Comprehension. 1

Directions for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly

[There is] a curious new reality: Human contact is becoming a luxury good. As more screens appear in the lives of the poor, screens are disappearing from the lives of the rich. The richer you are, the more you spend to be off-screen. . . .  

The joy — at least at first — of the internet revolution was its democratic nature. Facebook is the same Facebook whether you are rich or poor. Gmail is the same Gmail. And it’s all free. There is something mass market and unappealing about that. And as studies show that time on these advertisement-support platforms is unhealthy, it all starts to seem déclassé, like drinking soda or smoking cigarettes, which wealthy people do less than poor people.  The wealthy can afford to opt out of having their data and their attention sold as a product. The poor and middle class don’t have the same kind of resources to make that happen.

Screen exposure starts young. And children who spent more than two hours a day looking at a screen got lower scores on thinking and language tests, according to early results of a landmark study on brain development of more than 11,000 children that the National Institutes of Health is supporting. Most disturbingly, the study is finding that the brains of children who spend a lot of time on screens are different. For some kids, there is premature thinning of their cerebral cortex. In adults, one study found an association between screen time and depression. . . .

Tech companies worked hard to get public schools to buy into programs that required schools to have one laptop per student, arguing that it would better prepare children for their screen-based future. But this idea isn’t how the people who actually build the screen-based future raise their own children. In Silicon Valley, time on screens is increasingly seen as unhealthy. Here, the popular elementary school is the local Waldorf School, which promises a back-to-nature, nearly screen-free education. So as wealthy kids are growing up with less screen time, poor kids are growing up with more. How comfortable someone is with human engagement could become a new class marker.

Human contact is, of course, not exactly like organic food . . . . But with screen time, there has been a concerted effort on the part of Silicon Valley behemoths to confuse the public. The poor and the middle class are told that screens are good and important for them and their children. There are fleets of psychologists and neuroscientists on staff at big tech companies working to hook eyes and minds to the screen as fast as possible and for as long as possible. And so human contact is rare. . . . 

There is a small movement to pass a “right to disconnect” bill, which would allow workers to turn their phones off, but for now a worker can be punished for going offline and not being available. There is also the reality that in our culture of increasing isolation, in which so many of the traditional gathering places and social structures have disappeared, screens are filling a crucial void.

Question. 1

The author claims that Silicon Valley tech companies have tried to “confuse the public” by:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

The author is least likely to agree with the view that the increase in screen-time is fuelled by the fact that:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

The statement “The richer you are, the more you spend to be off-screen” is supported by which other line from the passage?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

Which of the following statements about the negative effects of screen time is the author least likely to endorse?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 2

Directions for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly

Although one of the most contested concepts in political philosophy, human nature is something on which most people seem to agree. By and large, according to Rutger Bregman in his new book Humankind, we have a rather pessimistic view – not of ourselves exactly, but of everyone else. We see other people as selfish, untrustworthy and dangerous and therefore we behave towards them with defensiveness and suspicion. This was how the 17th-century philosopher Thomas Hobbes conceived our natural state to be, believing that all that stood between us and violent anarchy was a strong state and firm leadership.

But in following Hobbes, argues Bregman, we ensure that the negative view we have of human nature is reflected back at us. He instead puts his faith in Jean-Jacques Rousseau, the 18th-century French thinker, who famously declared that man was born free and it was civilisation – with its coercive powers, social classes and restrictive laws – that put him in chains.

Hobbes and Rousseau are seen as the two poles of the human nature argument and it’s no surprise that Bregman strongly sides with the Frenchman. He takes Rousseau’s intuition and paints a picture of a prelapsarian idyll in which, for the better part of 300,000 years, Homo sapiens lived a fulfilling life in harmony with nature . . . Then we discovered agriculture and for the next 10,000 years it was all property, war, greed and injustice. . . . 

It was abandoning our nomadic lifestyle and then domesticating animals, says Bregman, that brought about infectious diseases such as measles, smallpox, tuberculosis, syphilis, malaria, cholera and plague. This may be true, but what Bregman never really seems to get to grips with is that pathogens were not the only things that grew with agriculture – so did the number of humans. It’s one thing to maintain friendly relations and a property-less mode of living when you’re 30 or 40 hunter-gatherers following the food. But life becomes a great deal more complex and knowledge far more extensive when there are settlements of many thousands. 

“Civilisation has become synonymous with peace and progress and wilderness with war and decline,” writes Bregman. “In reality, for most of human existence, it was the other way around.” Whereas traditional history depicts the collapse of civilisations as “dark ages” in which everything gets worse, modern scholars, he claims, see them more as a reprieve, in which the enslaved gain their freedom and culture flourishes. Like much else in this book, the truth is probably somewhere between the two stated positions.

In any case, the fear of civilisational collapse, Bregman believes, is unfounded. It’s the result of what the Dutch biologist Frans de Waal calls “veneer theory” – the idea that just below the surface, our bestial nature is waiting to break out. . . . There’s a great deal of reassuring human decency to be taken from this bold and thought-provoking book and a wealth of evidence in support of the contention that the sense of who we are as a species has been deleteriously distorted. But it seems equally misleading to offer the false choice of Rousseau and Hobbes when, clearly, humanity encompasses both.

Question. 1

According to the author, the main reason why Bregman contrasts life in pre-agricultural societies with agricultural societies is to:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

None of the following views is expressed in the passage EXCEPT that:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

According to the passage, the “collapse of civilisations” is viewed by Bregman as:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

The author has differing views from Bregman regarding:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 3

Directions for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly

Aggression is any behavior that is directed toward injuring, harming, or inflicting pain on another living being or group of beings. Generally, the victim(s) of aggression must wish to avoid such behavior in order for it to be considered true aggression. Aggression is also categorized according to its ultimate intent. Hostile aggression is an aggressive act that results from anger, and is intended to inflict pain or injury because of that anger. Instrumental aggression is an aggressive act that is regarded as a means to an end other than pain or injury. For example, an enemy combatant may be subjected to torture in order to extract useful intelligence, though those inflicting the torture may have no real feelings of anger or animosity toward their subject. The concept of aggression is very broad, and includes many categories of behavior (e.g., verbal aggression, street crime, child abuse, spouse abuse, group conflict, war, etc.). A number of theories and models of aggression have arisen to explain these diverse forms of behavior, and these theories/models tend to be categorized according to their specific focus. The most common system of categorization groups the various approaches to aggression into three separate areas, based upon the three key variables that are present whenever any aggressive act or set of acts is committed. The first variable is the aggressor him/herself. The second is the social situation or circumstance in which the aggressive act(s) occur. The third variable is the target or victim of aggression.

Regarding theories and research on the aggressor, the fundamental focus is on the factors that lead an individual (or group) to commit aggressive acts. At the most basic level, some argue that aggressive urges and actions are the result of inborn, biological factors. Sigmund Freud (1930) proposed that all individuals are born with a death instinct that predisposes us to a variety of aggressive behaviors, including suicide (self directed aggression) and mental illness (possibly due to an unhealthy or unnatural suppression of aggressive urges). Other influential perspectives supporting a biological basis for aggression conclude that humans evolved with an abnormally low neural inhibition of aggressive impulses (in comparison to other species), and that humans possess a powerful instinct for property accumulation and territorialism. It is proposed that this instinct accounts for hostile behaviors ranging from minor street crime to world wars. Hormonal factors also appear to play a significant role in fostering aggressive tendencies. For example, the hormone testosterone has been shown to increase aggressive behaviors when injected into animals. Men and women convicted of violent crimes also possess significantly higher levels of testosterone than men and women convicted of non violent crimes. Numerous studies comparing different age groups, racial/ethnic groups, and cultures also indicate that men, overall, are more likely to engage in a variety of aggressive behaviors (e.g., sexual assault, aggravated assault, etc.) than women. One explanation for higher levels of aggression in men is based on the assumption that, on average, men have higher levels of testosterone than women.

Question. 1

The author discusses all of the following arguments in the passage EXCEPT that:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

The author identifies three essential factors according to which theories of aggression are most commonly categorised. Which of the following options is closest to the factors identified by the author?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

All of the following statements can be seen as logically implied by the arguments of the passage EXCEPT:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

“[A]n enemy combatant may be subjected to torture in order to extract useful intelligence, though those inflicting the torture may have no real feelings of anger or animosity toward their subject.” Which one of the following best explicates the larger point being made by the author here?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 4

Directions for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly

The passage below is accompanied by a set of questions. Choose the best answer to each question.

The claims advanced here may be condensed into two assertions: [first, that visual] culture is what images, acts of seeing, and attendant intellectual, emotional, and perceptual sensibilities do to build, maintain, or transform the worlds in which people live. [And second, that the] study of visual culture is the analysis and interpretation of images and the ways of seeing (or gazes) that configure the agents, practices, conceptualities, and institutions that put images to work. . . .

Accordingly, the study of visual culture should be characterized by several concerns. First, scholars of visual culture need to examine any and all imagery – high and low, art and nonart. . . . They must not restrict themselves to objects of a particular beauty or aesthetic value. Indeed, any kind of imagery may be found to offer up evidence of the visual construction of reality. . . . 

Second, the study of visual culture must scrutinize visual practice as much as images themselves, asking what images do when they are put to use. If scholars engaged in this enterprise inquire what makes an image beautiful or why this image or that constitutes a masterpiece or a work of genius, they should do so with the purpose of investigating an artist’s or a work’s contribution to the experience of beauty, taste, value, or genius. No amount of social analysis can account fully for the existence of Michelangelo or Leonardo. They were unique creators of images that changed the way their contemporaries thought and felt and have continued to shape the history of art, artists, museums, feeling, and aesthetic value. But study of the critical, artistic, and popular reception of works by such artists as Michelangelo and Leonardo can shed important light on the meaning of these artists and their works for many different people. And the history of meaning-making has a great deal to do with how scholars as well as lay audiences today understand these artists and their achievements. 

Third, scholars studying visual culture might properly focus their interpretative work on lifeworlds by examining images, practices, visual technologies, taste, and artistic style as constitutive of social relations. The task is to understand how artifacts contribute to the construction of a world. . . . Important methodological implications follow: ethnography and reception studies become productive forms of gathering information, since these move beyond the image as a closed and fixed meaning-event. . . .

Fourth, scholars may learn a great deal when they scrutinize the constituents of vision, that is, the structures of perception as a physiological process as well as the epistemological frameworks informing a system of visual representation. Vision is a socially and a biologically constructed operation, depending on the design of the human body and how it engages the interpretive devices developed by a culture in order to see intelligibly. . . . Seeing . . . operates on the foundation of covenants with images that establish the conditions for meaningful visual experience. 

Finally, the scholar of visual culture seeks to regard images as evidence for explanation, not as epiphenomena.  

 

Question. 1

Which set of keywords below most closely captures the arguments of the passage?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

“Seeing . . . operates on the foundation of covenants with images that establish the conditions for meaningful visual experience.” In light of the passage, which one of the following statements best conveys the meaning of this sentence?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

“No amount of social analysis can account fully for the existence of Michelangelo or Leonardo.” In light of the passage, which one of the following interpretations of this sentence is the most accurate?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

All of the following statements may be considered valid inferences from the passage, EXCEPT:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 5

Which one of the following best describes the word “epiphenomena” in the last sentence of the passage?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 5

Directions for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly

Vocabulary used in speech or writing organizes itself in seven parts of speech (eight, if you count interjections such as Oh! and Gosh! and Fuhgeddaboudit!). Communication composed of these parts of speech must be organized by rules of grammar upon which we agree. When these rules break down, confusion and misunderstanding result. Bad grammar produces bad sentences. My favorite example from Strunk and White is this one: “As a mother of five, with another one on the way, my ironing board is always up.”

Nouns and verbs are the two indispensable parts of writing. Without one of each, no group of words can be a sentence, since a sentence is, by definition, a group of words containing a subject (noun) and a predicate (verb); these strings of words begin with a capital letter, end with a period, and combine to make a complete thought which starts in the writer’s head and then leaps to the reader’s.

Must you write complete sentences each time, every time? Perish the thought. If your work consists only of fragments and floating clauses, the Grammar Police aren’t going to come and take you away. Even William Strunk, that Mussolini of rhetoric, recognized the delicious pliability of language. “It is an old observation,” he writes, “that the best writers sometimes disregard the rules of rhetoric.” Yet he goes on to add this thought, which I urge you to consider: “Unless he is certain of doing well, [the writer] will probably do best to follow the rules.”

The telling clause here is Unless he is certain of doing well. If you don’t have a rudimentary grasp of how the parts of speech translate into coherent sentences, how can you be certain that you are doing well? How will you know if you’re doing ill, for that matter? The answer, of course, is that you can’t, you won’t. One who does grasp the rudiments of grammar finds a comforting simplicity at its heart, where there need be only nouns, the words that name, and verbs, the words that act.

Take any noun, put it with any verb, and you have a sentence. It never fails. Rocks explode. Jane transmits. Mountains float. These are all perfect sentences. Many such thoughts make little rational sense, but even the stranger ones (Plums deify!) have a kind of poetic weight that’s nice. The simplicity of noun-verb construction is useful—at the very least it can provide a safety net for your writing. Strunk and White caution against too many simple sentences in a row, but simple sentences provide a path you can follow when you fear getting lost in the tangles of rhetoric—all those restrictive and nonrestrictive clauses, those modifying phrases, those appositives and compound-complex sentences. If you start to freak out at the sight of such unmapped territory (unmapped by you, at least), just remind yourself that rocks explode, Jane transmits, mountains float, and plums deify. Grammar is . . . the pole you grab to get your thoughts up on their feet and walking.

Question. 1

Inferring from the passage, the author could be most supportive of which one of the following practices?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

“Take any noun, put it with any verb, and you have a sentence. It never fails. Rocks explode. Jane transmits. Mountains float.” None of the following statements can be seen as similar EXCEPT:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

All of the following statements can be inferred from the passage EXCEPT that:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

Which one of the following statements, if false, could be seen as supporting the arguments in the passage?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 5

Which one of the following quotes best captures the main concern of the passage?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 6

Directions for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly

The word ‘anarchy’ comes from the Greek anarkhia, meaning contrary to authority or without a ruler, and was used in a derogatory sense until 1840, when it was adopted by Pierre-Joseph Proudhon to describe his political and social ideology. Proudhon argued that organization without government was both possible and desirable. In the evolution of political ideas, anarchism can be seen as an ultimate projection of both liberalism and socialism, and the differing strands of anarchist thought can be related to their emphasis on one or the other of these. 

Historically, anarchism arose not only as an explanation of the gulf between the rich and the poor in any community, and of the reason why the poor have been obliged to fight for their share of a common inheritance, but as a radical answer to the question ‘What went wrong?’ that followed the ultimate outcome of the French Revolution. It had ended not only with a reign of terror and the emergence of a newly rich ruling caste, but with a new adored emperor, Napoleon Bonaparte, strutting through his conquered territories.

The anarchists and their precursors were unique on the political Left in affirming that workers and peasants, grasping the chance that arose to bring an end to centuries of exploitation and tyranny, were inevitably betrayed by the new class of politicians, whose first priority was to re-establish a centralized state power. After every revolutionary uprising, usually won at a heavy cost for ordinary populations, the new rulers had no hesitation in applying violence and terror, a secret police, and a professional army to maintain their control.

For anarchists the state itself is the enemy, and they have applied the same interpretation to the outcome of every revolution of the 19th and 20th centuries. This is not merely because every state keeps a watchful and sometimes punitive eye on its dissidents, but because every state protects the privileges of the powerful.

The mainstream of anarchist propaganda for more than a century has been anarchist-communism, which argues that property in land, natural resources, and the means of production should be held in mutual control by local communities, federating for innumerable joint purposes with other communes. It differs from state socialism in opposing the concept of any central authority. Some anarchists prefer to distinguish between anarchist-communism and collectivist anarchism in order to stress the obviously desirable freedom of an individual or family to possess the resources needed for living, while not implying the right to own the resources needed by others. . . . 

There are, unsurprisingly, several traditions of individualist anarchism, one of them deriving from the ‘conscious egoism’ of the German writer Max Stirner (1806–56), and another from a remarkable series of 19th-century American figures who argued that in protecting our own autonomy and associating with others for common advantages, we are promoting the good of all. These thinkers differed from free-market liberals in their absolute mistrust of American capitalism, and in their emphasis on mutualism. 

Question. 1

Of the following sets of concepts, identify the set that is conceptually closest to the concerns of the passage.

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

The author believes that the new ruling class of politicians betrayed the principles of the French Revolution, but does not specify in what way. In the context of the passage, which statement below is the likeliest explanation of that betrayal?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

According to the passage, what is the one idea that is common to all forms of anarchism?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

The author makes all of the following arguments in the passage, EXCEPT:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 5

Which one of the following best expresses the similarity between American individualist anarchists and free-market liberals as well as the difference between the former and the latter?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 7

Directions for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly

British colonial policy . . . went through two policy phases, or at least there were two strategies between which its policies actually oscillated, sometimes to its great advantage. At first, the new colonial apparatus exercised caution, and occupied India by a mix of military power and subtle diplomacy, the high ground in the middle of the circle of circles. This, however, pushed them into contradictions. For, whatever their sense of the strangeness of the country and the thinness of colonial presence, the British colonial state represented the great conquering discourse of Enlightenment rationalism, entering India precisely at the moment of its greatest unchecked arrogance. As inheritors and representatives of this discourse, which carried everything before it, this colonial state could hardly adopt for long such a self-denying attitude. It had restructured everything in Europe—the productive system, the political regimes, the moral and cognitive orders—and would do the same in India, particularly as some empirically inclined theorists of that generation considered the colonies a massive laboratory of utilitarian or other theoretical experiments. Consequently, the colonial state could not settle simply for eminence at the cost of its marginality; it began to take initiatives to introduce the logic of modernity into Indian society. But this modernity did not enter a passive society. Sometimes, its initiatives were resisted by pre-existing structural forms. At times, there was a more direct form of collective resistance. Therefore the map of continuity and discontinuity that this state left behind at the time of independence was rather complex and has to be traced with care.

Most significantly, of course, initiatives for . . . modernity came to assume an external character. The acceptance of modernity came to be connected, ineradicably, with subjection. This again points to two different problems, one theoretical, the other political. Theoretically, because modernity was externally introduced, it is explanatorily unhelpful to apply the logical format of the ‘transition process’ to this pattern of change. Such a logical format would be wrong on two counts. First, however subtly, it would imply that what was proposed to be built was something like European capitalism. (And, in any case, historians have forcefully argued that what it was to replace was not like feudalism, with or without modificatory adjectives.) But, more fundamentally, the logical structure of endogenous change does not apply here. Here transformation agendas attack as an external force. This externality is not something that can be casually mentioned and forgotten. It is inscribed on every move, every object, every proposal, every legislative act, each line of causality. It comes to be marked on the epoch itself. This repetitive emphasis on externality should not be seen as a nationalist initiative that is so well rehearsed in Indian social science. . . .

Quite apart from the externality of the entire historical proposal of modernity, some of its contents were remarkable. . . . Economic reforms, or rather alterations . . . did not foreshadow the construction of a classical capitalist economy, with its necessary emphasis on extractive and transport sectors. What happened was the creation of a degenerate version of capitalism—what early dependency theorists called the ‘development of underdevelopment’.

