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OneTime Test: Paragraph Summary- 1 - CAT MCQ


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10 Questions MCQ Test - OneTime Test: Paragraph Summary- 1

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OneTime Test: Paragraph Summary- 1 - Question 1

Totalitarianism is not always operated by diktat. It can be insinuated by suggestion and replication. Dissent does not have to be banned if it is countered by orchestrated mass promo rallies and hypnotizing oratory. Despotic establishments do not need to turn Hitlerian; all they need to do is to let the Reich chemistry work. Self-regulation and self-censorship will click in. Then any dissident who wants to retain his intellectual liberty will find himself thwarted by the general drift of society rather than by active persecution.

Detailed Solution for OneTime Test: Paragraph Summary- 1 - Question 1

The paragraph begins by stating that totalitarianism need not always be operated by issuing diktats or decrees and banning dissent; it can be brought in force just the same by “suggestion and replication?. How? By setting up mass promo rallies and captivating the audience with the power of their speech, despots can create the “Reich chemistry? without actually engaging in active persecution. The brainwashed society starts to self-censor and self-regulate itself, in line with the ideas implanted in the minds of the people. Dissenters, the paragraph argues, will find it hard to hold on to their intellectual liberty, as the “general drift of the society? will be against them.

Now let us look at the options and see which one sums up the paragraph best.

Option A: Totalitarianism is generally operated by undermining freedom of expression through active persecution and censorship.

The paragraph we have talks of how totalitarianism is insinuated by suggestion and replication to clamp down on dissent, whereas this option talks of a completely different idea. So we rule this option out.

Option B: Hypnotizing oratory and promo rallies can effectively counter dissent and lead to persecution of the masses.

The paragraph we have talks of promo rallies and hypnotizing oratory being used by totalitarian regimes to counter dissent. Option B talks of hypnotizing oratory and promo rallies leading to “persecution of the masses?. Clearly, this is not the idea conveyed in the paragraph and definitely does not summarize it.

Option C: Self-regulation and self-censorship in societies stifle freedom of expression.

Option C conveys one of the main ideas of the paragraph-stifling of intellectual liberty- but does not touch upon the other- how despotic establishments cynically exploit this. So it is good to check if there is a better option to summarize the paragraph.

Option D: Intellectual liberty does not have to be repressed by authority if there are self-appointed vigilantes to bully it into silence.

Clearly, this option summarizes the paragraph best. Dissent does not need to be put down by authority. By clever insinuation, despotic establishments can steer the society towards self-regulation and self-censorship. Any opposing ideas are bullied into silence by these self-appointed vigilantes.

The question is "Choose the option that summarizes the paragraph best "
Hence, the answer is D

OneTime Test: Paragraph Summary- 1 - Question 2

Modern history abounds with violence fueled by apocalyptic myths, not always explicitly religious in nature. The aim of the Jacobin terror in revolutionary France was the creation of a modern state. If the violent suppression of the peasant revolt in the Vendée is included, the casualties ran into the hundreds of thousands. The myths that possessed these anarchists in their campaigns of assassination were secular myths of social transformation. Lenin avowedly followed the Jacobin example when he used the Cheka to create a modern state in Russia. One of the factors that distinguished Nazism and fascism from conventional tyrannies was the belief that a new society could be fashioned by the systematic use of terror. Violent jihadism has more in common with these modern totalitarian movements than is commonly supposed.

Detailed Solution for OneTime Test: Paragraph Summary- 1 - Question 2

The paragraph given states that throughout modern history, several examples can be seen of violence fueled by apocalyptic myths, which are not blatantly religious in nature. Rather, what bolstered the violence was the myth of “social transformation? and creation of a “new society? or “modern state?. Be it the Jacobin terror in revolutionary France, or the use of the Cheka by Lenin in Russia or Nazism and fascism, terror has been justified on the promise of a new, transformed society. The paragraph concludes that violent jihadism has a lot in common with these modern totalitarian movements.

Now let us take a look at the options to see which one sums up the paragraph best:

Option A- Violent jihadism is justified on the secular myth of social transformation, rather than idea of religious apocalypse.

