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  1. #1
    joham is offline Key Member
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    Default What's the author's purpose of writing?

    My question is: Is Choice A (an idiom) reasonable as the purpose of the following passage? I should think the purpose of this passage should be 'to tell the readers how to use bank cards'. Thank you in advance.

    The purpose of the passage below is to show you how to ______.
    A. play your cards right B. use your cards abroad
    C. draw cash with your cards D. pay for goods with your cards

    The given answer is A. (from my province's 2008 College Entrance Examination Paper)


    We have designed all our bank cards to make your life easier.
    How to use your NatWest Servicecard
    As a Switch card, it lets you pay for all sports of goods and services, whenever you see the Switch logo. The money comes straight out of your account, so you can spend as much as you like as long as you have enough money (or an agreed overdraft(透支) )to cover it. It is also a cheque guarantee(担保) card for up to the amount shown on the card. And it gives you free access to your money from over 31,000 cash machines across the UK.
    How to use your NatWest Cashcard
    You can use your Cashcard as a Solo card to pay for goods and services wherever you see the Solo logo. It can also give you access to your account and your cash from over 31,000 cash machines nationwide. You can spend or withdraw(提取) what you have in your account, or as much as your agreed overdraft limit.
    Using your card abroad
    You can also use your Servicecard and Cashcard when youíre abroad. You can withdraw cash at cash machines and pay for goods and services wherever you see the Cirrus or Maestro logo displayed.
    We take a commission charge of 2.25% of each cash withdrawal you make (up to £4) and a commission charge of 75 pence every time you use Maestro to pay for goods or services. We also apply a foreign-exchange transaction fee of 2.62%.
    How to use your NatWest Credit Card
    With your credit card you can do the following:
    Pay for goods and services and enjoy up to 56 daysí interest-free credit.
    Pay in over 24 million shops worldwide that display the Mastercard or Visa logo.
    Collect one AIR MILE for every £20 of spending that appears on your statement.
    (This does not include foreign currency or travelerís cheques bought, interest and other charges.)

  2. #2
    Soup's Avatar
    Soup is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: What's the author's purpose of writing?

    A. play your cards right is the best answer, yes. Meaning, to make good use of one's resources.

    Play Your Cards Right: Information from Answers.com

  3. #3
    freezeframe is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: What's the author's purpose of writing?

    What a horrible question.

  4. #4
    joham is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: What's the author's purpose of writing?

    Thank you, Soup and freezeframe.
    And freezeframe, are you saying the question in the exam paper is a horrible one or my question is a horrible one?

    The comprehension passage is about how to use bank cards. This is the purpose of writing. Would a native English teacher have set a question like this, using an idiom of figure of speech?

    Thank you again.

  5. #5
    freezeframe is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: What's the author's purpose of writing?

    Quote Originally Posted by joham View Post
    And freezeframe, are you saying the question in the exam paper is a horrible one or my question is a horrible one?
    The exam question.

    I think mixing idiom with the literal description of cards is confusing. Also, it's just a list of benefits of various cards, it doesn't tell you how to play your cards. In my opinion, this question is ridiculous.

  6. #6
    joham is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: What's the author's purpose of writing?

    Wow, freezeframe, you gave me the answer immediately. It was splendid of you to help me. I don't know how to thank you enough.

  7. #7
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    Barb_D is offline Moderator
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    Default Re: What's the author's purpose of writing?

    I agree completely that it's a horrible question, mixing the literal use of bank cards with the idiom referring to playing cards. I'm sure whoever thought it up thought he or she was very clever, but I think it's unfair to ask of non-native speakers.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

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