Question. 1

Which of the following observations is a valid conclusion to draw from the author’s statement that “the logical structure of endogenous change does not apply here. Here transformation agendas attack as an external force”?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

Which one of the following 5-word sequences best captures the flow of the arguments in the passage?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

“Consequently, the colonial state could not settle simply for eminence at the cost of its marginality; it began to take initiatives to introduce the logic of modernity into Indian society.” Which of the following best captures the sense of this statement?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

All of the following statements, if true, could be seen as supporting the arguments in the passage, EXCEPT:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 5

All of the following statements about British colonialism can be inferred from the first paragraph, EXCEPT that it:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 8

Directions for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly

War, natural disasters and climate change are destroying some of the world's most precious cultural sites. Google is trying to help preserve these archaeological wonders by allowing users access to 3D images of these treasures through its site.
But the project is raising questions about Google's motivations and about who should own the digital copyrights. Some critics call it a form of "digital colonialism."
When it comes to archaeological treasures, the losses have been mounting. ISIS blew up parts of the ancient city of Palmyra in Syria and an earthquake hit Bagan, an ancient city in Myanmar, damaging dozens of temples, in 2016. In the past, all archaeologists and historians had for restoration and research were photos, drawings, remnants and intuition.
But that's changing. Before the earthquake at Bagan, many of the temples on the site were scanned. . . . [These] scans . . . are on Google's Arts & Culture site. The digital renditions allow viewers to virtually wander the halls of the temple, look up-close at paintings and turn the building over, to look up at its chambers. . . . [Google Arts & Culture] works with museums and other nonprofits . . . to put high-quality images online.
The images of the temples in Bagan are part of a collaboration with CyArk, a nonprofit that creates the 3D scanning of historic sites. . . . Google . . . says [it] doesn't make money off this website, but it fits in with Google's mission to make the world's information available and useful.
Critics say the collaboration could be an attempt by a large corporation to wrap itself in the sheen of culture. Ethan Watrall, an archaeologist, professor at Michigan State University and a member of the Society for American Archaeology, says he's not comfortable with the arrangement between CyArk and Google. . . . Watrall says this project is just a way for Google to promote Google. "They want to make this material accessible so people will browse it and be filled with wonder by it," he says. "But at its core, it's all about advertisements and driving traffic." Watrall says these images belong on the site of a museum or educational institution, where there is serious scholarship and a very different mission. . . .
[There's] another issue for some archaeologists and art historians. CyArk owns the copyrights of the scans — not the countries where these sites are located. That means the countries need CyArk's permission to use these images for commercial purposes.
Erin Thompson, a professor of art crime at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York City, says it's the latest example of a Western nation appropriating a foreign culture, a centuries-long battle. . . . CyArk says it copyrights the scans so no one can use them in an inappropriate way. The company says it works closely with authorities during the process, even training local people to help. But critics like Thompson are not persuaded. . . . She would prefer the scans to be owned by the countries and people where these sites are located.

Question. 1

Of the following arguments, which one is LEAST likely to be used by the companies that digitally scan cultural sites?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

In Dr. Thompson’s view, CyArk owning the copyright of its digital scans of archaeological sites is akin to:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

Which of the following, if true, would most strongly invalidate Dr. Watrall’s objections?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

By “digital colonialism”, critics of the CyArk–Google project are referring to the fact that:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 5

Based on his views mentioned in the passage, one could best characterise Dr. Watrall as being:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 9

Directions for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly

As defined by the geographer Yi-Fu Tuan, topophilia is the affective bond between people and place. His 1974 book set forth a wide-ranging exploration of how the emotive ties with the material environment vary greatly from person to person and in intensity, subtlety, and mode of expression. Factors influencing one’s depth of response to the environment include cultural background, gender, race, and historical circumstance, and Tuan also argued that there is a biological and sensory element. Topophilia might not be the strongest of human emotions— indeed, many people feel utterly indifferent toward the environments that shape their lives— but when activated it has the power to elevate a place to become the carrier of emotionally charged events or to be perceived as a symbol.

Aesthetic appreciation is one way in which people respond to the environment. A brilliantly colored rainbow after gloomy afternoon showers, a busy city street alive with human interaction—one might experience the beauty of such landscapes that had seemed quite ordinary only moments before or that are being newly discovered. This is quite the opposite of a second topophilic bond, namely that of the acquired taste for certain landscapes and places that one knows well. When a place is home, or when a space has become the locus of memories or the means of gaining a livelihood, it frequently evokes a deeper set of attachments than those predicated purely on the visual. A third response to the environment also depends on the human senses but may be tactile and olfactory, namely a delight in the feel and smell of air, water, and the earth.

Topophilia—and its very close conceptual twin, sense of place—is an experience that, however elusive, has inspired recent architects and planners. Most notably, new urbanism seeks to counter the perceived placelessness of modern suburbs and the decline of central cities through neo-traditional design motifs. Although motivated by good intentions, such attempts to create places rich in meaning are perhaps bound to disappoint. As Tuan noted, purely aesthetic responses often are suddenly revealed, but their intensity rarely is long- lasting. Topophilia is difficult to design for and impossible to quantify, and its most articulate interpreters have been self-reflective philosophers such as Henry David Thoreau, evoking a marvelously intricate sense of place at Walden Pond, and Tuan, describing his deep affinity for the desert.

Topophilia connotes a positive relationship, but it often is useful to explore the darker affiliations between people and place. Patriotism, literally meaning the love of one’s terra patria or homeland, has long been cultivated by governing elites for a range of nationalist projects, including war preparation and ethnic cleansing. Residents of upscale residential developments have disclosed how important it is to maintain their community’s distinct identity, often by casting themselves in a superior social position and by reinforcing class and racial differences. And just as a beloved landscape is suddenly revealed, so too may landscapes of fear cast a dark shadow over a place that makes one feel a sense of dread or anxiety—or topophobia.

Question. 1

Which of the following statements, if true, could be seen as not contradicting the arguments in the passage?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

Which one of the following comes closest in meaning to the author’s understanding of topophilia?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

Which one of the following best captures the meaning of the statement, “Topophilia is difficult to design for and impossible to quantify . . .”?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

In the last paragraph, the author uses the example of “Residents of upscale residential developments” to illustrate the:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 5

The word “topophobia” in the passage is used:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 10

Directions for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly

In the past, credit for telling the tale of Aladdin has often gone to Antoine Galland . . . the first European translator of . . . Arabian Nights [which] started as a series of translations of an incomplete manuscript of a medieval Arabic story collection. . . But, though those tales were of medieval origin, Aladdin may be a more recent invention. Scholars have not found a manuscript of the story that predates the version published in 1712 by Galland, who wrote in his diary that he first heard the tale from a Syrian storyteller from Aleppo named Hanna Diyab . . .

Despite the fantastical elements of the story, scholars now think the main character may actually be based on a real person’s real experiences. . . . Though Galland never credited Diyab in his published translations of the Arabian Nights stories, Diyab wrote something of his own: a travelogue penned in the mid-18th century. In it, he recalls telling Galland the story of Aladdin [and] describes his own hard-knocks upbringing and the way he marveled at the extravagance of Versailles. The descriptions he uses were very similar to the descriptions of the lavish palace that ended up in Galland’s version of the Aladdin story. [Therefore, author Paulo Lemos] Horta believes that “Aladdin might be the young Arab Maronite from Aleppo, marveling at the jewels and riches of Versailles.” . . .

For 300 years, scholars thought that the rags-to-riches story of Aladdin might have been inspired by the plots of French fairy tales that came out around the same time, or that the story was invented in that 18th century period as a byproduct of French Orientalism, a fascination with stereotypical exotic Middle Eastern luxuries that was prevalent then. The idea that Diyab might have based it on his own life — the experiences of a Middle Eastern man encountering the French, not vice-versa — flips the script. [According to Horta,] “Diyab was ideally placed to embody the overlapping world of East and West, blending the storytelling traditions of his homeland with his youthful observations of the wonder of 18th-century France.” . . .

To the scholars who study the tale, its narrative drama isn’t the only reason storytellers keep finding reason to return to Aladdin. It reflects not only “a history of the French and the Middle East, but also [a story about] Middle Easterners coming to Paris and that speaks to our world today,” as Horta puts it. “The day Diyab told the story of Aladdin to Galland, there were riots due to food shortages during the winter and spring of 1708 to 1709, and Diyab was sensitive to those people in a way that Galland is not. When you read this diary, you see this solidarity among the Arabs who were in Paris at the time. . . . There is little in the writings of Galland that would suggest that he was capable of developing a character like Aladdin with sympathy, but Diyab’s memoir reveals a narrator adept at capturing the distinctive psychology of a young protagonist, as well as recognizing the kinds of injustices and opportunities that can transform the path of any youthful adventurer.”

Question. 1

Which of the following does not contribute to the passage’s claim about the authorship of Aladdin?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

Which of the following is the primary reason for why storytellers are still fascinated by the story of Aladdin?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

Which of the following, if true, would invalidate the inversion that the phrase “flips the script” refers to?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

The author of the passage is most likely to agree with which of the following explanations for the origins of the story of Aladdin?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 5

All of the following serve as evidence for the character of Aladdin being based on Hanna Diyab EXCEPT:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 11

Directions for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly

The complexity of modern problems often precludes any one person from fully understanding them. Factors contributing to rising obesity levels, for example, include transportation systems and infrastructure, media, convenience foods, changing social norms, human biology and psychological factors. The multidimensional or layered character of complex problems also undermines the principle of meritocracy: the idea that the ‘best person’ should be hired. There is no best person. When putting together an oncological research team, a biotech company such as Gilead or Genentech would not construct a multiple-choice test and hire the top scorers, or hire people whose resumes score highest according to some performance criteria. Instead, they would seek diversity. They would build a team of people who bring diverse knowledge bases, tools and analytic skills.

Believers in a meritocracy might grant that teams ought to be diverse but then argue that meritocratic principles should apply within each category. Thus the team should consist of the ‘best’ mathematicians, the ‘best’ oncologists, and the ‘best’ biostatisticians from within the pool. That position suffers from a similar flaw.

Even with a knowledge domain, no test or criteria applied to individuals will produce the best team. Each of these domains possesses such depth and breadth, that no test can exist. Consider the field of neuroscience. Upwards of 50,000 papers were published last year covering various techniques, domains of enquiry and levels of analysis, ranging from molecules and synapses up through networks of neurons. Given that complexity, any attempt to rank a collection of neuroscientists from best to worst, as if they were competitors in the 50-metre butterfly, must fail. What could be true is that given a specific task and the composition of a particular team, one scientist would be more likely to contribute than another. Optimal hiring depends on context. Optimal teams will be diverse.

Evidence for this claim can be seen in the way that papers and patents that combine diverse ideas tend to rank as high-impact. It can also be found in the structure of the so-called random decision forest, a state-of-the-art machine-learning algorithm.

Random forests consist of ensembles of decision trees. If classifying pictures, each tree makes a vote: is that a picture of a fox or a dog? A weighted majority rules. Random forests can serve many ends. They can identify bank fraud and diseases, recommend ceiling fans and predict online dating behaviour. When building a forest, you do not select the best trees as they tend to make similar classifications. You want diversity. Programmers achieve that diversity by training each tree on different data, a technique known as bagging. They also boost the forest ‘cognitively’ by training trees on the hardest cases – those that the current forest gets wrong. This ensures even more diversity and accurate forests."

Yet the fallacy of meritocracy persists. Corporations, non-profits, governments, universities and even preschools test, score and hire the ‘best’. This all but guarantees not creating the best team. Ranking people by common criteria produces homogeneity. That’s not likely to lead to breakthroughs.

Question. 1

Which of the following best describes the purpose of the example of neuroscience?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

On the basis of the passage, which of the following teams is likely to be most effective in solving the problem of rising obesity levels?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

Which of the following conditions, if true, would invalidate the passage’s main argument?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

Which of the following conditions would weaken the efficacy of a random decision forest?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 5

The author critiques meritocracy for all the following reasons EXCEPT that:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 12

Directions for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly

Economists have spent most of the 20th century ignoring psychology, positive or otherwise. But today there is a great deal of emphasis on how happiness can shape global economies, or — on a smaller scale — successful business practice. This is driven, in part, by a trend in "measuring" positive emotions, mostly so they can be optimized. Neuroscientists, for example, claim to be able to locate specific emotions, such as happiness or disappointment, in particular areas of the brain. Wearable technologies, such as Spire, offer data-driven advice on how to reduce stress.

We are no longer just dealing with "happiness" in a philosophical or romantic sense — it has become something that can be monitored and measured, including by our behavior, use of social media and bodily indicators such as pulse rate and facial expressions. There is nothing automatically sinister about this trend. But it is disquieting that the businesses and experts driving the quantification of happiness claim to have our best interests at heart, often concealing their own agendas in the process. In the workplace, happy workers are viewed as a "win-win." Work becomes more pleasant, and employees, more productive. But this is now being pursued through the use of performance-evaluating wearable technology, such as Humanyze or Virgin Pulse, both of which monitor physical signs of stress and activity toward the goal of increasing productivity.

Cities such as Dubai, which has pledged to become the "happiest city in the world," dream up ever-more elaborate and intrusive ways of collecting data on well-being — to the point where there is now talk of using CCTV cameras to monitor facial expressions in public spaces. New ways of detecting emotions are hitting the market all the time: One company, Beyond Verbal, aims to calculate moods conveyed in a phone conversation, potentially without the knowledge of at least one of the participants. And Facebook [has] demonstrated that it could influence our emotions through tweaking our news feeds — opening the door to ever-more targeted manipulation in advertising and influence.

As the science grows more sophisticated and technologies become more intimate with our thoughts and bodies, a clear trend is emerging. Where happiness indicators were once used as a basis to reform society, challenging the obsession with money that G.D.P. measurement entrenches, they are increasingly used as a basis to transform or discipline individuals.

Happiness becomes a personal project, that each of us must now work on, like going to the gym. Since the 1970s, depression has come to be viewed as a cognitive or neurological defect in the individual, and never a consequence of circumstances. All of this simply escalates the sense of responsibility each of us feels for our own feelings, and with it, the sense of failure when things go badly. A society that deliberately removed certain sources of misery, such as precarious and exploitative employment, may well be a happier one. But we won't get there by making this single, often fleeting emotion, the over-arching goal.

Question. 1

From the passage we can infer that the author would like economists to:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

In the author's opinion, the shift in thinking in the 1970s:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

According to the author, Dubai:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

The author’s view would be undermined by which of the following research findings?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 5

According to the author, wearable technologies and social media are contributing most to:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 13

Directions for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly

The Indian government has announced an international competition to design a National War Memorial in New Delhi, to honour all of the Indian soldiers who served in the various wars and counter-insurgency campaigns from 1947 onwards. The terms of the competition also specified that the new structure would be built adjacent to the India Gate – a memorial to the Indian soldiers who died in the First World War. Between the old imperialist memorial and the proposed nationalist one, India’s contribution to the Second World War is airbrushed out of existence.

The Indian government’s conception of the war memorial was not merely absentminded. Rather, it accurately reflected the fact that both academic history and popular memory have yet to come to terms with India’s Second World War, which continues to be seen as little more than mood music in the drama of India’s advance towards independence and partition in 1947. Further, the political trajectory of the postwar subcontinent has militated against popular remembrance of the war. With partition and the onset of the India-Pakistan rivalry, both of the new nations needed fresh stories for self-legitimisation rather than focusing on shared wartime experiences.

However, the Second World War played a crucial role in both the independence and partition of India. The Indian army recruited, trained and deployed some 2.5 million men, almost 90,000 of which were killed and many more injured. Even at the time, it was recognised as the largest volunteer force in the war.

India’s material and financial contribution to the war was equally significant. India emerged as a major military-industrial and logistical base for Allied operations in south-east Asia and the Middle East. This led the United States to take considerable interest in the country’s future, and ensured that this was no longer the preserve of the British government. Other wartime developments pointed in the direction of India’s independence. In a stunning reversal of its long-standing financial relationship with Britain, India finished the war as one of the largest creditors to the imperial power.

Such extraordinary mobilization for war was achieved at great human cost, with the Bengal famine the most extreme manifestation of widespread wartime deprivation. The costs on India’s home front must be counted in millions of lives.

Indians signed up to serve on the war and home fronts for a variety of reasons. Many were convinced that their contribution would open the doors to India’s freedom. The political and social churn triggered by the war was evident in the massive waves of popular protest and unrest that washed over rural and urban India in the aftermath of the conflict. This turmoil was crucial in persuading the Attlee government to rid itself of the incubus of ruling India. Seventy years on, it is time that India engaged with the complex legacies of the Second World War. Bringing the war into the ambit of the new national memorial would be a fitting – if not overdue – recognition that this was India’s War.

Question. 1

The author claims that omitting mention of Indians who served in the Second World War from the new National War Memorial is:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

The author suggests that a major reason why India has not so far acknowledged its role in the Second World War is that it:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

The phrase “mood music” is used in the second paragraph to indicate that the Second World War is viewed as:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

The author lists all of the following as outcomes of the Second World War EXCEPT:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 5

In the first paragraph, the author laments the fact that

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 14

Directions for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly

Typewriters are the epitome of a technology that has been comprehensively rendered obsolete by the digital age. The ink comes off the ribbon, they weigh a ton, and second thoughts are a disaster. But they are also personal, portable and, above all, private. Type a document and lock it away and more or less the only way anyone else can get it is if you give it to them. That is why the Russians have decided to go back to typewriters in some government offices, and why in the US, some departments have never abandoned them. Yet it is not just their resistance to algorithms and secret surveillance that keeps typewriter production lines — well one, at least — in business (the last British one closed a year ago). Nor is it only the nostalgic appeal of the metal body and the stout well-defined keys that make them popular on eBay. A typewriter demands something particular: attentiveness. By the time the paper is loaded, the ribbon tightened, the carriage returned, the spacing and the margins set, there's a big premium on hitting the right key. That means sorting out ideas, pulling together a kind of order and organising details before actually striking off. There can be no thinking on screen with a typewriter. Nor are there any easy distractions. No online shopping. No urgent emails. No Twitter. No need even for electricity — perfect for writing in a remote hideaway. The thinking process is accompanied by the encouraging clack of keys, and the ratchet of the carriage return. Ping!

Question. 1

The writer praises typewriters for all the following reasons EXCEPT

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

According to the passage, some governments still use typewriters because:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

Which one of the following best describes what the passage is trying to do?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 15

Directions for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly

The end of the age of the internal combustion engine is in sight. There are small signs everywhere: the shift to hybrid vehicles is already under way among manufacturers. Volvo has announced it will make no purely petrol-engined cars after 2019...and Tesla has just started selling its first electric car aimed squarely at the middle classes: the Tesla 3 sells for $35,000 in the US, and 400,000 people have put down a small, refundable deposit towards one. Several thousand have already taken delivery, and the company hopes to sell half a million more next year. This is a remarkable figure for a machine with a fairly short range and a very limited number of specialised charging stations.

Some of it reflects the remarkable abilities of Elon Musk, the company's founder, as a salesman, engineer, and a man able to get the most out his factory workers and the governments he deals with...Mr Musk is selling a dream that the world wants to believe in. This last may be the most important factor in the story. The private car is...a device of immense practical help and economic significance, but at the same time a theatre for myths of unattainable selffulfilment. The one thing you will never see in a car advertisement is traffic, even though that is the element in which drivers spend their lives. Every single driver in a traffic jam is trying to escape from it, yet it is the inevitable consequence of mass car ownership.