The paragraph we have argues that violent jihadism has a lot in common with the totalitarian movements in history which were powered by the promise of social transformation. But the paragraph does not say that violent jihadism is not based on the idea of religious apocalypse. Also, this option does not sum up the paragraph we have. So this is definitely ruled out.

Option B- The myth of social transformation has underpinned many totalitarian movements in modern history, and violent jihadism too exploits this.

This, clearly, is the main idea of the paragraph. Many totalitarian movements in modern history have been fueled by the myth of social transformation. Violent jihadism also draws on this idea. Option B summarizes the paragraph well.

Option C- Although it is believed that violence is fueled by religion, the reality is that it is unleashed on the premise of the creation of a modern state.

This option categorially rules out the idea that violence is fueled by religion. It claims that it is only unleashed on the premise of the creation of a modern state. This is not what the paragraph given states. It states that violence is fueled by apocalyptic myths which are “not always? explicitly religious. So we rule this option out.

Option D- Modern history illustrates that it is a myth that societies can be transformed by the systematic use of terror.

This option says that societies cannot be transformed by the systematic use of terror and that modern history confirms this. Clearly, this is not what the paragraph conveys and so this is not the right option to sum up the paragraph.

The question is "Choose the option that summarizes the paragraph best "
Hence, the answer is B

OneTime Test: Paragraph Summary- 1 - Question 3

When a language seems especially telegraphic (that is, requiring less to be actually said to put a sentence together), it is usually because enough adults learnt it at a certain stage in its history that, given the difficulty of learning a new language after childhood, it became a kind of stripped-down “schoolroom? version of itself. Because all languages, are, to some extent, busier than they need to be, this streamlining leaves the language thoroughly complex and nuanced, just lighter on the bric-a-brac that so many languages pant under. For example, Indonesian, one of the most economical languages in the world, is a first language to only one in four of its speakers; the language has been used for many centuries as a lingua franca in a vast region, imposed on speakers of several hundred languages. This means that while other languages can be like overgrown lawns, Indonesian’s grammar has been regularly mowed, such that especially the colloquial forms are tidier.

Detailed Solution for OneTime Test: Paragraph Summary- 1 - Question 3

The first line of the paragraph contains several ideas. Let’s break it down into parts:

First, a language is “telegraphic? when you need say less to put a sentence together.

Second, this is because a number of adults learnt it at a certain stage in its history.

Third, we know that adults find it difficult to learn a language after childhood. This is why the language became a stripped-down version of itself.

The paragraph then goes on to explain that all languages are “busier? than they need to be and “panting under bric-a brac?. That is, all languages have complexities that make one to do a lot of work to put a sentence together.

The paragraph cites the example of Indonesian to substantiate the point. When a language is forced on a lot of non-native speakers who are adults over a long period of time, it gets streamlined and nuanced. The grammar gets simplified and colloquial forms are “tidier?.

Now let us look at the options to see which one sums up the paragraph best:

Option A- When a language has been used for many centuries as the lingua franca in a vast region, it becomes especially telegraphic. This is not the idea of the paragraph. The paragraph tells us that when a language is forced over a long period of time on non-native speakers who are adults, it becomes telegraphic. It does not get telegraphic simply because it is the lingua franca of a vast region.

Option B- Languages become less "busy" and more nuanced when imposed over long periods of time on new people, who learn it as adults.

This is the crux of the paragraph given.

Option C- When more adults who are non-native speakers are forced, over time, to learn a language, its colloquial forms become cryptic.

This option states the exact opposite of what the paragraph conveys. The language does not become more cryptic, i.e obscure and hard to understand, but more telegraphic when more adults who are non-native speakers are forced, over time, to learn it.

Option D- In languages that have been spoken for centuries over vast regions, time and repetition wear words out, and what wears away is often a nugget of meaning.

This option points to ‘time’ and to ‘repetition’ as the factors which wear the words out in a language. The paragraph, on the other hand, talks of language grammar getting simplified due to non-native speakers being forced to use it over time. So this is not the right option to sum up the paragraph.

