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Vinny Gambini
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by ccheng Thu May 22, 2014 2:00 pm

I was torn between answers B and C mainly due to their vague language. I’d really appreciate if someone could provide definitions of the following terms or examples of what they should look like?
The descriptions in parenthesis are just my understanding but hope someone could shed some lights.
"A common claim" (Is it a claim that most people believe?)
"A similar observation" (Just another observation and no reasoning relation between two observations?)
"Some specific evidence that supports a claim" (Does the claim have to be a conclusion or an argument in order to have support evidence?)
"An inference" v. "exemplify" ("inference" is not a fact or concrete example but "exemplify" does offer such?)

Thanks very much.
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Atticus Finch
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Re: Q16

by maryadkins Fri May 23, 2014 1:56 pm

In the first paragraph, we learn that literature developed out of music and aspires to it. The African-American tradition is viewed as embodying this best, according to the author, and no one with in that tradition took it as far as Toni Morrison.

(A) is wrong because nowhere in this paragraph is there a denial of anything"”it all builds on itself.

(B) looks pretty good"”keep for now. I'm not sure about "similar observation," because it feels more to me like an application of the general theory. But again, it's not awful, so keep.

(C) ooooh, tricky. This is very similar to (B). But let's check out this "common claim." Re-read the first couple of sentences. I'm not seeing anything about how this is "common" or even a "claim." The author is just stating facts. And now that I think about it, the African-American tradition of storytelling aspiring to music isn't being given as EVIDENCE for those facts but illustrations of them.

(D) is the opposite of what the paragraph is doing.

(E) includes "counterexample" which is not there.

So in sum, I totally get your confusion about (B) and (C) and have tried to show you how I think through your questions below.

Your definitions are generally good...but as we see from this illustration, "similar observation" doesn't necessarily mean the two observations are independent. And no, an inference CAN be factual and concrete. An inference just means an inferred fact or idea.

In general, you want to apply standard understandings to all of these terms, and work from wrong to right to find the answer choice you can live with, rather than vice versa.
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Vinny Gambini
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Re: Q16

by MayaM405 Sat Nov 10, 2018 7:09 pm

Sorry to ask a fairly general question but I was wondering if you could elaborate on how the passage isn't making a claim and therefore answer choice C is incorrect.

Why aren't lines 1-2 considered a claim? Is it because there is not really any support? Would love any tricks to be able quickly determine this under timed pressure.