The sleek and swift electric car is at one level merely the most contemporary fantasy of autonomy and power. But it might also disrupt our exterior landscapes nearly as much as the fossil fuel-engined car did in the last century. Electrical cars would of course pollute far less than fossil fuel-driven ones; instead of oil reserves, the rarest materials for batteries would make undeserving despots and their dynasties fantastically rich. Petrol stations would disappear. The air in cities would once more be breathable and their streets as quiet as those of Venice. This isn't an unmixed good. Cars that were as silent as bicycles would still be as dangerous as they are now to anyone they hit without audible warning.

The dream goes further than that. The electric cars of the future will be so thoroughly equipped with sensors and reaction mechanisms that they will never hit anyone. Just as brakes don't let you skid today, the steering wheel of tomorrow will swerve you away from danger before you have even noticed it...

This is where the fantasy of autonomy comes full circle. The logical outcome of cars which need no driver is that they will become cars which need no owner either. Instead, they will work as taxis do, summoned at will but only for the journeys we actually need. This the future towards which Uber...is working. The ultimate development of the private car will be to reinvent public transport. Traffic jams will be abolished only when the private car becomes a public utility. What then will happen to our fantasies of independence? We' ll all have to take to electrically powered bicycles.

Question. 1

In paragraph 6, the author mentions electrically powered bicycles to argue that

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

In paragraphs 5 and 6, the author provides the example of Uber to argue that

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

The author comes to the conclusion that

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

According to the author, the main reason for Tesla's remarkable sales is that

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 5

The author points out all of the following about electric cars EXCEPT

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 6

Which of the following statements best reflects the author's argument?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 16

Directions for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly

Creativity is at once our most precious resource and our most inexhaustible one. As anyone who has ever spent any time with children knows, every single human being is born creative; every human being is innately endowed with the ability to combine and recombine data, perceptions, materials and ideas, and devise new ways of thinking and doing.What fosters creativity? More than anything else: the presence of other creative people. The big myth is that creativity is the province of great individual gen.iuses. In. fact creativity is a social process. Our biggest creative breakthroughs come when people learn from, compete with, and collaborate with other people.

Cities are the true fonts of creativity... With their diverse populations, dense social networks, and public spaces where people can meet spontaneously and serendipitously, they spark and catalyze new ideas. With their infrastructure for finance, organization and trade, they allow those ideas to be swiftly actualized.

As for what staunches creativity, that's easy, if ironic. It's the very institutions that we build to manage, exploit and perpetuate the fruits of creativity — our big bureaucracies, and sad to say, too many of our schools. Creativity is disruptive; schools and organizations are regimented, standardized and stultifying.

The education expert Sir Ken Robinson points to a 1968 study reporting on a group of 1,600 children who were tested over time for their ability to think in out-of-the-box ways. When the children were between 3 and 5 years old, 98 percent achieved positive scores. When they were 8 to 10, only 32 percent passed the same test, and only 10 percent at 13 to 15. When 280,000 25-year-olds took the test, just 2 percent passed. By the time we are adults, our creativity has been wrung out of us.

I once asked the great urbanist Jane Jacobs what makes some places more creative than others. She said, essentially, that the question was an easy one. All cities, she said, were filled with creative people; that's our default state as people. But some cities had more than their shares of leaders, people and institutions that blocked out that creativity. She called them "squelchers."

Creativity (or the lack of it) follows the same general contours of the great socio-economic divide — our rising inequality — that plagues us. According to my own estimates, roughly a third of us across the United States, and perhaps as much as half of us in our most creative cities — are able to do work which engages our creative faculties to some extent, whether as artists, musicians, writers, techies, innovators, entrepreneurs, doctors, lawyers, journalists or educators — those of us who work with our minds. That leaves a group that I term "the other 66 percent," who toil in low-wage rote and rotten jobs — if they have jobs at all — in which their creativity is subjugated, ignored or wasted.

Creativity itself is not in danger. It's flourishing is all around us — in science and technology, arts and culture, in our rapidly revitalizing cities. But we still have a long way to go if we want to build a truly creative society that supports and rewards the creativity of each and every one of us.

Question. 1

The author's conclusions about the most 'creative cities' in the US (paragraph 6) are based on his assumption that

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

The 1968 study is used here to show that

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

Jane Jacobs believed that cities that are more creative

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

The central idea of this passage is that

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 5

The author uses 'ironic' in the third paragraph to point out that

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 6

In the author's view, cities promote human creativity for all the following reasons EXCEPT that they

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 17

Directions: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly

I used a smartphone GPS to find my way through the cobblestoned maze of Geneva's Old Town, in search of a handmade machine that changed the world more than any other invention. Near a 13th-century cathedral in this Swiss city on the shores of a lovely lake, I found what I was looking for: a Gutenberg printing press. "This was the Internet of its day — at least as influential as the iPhone," said Gabriel de Montmollin, the director of the Museum of the Reformation, toying with the replica of Johann Gutenberg's great invention. [Before the invention of the printing press] it used to take four monks...up to a year to produce a single book. With the advance in movable type in 15th-century Europe, one press could crank out 3,000 pages a day.

Before long, average people could travel to places that used to be unknown to them — with maps! Medical information passed more freely and quickly, diminishing the sway of quacks...The printing press offered the prospect that tyrants would never be able to kill a book or suppress an idea. Gutenberg's brainchild broke the monopoly that clerics had on scripture. And later, stirred by pamphlets from a version of that same press, the American colonies rose up against a king and gave birth to a nation. So, a question in the summer of this 10th anniversary of the iPhone: has the device that is perhaps the most revolutionary of all time given us a single magnificent idea? Nearly every advancement of the written word through new technology has also advanced humankind. Sure, you can say the iPhone changed everything. By putting the world's recorded knowledge in the palm of a hand, it revolutionized work, dining, travel and socializing. It made us more narcissistic — here's more of me doing cool stuff! — and it unleashed an army of awful trolls. We no longer have the patience to sit through a baseball game without that reach to the pocket. And one more casualty of Apple selling more than a billion phones in a decade's time: daydreaming has become a lost art.

For all of that, I'm still waiting to see if the iPhone can do what the printing press did for religion and democracy...the Geneva museum makes a strong case that the printing press opened more minds than anything else...it's hard to imagine the French or American revolutions without those enlightened voices in print...

Not long after Steve Jobs introduced his iPhone, he said the bound book was probably headed for history's attic. Not so fast. After a period of rapid growth in e-books, something closer to the medium for Chaucer's volumes has made a great comeback.

The hope of the iPhone, and the Internet in general, was that it would free people in closed societies. But the failure of the Arab Spring, and the continued suppression of ideas in North Korea, China and Iran, has not borne that out... The iPhone is still young. It has certainly been "one of the most important, world-changing and successful products in history, “ as Apple CEO. Tim Cook said. But I'm not sure if the world changed for the better with the iPhone — as it did with the printing press — or merely, changed.

Question. 1

The main conclusion of the passage is that the new technology has

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

The author attributes the French and American revolutions to the invention of the printing press because

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

"I'm still waiting to see if the iPhone can do what the printing press did for religion and democracy." The author uses which one of the following to indicate his uncertainty?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

Steve Jobs predicted which one'of the following with the introduction of the iPhone?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 5

According to the passage, the invention of the printing press did all of the following EXCEPT

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 6

The printing press has been likened to the Internet for which one of the following reasons

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 18

Directions for the Questions: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly.

Understanding where you are in the world is a basic survival skill, which is why we, like most species come hard-wired with specialized brain areas to create cognitive maps of our surroundings. Where humans are unique, though, with the possible exception of honeybees, is that we try to communicate this understanding the world with others. We have along history of doing this by drawing maps – the earliest version yet discovered were scrawled on cave walls 14,000 years ago. Human cultures have been drawing them on stone tablets, papyrus, paper and now computer screens ever since.

Given such a long history of human map-making, it perhaps surprising that is only within the last few hundred years that north has been consistently considered to be at the top. In fact, for much of human history, north almost never appeared at the top, according to Jerry Brotton, a map historian... “North was rarely put at the top for the simple fact that north is where darkness comes from,” he says. “West is also very unlikely o be put at the top because west is where the sun disappears.”

Confusingly, early Chinese maps seem to buck this trend. But, Brotton, says, even though they did have compasses at the time, that isn’t the reason that they placed north at the top. Early Chinese compasses were actually oriented to point south, which was considered to be more desirable than deepest darkest north. But in Chinese maps, the emperor, who lived in the north of the country was always put at the top of the map, with everyone else, his loyal subjects, looking up towards him. “In Chinese culture the Emperor looks south because it’s where the winds come from, it’s a good direction. North is not very good but you are in a position of the subjection to the emperor, so you look up to him,” says Brotton.

Given that each culture has a very different idea of who, or what, they should look upto it’s perhaps not surprising that there is very little consistency in which way early maps pointed. In ancient Egyptian times the top of the world was east, the position of sunrise. Early Islamic maps favoured south at the top because most of the early Muslim cultures were north of Mecca, so they imagined looking up (south) towards it Christian maps from the same era (called Mappa Mundi) put east at the top, towards the Garden of Eden and with Jerusalem in the centre.

So when did everyone get together and decide that north was the top? It’s tempting to put it down to European explorers like Christopher Columbus and Ferdinand Megellan who were navigating by the North Star. But Brotton argues that these early explorers didn’t think of the world like that at all. “When Columbus describes the world it is in accordance with east being at the top,” he says “Columbus says he is going towards paradise, so his mentality is from a medieval mappa mundi.” We’ve got to remember, adds Brotton, that at the time, “no one knows what they are doing and where they are going.”

Question. 1

The role of natural phenomena in influencing map-making conventions is seen most clearly in

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

Which one of the following about the northern orientation of modern maps is asserted in the passage

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

It can be inferred from the passage that European explorers like Columbus and Megellan

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

According to the passage, early Chinese maps placed north at the top because

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 5

Early maps did NOT put north at the top for all the following reasons EXCEPT

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 6

Which one of the following best describes what the passage is trying to do?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 19

Direction for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly. 

Humans have a basic need to perceive themselves as part
of a grand scheme, of a natural order that has a deeper significance
and greater endurance than the petty affairs of daily life. The
incongruous mismatch between the futility of the human condition
and the brooding majesty of the cosmos compels people to seek a
transcendent meaning to underpin their fragile existence.
For thousands of years this broader context was provided
by tribal mythology and storytelling. The transporting qualities
of those narratives gave human beings a crucial spiritual anchor.
All cultures lay claim to haunting myths of other-worldliness:
from the dreaming of the Australian Aborigines or the Chronicles
of Narnia, from the Nirvana of Buddhism to the Christian
Kingdom of Heaven. Over time, the humble campfire stories morphed into the splendour and ritual of organized religion and
the great works of drama and literature.
Even in our secular age, where many societies have
evolved to a post-religious phase, people still have unfulfilled
spiritual yearnings. A project with the scope and profundity of
SETI (search for extraterrestrial intelligence) cannot be divorced
from this wider cultural context, for it too offers us the compelling
promise that this could happen any day soon. As writer David
Brin has pointed out, 'contact with advanced alien civilizations
may carry much the same transcendental or hopeful significance
as any more traditional notion of "salvation from above". I have
argued that if we did make contact with an advanced
extraterrestrial community, the entities with which we would be
dealing would approach godlike status in our eyes. Certainly they
would be more godlike than humanlike; indeed, their powers
would be greater than those attributed to most gods in human
history.'
So is SETI itself in danger of becoming a latter day
religion? Science fiction writer Michael Crichton thought so. He
said: "Faith is defined as the firm belief in something for which
there is no proof," he explained. "The belief that there are other
life forms in the universe is a matter of faith. There is not a single
shred of evidence for any other life forms, and in forty years of
searching, none has been discovered." Writer Margaret Wertheim
has studied how the concept of space and its inhabitants has
evolved over several centuries. She traces the modern notion of
aliens to Renaissance writers such as the Roman Catholic Cardinal
Nichols of Cusa, who considered the status of man in the universe
in relation to celestial beings such as angels.
With the arrival of the scientific age, speculations about
alien beings passed from theologians to science fiction writers,
but the spiritual dimension remained just below the surface.
Occasionally it is made explicit, as in Olaf Stapledon's Star Maker,
David Lindsay's A Voyage to Arcturus, or Steven Spielberg's Close
Encounters of the Third Kind, which is strongly reminiscent of
John Bunyan's A Pilgrim's Progress. These are iconic images that
resonate deeply with the human psyche, and shadow the scientific
quest to discover intelligent life beyond Earth. 

Question. 1

Great literary works, according to the passage

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

Which of the following statements reflects or captures the author’s view on the search for extraterrestrial intelligence?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

It can be inferred from the passage that, ‘Close Encounters of the Third Kind’

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 20

Direction for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly. 

Some artists go out in a blaze of glory. Pierre-Auguste
Renoir went out in a blaze of kitsch. At least, that's the received
opinion about the work of his final decades: all those pillowy
nudes, sunning their abundant selves in dappled glades; all those
peachy girls, strumming guitars and idling in bourgeois parlors;
all that pink. In the long twilight of his career, the old man found
his way to a kissable classicism that modern eyes can find awfully
hard to take.
All the same, the Renoir of this period-the three very
productive decades before his death in 1919 at the age of 78
fascinated some of the chief figures of modernism. Picasso was
on board; his thick-limbed 'neoclassical' women from the 1920
are indebted to Renoir. So was Matisse, who had one eye on
Renoir's Orientalist dress-up fantasies like the Concert, with its
flattened space and overall patterning, when he produced his
odalisques. Given that so much of late Renoir seems saccharine
and semi comical to us, is it still possible to see what made it
modern to them?
Yes and no. To understand the Renoir in the 20th Century
you have to remember that before he became a semi classicist, he
was a consummate Impressionist. You need to picture him in 1874,
33 years old, painting side by side with Monet in Argenteuil,
teasing out the new possibilities of sketchy brushwork to capture
fleeting light as it fell across people and things in an indisputably
modern world.
But in the decade that followed, Renoir became one of the
movement's first apostates. Impressionism affected many people
in the 19th century in much the way the internet does now. It both
charmed and unnerved them. It brought to painting a novel
immediacy, but it also gave back a world that felt weightless and
unstable. What we now call post Impressionism was the inevitable
by-product of that anxiety. Artists like Seurat and Gauguin
searched for an art that owed nothing to the stale models of
academicism but possessed the substance and authority that
Impressionism had let fall away.
For Renoir, a turning point came during his honeymoon
to Rome and Naples in 1881. Face to face with the firm outlines
of Raphael and the musculature of Michelangelo, he lost faith in
his flickering sunbeams. He returned to France determined to find
his way to lucid, distinct forms in an art that reached for the eternal,
not the momentary. By the later years of that decade, Renoir had
lost his taste for the modern world anyway. As for modern women,
in 1888 he could write, "I consider that women who are authors,
lawyers and politicians are monsters". ("The woman who is an
artist," he added graciously, "is merely ridiculous.") Ah, but the woman who is a goddess-or at least harks back
to one that is different matter. It would be Renoir's aim to
reconfigure the female nude in a way that would convey the spirit
of the classical world without classical trappings. Set in "timeless"
outdoor settings, these women by their weight and scale and
serenity alone-along with their often recognizably classical poses
would point back to antiquity.
For a time, Renoir worked with figures so strongly outlined
that they could have been put down by Ingres with a jackhammer.
By 1892, he had drifted back toward a fluctuating impressionist
brushstroke. Firmly contoured or flickering, his softly scalped
women are as full-bodied as Doric columns. This was one of the
qualities that caught Picasso's eye, especially after his first trip to
Italy, in 1917. He would assimilate Renoir along-side his own
sources in Iberian sculpture and elsewhere to come up with a
frankly more powerful, even haunting, amalgam of the antique
and the modern in paintings like Woman in a White Hat.
Renoir was most valuable as a stepping-stone for artists
making more potent use of the ideas he was developing. The heart
of the problem is the challenge. Renoir set for himself: to reconcile
classical and Renaissance models with the 18th century French
painters he loved. To synthesize the force and clarity of classicism
with the intimacy and charm of the Rococo is a nearly impossible
trick. How do you cross the power of Phidias with the delicacy of
Fragonard? The answer: at your own risk-especially the risk of
admitting into your work the weaknesses of the Rococo. It's fine
line between charming and insipid, and 18th century French
painters crossed it all the time. So did Renoir.

Question. 1

The passage suggests that

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

We can infer from the passage that the word ‘odalisques’ means

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

All of the following are true in light of the passage EXCEPT

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 21

Direction for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly

“Myth has two main functions,” the poet and scholar
Robert Graves wrote in 1955. “The first is to answer the sort of
awkward questions that children ask, such as ‘Who made the
world? How will it end? Who was the first man? Where do souls
go after death?’…The second function of myth is to justify an
existing social system and account for traditional rites and
customs.” In ancient Greece, stories about gods and goddesses
and heroes and monsters were an important part of everyday life.
They explained everything from religious rituals to the weather,
and they gave meaning to the world people saw around them.
In Greek mythology, there is no single original text like
the Christian Bible or the Hindu Vedas that introduces all of the
myths’ characters and stories. Instead, the earliest Greek myths
were part of an oral tradition that began in the Bronze Age, and
their plots and themes unfolded gradually in the written literature
of the archaic and classical periods. The poet Homer’s 8th-century
BC epics the Iliad and the Odyssey, for example, tell the story of
the (mythical) Trojan War as a divine conflict as well as a human
one. They do not, however, bother to introduce the gods and
goddesses who are their main characters, since readers and
listeners would already have been familiar with them.
Around 700 BC, the poet Hesiod’s Theogony offered the
first written cosmogony, or origin story, of Greek mythology. The
Theogony tells the story of the universe’s journey from
nothingness (Chaos, a primeval void) to being, and details an
elaborate family tree of elements, gods and goddesses who evolved
from Chaos and descended from Gaia (Earth), Ouranos (Sky),
Pontos (Sea) and Tartaros (the Underworld).
Later Greek writers and artists used and elaborated upon
these sources in their own work. For instance, mythological figures
and events appear in the 5th-century plays of Aeschylus,
Sophocles and Euripides and the lyric poems of Pindar. Writers
such as the 2nd-century BC Greek mythographer Apollodorus of
Athens and the 1st-century BC Roman historian Gaius Julius
Hyginus compiled the ancient myths and legends for
contemporary audiences.
At the center of Greek mythology is the pantheon of deities
who were said to live on Mount Olympus, the highest mountain
in Greece. From their perch, they ruled every aspect of human
life. Olympian gods and goddesses looked like men and women
(though they could change themselves into animals and other
things) and were–as many myths recounted–vulnerable to human
foibles and passions.

Question. 1

What were the similarities between Olympian Gods and Human Beings?
A. These Gods looked like humans.
B. They had weaknesses like humans.
C. They were as passionate as humans.

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

What does the author mean by ‘pantheon of deities’?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

What is the role played by Theogony in Greek mythology?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

Who created the first story of Greek Mythology?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 5

What is the difference between Hindu and Greek Mythology?
 

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 6

Which of the following is one of the main functions of Myth?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 22

Direction for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly.