The question is "Choose the option that summarizes the paragraph best "
Hence, the answer is B

OneTime Test: Paragraph Summary- 1 - Question 4

Nineteenth-century liberals recognized that democracy comes in various forms, and dreaded the version advocated by Rousseau, in which an inspired lawgiver interprets and implements the will of the people. Nowadays such fears are dismissed as elitist. But the old-fashioned liberals grasped a vital truth: popular government has no necessary connection with the freedom of individuals or minorities. Of course, liberals today will say this can be remedied by installing the rule of constitutional rights. Such systems are fragile, however, and count for nothing when large sections of society are indifferent or actively hostile to liberal values. Where this is the case, democracy means not much more than the tyranny of the majority.

Detailed Solution for OneTime Test: Paragraph Summary- 1 - Question 4

Let us analyze the paragraph in detail.

19th century liberals "dreaded" the version of democracy advocated by Rousseau. What was Rousseau's version of democracy? It was one in which an "inspired" lawgiver interprets and implements "the will of the people". That is, in this version of democracy, the government is influenced by popular opinion in implementing policies.

The old-fashioned liberals dreaded this. Why? Because they realized that a “popular? or strong government backed by the majority has "no necessary connection" with minorities and the freedom of individuals.

Though constitutional rights may be put in place to protect the freedom of individuals and minorities, such systems are weak in societies which are hostile to liberal values. This is because, in such illiberal democracies, the "will of the people" equates to the tyranny of the majority, who are either indifferent or opposed to minorities. A government that is influenced by the “will of the people? in such societies is unlikely to protect the minorities.

Now let us look at the options given to see which one sums up the paragraph best:

Option A. Inspired lawgivers in liberal democracies are better equipped to interpret and implement the will of the people than in illiberal democracies.

We can rule this option out straight away, as this is not what the paragraph says. The paragraph does not talk about lawgivers in liberal democracies as better equipped to interpret the will of the people as compared to those in illiberal democracies.

Option B. Nineteenth-century liberals believed that democracy means not much more than the tyranny of the majority.

Again, this is not what the paragraph states. Nineteenth-century liberals only dreaded the version of democracy where the lawgiver declares himself to be the interpreter and implementer of the will of the people. They did not equate democracy to the tyranny of the majority.

Option C. Constitutional rights are fragile and ineffective in ensuring protection of the freedom of individuals in any democracy.

The paragraph does declare that constitutional rights are fragile and not effective in protecting freedom of individuals and minorities. But this is in the specific context where “when large sections of society are indifferent or actively hostile to liberal values?. That is, in illiberal democracies constitutional rights provide little by way of support to minorities. However, option C generalizes this to say that constitutional rights are fragile and infective in any democracy. This is not what the paragraph says.

Option D. Popular governments in illiberal democracies use the power of the majority to clamp down on the freedom of minorities.

This option sums up the main idea of the paragraph best. In illiberal democracies, where the majority is indifferent or actively hostile to liberal values, popular governments use the power of majority to clamp down on the freedom of minorities.

The question is "Choose the option that summarizes the paragraph best "
Hence, the answer is D

OneTime Test: Paragraph Summary- 1 - Question 5

Cheapness and its cinematic markers, such as hand-held camera work and low or high-contrast light, aren’t themselves guarantors of a tone of artistic authenticity. In fact, they’re often misused by filmmakers short of inspiration as badges of sincerity that take the place of actual artistry. The theatrical realism of many older, ostensibly classic movies have dated terribly and reflect the very exclusions and compromises of the system that produced them. Only the ingenious exertions and inventions of a slender minority of great filmmakers could circumvent and override them. Yet, critics fetishize the styles of studio-era movies and take them for an enduring and immutable aesthetic standard – as if, with an appreciation of Shakespeare came a comparable fixation on lesser Elizabethans and a disdain for latter-day dramatists for not writing in iambic pentameter.

