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    #1

    The primary purpose of the passage is to present?

    Hi. I have two questions on the following reading, for which I cannot understand the correct answers! I would really appreciate it if you would spend some time and help me. Thanks a lot.


    Reading:
    Some modern anthropologists hold that biological evolution has shaped not only human morphology but also human behavior. The role those anthropologists ascribe to evolution is not of dictating the details of human behavior but one of imposing constraints—ways of feeling, thinking, and acting that “come naturally” in archetypal situations in any culture. Our “frailties”—emotions and motives such as rage, fear, greed, gluttony, joy, lust, love—may be a very mixed assortment, but they share at least one immediate quality: we are, as we say, “in the grip” of them. And thus they give us our sense of constraints.

    Unhappily, some of those frailties—our need for ever-increasing security among them—are presently maladaptive. Yet beneath the overlay of cultural detail, they, too, are said to be biological in direction, and therefore as natural to us as are our appendixes. We would need to comprehend thoroughly their adaptive origins in order to understand how badly they guide us now. And we might then begin to resist their pressure.


    24. The primary purpose of the passage is to present
    (A) a position on the foundations of human behavior and on what those foundations imply
    (B) a theory outlining the parallel development of human morphology and of human behavior
    (C) a diagnostic test for separating biologically determined behavior patterns from culture-specific detail
    (D) a practical method for resisting the pressures of biologically determined drives
    (E) an overview of those human emotions and motives that impose constraints on human behavior

    Answer: The answer book says A is correct, I agree, but I cannot understand why B is wrong. Would you please explain?


    26. Which of the following most probably provides an appropriate analogy from human morphology for the “details” versus “constraints” distinction made in the passage in relation to human behavior?
    (A) The ability of most people to see all the colors of the visible spectrum as against most people‟s inability to name any but the primary colors
    (B) The ability of even the least fortunate people to show compassion as against people‟s inability to mask their feelings completely
    (C) The ability of some people to dive to great depths as against most people‟s inability to swim long distances
    (D) The psychological profile of those people who are able to delay gratification as against people‟s inability to control their lives completely
    (E) The greater lung capacity of mountain peoples that helps them live in oxygen-poor air as against people‟s inability to fly without special apparatus

    Answer:
    The answer book says A is correct, but I cannot understand why. Would you please explain?

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    #2

    Re: The primary purpose of the passage is to present?

    The first sentence is enough to answer 24. The main verb hold suggests a position, not a theory. Furthermore, the text makes no more mention of human morphology, only human behaviour.

    With 26., the closest analogy is (A) although I don't think it's a very useful analogy. The plural countable noun colours matches most closely with details. In the colour spectrum there is a variety of colours, and the inability to name any but the primary colours, suggests a constraint on this variation. Without our rage, fear, greed and love, human behaviour would be more varied.

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    #3

    Re: The primary purpose of the passage is to present?

    Thank you so much. Your comment for 24 was so convincing. Thank you.

    I am sorry, the answer book is a confusing one and I some time make a mistake to find the real answer. I again looked up question 26's answer in it and I understood, the answer key says that E is correct. I am sorry because I wasted your time with A. What is your idea about E as the correct answer? Thanks a lot.

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    #4

    Re: The primary purpose of the passage is to present?

    Really? I'm sorry but I don't understand why (E), either!

    The question asks you to select "an appropriate analogy from human morphology". In light of this, answers (B) and (D) clearly do not apply. Also, (C) and (E) seem similar to me but I can't make the analogy with human behaviour.

    For me, (A) is the most intelligible answer although I don't think it's a very useful analogy, either.

    What a stinker of a question! I wonder what the other teachers think about these analogies.

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