Did you know that the Impressionists favored the
elimination of the color black from their painter’s palette?
According to Wilkins et al, Impressionism encouraged this:
“The new color theory emphasized the presence of color
within shadows and, in asserting that there was no black in nature,
inspired the Impressionists to ban black from their palette.”
The founder of Impressionism is Claude Monet (1840-
1926), a French painter born in Paris. He was a close associate of
the French painter, Edouard Manet, who helped art move away
from Realism in the nineteenth century. Monet served along with
fellow artist Edgar Degas and author Emile Zola as a pall bearer
at Manet’s funeral in 1883. Degas later created ballet scenes
including 1874’s Ballet Rehearsal which showed some qualities
of Impressionism.
Early in his career, Monet created a style of painting that
focused on the light in the shadows. This study of natural light is
the focus of his landmark painting, Impression – Sunrise,
completed in 1872. This work is the source of the term
“Impressionism.” Impression – Sunrise is full of powerful shades
of blue, gray, and orange, and a few fishermen in small boats
float in the foreground as the sun rises at the top of the painting.
Art historians note that Impressionist paintings such as
Impression – Sunrise were rejected by the Paris Salon, leading
the painters to hold their own autonomous shows. Monet first
exhibited this work in Paris in 1874 in a non- Salon-approved exhibition. Honour and Fleming note that the independent
exhibitions by the Impressionists showed how the artists were
trying to escape the “tyranny of the official art-world.” In other
words, if an artist could not get accepted by the Salon, he or she
would have no method of becoming a professional artist in France.
Monet contributed many other paintings to the art world
over the remainder of his career. He consistently explored how
the human eye sees landscapes or scenes in the outdoors. He
wanted to capture real events and watch how they related to the
light. In Gare St.-Lazare (1877), Monet showed that a Paris train
station could be the center point of the natural light shining through
the glass roof on a sunny day.
The Impressionists also painted “a typically middle-class
vision of happiness” in keeping with their bourgeois backgrounds,
according to Honour and Fleming. The authors use the example
of Monet’s sketch for The Picnic which predates Impression –
Sunrise by six years. It was never finished, but it shows middleclass
ladies and gentleman at a picnic beneath a beautiful canopy
of trees.
As the founder of this a new style of painting, Monet left
a huge mark on the art worlds of the 19th and 20th centuries. He
died of lung cancer in 1926 and was buried at the church in
Giverny, France. 

Question. 1

Which of the following was/were artists’ attempt(s) to escape the tyranny of the official art-world?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

What does the author mean by ‘a typically middleclass vision of happiness’?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

The passage is most likely

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

Which of the following is true of Impressionism?
A. It received its name from a painting of Monet.
B. It is a study of light in shadows.
C. In its early stage, it was rejected by the Paris Salon.

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 5

What was the most significant contribution of Monet to art?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 6

Why did the Impressionists favor the elimination of the color black from their painter’s palette?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 23

Direction for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly.

Hundreds of protesters gathered outside Downing Street
Thursday to protest David Cameron’s invitation to Egyptian
President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi. Seven people were arrested during
Thursday’s demonstration, including two people for assault. Five
others were arrested after holding a “die-in” to block the Egyptian
president from entering No. 10, Metropolitan police told BuzzFeed
News. All seven are still being held by police officers, BuzzFeed
News has been told.
Sisi arrived in London on Wednesday night and met
Thursday with Cameron and senior members of the cabinet. He
is also expected to meet defence secretary Michael Fallon later
today to discuss issues surrounding regional security and
counterterrorism.
At a press conference held in Downing Street on Thursday
afternoon, both Sisi and Cameron stated that security services
were doing all they could to ensure the security of tourists in the
Egyptian resort of Sharm el Sheikh. Cameron also said that the
UK and Egypt would work together in ensuring the safety of
British tourists. “We are working intensively together in the spirit
of close cooperation and I’m immensely grateful for all the efforts
the Egyptian authorities have made so far,” Cameron said. Sisi
claimed that the British government had been satisfied with
Egyptian airport security when it requested information 10 months
ago, but asserted that Egypt was “completely ready to co-operate
with all of our friends” to strengthen security.
Sisi’s Downing Street invitation has been highly criticised
by activists who accuse the British government of ignoring human
rights concerns regarding the Egyptian regime, in particular the
death of over 800 people at the hands of Egyptian military forces
in Ra’baa in 2013.
On Wednesday night, a number of Egyptian activists
addressed a crowd of protesters. Among those who spoke were
the sisters of Ibrahim Halawa, a 19-year-old Irish man who has
been held in an Egyptian prison since 2013 for participating in
the Ra’baa protests against the regime. Human rights groups such
as Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch have urged
the British government to confront Sisi on human rights issues.
“David Cameron needs to show that he’s got what it takes
to stand up to repressive leaders not just give them a handshake
and a grand tour of No. 10,” Amnesty International’s Egypt
researcher, Nicholas Piachaud, told the IB Times. “That means
raising serious human rights concerns including the repressive
laws which are putting peaceful protesters behind bars.”
David Mepham, UK director at Human Rights Watch, said
the British government should show its “support for an
international inquiry into grave crimes committed by the Egyptian
security forces” and call for the release of prisoners arrested
“solely for peaceful protest or their political or religious
sympathies”.

Question. 1

Based on the information furnished in the passage above, all of the following statements are correct EXCEPT

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

In the given context, what is the role that para 4 plays in shedding some light on the relationship between the UK and Egypt?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

Which of the following statements states the main idea of this passage appropriately?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 24

Directions for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly.

For as long as it has existed, fashion, being a language, has always been used as a means of communication. This very peculiar kind of communication takes place on two levels: an open one, and a hidden one. There is in fact an underlying fact, a creative value left to each individual that allows the transmission of ambiguous and equivocal messages; think of the eroticism of neglected lace, the hardness of riding boots or the provocativeness of some metal details. If we agree that fashion is a language we should emphasize that it is a very sophisticated one and, in a way, a complementary one — a tool for articulating and supporting words rather than substituting them. And if we agree that fashion is distinct from style, we must admit that its acknowledged codes are variable. This variation can occur at different levels mainly, but not only, visually, often revamping outdated meanings. The system of constantly shifting meanings, codes and values is in fact fundamental to fashion, as we understand it in our culture. Designers know this well and they are the first to perceive signs of instability. The instabilities, ambiguities and ambivalences, described by Fred Davis in his excellent book on the subject, drive creativity to and fro between opposites such as young/old, male/ female, work/play, simplicity/complexity, revelation/ concealment, freedom/constraint, conformism/rebellion, eroticism/chastity, discretion/overstatement and so on. The field where the game of change is played is framed within couples of constantly recurring antithetic meanings. Fashion delights us by playing on the tensions between these couples — we derive a frisson from the contradictions they suggest. We may tire of a look but whenever one of these themes returns, its freshness is restored; our fascination with them seems endless. James Carse, a professor of philosophy at New York University, and a friend of mine, in one of his books, divides the world of human relations into ‘finite and infinite games’. What is the difference? In the former case, the goal of the game is to select a winner; in the latter, it is to play the game forever. Incidentally, the latter is typical of the game of children, which were in fact the author’s chief source of inspiration. Without doubt, fashion is an infinite game, since nobody is interested in starting the ultimate trend, the final one. Though changes in fashion correspond to macro-changes in cultures or societies, they nevertheless require human action, the work of creative people, of industry and the complicity of consumers. Fashion, after all, does not happen by accident. The fashion industry purposefully identifies garments and accessories as indicators of social status. Historians have suggested that this has been so since the fourteenth century. Nowadays, this identification has become a carefully planned and greatly accelerated activity. In the eternal ping-pong game between antithetical meanings, the motivating force for creativity within fashion is nearly always, or often, cultural. When Chanel urged her wealthy clients to dress like their maids, she was playing on the dialectics between the rich and the poor, the high and the low status; but the reason for her attraction to these particular themes, and the reason for the fashion’s success, was her ability to intuit the predominant social tensions of the moment (in this case ideas about the uncertainties of wealth and power initiated by the economic unrest of the 1930s).

Question. 1

What does the author wish to convey when he states that fashion is an infinite game?



(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

According to the passage, what is the role of contradictions, as mentioned by Fred Davis?

 

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

According to the passage, what is the relevance of the distinction between fashion and style?



(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

According to the passage, which of the following statements correctly describes one of the levels of communication through fashion?



(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 25

Direction for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly. 

Attempts to explain prophecy must make suppositions about the
future. The most fundamental supposition is that events in the
future do not yet exist and cannot, therefore, produce effects in
the present. The path of explanation that stems from this view
leads necessarily to various ideas of the future as a potential that
somehow exists in the present.
In their simplest form, these ideas follow the analogy of the
seed and flower. A gardener can examine a seed and predict what
flower it will produce. Some premonitions may indeed stem from
clues scarcely noticed in a conscious way. An unfamiliar noise in
a car, for example, may give rise to an accurate premonition of
danger. The weakness of the theory, in this form, is that it requires
of the precogniser an uncanny ability to analyze signs and
indications that are not only imperceptible to the ordinary eye
but also impossible to deduce theoretically. What clues in a
dreamer’s environment could prompt an accurate precognition
of a disaster six months and 3,000 miles away? Some
extraordinary suggestions have been made to explain how the
future may be unrealized but cognizable in the present. One such
suggestion, by Gerhard Dietrich Wasserman, a mathematical
physicist at the University of Durliam in England, is that all events
exist as timeless mental patterns, with which every living and
non-living particle in the universe is associated.
This idea owes something to the ancient belief that the
universe — the macrocosm — contains innumerable microcosms,
each recapitulating the features and order of the large whole. Thus
man was seen as a microcosm of the earth, his veins and arteries
corresponding to streams and rivers, and so on.
By the end of the 17th century, the idea had undergone many
transformations but was still potent. The great philosopher and
mathematician Baron Gottfried Wilhelm von Leibniz, for example
wrote, “All the different classes of being which taken together
make up the universe are, in the ideas of God who knows distinctly their essential graduations, only so many ordinates of a single
curve so closely united that it would be impossible to place others
between any two of them, since that would imply disorder and
imperfection.”
Accordingly, the various orders of beings, animate and
inanimate, so gradually approximate each other in their attributes
and properties that they form a single chain, “so closely linked
one to another that it is impossible to determine precisely the
point at which one ends and the next begins.” In this concept of a
“chain of being” then, the animate, and therefore the spiritual or
psychic, are connected with the inanimate by a gradation of shared
attributes. For Leibniz the implication was that someone with
enough insight “would see the future in the present as in a mirror.”
Another version of the idea that the future lies hidden in the present
was advanced by Adrian Dobbs, a mathematician and physicist
at the University of Cambridge, in 1965. As events unfold, he
proposed, they actualize a relatively small number of the
possibilities for change that exist at a subatomic level. In the
process, disturbances are caused that create another dimension
of time or what Dobbs calls a psitronic wave-front. This wavefront
can be registered by the brain’s neurons, at least in certain
especially sensitive people, and be interpreted. A metaphor may
help to clarify the process.
Imagine a pond, at one side of which a toy ship is launched;
at the other side of the pond is a very small person. He is unable
to see the ship, but as the ship travels forward, the waves it makes
reach the shore on which he stands. As they travel across the
pond, these waves pass around certain objects — weeds, leaves,
a log — that are fixed or slowly drifting on its surface. The objects
thus create disturbances in the wave-front, which the small person,
who has a lifetime’s experience in these things, is able to note in
fine detail. From what he learns of the wave-fronts he not only
obtains an image of the objects that produced them but also
calculates how long it will be before they drift to the shore.
In this metaphor, the toy ship represents an event unfolding
in time. Its course across the pond represents one of many paths
it might take and the dimension of time it occurs in. The pond
itself represents Dobbs’s “psitronic wave-front,” and the small
person is, ofcourse, the neuronal apparatus that receives the wavefront
and converts it to a prediction. Granting that Dobbs’s theory
is purely hypothetical and that no psitronic wave has been
discovered, the difficulty is in suggesting a neuronal mechanism
by which the observer distinguishes the wave-front of a particular
event from the presumable maelstrom of wave-fronts produced
by simultaneously unfolding events. Again, the farther away the
event is in the future, the more numerous the wave-fronts and the
more complex the problem.
Such in general, are some of the theories that regard the
future as being, in some way, a potential implicitly accessible in
the present, and such are the difficulties and limitations attending
them. 

Question. 1

The word “uncanny” in the passage specifically refers to:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

Which of the following is not correct as per the passage?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

In the toy ship example, the author is least likely to agree with the statement that 

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

The given passage mentions each of the following EXCEPT

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 26

Direction for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly. 

Conscious of her approaching death, she has broken at last a
lifetime’s practice of concealment, of stashing the truth away in
the manner of the papers and mementoes mouldering in her
battered travel trunk. The woman in her eighties (her bones aching
in the humid heat of summer, her step cautious in winter’s frozen
treachery) unwinds the past, sends it twisting and spiralling in an
unstoppable black flow across the pages. The urgency of the
project is insistent: impending foreclosure flays her on, reopening
old wounds, forcing her to confront life in all its bewilderment
and pain.
This, in the sparest of terms, is the framework of The Blind
Assassin, the novel which has won for the Canadian writer,
Margaret Atwood, this year’s Booker Prize. Her previous nearwinners
were The Handmaid’s Tale, Cat’s Eye, and Alias Grace.
In her latest book, Atwood explores again a theme central to her
fictional universe: what happens to relationships, to human
potential, to the possibility of happiness when women are kept
subordinate, stultified by their inferior status and locked in silence.
Iris Chase, the woman who unravels her past across the
pages of The Blind Assassin, is at first sight an improbable victim
of history. The granddaughter of an entrepreneur who built an
empire out of the manufacture of buttons and cheap clothing for
the masses, she has lived, for the most part of her life, cocooned
from economic hardship. In her narrative, she conjures up the
whimsical splendours of Avilion, the evocatively titled domain
her grandparents built in celebration of their new wealth and status
and the place where she spent her childhood. Reliving her marriage
to a young tycoon with political ambitions, she takes us into the
sumptuous between-the-Wars world of the highly moneyed: the
fur-draped fashions, the dinner parties, the Atlantic crossings on luxury liners. Such landscapes, replete with nostalgia, have in
our own times yielded rich pickings to advertisers and commercial
film-makers aware of the power of the past. In Atwood’s case,
however, evoking a class experience characterized by profligacy
and privilege is not done to beguile us or set the book on course for
film rights. Rather, it establishes a polarity between material
advantage and emotional poverty, between the possibilities opened
up by access to plenty and the reality of futile, empty lives. In a real
sense, this is not only a political novel but also a morality tale.
In the book’s opening pages, information is thrown at the
reader from a variety of sources: from a narrative we do not yet
understand to be Iris’, from newspaper clippings, and from a book
written by Laura Chase (Iris’ sister). The last carries immediate
poignancy, for we already know Laura to be dead, her car having
plunged from a bridge; there is speculation that it was suicide.
This choice of structure allows Atwood to introduce, from
the start, a sense of the contentious nature of experience: there is
a world of difference between the clipped prose of the proestablishment
local paper and the dead Laura’s unfolding of
emotion (her novel is a high-intensity story of unmarried love
which generated shock waves following its publication in the late
1940s). The structure also builds in elasticity, enabling the writer
not only to throw the past against the present but also to change
pace, to intensify and then release, in a way that tightens her hold
on our sensibilities, propelling us deeper into the mystery.
There is a further dimension to this structure: through it we,
the readers, find ourselves repeatedly revising the assumptions
we formed at the novel’s beginning. In the manner of a landscape
viewed from a moving vantage point, the story shifts, rearranges
itself, discloses elements once hidden from view. To specify the
changes would be to give away too much of the plot, reducing
the novel’s capacity to surprise and challenge. What Atwood is
attempting, one senses, is not a bid for authorial cleverness
designed to leave the reader stunned and bemused, but rather a
journey towards the truth which invites her reader to question,
reformulate and reinterpret. Despite its old technology form, this
is an interactive novel.
For the reader who accepts the invitation, this is a journey
into pain. Atwood wields her pen like the most deadly and delicate
of knives, cutting through to the raw edge of emotion, exposing
our areas of greatest vulnerability: our relationships with others.
Part of the stiletto sharpness of her writing derives from a use of
language that is precise and alive to the sheer potency of words.
Atwood’s use of analogy, too, can bring the reader up short.
When Iris’ father, lamed and broken, returns home in his uniform
from the First World War, his medals “are like holes shot in the
cloth, through which the dull gleam of his real, metal body can be
seen”. On board a ship at the start of her honeymoon, Iris watches
professional dancers perform a passionless tango accompanied
by music that is “… jagged, hobbled — like a four-legged animal
lurching on three legs; a crippled bull with its head down, lunging”.
This is also a book rich in tongue-in-cheek humour that at
several points had me laughing out loud. In a narrative that has a
strong aural quality to it, a pervasive sense of voice play, Atwood
makes artful use of the character of Renee, the housekeeper at
the ancestral home to whom Iris and Laura, having lost their own
mother, turn for maternal attention.
A working class woman with a nononsense outlook on life,
Renee offers, through her repertoire of proverbs, sayings and
catch-phrases, a running commentary on events that both
entertains and unsettles. But the primary source of humour is Iris
herself: curmudgeonly and difficult in old age, she is possessed of a capacity for wry observation, an ability to lay bare the
incongruities of life, with humour jostling the sadness. 

Question. 1

Identify the central theme of Atwood’s novel.

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

What does the author mean by ‘the contentious nature of experience’?
 

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

Pick the odd one out:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

If medals “are like holes shot in the cloth”, then Atwood is a critic of

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 27

Direction for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly.