Detailed Solution for OneTime Test: Paragraph Summary- 1 - Question 5

This paragraph is about movies of the “studio-era?, produced on low budgets, using techniques such as hand-held camera work and low or high-contrast light. The paragraph argues that these cinematic markers alone are not enough to claim that the movie is authentic and artistic. In fact, only great filmmakers, using their extraordinary skills and genius, could overcome the deficiencies of these production methods and make exceptional movies. The paragraph declares that filmmakers who are short of ideas often use techniques such as low light or handheld camera word to falsely project themselves as artistic. Critics too fixate on the styles of studio-era filmmaking, assuming these set the highest artistic and aesthetic standard. However, this is not correct. To think so is to say that an appreciation for Shakespeare implies an equal fixation on “lesser Elizabethans? (Shakespeare’s contemporaries) and disdain for later-day dramatists, just because they do not write in iambic pentameter (Shakespeare’s style).

Let us see the options one-by-one to see which one summarizes the paragraph best:

Option A. Nostalgia for movies as they were made in the past converges to nostalgic exaltation of their production methods.

From what the paragraph says, we know that the above is true. However, this does not fully summarize the main idea of the paragraph, which argues emphatically that this nostalgia is misplaced. So option A is not the right one to sum up the paragraph as it only partially covers the main idea of the paragraph.

Option B. Rather than imitating the styles of studio-era movies in a bid to achieve artistic authenticity, filmmakers need to focus on inventive ideas and realistic themes.

The paragraph given does talk about filmmakers trying to copy the styles of studio-era movies, as if this alone is enough to declare their work as artistic. However, the focus of the paragraph is not what filmmakers need to do. Rather, the focus is on the mistaken notion that low budget filmmaking of the studio-era is an immutable standard for artistic authenticity. Further, the paragraph makes no mention of the need for filmmakers to center their attention on “realistic themes? as mentioned in the line above. So option B is not the right one to sum up the paragraph.

Option C. Only the brilliance and resourcefulness of small minority of great filmmakers could overcome the hurdles posed by budget constraints in studio-era movies.

Again, the paragraph does say this, but this is not the main idea of the paragraph and certainly does not summarize it.

Option D. The veneration of the styles and production methods of low-budget movies of the studio-era as the ideal aesthetic standard is misguided.

The whole point of the paragraph is to say that the undue fetish for the styles and production of low-budget movies of the studio-era and the idea that this is the immutable artistic standard is misguided. So this is the right option to sum up the paragraph.

OneTime Test: Paragraph Summary- 1 - Question 6

A recent study, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, has shown that high-level mathematical reasoning rests on a set of brain areas that do not overlap with the classical left-hemisphere regions involved in verbal semantics. Instead, all domains of mathematics tested (algebra, analysis, geometry, and topology) recruit a bilateral network, of prefrontal, parietal, and inferior temporal regions, which is also activated when mathematicians or non-mathematicians recognize and manipulate numbers mentally. These results suggest that high-level mathematical thinking makes minimal use of language areas and instead recruits circuits initially involved in space and number. This result may explain why knowledge of number and space, during early childhood, predicts mathematical achievement.

Detailed Solution for OneTime Test: Paragraph Summary- 1 - Question 6

The key ideas of the paragraph are:

  1. High level mathematical expertise makes only minimal use of 'language' areas of the brain.
  2. Knowledge of number and space in early childhood predicts mathematical achievement.
  3. High level mathematical uses circuits initially involved in understanding of space and number.

Now, let us see which of the given answer options captures all these ideas:

Option A- High-level mathematical expertise and basic number sense share common roots in a non-linguistic brain circuit.

This option seems to convey all the three key ideas in the paragraph, summarising it well. High level mathematical thinking uses a non-linguistic circuit, and shares common roots with basic number sense.

Option B- Regardless of domain- algebra, analysis,geometry or topology- mathematicians recognize and manipulate numbers mentally.

This is not an idea that features in the paragraph.

Option C- Classic left-hemisphere regions involved in verbal semantics are not as well developed in mathematicians as the brain areas involving number and space.

