40. What aspect of twentieth-century art in the United States does the passage mainly discuss?In the years leading up to the First World War, the realist tradition in the United States was given new life within the ranks of the so-called Ashcan School, a term that loosely describes a group of artists in New York who favored, as the name implies, commonplace subjects, even ones that emphasized the seedy aspects of daily life. In an era when the United States was shifting from an agricultural to an industrially based economy, artists turned to the vitality of the city for their themes, sometimes documenting the lives of the nation's urban inhabitants with a literalness that shocked viewers accustomed to the bland generalizations of academic art. Thus, the first modern American revolution in painting in the early twentieth century was not away from, but toward, realism.
10 The developments toward realism and new pictorial subject matter introduced by this revolution are explained in part by the fact that the academic spirit had become anathema to many young painters by the beginning of the twentieth century, when the professional survival of an artist was largely contingent on membership in the National Academy of Design, the American equivalent of the French Academy of Aits. The National Academy of Design perpetuated the Traditions of ftp French Academy, such as annual juried exhibitions. Although it merged with the more tolerant Society of American Artists in 1907, it remained steadfastly intolerant of new developments.
At the same time, important venues in New York, particularly Alfred Stteglitz's gallery known as 291 and* in 1913, the gigantic exhibition of modern art known as the Armory Show, introduced European modernists to American audiences and nurtured a number
of American artists committed not to realism but to experimental art During the 1930's, the country's focus turned inward, giving rise to new varieties of realist art based on intrinsically American themes. These were practiced by the so-called Regionalists, who
recorded the rural lire of the Midwest, and the more politically engaged Social Realists, who documented the social consequences of extreme economic change. Also a fertile period for American photography, the era before the Second World War witnessed the development of photojournalism, as well as social documentary and advertising photography.
(A) The realistic representation of urban life in the years before the First World War
(B) the limitations of early twentieth-century academic art
(C) The development of realism from the early twentieth century to the Second World War
(D) The influence of European art on American an between the First and the Second World Wars
I chose A but the answer is C. I think the realistic representation of urban life happened before the First World War.
lead up to sth: to be an introduction or the cause of sth (OAL)
In the years leading up to the First World War, the realist tradition in the United States was given new life within the ranks of the so-called
"A" is the first thing the article discusses. But it is not what it "mainly discusses." It begins there and then discusses many things leading up to WWII.