You see, society feels that it must control or discipline the citizen,
shape his mind according to certain religious, social, moral and
economic patterns. One of our most difficult problems is what
we call discipline, and it is really very complex. Now, is discipline
necessary at all? Most of us feel, especially while we are young,
that there should be no discipline, that we should be allowed to
do whatever we like, and we think that is freedom. But merely to
say that we should or should not have discipline, that we should
be free, and so on, has very little meaning without understanding
the whole problem of discipline. The keen athlete is disciplining
himself all the time, is he not? His joy in playing games and the
very necessity to keep fit makes him go to bed early, refrain from
smoking, eat the right food and generally observe the rules of
good health. His discipline is not an imposition or a conflict, but
a natural outcome of his enjoyment of athletics.
Now, does discipline increase or decrease human energy?
Human beings throughout the world, in every religion, in every
school of thought, impose discipline on the mind, which implies
control, resistance, adjustment, suppression; and is all this
necessary? If discipline brings about a greater output of human
energy, then it is worth while, then it has meaning; but if it merely
suppresses human energy, it is very harmful and destructive. All
of us have energy, and the question is whether through discipline
that energy can be made vital, rich and abundant, or whether
discipline destroys whatever energy we have. I think this is the
central issue. Many human beings do not have a great deal of
energy, and what little energy they have is soon smothered and
destroyed by the controls, threats and taboos of their particular
society with its so-called education; so they become imitative,
lifeless citizens of that society. And does discipline give increased
energy to the individual who has a little more to begin with? Does
it make his life rich and full of vitality?
When you are very young, as you all are, you are full of
energy, are you not? You want to play, to rush about, to talk —
you can’t sit still, you are full of life. Then what happens? As you
grow up, your teachers begin to curtail that energy by shaping it,
directing it into various moulds; and when at last you become
men and women, the little energy you have left is soon smothered
by society, which says that you must be proper citizens, you must
behave in a certain way. Through so-called education and the
compulsion of society, this abounding energy you have when you
are young is gradually destroyed.
Now, can the energy you have at present be made more
vital through discipline? If you have only a little energy, can
discipline increase it? If it can, then discipline has meaning; but
if discipline really destroys one’s energy, then discipline must
obviously be put aside. What is this energy which we all have? This energy is
thinking, feeling; it is interest, enthusiasm, greed, passion, lust,
ambition, and hate. Painting pictures, inventing machines, building
bridges, making roads, cultivating the fields, playing games,
writing poems, singing, dancing, going to the temple, worshipping
— these are all expressions of energy; and energy also creates
illusion, mischief and misery. The very finest and the most
destructive qualities are equally the expressions of human energy.
But, you see, the process of controlling or disciplining this energy
and letting it out in one direction and restricting it in another
becomes merely a social convenience; the mind is shaped
according to the pattern of a particular culture, and thereby its
energy is gradually dissipated.
So, our problem is, can this energy, which in one degree or
another we all possess, be increased, given greater vitality — and
if so, to do what?
What is energy for? Is it the purpose of energy to make
war? Is it to invent jet planes and innumerable other machines, to
pursue some guru, to pass examinations, to have children, to worry
endlessly over this problem and that? Or can energy be used in a
different way so that all our activities have significance in relation
to something which transcends them all? Surely, if the human
mind, which is capable of such astonishing energy, is not seeking
reality or God, then every expression of its energy becomes a
means of destruction and misery. To seek reality requires immense
energy; and if man is not doing that, he dissipates his energy in
ways which create mischief, and therefore society has to control
him. Now, is it possible to liberate energy in seeking God or truth
and, in the process of discovering what is true, to be a citizen
who understands the fundamental issues of life and whom society
cannot destroy? Are you following this, or is it a little bit too
complex? You see, man is energy, and if man does not seek truth,
this energy becomes destructive; therefore society controls and
shapes the individual, which smothers this energy. That is what
has happened to the majority of grown-up people all over the
world. And perhaps you have noticed another interesting and very
simple fact: that the moment you really want to do something,
you have the energy to do it. What happens when you are keen to
play a game? You immediately have energy, do you not? And
that very energy becomes the means of controlling itself, so you
don’t need outside discipline. In the search for reality, energy
creates its own discipline. The man who is seeking reality
spontaneously becomes the right kind of citizen, which is not
according to the pattern of any particular society or government.

Question. 1

According to the author, energy is

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

The author believes that controlling discipline is

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

As per the passage, the general effect of education is

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

The athlete’s example proves that

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 28

Direction for question: Read the poem carefully and answer the given questions accordingly.

I would not exchange the sorrows of my heart
For the joys of the multitude.
And I would not have the tears that sadness makes
To flow from my every part turn into laughter.
I would that my life remain a tear and a smile.
A tear to purify my heart and give me understanding
Of life’s secrets and hidden things.
A smile to draw me nigh to the sons of my kind and
To be a symbol of my glorification of the gods.
A tear to unite me with those of broken heart;
A smile to be a sign of my joy in existence.
I would rather that I died in yearning and longing than that I live
Weary and despairing.
I want the hunger for love and beauty to be in the
Depths of my spirit, for I have seen those who are
Satisfied the most wretched of people.
I have heard the sigh of those in yearning and Longing, and it is
sweeter than the sweetest melody.
With evening’s coming the flower folds her petals
And sleeps, embracing her longing.
At morning’s approach she opens her lips to meet
The sun’s kiss.
The life of a flower is longing and fulfilment.
A tear and a smile.
The waters of the sea become vapour and rise and come
Together and area cloud.
And the cloud floats above the hills and valleys
Until it meets the gentle breeze, then falls weeping
To the fields and joins with brooks and rivers to Return to the sea,
its home.
The life of clouds is a parting and a meeting.
A tear and a smile.
And so does the spirit become separated from
The greater spirit to move in the world of matter
And pass as a cloud over the mountain of sorrow
And the plains of joy to meet the breeze of death
And return whence it came.
To the ocean of Love and Beauty——to God.

Question. 1

Which of the following does the author attempt to signify while stating the example of the clouds?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

Which of the following options best explains why the poet feels that those who are Satisfied are the most wretched?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

Which of the following options best reflects the theme of the poem?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 29

Direction for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly.

Scheibitz’s paintings are often difficult to read, though most
contain human presences, and many are titled as if they are
portraits: Portrait Tracy Berglund; Henry Stand; Ret Marut. The
names sound as invented as the shapes that make and unmake the
figures in the paintings. Look long enough and Tracy Berglund
appears to resolve into a female figure in a long skirt and grey
jacket, holding a slice of watermelon. Or it could be cheese. Or a
megaphone.
Everything looks deliberate and calculated, but at some
point things stop making sense – or rather, start making a kind of
sense that is all Scheibitz’s own. Flat planes drift into emptiness;
distracted brushstrokes wander away like someone getting lost
on a walk. Perspectives warp, geometries fall apart. The spaces
between things become more insistent than the things themselves.
These are very unreasonable paintings.
That’s part of the pleasure. Scheibitz’s work has been called
“conceptual painting”. I have always thought painting is a
conceptual as well as a physical activity. Using fragments of
graphic symbols, compound forms and motifs whose origins are
often impossible to trace, the artist arrives at a kind of figuration
that is at odds with itself. “I can’t invent anything and I can’t use
what I find as it is,” he recently told one interviewer. He also told
me, as we looked around his show, that everything connects to
everything else.
Part of Scheibitz’s collection of source materials is laid
out on tables at Baltic – not that they’re much help. Here is a gift
pack of multicoloured Harrods golf tees, then two patterned
cigarette lighters, some dice, a walnut and several stones with
naturally occurring right angles. How odd. And now, he has
painted various objects yellow: a plaster tortoise, a paintbrush
stiff with pigment, a toy car. Among all these things, traces of the
shapes and contours in his paintings might be found, like lines of
a song or a bit of a tune that goes round your head. There are
dozens of these objects. How they are translated into elements in
his paintings is anybody’s guess.
The overall impression is that nothing is random. There
are affinities here. Scheibitz has a good eye for an ambiguous but
characterful shape. One “portrait”, called John Held, is painted
on a small, asymmetrically carved gravestone that sits on a plinth.
It looks a bit like a face but has no features.

Question. 1

Which of the following options best presents the significance of the penultimate paragraph?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

Which of the following options can be inferred from the given passage?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

Which of the following options best explains why the author terms Scheibitz’s paintings as unreasonable?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 30

Direction for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly

On the first page of the novel I am writing, I describe a horse — a gray mare named Mathilde. The mare is not a principal character
in my novel; on page 23, when she briefly reappears in the hold
of a ship crossing the Atlantic Ocean on her way to South America,
I may, in the confusion of a stormy passage, easily forget about
her and call her a pony; worse still, on page 84 where Mathilde is
galloping on the plains of the Gran Chaco in Paraguay, I could
have her become a filly. My point is that there is a huge difference
between a mare, a pony and a filly. My Mathilde is long-legged,
elegant, reliable, whereas a pony is tricky, often mean and tends
to nip, and a filly is skittish, untrained, ready to bolt and do who
knows what.
Misspellings and inaccurate quotations and/or inaccurately
rendered foreign phrases (and the writer herself is often the one
to notice these most) stop the reader cold on the page. The same
is true of typos.
Writing consistently goes beyond getting the facts right. “If it is
one, say one,” says a Chinese proverb (and not eighteen minus
seventeen nor five-sixths plus one-sixth). This is not, I think, a
question of keeping it simple but of making it as true as possible.
Not an easy task: At every turn, the sentence invites me to show
how much I know, to show how smart I think I am; every
metaphor, every analogy has the potential for fraudulence.
Adverbs are hills I must climb to get to my destination; adjectives
are furniture blocking my way. English is a naming language; its
power derives from nouns.
“Art,” Ken Kesey said, “is a lie in the service of truth,” a statement
which may appear to be contradictory but is not. Interesting, too,
how often a true story sounds both false and boring while a lie
sounds quite plausible.; the truth is right there in front of your
nose. A lie is more trouble. As the liar/writer, I have to convince.
I have to appear sincere and be twice as clever so as not to get
caught. One way of doing this is to use a lot of details, to distract
the reader: “Making things up — as in fiction — sounds easy and
like fun and it may be at first. By page three, to say nothing of by
chapter five or six, I guarantee, it becomes harder and harder to
sustain that lie or whatever the story is that you have made up.
Harder still to continue to sustain the belief of your reader as well
as to convince him of the worth of your endeavor; hardest of all
for him to trust you with it.
In my case, some of my writing is based on my experience. And
if I’m successful, in the end, I won’t be able to remember — like
a good liar, I suppose — what is true and what is made up. Or I
like to write about stuff the average reader may not know a whole
lot about: Sufis, Thai culinary customs, Guarani lace-making. Or
I do a lot of research and then try my damndest to hide it all —
another form of deceit — because every fact, every date, every
statistic (however accurate and consistent) in fiction is like a stone
hurled into the hull of a boat and with each stone the boat sinks
further in the water.

Question. 1

What is the author trying to convey by using the imagery of throwing stones into a boat, which sinks further to talk about fiction?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

What does the author mean by saying “English is a naming language”?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

It can be inferred that the author talks about the mistakes with the horse, filly and mare in order to 

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 31

Direction for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly.

In the 1950 movie All About Eve, the theatre critic is a dapper,
cynical charmer with the Old World moniker Addison DeWitt.
He’s no hero, but his wry assessments can make or break a
production. Characters repeat his phrases throughout the film, in
both scornful and reverent tones.
Almost a half-century later, the television show The Critic
presented an animated schlemiel, paunchy and balding, voiced
by the nerdy comic endomorph Jon Lovitz. This character’s
influence on the world in which he lives is nonexistent: His impact
comes down to serving as the butt of jokes.
Does this series tell us something about the way the world view
those who make cultural judgments for a living? In the decade
since that show’s run, many critics report, they’ve gotten even
less respect. Or ceased to matter entirely.
”You get arts journalists together these days,” says Doug
McLennan, editor of Arts Journal.com and a longtime Seattle
music writer, “and it’s what they talk about: their declining
influence. They say Frank Rich was the last critic who could close
a show.” Most remember when Time and Newsweek had full
rosters of arts critics.
What happened? Besides the Internet and its rash of blogs,
suspected culprits include the culture of celebrity, anti-intellectual
populism, stingy newspaper owners and what some critics say is
a loss of vitality or visibility in their art forms. While many lament
the situation, some think the decentralization of authority means
the arts — and the conversation around them — will flourish
without these stern, doctrinaire figures.
The nonprofit arts, with their limited marketing budgets, have
typically depended more on criticism than the promotion-driven
world of entertainment, which is sometimes called “critic-proof.”
But as late as the 1970s, the feisty Pauline Kael was spurring
American outlaw filmmakers toward their most daring work. But it’s less common, critics say, for one of their kind to draw an
audience’s attention to an overlooked work. Some arts critics,
such as Peter Schjeldahl of the New Yorker, Charles Rosen of the
New York Review of Books and former Time critic Robert
Hughes, continue to do this.
Part of the problem seems to be the general tarnishing of the press
in recent years. “Two decades ago,” concludes “Trends 2005,” a
Pew Research Center study, “just 16 per cent of readers said they
could believe little or nothing of what they read in their daily
paper; in the most recent survey, that number nearly tripled, to 45
per cent.”.
Dave Hickey, an art critic best known for the book Air Guitar:
Essays on Art & Democracy, doesn’t think the Internet is the
problem. “But I do think that we’re over,” he says. “Being an art
critic was one of those jobs like night-time disk jockey or sewing
machine repairman: It was a one- or two-generation job.”
For Hickey, art criticism lost its lustre and excitement the
same time art did. “There was a sense that things had a forward
tilt,” he says of American art after World War II, when it seemed
to be moving toward a consummation. “Jackson Pollock changed
the way the world looked, Andy Warhol changed the way the
world looked.”
But the high couldn’t last forever, and the power went to
the curators.
“I’m like Wolfman Jack,” Hickey groans. “The times have
passed me by.”

Question. 1

What is Hickey trying to say by calling art criticism “a one – or two – generation job”?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

What is the author trying to prove by mentioning: “Characters repeat his phrases throughout the film, in both scornful and reverent tones” while talking about the critic?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

By citing the example of Charles Rosen, what aspect of a critic’s personality is being highlighted by the author?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

It can be inferred from the passage that the world of entertainment is less dependent now on the critics because 

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 32

Direction for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly.

Ask anyone on the street: “what is Romanticism?” and you will
certainly receive some kind of reply. Everyone claims to know
the meaning of the word romantic. The word conveys notions of
sentiment and sentimentality, a visionary or idealistic lack of
reality. It connotes fantasy and fiction. It has been associated with
different times and with distant places: the island of Bali, the
world of the Arabian Nights, the age of the troubadours and even Manhattan. Advertising links it with the effects of lipstick, perfume
and soap. If we could ask the advertising genius who, fifty years
ago came up with the brilliant cigarette campaign, “blow some
my way,” he may have responded with “it’s romantic.”
These meanings cause few problems in every day life — indeed,
few of us wonder about the meaning of Romanticism at all. Yet
we use the expression freely and casually (“a romantic, candle-lit
dinner”). But literary historians and critics as well as European
historians have been quarreling over the meaning of the word
Romanticism for decades. One of the problems is that the
Romantics were liberals and conservatives, revolutionaries and
reactionaries. Some were preoccupied with God; others were
atheistic to the core. Some began their lives as devout Catholics,
lived as ardent revolutionaries and died as staunch conservatives.
The expression Romantic gained currency during its own time,
roughly 1780-1850. However, even within its own period of
existence, few Romantics would have agreed on a general
meaning. Perhaps this tells us something. To speak of a Romantic
era is to identify a period in which certain ideas and attitudes
arose, gained currency and in most areas of intellectual endeavor,
became dominant. That is, they became the dominant mode of
expression. Which tells us something else about the Romantics:
expression was perhaps everything to them — expression in art,
music, poetry, drama, literature and philosophy. Just the same,
older ideas did not simply wither away. Romantic ideas arose
both as implicit and explicit criticisms of 18th century
Enlightenment thought. For the most part, these ideas were
generated by a sense of inadequacy with the dominant ideals of
the Enlightenment and of the society that produced them.
Romanticism appeared in conflict with the Enlightenment. You
could go as far as to say that Romanticism reflected a crisis in
Enlightenment thought itself, a crisis which shook the comfortable
18th century philosophe out of his intellectual single-mindedness.
The Romantics were conscious of their unique destiny. In fact, it
was selfconsciousness which appears as one of the keys elements
of Romanticism itself.
The philosophes were too objective — they chose to see human
nature as something uniform. The philosophes had also attacked
the Church because it blocked human reason. The Romantics
attacked the Enlightenment because it blocked the free play of
the emotions and creativity. The philosophe had turned man into
a soulless, thinking machine — a robot. In a comment typical of
the Romantic thrust, William Hazlitt (1778-1830) asked, “For
the better part of my life all I did was think.” And William Godwin
(1756-1836), a contemporary of Hazlitt’s asked, “what shall I do
when I have read all the books?”
Christianity had formed a matrix into which medieval man situated
himself. The Enlightenment replaced the Christian matrix with
the mechanical matrix of Newtonian natural philosophy. For the
Romantic, the result was nothing less than the demotion of the
individual. Imagination, sensitivity, feelings, spontaneity and
freedom were stifled — choked to death. Man must liberate
himself from these intellectual chains.

Question. 1

What makes the author deduce “for the Romantics, expression was everything”?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

What specific instance of the Romantics’ selfconsciousness is mentioned by the author in the passage?
 

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 33

Direction for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly.

Ask anyone on the street: “what is Romanticism?” and you will
certainly receive some kind of reply. Everyone claims to know
the meaning of the word romantic. The word conveys notions of
sentiment and sentimentality, a visionary or idealistic lack of
reality. It connotes fantasy and fiction. It has been associated with
different times and with distant places: the island of Bali, the
world of the Arabian Nights, the age of the troubadours and even Manhattan. Advertising links it with the effects of lipstick, perfume
and soap. If we could ask the advertising genius who, fifty years
ago came up with the brilliant cigarette campaign, “blow some
my way,” he may have responded with “it’s romantic.”
These meanings cause few problems in every day life — indeed,
few of us wonder about the meaning of Romanticism at all. Yet
we use the expression freely and casually (“a romantic, candle-lit
dinner”). But literary historians and critics as well as European
historians have been quarreling over the meaning of the word
Romanticism for decades. One of the problems is that the
Romantics were liberals and conservatives, revolutionaries and
reactionaries. Some were preoccupied with God; others were
atheistic to the core. Some began their lives as devout Catholics,
lived as ardent revolutionaries and died as staunch conservatives.
The expression Romantic gained currency during its own time,
roughly 1780-1850. However, even within its own period of
existence, few Romantics would have agreed on a general
meaning. Perhaps this tells us something. To speak of a Romantic
era is to identify a period in which certain ideas and attitudes
arose, gained currency and in most areas of intellectual endeavor,
became dominant. That is, they became the dominant mode of
expression. Which tells us something else about the Romantics:
expression was perhaps everything to them — expression in art,
music, poetry, drama, literature and philosophy. Just the same,
older ideas did not simply wither away. Romantic ideas arose
both as implicit and explicit criticisms of 18th century
Enlightenment thought. For the most part, these ideas were
generated by a sense of inadequacy with the dominant ideals of
the Enlightenment and of the society that produced them.
Romanticism appeared in conflict with the Enlightenment. You
could go as far as to say that Romanticism reflected a crisis in
Enlightenment thought itself, a crisis which shook the comfortable
18th century philosophe out of his intellectual single-mindedness.
The Romantics were conscious of their unique destiny. In fact, it
was selfconsciousness which appears as one of the keys elements
of Romanticism itself.
The philosophes were too objective — they chose to see human
nature as something uniform. The philosophes had also attacked
the Church because it blocked human reason. The Romantics
attacked the Enlightenment because it blocked the free play of
the emotions and creativity. The philosophe had turned man into
a soulless, thinking machine — a robot. In a comment typical of
the Romantic thrust, William Hazlitt (1778-1830) asked, “For
the better part of my life all I did was think.” And William Godwin
(1756-1836), a contemporary of Hazlitt’s asked, “what shall I do
when I have read all the books?”
Christianity had formed a matrix into which medieval man situated
himself. The Enlightenment replaced the Christian matrix with
the mechanical matrix of Newtonian natural philosophy. For the
Romantic, the result was nothing less than the demotion of the
individual. Imagination, sensitivity, feelings, spontaneity and
freedom were stifled — choked to death. Man must liberate
himself from these intellectual chains.

Question. 1

How does the author use the arguments of the philosophes and the Romantics attacking the church for different reasons to make a point regarding the Romantics’ problem with the philosophes?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 34

Direction for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly.