The paragraph does not suggest that mathematicians do not have good language abilities. It merely states that language ability is not required for high level mathematics.

Option D- The mathematical achievement of an individual can be predicted based on his knowledge of number, space and language during childhood.

Option D includes language capability along with 'knowledge of number and space' as an indicator of mathematical achievement in adult life, whereas the paragraph clearly states that mathematical achievement is not dependant on language.

So option (A) is the best option to summarize the paragraph.

The question is "Choose the option that summarizes the paragraph best "
Hence, the answer is A

OneTime Test: Paragraph Summary- 1 - Question 7

Since the Holocaust is an axial event of modern history, its misunderstanding turns our minds in the wrong direction. When the Holocaust is blamed on the modern state, the weakening of state authority appears salutary. On the political right, the erosion of state power by international capitalism seems natural; on the political left, rudderless revolutions portray themselves as virtuous. In the 21st century, anarchical protest movements join in a friendly tussle with global oligarchy, in which neither side can be hurt since both see the real enemy as the state. Both the left and the right tend to fear order rather than its destruction or absence.

Detailed Solution for OneTime Test: Paragraph Summary- 1 - Question 7

The paragraph asserts that we have misunderstood the reason for the Holocaust, blaming it on the modern state. In fact, it was the weakening of state authority that led to the Holocaust. However, given the misconception that the Holocaust was due to a powerful state, we accept the erosion of state authority by international capitalism on the right and rudderless protest movements on the left as something quite natural. Both the right and the left fear the order that a strong state can bring forth.

Now, let us look at the options to sum up the paragraph:

Option A- The Holocaust was a result of an all-powerful state, which forced order through fear and crushed dissent from both the political right and the political left.

This contradicts the main idea of the paragraph. So we rule this option out right away.

Option B- Following the Holocaust, the power of the state has been systematically eroded by international capitalism and rudderless revolutions, as both the right and the left fear order more than its absence.

While the part of the sentence about the right and the left fearing order is true according to the paragraph, this option talks of the weakening of state power as something that has happened “following the Holocaust?. The paragraph given, however, argues that the Holocaust itself was the result of weakening of state power. So this is not the right option to sum up the paragraph.

Option C- The weakened state is the fundamental reason for disorder in the world, be it anarchical uprisings, global oligarchy or the Holocaust.

This option sums up the paragraph well. Anarchical uprisings and global oligarchy are possible only in the absence of order that a strong state can command. Weakening of state authority led to the Holocaust.

Option D- The Holocaust is not to be blamed on the modern state, but on the tussle between the political right and the political left.

While the first part of the above statement is true according to the paragraph, the second part, that the Holocaust is to be blamed on the tussle between the right and left is incorrect.

The question is "Choose the option that summarizes the paragraph best "
Hence, the answer is C

OneTime Test: Paragraph Summary- 1 - Question 8

Journalism may never have been as public-spirited an enterprise as editors and writers liked to think it was. Yet the myth mattered. It pushed journalism to challenge power; it made journalists loath to bend to the whims of their audience; it provided a crucial sense of detachment. The new generation of media giants that dominates journalism today has no patience for the old ethos of detachment. It’s not that these companies don’t have aspirations toward journalistic greatness. BuzzFeed, Vice, and the Huffington Post invest in excellent reporting and employ first-rate journalists—and they have produced some of the most memorable pieces of investigative journalism in this century. But in the pursuit of audience, they have allowed the endless feedback loop of the web to shape their editorial sensibility and determine their editorial investments.

Detailed Solution for OneTime Test: Paragraph Summary- 1 - Question 8

The paragraph given argues that though journalism may have never been as public-spirited as it believed itself to be, the myth of detachment mattered, as it encouraged journalistic ideals such as standing up to power and not bending to the whims of the audience. In contrast, the guiding ethos of media giants that dominate journalism today is not detachment or editorial sensibility, but the relentless pursuit of the audience.

Option (C) sums up the main idea of the paragraph the best.

