The question whether intelligent life exists elsewhere in the universe is certainly imprecise, because we are not sure how different from us something might be and still count as “intelligent life.” Yet we cannot just decide to define “intelligent life” in some more precise way since it is likely that we will find and recognize intelligent life elsewhere in the universe only if we leave our definitions open to new, unimagined possibilities.The passage concludes: we cannot define “intelligent life” in some more precise way and we will find intelligent life only if we leave our definitions open.The argument can most reasonably be interpreted as an objection to which one of the following claims?
(A) The question whether intelligent life exists elsewhere in the universe is one that will never be correctly answered. - irrelevant to the conclusion
(B) Whether or not there is intelligent life elsewhere in the universe, our understanding of intelligent life is limited. - the passage does not object to this.
(C) The question about the existence of intelligent life elsewhere in the universe must be made more precise if we hope to answer it correctly. - the best.
(D) The question whether there is intelligent life elsewhere in the universe is so imprecise as to be meaningless. - irrelevant
(E) The question whether there is intelligent life elsewhere in the universe is one we should not spend our time trying to answer. - irrelevant to the conclusionThe passage, if seen as an objection to an antecedent claim, challenges that claim by:
(A) showing the claim to be irrelevant to the issue at hand - irrelevant
(B) citing examples that fail to fit proposed definition of “intelligent life” - irrelevant. there are no examples
(C) claiming that “intelligent life” cannot be adequately defined - the best
(D) arguing that the claim, if acted on
, would be counterproductive - tricky. but "if acted on" does not fit the passage.
(E) maintaining that the claim is not supported by the available evidence - irrelevant
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