Deborah Mayo is a philosopher of science who has attempted to
capture the implications of the new experimentalism in a
philosophically rigorous way. Mayo focuses on the detailed way
in which claims are validated by experiment, and is concerned
with identifying just what claims are borne out and how. A key
idea underlying her treatment is that a claim can only be said to
be supported by experiment if the various ways in which the claim
could be as fault have been investigated and eliminated. A claim
can only be said to be borne out by experiment, and a severe test of a claim, as usefully construed by Mayo, must be such that the
claim would be unlikely to pass it if it were false.
Her idea can be explained by some simple examples. Suppose
Snell's law of refraction of light is tested by some very rough
experiments in which very large margins of error are attributed to
the measurements of angles of incidence and refraction, and
suppose that the results are shown to be compatible with the law
within those It margins of error. Has the law been supported by
experiments that have severely tested it? From Mayo's perspective
the answer is "no", because, owing to the roughness of the
measurements, the law of refraction would be quite likely to pass
this test even if it were false and some other law differing not too
much from Snell's law true. An exercise I carried out in my schoolteaching
days serves to drive this point home. My students had
conducted some not very I careful experiments to test Snell's law.
I there presented them with some alternative laws of refraction
that had been suggested in antiquity and mediaeval times, prior
to the discovery of Snell's law, and invited the students to test
them with the measurements they had used , to test Snell's law;
because of the wide margins of error they had' attributed to their
measurements, all of these alternative laws pass the test. This
clearly brings out the point that the experiments in question did
not constitute a severe test of Snell's law. The law would have
passed the test even if it were false and one of the historical
alternatives true.

Question. 1

The author's use of Snell's law of refraction to illustrate Mayo's perspective can best said to be

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

As per Mayo's perspective, which of the following best defines the phrase "scientific explanation"?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

Which of the following conclusion can be drawn from the passage?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 35

Direction for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly

Thomas Harris’ latest novel is being hailed as the long awaited sequel to The Silence of the Lambs, but I have never thought that novel actually needed one. It stood on its own, finished and complete. After I put that book down I did not think to ask what Hannibal was going to do next. In my opinion he had done enough. I’ve always preferred a novel that concludes with a few loose ends because, in life, not all problems get tied up nice and neat. There was something so frightening, so giddily uncomfortable about knowing that Hannibal “The Cannibal” was loose on an unsuspecting world. Author Harris did readers a favor by letting us all keep a little of that fear in our hearts and minds for the past 11 years. But we became so intrigued by Hannibal, didn’t we? And we wanted to see more of him. When we first met him in Harris’s second novel Red Dragon, he was a small but important player, giving reluctant but brilliant insights into the mind of a serial killer to FBI agent Will Graham. In The Silence of the Lambs it was FBI cadet Clarice Starling looking for a multiple murderer and Lecter became a major and integral part of the story. And when we saw Hannibal brought to life by Anthony Hopkins in the 1991 film, we became hooked. Rarely before had we been drawn to such an evil character — one who charmed and hypnotized us with his combination of verbal gymnastics, Old World manners and awesome intellectual abilities. But now there is Hannibal, Harris’s latest novel, and this time Dr. Hannibal Lecter is the player. And like The Silence of the Lambs, Hannibal is finished and complete and stands on its own. Quite well in fact. In Hannibal, Harris plumbs the shadowy depths of Lecter’s mind and throws us into the stinking oubliette of his psyche, taking us through past — and possibly significant — remembrances. When we re-ascend, it is with a startling array of
knowledge about the man. We find him fascinating, sympathetic and — despite his dietary habits and penchant for killing (and consuming) only the “rude” — a likable character. I like the well rounded character that Harris has created, even if he’s somewhat outlandish, flamboyant and deeply disturbed. Hannibal loves the finer things in life: classical music, ancient literature, fine art, a tidy evisceration. The novel’s title works, not only because it is about Hannibal; it is Hannibal. And though the narration is in the third person, it speaks with his voice. It’s a voice of culture and intelligence; of terror and menace. In hushed conspiratorial tones, it politely invites us to witness acts of inhuman horror and suffering. Almost —almost — making them palatable. And if not palatable, then so fascinating we find it hard to turn away. Harris does not write of
these atrocities from the moral standpoint of someone who thinks the things. Hannibal does are wrong; we all know what he does is wrong. Even Hannibal knows very well what he does is wrong. He also believes he has the intellectual and moral superiority to justify his actions, and this is Harris’s triumph in the narration. We are shown things in the way Hannibal would see them through his intellectually superior and amoral eyes, and it is up to us to decide the right or wrongness of things. We also see things with
an almost clinically unprejudiced and sometimes uncomfortably ncensored eye; unwavering, unblinking. Harris’s prose is elegant and economic.

Question. 1

Which of the following can be inferred from the passage?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

Which of the following is admitted by the author in the passage?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

Why does the writer think that the title of the novel Hannibal works?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 36

Direction for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly

In a stadium in Prague, 20 years ago today, a hundred thousand
people, including my father and me, saw something we were not
supposed to see. For decades it had been forbidden. The music,
we were told, would poison our minds with filthy images. We
would be infected by the West’s capitalist propaganda. It was a
cool August night in 1990; the Communist regime had officially
collapsed eight months earlier, when Vaclav Havel, the longtime
dissident, was elected president. And now the Rolling Stones had
come to Prague. I was 16 then, and to this day I recall the posters
promoting the concert, which lined the streets and the walls of
the stadium: “The Rolling Stones roll in, Soviet army rolls out.”
Soviet soldiers had been stationed in Czechoslovakia since 1968,
when their tanks brutally crushed the so-called Prague Spring.
My father was 21 at that time, dreaming of freedom and listening
to bootlegged copies of “Let’s Spend the Night Together.” But it
would be more than two decades before he would get to see the
band live. During those years, you had to tune into foreign stations
to hear the Stones. Communists called the band members “rotten
junkies,” and said no decent socialist citizen would listen to them.
I only knew one Stones song, “Satisfaction” — but I knew it by
heart. I had heard it for the first time on a pirated tape my father
had bought on the black market in Hungary and smuggled into
the country. It put an immediate spell on me. I was hugely
impressed by the rough, loud guitar riff, so unlike the mellow
sound of Czechoslovakian music. (The Communists frowned on
the bass and the electric guitar, but they severely disapproved of
the saxophone because they said it was invented by a Belgian
imperialist.)
Czechoslovakians had been urged for four decades to sacrifice
their inner dreams to the collective happiness of the masses. People
who went their own way — rebels — often ended up in jail.
That night in August, waiting for the Rolling Stones to come on
stage, we felt like rebels.
The concert was held in the same stadium where the Communist
government used to hold rallies and organize parades. My
classmates and I had spent endless hours in that stadium, marching
in formations that, seen from the stands above, were supposed to
symbolize health, joy and the discipline of the masses. Now,
instead of marching as one, we were ready to get loose. “We
gotta get closer,” my father whispered into my ear as we tried to
make our way through the crowd. I sensed that everyone was nervous. They were accustomed to
being lied to, to having promises broken. They didn’t quite believe
that the Stones were really coming to play live. I could see that
my father didn’t either. “We might see their photographs or a
movie instead,” I heard some people saying, pointing to huge
video screens installed inside the stadium. I started to have doubts
myself. We had been waiting for five hours.
Suddenly, the lights dimmed. Drums started to pound, and the
screens turned on as if by magic. “Oh my God, it is really
happening,” whispered a woman standing close to me. She was
expressing something more than just the thrill of a concert. She
was saying that the Communists were truly gone. That we were
finally free to do as we pleased.

Question. 1

What can be inferred as the real reason for Communists in Czechoslovakia to oppose ‘The Rolling Stones’?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

According to the passage, which of the following is not a characteristic of Czechoslovakia while it was under Soviet/ Communist influence?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

Which of the following best captures what the Rolling Stones concert stood for in the author’s mind?
 

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 37

Direction for question: Read the passage carefully and answer the given questions accordingly

The spiritual interlocutor interacts without preconceived notions.
The good discussant receives without barriers and responds in a
heightened state of understanding. The shedding of constructs
becomes at once a spiritual and humanist pursuit. Most of us, by
force of sub- conscious habit, introduce our experiential and
intellectual baggage into our interactions with people. This not
only distorts our understanding of thematerial reality, but inhibits
our spiritual growth as well. We stew in our ‘here and now’ boxes,
unable to elevate ourselves as a bird would.
Yet, the validity of experience should not be discounted.
Experience should be assessed with a certain heightened
objectivity for one to draw the right lessons for one’s actions. So
detachment should be seen as a means to arrive at that state of
balanced understanding. It does not preclude pain and compassion;
but it discards obfuscation and hypocrisy.
Creativity is said to spring from the angst of experience. Often
the outpourings of a tortured mind make for great literature and
painting. Ironically, existential pain can bring about work of
transcendental quality. The beauty and simplicity of Kahlil
Gibran’s The Prophet is testimony to the literary virtues of
spiritualism. The spiritual world is a rich, fulsome, loving
nothingness that opens up the heavens, not a musty blankness.
Compassion could liberate us from the boundaries of the mind.
The house- holder looks after the family out of a sense of duty
and affection, which in due course becomes second nature. The
mental and emotional universe of such an individual is able to
accommodate reality in virtually all its dimensions. Psychologist Eric Fromm points out that love must be all-encompassing by
nature for an individual to be spiritually liberated. To love some
people and resent others is not real love.

Question. 1

“It does not preclude pain and compassion; but it discards obfuscation and hypocrisy.” When paraphrased, how will the given sentence read?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

Which of the following will be a suitable title for the passage?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 38

Every civilized society lives and thrives on a silent but profound agreement as to what is to be accepted as the valid mould of experience. Civilization is a complex system of dams, dykes, and canals warding off, directing, and articulating the influx of the surrounding fluid element; a fertile fenland, elaborately drained and protected from the high tides of chaotic, unexercised, and inarticulate experience. In such a culture, stable and sure of itself within the frontiers of ‘naturalized’ experience, the arts wield their creative power not so much in width as in depth. They do not create new experience, but deepen and purify the old. Their works do not differ from one another like a new horizon from a new horizon, but like a madonna from a madonna.

The periods of art which are most vigorous in creative passion seem to occur when the established pattern of experience loosens its rigidity without as yet losing its force. Such a period was the Renaissance, and Shakespeare its poetic consummation. Then it was as though the discipline of the old order gave depth to the excitement of the breaking away, the depth of job and tragedy, of incomparable conquests and irredeemable losses. Adventurers of experience set out as though in lifeboats to rescue and bring back to the shore treasures of knowing and feeling which the old order had left floating on the high seas. The works of the early Renaissance and the poetry of Shakespeare vibrate with the compassion for live experience in danger of dying from exposure and neglect. In this compassion was the creative genius of the age. Yet, it was a genius of courage, not of desperate audacity. For, however elusively, it still knew of harbours and anchors, of homes to which to return, and of barns in which to store the harvest. The exploring spirit of art was in the depths of its consciousness still aware of a scheme of things into which to fit its exploits and creations.

But the more this scheme of things loses its stability, the more boundless and uncharted appears the ocean of potential exploration. In the blank confusion of infinite potentialities flotsam of significance gets attached to jetsam of experience; for everything is sea, everything is at sea —

...The sea is all about us;

The sea is the land’s edge also,

the granite Into which it reaches,

the beaches where it tosses

Its hints of earlier and other creation ...

- and Rilke tells a story in which, as in T.S. Eliot’s poem, it is again the sea and the distance of ‘other creation’ that becomes the image of the poet’s reality. A rowing boat sets out on a difficult passage. The oarsmen labour in exact rhythm. There is no sign yet of the destination. Suddenly a man, seemingly idle, breaks out into song. And if the labour of the oarsmen meaninglessly defeats the real resistance of the real waves, it is the idle single who magically conquers the despair of apparent aimlessness. While the people next to him try to come to grips with the element that is next to them, his voice seems to bind the boat to the farthest distance so that the farthest distance draws it towards itself. ‘I don’t know why and how,’ is Rilke’s conclusion, but suddenly I understood the situation of the poet, his place and function in this age. It does not matter if one denies him every place — except this one. There one must tolerate him.’

Question. 1

According to the passage, the term “adventurers of experience” refers to

(a) (b) (c) (d) (e)
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Question. 2

According to the passage, the term “adventurers of experience” refers to

(a) (b) (c) (d) (e)
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Question. 3

The sea and ‘other creation’ leads Rilke to

(a) (b) (c) (d) (e)
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Question. 4

In the passage, the expression “like a madonna from a madonna” alludes to

(a) (b) (c) (d) (e)
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Comprehension. 39

My aim is to present a conception of justice which generalizes and carries to a higher level of abstraction the familiar theory of the social contract. In order to do this we are not to think of the original contract as one to enter a particular society or to set up a particular form of government. Rather, the idea is that the principles of justice for the basic structure of society are the object of the original agreement. They are the principles that free and rational persons concerned to further their own interests would accept in an initial position of equality. These principles are to regulate all further agreements; they specify the kinds of social cooperation that can be entered into and the forms of government that can be established. This way of regarding the principles of justice, I shall call justice as fairness. Thus, we are to imagine that those who engage in social cooperation choose together, in one joint act, the principles which are to assign basic rights and duties and to determine the division of social benefits. Just as each person must decide by rational reflection what constitutes his good, that is, the system of ends which it is rational for him to pursue, so a group of persons must decide once and for all what is to count among them as just and unjust. The choice which rational men would make in this hypothetical situation of equal liberty determines the principles of justice.

In ‘justice as fairness’, the original position is not an actual historical state of affairs. It is understood as a purely hypothetical situation characterized so as to lead to a certain conception of justice. Among the essential features of this situation is that no one knows his place in society, his class position or social status, nor does anyone know his fortune in the distribution of natural assets and abilities, his intelligence, strength, and the like. I shall even assume that the parties do not know their conceptions of the good or their special psychological propensities. The principles of justice are chosen behind a veil of ignorance. This ensures that no one is advantaged or disadvantaged in the choice of principles by the outcome of natural chance or the contingency of social circumstances. Since all are similarly situated and no one is able to design principles to favor his particular condition, the principles of justice are the result of a fair agreement or bargain.

Justice as fairness begins with one of the most general of all choices which persons might make together, namely, with the choice of the first principles of a conception of justice which is to regulate all subsequent criticism and reform of institutions. Then, having chosen a conception of justice, we can suppose that they are to choose a constitution and a legislature to enact laws, and so on, all in accordance with the principles of justice initially agreed upon. Our social situation is just if it is such that by this sequence ofhypothetical agreements we would have contracted into the general system of rules which defines it. Moreover, assuming that the original position does determine a set of principles, it will then be true that whenever social institutions satisfy these principles, those engaged in them can say to one another that they are cooperating on terms to which they would agree if they were free and equal persons whose relations with respect to one another were fair. They could all view their arrangements as meeting the stipulations which they would acknowledge in an initial situation that embodies widely accepted and reasonable constraints on the choice of principles. The general recognition of this fact would provide the basis for a public acceptance of the corresponding principles of justice. No society can, of course, be a scheme of cooperation which men enter voluntarily in a literal sense; each person finds himself placed at birth in some particular position in some particular society, and the nature of this position materially affects his life prospects. Yet a society satisfying the principles of justice as fairness comes as close as a society can to being a voluntary scheme, for it meets the principles which free and equal persons would assent to under circumstances that are fair.

Question. 1

Which of the following situations best represents the idea of justice as fairness, as argued in the passage?

(a) (b) (c) (d) (e)
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Question. 2

Why, according to the passage, do principles of justice need to be based on an original agreement?

(a) (b) (c) (d) (e)
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Question. 3

Which of the following best illustrates the situation that is equivalent to choosing ‘the principles of justice’ behind a ‘veil of ignorance’?

(a) (b) (c) (d) (e)
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Question. 4

The original agreement or original position in the passage has been used by the author as:

(a) (b) (c) (d) (e)
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Comprehension. 40

My aim is to present a conception of justice which generalizes and carries to a higher level of abstraction the familiar theory of the social contract. In order to do this we are not to think of the original contract as one to enter a particular society or to set up a particular form of government. Rather, the idea is that the principles of justice for the basic structure of society are the object of the original agreement. They are the principles that free and rational persons concerned to further their own interests would accept in an initial position of equality. These principles are to regulate all further agreements; they specify the kinds of social cooperation that can be entered into and the forms of government that can be established. This way of regarding the principles of justice, I shall call justice as fairness. Thus, we are to imagine that those who engage in social cooperation choose together, in one joint act, the principles which are to assign basic rights and duties and to determine the division of social benefits. Just as each person must decide by rational reflection what constitutes his good, that is, the system of ends which it is rational for him to pursue, so a group of persons must decide once and for all what is to count among them as just and unjust. The choice which rational men would make in this hypothetical situation of equal liberty determines the principles of justice.

In ‘justice as fairness’, the original position is not an actual historical state of affairs. It is understood as a purely hypothetical situation characterized so as to lead to a certain conception of justice. Among the essential features of this situation is that no one knows his place in society, his class position or social status, nor does anyone know his fortune in the distribution of natural assets and abilities, his intelligence, strength, and the like. I shall even assume that the parties do not know their conceptions of the good or their special psychological propensities. The principles of justice are chosen behind a veil of ignorance. This ensures that no one is advantaged or disadvantaged in the choice of principles by the outcome of natural chance or the contingency of social circumstances. Since all are similarly situated and no one is able to design principles to favor his particular condition, the principles of justice are the result of a fair agreement or bargain.

Justice as fairness begins with one of the most general of all choices which persons might make together, namely, with the choice of the first principles of a conception of justice which is to regulate all subsequent criticism and reform of institutions. Then, having chosen a conception of justice, we can suppose that they are to choose a constitution and a legislature to enact laws, and so on, all in accordance with the principles of justice initially agreed upon. Our social situation is just if it is such that by this sequence ofhypothetical agreements we would have contracted into the general system of rules which defines it. Moreover, assuming that the original position does determine a set of principles, it will then be true that whenever social institutions satisfy these principles, those engaged in them can say to one another that they are cooperating on terms to which they would agree if they were free and equal persons whose relations with respect to one another were fair. They could all view their arrangements as meeting the stipulations which they would acknowledge in an initial situation that embodies widely accepted and reasonable constraints on the choice of principles. The general recognition of this fact would provide the basis for a public acceptance of the corresponding principles of justice. No society can, of course, be a scheme of cooperation which men enter voluntarily in a literal sense; each person finds himself placed at birth in some particular position in some particular society, and the nature of this position materially affects his life prospects. Yet a society satisfying the principles of justice as fairness comes as close as a society can to being a voluntary scheme, for it meets the principles which free and equal persons would assent to under circumstances that are fair.

Question. 1

A just society, as conceptualized in the passage, can be best described as

(a) (b) (c) (d) (e)
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Comprehension. 41

hile complex in the extreme, Derrida’s work has proven to be a particularly influential approach to the analysis of the ways in which language structures our understanding of ourselves and the world we inhabit, an approach he termed deconstruction. In its simplest formulation, deconstruction can be taken to refer to a methodological strategy which seeks to uncover layers of hidden meaning in a text that have been denied or suppressed. The term ‘text’, in this respect, does not refer simply to a written form of communication, however. Rather, texts are something we all produce and reproduce constantly in our everyday social relations, be they spoken, written or embedded in the construction of material artifacts. At the heart of Derrida’s deconstructive approach is his critique of what he receives to be the totalitarian impulse of the Enlightenment pursuit to bring all that exists in the world under the domain of a representative language, a pursuit he refers to as logocentrism. Logocentrism is the search for a rational language that is able to know and represent the world and all its aspects perfectly and accurately. Its totalitarian dimension, for Derrida at least, lies primarily in its tendency to marginalize or dismiss all that does not neatly comply with its particular linguistic representations, a tendency that, throughout history, has all too frequently been manifested in the form of authoritarian institutions. Thus logocentrism has, in its search for the truth of absolute representation, subsumed difference and oppressed that which it designates as its alien ‘other’. For Derrida, western civilization has been built upon such a systematic assault on alien cultures and ways of life, typically in the name of reason and progress.