Option (A) talks of ‘editorial insight’ being engineered with the help of audience feedback loops. The paragraph, on the other hand talks of editorial sensibility/discernment, and expresses concern that media giants, in their single-minded focus on audience, have dashed the “crucial? myth of detachment that shaped journalism earlier. Option A does not touch upon this.

Option (B) is close, but incorrect, as it refers to “social-consciousness? that journalism exhibited earlier. The paragraph categorically states that journalism was never as public-spirited as it imagined itself to be.

Option (D) talks of a drop in the quality of journalism. The paragraph actually states the contrary. It only holds that editorial sensibility has been compromised.

The question is "Choose the option that summarizes the paragraph best "
Hence, the answer is C

OneTime Test: Paragraph Summary- 1 - Question 9

Much has rightly been made of the problem of political polarisation, but not nearly as much has been said about the problem of political homogenisation. Both are toxic to public discourse. While the former makes for awkward conversations at the family dinner table, the latter buries difficult conversations. Where agreement is sought without a decent discussion, opinion corridors form, limiting the range of ideas tolerated in public discourse. Where all views are not heard in appropriate discussion, the only alternative is inappropriate discussion. And populist rhetoric cuts through this muffled discussion culture like a hot knife through butter, as the pent-up need to be heard surfaces.

Detailed Solution for OneTime Test: Paragraph Summary- 1 - Question 9

The paragraph argues that political homogenisation is as toxic to public discourse as political polarisation. To support this, the paragraph puts forth two main points. The first one is that where agreement is sought without a "decent" or "appropriate" discussion, there are "opinion corridors". The ideas tolerated in public discourse get limited and discussion is subdued. The second point the paragraph makes is that when a culture buries difficult conversations, it sets the stage for the rise of populism as populist rhetoric resonates with those segments of the population that have a pent up need to be heard.

Option B captures both these ideas, and is the best one to sum up the paragraph.

Option A talks of "political ambivalence". This is not discussed in the paragraph.

Option C is very close, but while it speaks of one of the ideas in the paragraph, it doesn't touch upon the point about populist rhetoric.

That political polarisation leads to populism is not clear from this paragraph. So, option D is incorrect.

The question is "Choose the option that summarizes the paragraph best "
Hence, the answer is B

OneTime Test: Paragraph Summary- 1 - Question 10

Though they do not involve burning dirty fossil fuels, hydropower projects are not emissions free. Often, large dams flood vast vegetated areas. As a result, the vegetation rots under water. Eventually, this leads to the release of methane, a greenhouse gas 34 times as potent as carbon dioxide. In some cases, large dams can result in even more lifetime greenhouse gas emissions than equivalent conventional sources. And this does not even include the emissions resulting from the construction of such dams – cement and equipment-heavy projects that usually take several years to build.

Detailed Solution for OneTime Test: Paragraph Summary- 1 - Question 10

The main idea of the given paragraph is that hydropower projects are not emissions free. To support this argument, the paragraph cites evidence: methane is released by rotting vegetation and emissions are released during the years the dam is under construction.

Now, option A states that large hydropower projects contribute "more" to climate change than fossil fuel plants. The paragraph merely states that "in some cases" large dams can result in even more lifetime greenhouse gas emissions than equivalent conventional sources. Also, "climate change" is not talked about here. So, option A is ruled out.

Similarly, option D states that hydropower is "comparable" to more conventional sources of energy in terms of greenhouse gas costs. The paragraph does not try to compare the amount or nature of emissions resulting from hydropower projects to emissions from conventional sources. It only argues that hydropower is not emissions free. So, option D is also ruled out.

Now, between options B and C, while C is clearly true, it doesn't touch upon the emissions released during dam construction. It is therefore not a good option to sum up the paragraph.

Option B states the main idea: large dams result in significant greenhouse gas emissions. As to hydropower not being a "clean" source of energy, the paragraph does state that while hydropower projects do not involve burning "dirty" fossil fuels, they are not emissions free. The implication is that hydropower is not a clean source of energy. So, of the given options, B summarizes the given paragraph best.

The question is "Choose the option that summarizes the paragraph best "
Hence, the answer is B

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