In response to logocentrism, deconstruction posits the idea that the mechanism by which this process of marginalization and the ordering of truth occurs is through establishing systems of binary opposition. Oppositional linguistic dualisms, such as rational/ irrational, culture/nature and good/bad are not, however, construed as equal partners as they are in, say, the semiological structuralism of Saussure. Rather, they exist, for Derrida, in a series of hierarchical relationships with the first term normally occupying a superior position. Derrida defines the relationship between such oppositional terms using the neologism difference. This refers to the realization that in any statement, oppositional terms differ from each other (for instance, the difference between rationality and irrationality is constructed through oppositional usage), and at the same time, a hierarchical relationship is maintained by the deference of one term to the other (in the positing of rationality over irrationality, for instance). It is this latter point which is perhaps the key to understanding Derrida’s approach to deconstruction.

For the fact that at any given time one term must defer to its oppositional ‘other’, means that the two terms are constantly in a state of interdependence. The presence of one is dependent upon the absence or ‘absent-presence’ of the ‘other’, such as in the case of good and evil, whereby to understand the nature of one, we must constantly relate it to the absent term in order to grasp its meaning. That is, to do good, we must understand that our act is not evil for without that comparison the term becomes meaningless. Put simply, deconstruction represents an attempt to demonstrate the absent-presence of this oppositional ‘other’, to show that what we say or write is in itself not expressive simply of what is present, but also of what is absent. Thus, deconstruction seeks to reveal the interdependence of apparently dichotomous terms and their meanings relative to their textual context; that is, within the linguistic power relations which structure dichotomous terms hierarchically. In Derrida’s awn wards, a deconstructive reading “must always aim at a certain relationship, unperceived by the writer, between what he commands and what he does not command of the patterns of a language that he uses. . . .[It] attempts to make the not-seen accessible to sight.”

Meaning, then, is never fixed or stable, whatever the intention of the author of a text. For Derrida, language is a system of relations that are dynamic, in that all meanings we ascribe to the world are dependent not only an what we believe to be present but also an what is absent. Thus, any act of interpretation must refer not only to what the author of a text intends, but also to what is absent from his or her intention. This insight leads, once again, Derrida’s further rejection of the idea of the definitive authority of the intentional agent or subject. The subject is decentred; it is conceived as the outcome of relations of difference. As author of its awn biography, the subject thus becomes the ideological fiction of modernity and its logocentric philosophy, one that depends upon the formation of hierarchical dualisms, which repress and deny the presence of the absent ‘other’. No meaning can, therefore, ever be definitive, but is merely an outcome of a particular interpretation.

Question. 1

To Derrida, ‘logocentrism’ does not imply:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

Derrida rejects the idea of ‘definitive authority of the subject’ because

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

According to the passage, Derrida believes that :

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

According to the passage, Derrida believes that the system of binary opposition

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 42

The painter is now free to paint anything he chooses. There are scarcely any forbidden subjects, and today everybody is prepared to admit that a painting of some fruit can be as important as a painting of a hero dying. The impressionists did as much as anybody to win this previously unheard-of freedom for the artist. Yet, by the next generation, painters began to abandon the subject altogether, and began to paint abstract pictures. Today the majority pictures painted are abstract.

Is there a connection between these two developments? Has art gone abstract because the artist is embarrassed by his freedom? Is it that because he is free to paint anything, he doesn’t know what to paint? Apologists for abstract art often talk of it as the art of maximum freedom. But could this be the freedom of the desert island? It would take to long to answer these questions properly. I believe there is a connection. Many things have encouraged the development of abstract art. Among them has been the artists’ wish to avoid the difficulties of finding subjects when all subjects are equally possible.

I raise the matter now because I want to draw attention to the fact that the painter’s choice of a subject is a far more complicated question than it would at first seem. A subject does not start with what is put in front of the easel or with something which the painter happens to remember. A subject starts with the painter deciding he would like to paint such-and-such because for some reason or other he finds it meaningful. A subject begins when the artist selects something for special mention. (What makes it special or meaning full may seem to the artist to be purely visual– its colours or its form.) When the subject has been selected, the function of the painting itself is to communicate and justify the significance of that selection.

It is often said today that subject matter is unimportant. But this is only a reaction against the excessively literary and moralistic interpretation of subject matter in the nineteenth century. In truth the subject is literally the beginning and end of a painting. The painting begins with a selection (I will paint this and not everything else in the world); it is finished when that selection is justified (now you can see all that I saw and felt in this and how it is more than merely itself).

Thus, for a painting to succeed it is essential that the painter and his public agree about what is significant. The subject may have a personal meaning for the painter or individual spectator; but there must also be the possibility of their agreement on its general meaning. It is at this point that the culture of the society and period in question proceeds the artist and his art. Renaissance art would have meant nothing to the Aztecs–and vice versa. If, to some extent, a few intellectuals can appreciate them both today it is because their culture is an historical one: its inspirations is history and therefore it can include within itself, in principle if not in every particular, all known developments to date.

When a culture is secure and certain of its values, it presents its artists with subjects. The general agreement about what is significant is so well established that the significance of a particular subject accrues and becomes traditional. This is true, for instance, of reeds and water in China, of the nude body in Renaissance, of the animal in Africa. Furthermore, in such cultures the artist is unlikely to be a free agent: he will be employed for the sake of particular subjects, and the problem, as we have just described it, will not occur to him.

When a culture is in a state of disintegration or transition the freedom of the artist increases – but the question of subject matter becomes problematic for him: he, himself, has to choose for society. This was at the basis of all the increasing crises in European art during the nineteenth century. It is too often forgotten how many of the art scandals of that time were provoked by the choice of subject (Gericault, Courbet, Daumier, Degas, Lautrec, Van Gogh, etc.).

By the end of the nineteenth century there were, roughly speaking, two ways in which the painter could meet this challenge of deciding what to paint and so choosing for society. Either he identified himself with the people and so allowed their lives to dictate his subjects to him; or he had to find his subjects within himself as painter. By people I mean everybody except the bourgeoisie. Many painters did of course work of the bourgeoisie according to their copy-book of approved subjects, but all of them, filling the Salon and the Royal Academy year after year are now forgotten, buried under the hypocrisy of those they served so sincerely.

Question. 1

Which of following views is taken by the author?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

In the context of the passage, which of the following statements would NOT be true?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

Which of the following is NOT necessarily among the attributes needed for a painter to succeed:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

In the sentence, “I believe there is a connection” (Second paragraph), what two developments is the author referring to?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 5

When a culture is insecure, the painter chooses his subject on the basis of

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 43

The endless struggle between the flesh and the spirit found an end in Greek art. The Greek artists were unaware of it. They were spiritual materialists, never denying the importance of the body and ever seeing in the body a spiritual significance. Mysticism on the whole was alien to the Greeks, thinkers as they were. Thought and mysticism never go well together and there is little symbolism in Greek art. Athena was not a symbol of wisdom but an embodiment of it and her statues were beautiful grave women, whose seriousness might mark them as wise , but who were marked in no other way. The Apollo Belvedere is not a symbol of the sun, nor the Versailles Artemis of the moon. There could be nothing less akin to the ways of symbolism than their beautiful, normal humanity. Nor did decoration really interest the Greeks. In all their art they were preoccupied with what they wanted to express, not with ways of expressing it, and lovely expression, merely as lovely expression, did not appeal to them at all.

Greek art is intellectual art, the art of men who were clear and lucid thinkers, and it is therefore plain art. Artists than whom the work has never seen greater, men endowed with the spirit’s best gift, found their natural method of expression in the simplicity and clarity which are the endowment of the unclouded reason. “Nothing in excess,” the Greek axiom of art, is the dictum of men who would brush aside all obscuring, entangling superfluity, and see clearly, plainly, unadorned , what they wished to express. Structure belongs in an especial degree to the province of the mind in art, and architectonics were pre-eminently a mark of the Greek. The power that made a unified whole of the trilogy of a Greek tragedy, that envisioned the sure, precise, decisive scheme of the Greek statue, found its most conspicuous expression in Greek architecture . The Greek temple is the creation, par excellence, of mind and spirit in equilibrium.

A Hindoo temple is a conglomeration of adornment. The lines of the building are completely hidden by the decorations. Sculptured figures and ornaments crowd its surface, stand out from it in thick masses, break it up into a bewildering series of irregular tiers. It is not a unity but a collection, rich, confused. It looks like something not planned but built this way and that as the ornament required. The conviction underlying it can be perceived : each bit of the exquisitely wrought detail had a mystical meaning and the temple’s exterior was important only as a means for the artist to inscribe thereon the symbols of the truth. It is decoration, not architecture.

Again, the gigantic temple of Egypt, those massive immensities of granite which look as if only the power that moves in the earthquake were mighty enough to bring them into existence, are something other than the creation of geometry balanced by beauty. The science and the spirit are there, but what is there most of all is force, unhuman force, calm but tremendous, overwhelming. It reduces to nothingness all that belongs to man. He is annihilated . The Egyptian architects were possessed by the consciousness of the awful, irresistible domination of the ways of nature; they had no thought to give to the insignificant atom that was man.

Greek architecture of the great age is the expression of men who were, first of all, intellectual artists, kept firmly within the visible world by their mind, but, only second to that, lovers of the human world. The Greek temple is the perfect expression of the pure intellect illumined by the spirit. No other great building anywhere approach its simplicity. In the Parthenon straight columns rise to plain capital; a pediment is sculptured in bold relief ; there is nothing more. And yet - here is the Greek miracle - this absolute simplicity of structure is alone in majesty of beauty among all the temples and cathedrals and palaces of the world. Majestic but human, truly Greek. No superhuman force as in Egypt; no strange supernatural shapes as in India; the parthenon is the home of humanity at ease, calm, ordered, sure of itself and the world. The Greeks flung a challenge to nature in the fullness of their joyous strength. They set their temple on the summit of a hill overlooking the wide sea, outlined against the circle of the sky. They would build what was more beautiful than hill and sea and sky and greater than all these. It matters not at all if the temple is larger or small; one never thinks of the size. It matters not how much it is in ruins. A few white columns dominate the lofty height at Sunion as securely as the great mass of the Parthenon dominates all the sweep of the sea and land around Athens. To the Greek architect man was the master of the world. His mind could understand its laws; his spirit could discover its beauty.

Question. 1

“The Greeks flung a challenge to nature in the fullness of their joyous strength.” Which of the following best captures the ‘challenge’ that is being referred to?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

According to the passage, which of the following best explains why there is little symbolism in Greek art?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

According to the passage, what conception of man can be inferred from Egyptian architecture?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

From the passage, which of the following combination can be inferred to be correct ?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 5

Which of the following is NOT a characteristic of Greek architecture, according to the passage?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 44

As you set out for Ithaka

hope the journey is a long one.

full of adventure, full of discovery.

Laistrygonians and Cyclops.

angry Poseidon-don’t be afraid of them :

you’ll never find things like that on your way

as long as you keep your thoughts raised high,

as long as a rare excitement

stirs your spirit and your body.

Laistrygonians and Cyclops,

wild Poseidon-you won’t encounter them

unless you bring them along inside you soul,

unless your soul sets them up in front of you.

Hope the voyage is a long one,

may there be many a summer morning when,

with what pleasure, what joy,

you come into harbours seen for the first time;

may you stop at Phoenician trading stations

to buy fine things,

mother of pearl and coral, amber and ebony,

sensual perfume of every kind–

as many sensual perfumes as you can ;

and may you visit many Egyptian cities

to gather stores of knowledge from their scholars.

Keep lthaka always in your mind

arriving there is what you are destined for.

But do not hurry the journey at all. Better if it lasts for years,

so you are old by the time you reach the island

Wealthy with all you have gained on the way, not expecting

Ithaka to make you rich lthaka gave you the marvellous journey,

without her you would not have set out

She has nothing left to give you now.

And if you find her poor, Ithaka won’t have fooled you

Wise as you will have become, so full of experience

you will have understood by then what these lthakas mean

Question. 1

Which of the following best reflects the central theme of this poem?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

The poet recommends a long journey. Which of the following is the most comprehensive reason for it?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

In the poem, lthaka is a symbol of

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

What does the poet mean by ‘Laistrygonians’ and ‘Cyclops’?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 5

Which of the following best reflects the tone of the poem?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 45

The conceptions of life and the world which we call ‘philosophical’ are a product of two factors: one, inherited religious and ethical conceptions; the other, the sort of investigation which may be called ‘scientific’, using this word in its broadest sense. Individual philosophers have differed widely in regard to the proportions in which these two factors entered into their system, but it is the presence of both, in some degree, that characterizes philosophy.

‘Philosophy’ is a word which has been used in many ways, some wider, some narrower. I propose to use it in a very wide sense, which I will now try to explain.

Philosophy, as I shall understand the word, is something intermediate between theology and science. Like theology, it consists of speculations on matters as to which definite knowledge has, so far, been unascertainable; but like science, it appeals to human reason rather than to authority, whether that of tradition or that of revelation. All definite knowledge-so I should contend-belongs to science; all dogma as to what surpasses definite knowledge belongs to theology. But between theology and science there is a ‘No man’s Land’, exposed to attack from both sides; this ‘No Man’s Land’ is philosophy. Almost all the questions of most interest to speculative minds are such as science cannot answer, and the confident answers of theologians no longer seem so convincing as they did in former centuries. Is the world divided into mind and matter, and if so, what is mind and what is matter? Is mind subject to matter, or is it possessed of independent powers? Has the universe any unity or purpose? Is it evolving towards some goal? Are there really laws of nature, or do we believe in them only because of our innate love of order? Is man what he seems to the astronomer, a tiny lump of carbon and water impotently crawling on a small and unimportant planet? Or is he what he appears to Hamlet? Is he perhaps both at once? Is there a way of living that is noble and another that is base, or are all ways of living merely futile? If there is a way of living that is noble, in what does it consist, and how shall we achieve it? Must the good be eternal in order to deserve to be valued, or is it worth seeking even if the universe is inexorably moving towards death? Is there such a thing as wisdom, or is what seems such merely the ultimate refinement of folly? To such questions no answer can be found in the laboratory. Theologies have professed to give answers, all to definite; but their definiteness causes modern minds to view them with suspicion. The studying of these questions, if not the answering of them, is the business of philosophy.

Why, then, you may ask, waste time on such insoluble problems? To this one may answer as a historian, or as an individual facing the terror of cosmic loneliness.

The answer of the historian, in so far as I am capable of giving it, will appear in the course of this work. Ever since men became capable of free speculation, their actions in numerable important respects, have depended upon their theories as to the world and human life, as to what is good and what is evil. This is as true in the present day as at any former time. To understand an age or a nation, we must understand its philosophy, and to understand its philosophy we must ourselves be in some degree philosophers. There is here a reciprocal causation: the circumstances of men’s lives do much to determine their philosophy, but, conversely, their philosophy does much to determine their circumstances.

There is also, however, a more personal answer. Science tells us what we can know, but what we can know is little, and if we forget how much we cannot know we may become insensitive to many things of very great importance. Theology, on the other hand, induces a dogmatic belief that we have knowledge, where in fact we have ignorance, and by doing so generates a kind of impertinent insolence towards the universe. Uncertainty, in the presence of vivid hopes and fears, is painful, but must be endured if we wish to live without the support of comforting fairy tales. It is not good either to forget the questions that philosophy asks, or to persuade ourselves that we have found indubitable answers to them. To teach how to live without certainty, and yet without being paralyzed by hesitation, is perhaps the chief thing that philosophy, in our age, can still do for those who study it.

Question. 1

According to the author, which of the following statements about the nature of the universe must be definitely true?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

From reading the passage, what can be concluded about the profession of the author? He is most likely not to be a

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

 Based on this passage what can be concluded about the relation between philosophy and science?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

The purpose of philosophy is to

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 46

The production of histories of India has become very frequent in recent years and may well call for some explanation. Why so many and why this one in particular? The reason is a twofold one: changes in the Indian scene requiring a re-interpretation of the facts and changes in attitudes of historians about the essential elements of Indian history. These two considerations are in addition to the normal fact of fresh information, whether in the form of archeological discoveries throwing fresh light on an obscure period or culture, or the revelations caused by the opening of archives or the release of private papers. The changes in the Indian scene are too obvious to need emphasis. Only two generations ago British rule seemed to most Indian as well as British observers likely to extend into an indefinite future; now there is a teenage generation which knows nothing of it. Changes in the attitude of historians have occurred everywhere, changes in attitudes to the content of the subject as well as to particular countries, but in India there have been some special features. Prior to the British, Indian historiographers were mostly Muslims, who relied, as in the case of Sayyid Ghulam Hussain,

on their own recollection of events and on information from friends and men of affairs. Only a few like Abul Fazl had access to official papers. These were personal narratives of events, varying in value with the nature of the writer. The early British writers were officials. In the eighteenth century they were concerned with some aspect of Company policy, or, like Robert Orme in his Military Transactions, gave a straight narrative in what was essentially a continuation of the Muslim tradition. In the early nineteenth century the writers were still, with two notable exceptions, officials, but they were now engaged in chronicling, in varying moods of zest, pride, and awe, the rise of the British power in India to supremacy. The two exceptions were James Mill, with his critical attitude to the Company and John Marchman, the Baptist missionary. But they, like the officials, were anglo-centric in their attitude, so that the history of modern India in their hands came to be the history of the rise of the British in India.

The official school dominated the writing of Indian history until we get the first professional historian’s approach, Ramsay Muir and P. E. Roberts in England and H. H. Dodwell in India. Then Indian historians trained in the English school joined in, of whom the most distinguished was Sir Jadunath Sarkar and the other notable writers: Surendranath Sen, Dr. Radhakumud Mukerji, and Professor Nilakanta Shastri. They, it may be said, restored India to Indian history, but their bias was mainly political. Finally have come the nationalists who range from those who can find nothing good or true in the British to sophisticated historical philosophers like K. M. Panikker.

Along with types of historians with their varying bias have gone changes in the attitude to the content of Indian history. Here Indian historians have been influenced both by their local situation and by changes of thought elsewhere. It is in this field that this work can claim some attention since it seeks to break new ground, or perhaps to deepen a freshly turned furrow in the field of Indian history. The early official historians were content with the glamour and drama of political history from Plassey to the Mutiny, from Dupleix to the Sikhs. But when the raj was settled down, glamour departed from politics, and they turned to the less glorious but more solid ground of administration. Not how India was conquered but how it was governed was the theme of this school of historians. It found its archpriest in H. H. Dodwell, its priestess in Dame Lilian Penson, and its chief shrine in the Volume VI of the Cambridge History of India. Meanwhile in Britain other currents were moving, which led historical study into the economic and social fields. R. C. Dutt entered the first of these currents with his Economic History of India to be followed more recently by the whole group of Indian economic historians. W. E. Moreland extended these studies to the Mughal Period. Social history is now being increasingly studied and there is also of course a school of nationalist historians who see modern Indian history in terms of the rise and the fulfillment of the national movement.

All these approaches have value, but all share in the quality of being compartmental. It is not enough to remove political history from its pedestal of being the only kind of history worth having if it is merely to put other types of history in its place. Too exclusive an attention to economic, social, or administrative history can be as sterile and misleading as too much concentration on politics. A whole subject needs a whole treatment for understanding. A historian must dissect his subject into its elements and then fuse them together again into an integrated whole. The true history of a country must contain all the features just cited but must present them as parts of a single consistent theme.

Question. 1

In the table given below, match the historians to the approaches taken by them:

A. Administrative E. Robert Orme
B.  Political  F. H. H. Dodwell
C.  Narrative G. Radhakumud Mukherji
D.  Economic H. R. C. Dutt

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

According to the author, which of the following is not among the attitudes of Indian historians of Indian origin?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

Historians moved from writing political history to writing administrative history because

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

Which of the following is the closest implication of the statement “to break new ground, or perhaps to deepen a freshly turned furrow”?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 5

Which of the following may be the closest in meaning to the statement “restored India to Indian history”?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 47

The narrative of Dersu Uzala is divided into two major sections, set in 1902 and 1907 that deal with separate expeditions which Arseniev conducts into the Ussuri region. In addition a third time frame forms a prologue to the film. Each of the temporal frames has a different focus, and by shifting them Kurosawa is able to describe the encroachment of settlements upon the wilderness and the consequent erosion of Dersu’s way of life. As the film opens, that erosion has already begun. The first image is a ling shot of a huge forest, the trees piled upon one another by the effects of the telephoto lens so that the landscape becomes an abstraction and appears like a huge curtain of green. A little informs us that the year is 1910. This is as late into the century as Kurosawa will go. After this prologue, the events of the film will transpire even farther back in time and will be presented as Arseniev’s recollections. The character of Dersu Uzala is the heart of the film, his life the example that Kurosawa wishes to affirm. Yet the formal organisation of the film works to contain, to circumscribe that life by erecting a series of obstacles around it. The film itself is circular, opening and closing by Dersu’s grave thus sealing off the character from the modern world to which Kurosawa once so desperately wanted to speak. The multiple time frames also work to maintain a separation between Dersu and the contemporary world. We must go back farther even than 1910 to discover who he was. But this narrative structure has yet another implication. It safeguards Dersu’ example, inoculates it from contamination with history, and protects it from contact with the industrialised, urban world. Time is organised by the narrative into a series of barriers , which enclose Dersu in kind of vacuum chamber protecting him from the social and historical dialectics that destroyed the other Kurosawa heroes. Within the film, Dersu does die, but the narrative structure attempts to immortalise him and his example, as Dersu passes from history into myth.

We see all this at work in the enormously evocative prologue. The camera tilts down to reveal felled trees littering the landscape and an abundance of construction. Roads and hoses outline the settlement that is being built. Kurosawa cuts to a medium shot of Arseniev standing in the midst of the cleating, looking uncomfortable and disoriented . A man passing in a wagon asks him what he is doing , and the explorer says he is looking for grave . The driver replies that no one has died here, the settlement is too recent. These words enunciate the temporal rupture that the film studies. It is the beginning of things (industrial society ) and the end of things (the forest) the commencement of one world so young that no one has had time yet to die and the eclipse of another, in which Dersu has died. It is his grave for which the explorer searches. His passing symbolises the new order, the development that now surrounds Arseniev. The explorer says he buried his friend three years ago, next to huge cedar and fir trees, but now they are all gone. The man on the wagon replies they were probably chopped down when the settlement was built, and he drives off. Arseniev walks to a barren, treeless spot next to a pile of bricks. As he moves the camera tracks and pans to follow, revealing a line of freshly built houses and a women hanging her laundry to dry. A distant train whistle is heard, and the sound of construction in the clearing vie with the cries of birds and the rustle of wind in the trees. Arseniev pauses looks around for the grave that once was, and murmurs desolately, “Dersu”. The image now cuts farther into the past, to 1902 and the first section of the film commences, which describes Arseniev’s meeting with Dersu and their friendship.

Kurosawa defines the world of the film initially upon a void a missing presence. The grave is gone , brushed aside by a world rushing into modernism, and now the hunter exists only in Arseniev’s memories. The hallucinatory dreams and visions of Dodeskaden are succeeded by nostalgic, melancholy ruminations. Yet by exploring these ruminations, the firm celebrates the timelessness of Dersu’s wisdom .The first section of the film has two purposes: to describe the magnificence and inhuman vastness of nature and to delineate the code of ethics by which Dersu lives and which permits him to survive in these conditions. When Dersu first appears, the other soldiers treat him with condescension and laughter, but Arseniev watches him closely and does not share their derisive response. Unlike them, he is capable of immediately grasping Dersu’s extraordinary qualities. In camp, Kurosawa frames Arseniev by himself, sitting on the other side of the fire from his soldiers. While they sleep or joke among themselves, he write in his diary and Kurosawa cuts in several point-of-view shots from his perspective of trees that appear animated and sinister as the fire light dances across their gnarled, leafless outlines. This reflective dimension, this sensitivity to the spirituality of nature, distinguishes him from the others and forms the basis of hid receptivity to Dersu and their friendship. It makes him a fir pupil for the hunter.

Question. 1

According to the author, which of these statements about the film are correct?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

 In the film, Kurosawa hints at Arseniev’s reflective and sensitive nature

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

. According to the author the section of the film following the prologue

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

The film celebrates Dersu’s wisdom

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 5

Arseniev’s search for Dersu’s grave

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 6

How is Kurosawa able to show the erosion of Dersu’s way of life?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 48

Billie Holiday died a few weeks ago. I have been unable until now to write about her, but since she will survive many who receive longer obituaries, a short delay in one small appreciation will not harm her or us. When she died we the musicians, critics all who were ever transfixed by the most heart- reading voice of the past generation-grieved bitterly. There was no reason to. Few people pursued self- destruction more whole-heartedly than she, and when the pursuit was at an end, at the age of forty- four, she had turned herself into a physical and artistic wreck. Some of us tried gallantly to pretend otherwise, taking comfort in the occasional moments when she still sounded like a ravaged echo of her greatness. Other had not even the heart to see and listen any more. We preferred to stay home and, if old and lucky enough to own the incomparable records of her heyday from 1937 to 1946 ,many of which are not even available on British LP ,to recreate those coarse textured, sinuous, sensual and unbearable sad noises which gave her a sure corner of immortality. Her physical death called, of anything for relief rather than sorrow. What sort of middle age would she have faced without the voice to earn money for her drinks and fixes, without the looks -and in her day she was hauntingly beautiful- to attract the men she needed, without business sense, without anything but the disinterested worship of ageing men who had heard and seen her in her glory?

And yet ,irrational though it is , our grief expressed Billie Holiday’s art, that of a woman for whom one must be sorry . The great blues singers, to whom she may be justly compared, played their game from strength. Lionesses, though often wounded or at bay (did not Bessie Smith call herself ‘a tiger, ready to jump’?), their tragic equivalents were Cleopatra and Phaedra; Holiday’s was embittered Ophelia. She was the Puccini heroine among blues singers, or rather among jazz singers, for thought she sang a cabaret version of the blues incomparably her natural idiom was the poop song . Her unique achievement was to have twisted this into a genuine expression of the major passions by means of a total disregard of its sugary tunes, or indeed of any tune other than her own few delicately crying elongated notes, phrased like Bessie Smith or Louis Armstrong in sackcloth, sung in a thin, gritty, haunting voice whose natural mood was an unresigned and voluptuous welcome for the pains of love. Nobody has sung , or will sing, Bess’s songs from Porgy as she did. It was this combination of bitterness and physical submission, as of someone lying still while watching his legs being amputated, which gives such a blood curdling quality to her strange Fruit the anti-lynching poem which she turned into an unforgettable art song. Suffering was her profession, but she did not accept it.

Little need be said about her horrifying life, which she described with emotional thought hardly with factual, truth in her autobiography Lady Singer the Blues. After an adolescence in which self-respect was measured by a girl’s insistence on picking up the coins thrown to her by clients with her hands , she was plainly beyond help. She did not lack it, for she had the flair and scrupulous honesty of John Hammond to launch her, the best musicians of the 1930s to accompany her notably Teddy Wilson , Frankie Newton and Lester Young the boundless devotion of all serious connoisseurs and much public success. It was too late to arrest a career of systematic embittered self-immolation. To be born with both beauty and self-respect in the Negro ghetto of Baltimore in 1915 was too much of a handicap, even without rape at the age of ten and drug-addiction in her teens. But, while she destroyed herself, she sang, unmelodious profound and heartbreaking. It is impossible not to weep for her or not to hate the world which made her what she was.

Question. 1

According to the passage, Billie Holiday was fortunate in all but one of the following ways

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

Which of the following statements is not representative of the author’s opinion

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

According to the author, if Billie Holiday had not died in her middle age

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

Why will Billie holiday survive who receive linger obituaries ?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 49

Studies of the factors governing reading development in young children have achieved a remarkable degree of consensus over the past two decades. This consensus concerns the causal role of phonological skills in young children’s reading progress. Children who have good phonological skills, or good “phonological awareness’ become good readers and good spellers. Children with poor phonological skills progress more poorly. In particular, those who have a specific phonological deficit are likely to be classified as dyslexic by the time that they are 9 or 10 years old.

Phonological skills in young children can be measured at a number of different levels. The term phonological awareness is a global one , and refers to a deficit in recognising smaller units of sound within spoken words. Developmental work has shown that this deficit can be at the level of syllables, of onsets and rimes, or of phonemes. For example, a 4-year old child might have difficulty in recognising that a word like valentine has three syllables, suggesting a lack of syllabic awareness. A 5- years old might have difficulty in recognising that the odd word out in the set of words fan, cat, hat, mat, is fan. This task requires an awareness of the sub-syllabic units of the onset and the rime. The onset corresponds to any initial consonants in a syllable, and the rime corresponds to the vowel and to any following consonants. Rimes correspond to rhyme in single-syllable words and so the rime in fan differs from the rime cat, hat, and mat. In longer words , rime and rhyme may differ. The onsets in valentine are /v/ and /t/, and the rimes correspond to the spelling patterns ‘al’ ‘en’ and ‘ine’.

A 6-year-old might have difficulty in recognising that plea and pray begin with the same initial sound. This is a phonemic judgement. Although the initial phoneme /p/ is shared between the two words, in plea it is part of the onset ‘pl’, and in pray it is part of the onset ‘pr’. Until children can segment the onset (or the rime), such phonemic judgements are difficult are difficult for them to make. In fact, a recent survey of different developmental studies has shown that the different levels of phonological awareness appear to emerge sequentially. The awareness of syllables, onsets, and rimes appears to emerge at around the ages of 3 and 4, long before most children go to school. The awareness of phonemes , on the other hand, usually emerges at around the age of 5 or 6 when children have been taught to read for about a year . An awareness of onsets and rimes thus appears to be a precursor of reading , whereas an awareness of phonemes at every serial position on a word only appears to develop as reading is taught. The onset-rime and phonemic levels of phonological structure, however, are not distinct. Many onsets in English are single phonemes ,and so are some rimes (e.g., sea, go, zoo).

The early availability of onsets and rimes is supported by studies that have compared the development of phonological awareness of onsets, rimes , and phonemes in the same subjects using the same phonological awareness tasks. For example, a study by Treiman and Zudowski used a same /different judgement task based on the beginning or the end sounds of the words . In the beginning sound task, the words began with the same onset, as in plea and plank, or shared only the initial phoneme , as in plea and pray. In the end - sound task, the words either shared the entire rime, as in spit and wit, or shared only the final phoneme, as in rat and wit. Treiman and Zudowski showed that 4- and 5-year old children found the onset rime version of the same/different task significantly easier than the version based on the phonemes. Only the 6-year-olds, who had been learning to read for about a year , were able to perform both versions of the tasks with an equal level of success.

Question. 1

The single-syllable words Rhyme and Rime are constituted by the exact set of :

(A) rime(s)           (B) onset(s)             (C) rhyme(s)              (D) phoneme(s)

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

The Treiman and Zudowski experiments found evidence to support the following

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

A phonological deficit in which of the following is likely to be classified as dyslexia?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

Which one of the following is likely to emerge last in the cognitive development of a child ?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 5

From the following statements, pick out the true statement according to the passage :

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 50

The teaching and transmission of North Indian classical music is, and long has been, achieved by largely oral means. The raga and its structure, the often breathtaking intricacies of tala or rhythm, and the incarnation of raga and tala as bandish or composition, are passed thus, between guru and shishya by word of mouth and direct demonstration, with no printed sheet of notated music, as it were, acting as a go-between. Saussure’s conception of language as a communication between addresser and addressee is given in this model, a further instance, and a new, exotic complexity and glamour.

These days, especially with the middle class having entered the domain of classical music and playing not a small part in ensuring the continuation of this ancient tradition, the tape recorder serves as a handy technological slave and preserves, from oblivion, the vanishing, the elusive moment of oral transmission. Hoary gurus, too have seen the advantage of this device, and increasingly use it as an aid to instructing their pupils; in place of the shawls and other traditional objects that used to pass from shishya to guru in the past, as a token of the regard of the former of the latter, it is not unusual today, to see cassettes changing hands.

Part of my education in North Indian classical music was conducted via this rather ugly but beneficial rectangle of plastic, which I carried with me to England when I was an undergraduate. One cassette had stored in it various talas played upon the tabla, at various tempos, by my music teacher’s brother-in -law, Hazarilalji, who was a teacher of Kathak dance, as well as a singer and a tabla player. This was a work of great patience and prescience , a one- and -a half hour performance without any immediate point or purpose, but intended for some delayed future moment when I’d practise the talas solitarily.

This repeated playing out of the rhythmic cycles on the tabla was inflected by the noises-an irate auto driver blowing a horn; the sound of overbearing pigeons that were such a nuisance on the banister; even the cry of a kulfi seller in summer-entering from the balcony of the third floor flat we occupied in those days, in a lane in Bombay suburb, before we left the city for good. These sounds, in turn, would invade, hesitantly, the ebb and flow of silence inside the artificially heated room, in a borough of West London, in which I used to live as an undergraduate. There, in the trapped dust silence and heat, the theka of the table, qualified by the imminent but intermittent presence and the itinerant kulfi seller, would inhabit a small graduate room in Oxford.

The tape recorder, though remains an extension of the oral transmission of music, rather than a replacement of it. And the oral transmission of North Indian classical music remains, almost uniquely, a testament to the fact that the human brain can absorb, remember and reproduce structures of great complexity and sophistication without the help of the hieroglyph or written mark or a system of notation. I remember my surprise on discovering that Hazarilalji - who had mastered Kathak dance, tala and North Indian classical music, and who used to narrate to me, occasionally, compositions meant or dance that were grand and intricate in their verbal prosody, architecture and rhythmic complexity - was near illiterate and barely learnt to write his name in large and clumsy letters.

Of course, attempts have been made, throughout the 20th century, to formally codify and even notate this music and institutions set up and degrees created. Specifically to educate students in this “scientific” and codified manner. Paradoxically, however, this style of teaching has produced no noteworthy student or performer; the most creative musicians still emerge from the guru-shishya relationship, their understanding of music developed by oral communication.

The fact that North Indian classical music emanated from, and has evolved through, oral culture, means that this music has a significantly different aesthetic, and that this aesthetic has different politics, from that of Western classical music. A piece of music in the Western tradition, at least in its most characteristic and popular conception, originates in its composer, and the connection between the composer writes down, in notation, his composition, as a poet might write down and publish his poem. However far the printed sheet of noted music might travel this from the composer, it still remains his property ; and the notion of property remains at the heart of the Western conception of “genius”, which derives from the Latin gignere or ‘to beget’.

The genius in Western classical music is, then the originator, begetter and owner of his work-the printed, notated sheet testifying to his authority over his product and his power, not only of expression or imagination, but of origination. The conductor is a custodian and guardian of this property. Is it an accident that Mandelstam, in his notebooks, compares the conductor’s baton to a policeman’s, saying all the music of the orchestra lies mute within it, waiting for its first movement to release it into the auditorium?

The raga transmitted through oral means-is, in a sense, no one’s property; it is not easy to pin down its source, or to know exactly where its provenance or origin lies. Unlike the Western classical tradition, where the composer begets his piece, notates it and stamps it with his ownership, the raga-unconfined to a single incarnation, composer or performer- remains necessarily greater than the artist who invokes it.

This leads to a very different politics of interpretation and valuation, to an aesthetic that privileges the evanescent moment of performance and invocation over the controlling authority of genius and the permanent record. It is a tradition, thus, that would appear to value the performer, as medium, more highly than the composer who presumes to originate what, effectively, cannot be originated in a single person-because the raga is the inheritance of a culture.

Question. 1

Which of the following statements best conveys the overall idea of the passage?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 2

According to the author, the inadequacy of teaching North Indian classical music through a codified, notation based system is best illustrated by

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 3

From the author’s explanation of the notion that in the Western tradition, music originates in its composer, which one of the following be inferred?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 4

According to the passage, in the North Indian classical tradition, the raga remains greater than the artist who invokes it. This implies an aesthetic which

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 5

The oral transmission of North Indian classical music is an almost unique testament of the :

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 6

The author holds that the “rather ugly but beneficial rectangle of plastic” has proved to be a “handy technological slave” in:

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 7

Saussure’s conception of language as communication between addresser and addressee, according to the author, is exemplified by the

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Question. 8

The authors’s contention that the notion of property lies at the heart of the Western conception of genius is best indicated by which one of the following?

(a) (b) (c) (d)
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Comprehension. 51

One of the criteria by which we judge the vitality of a style of painting is its ability to renew itself - its responsiveness to the changing nature and quality of experience, the degree of conceptual and formal innovation that it exhibits. By this criterion, it would appear that the practice of abstractionism has failed to engage creatively with the radical change in human experience in recent decades. It has, seemingly, been unwilling to re-invent itself in relation to the systems of artistic expression and viewer’s expectations that have developed under the impact of the mass media.

The judgement that abstractionism has slipped into ‘inertia gear’ is gaining endorsement, not only among discerning viewers and practitioners of other art forms, but also among abstract painters themselves. Like their companions elsewhere in the world, abstractionists in India are asking themselves an overwhelming question today: Does abstractionism have a future? The major crisis that abstractionists face is that of revitalising their picture surface; few have improvised any solutions beyond the ones that were exhausted by the 1970s. Like all revolutions, whether in politics or in art, abstractionism must now confront its moment of truth: having begun life as a new and radical pictorial approach to experience, it has become an entrenched orthodoxy itself. Indeed, when viewed against an historical situation in which a variety of subversive, interactive and richly hybrid forms are available to the art practitioner, abstractionism assumes the remote and defiant air of an aristocracy that has outlives its age; trammelled by formulaic conventions yet buttressed by a rhetoric of sacred mystery, it seems condemned to being the last citadel of the self-regarding ‘fine-art’ tradition, the last hurrah of painting for paintings’s sake