Tocqueville, a nineteenth-century writer known for his study : GMAT Critical Reasoning (CR)
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# Tocqueville, a nineteenth-century writer known for his study

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02 Nov 2005, 13:07
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17. Tocqueville, a nineteenth-century writer known for his study of democracy in the United States, believed that a government that centralizes power in one individual or institution is dangerous to its citizens. Biographers claim that Tocqueville disliked centralized government because he blamed NapoleonтАЩs rule for the poverty of his childhood in Normandy.
Which of the following, if true, would cast the most serious doubt on the biographersтАЩ claim?
(A) Although Napoleon was popularly blamed at the time for the terrible living conditions in Normandy, historians now know that bad harvests were really to blame for the poor economic conditions.
(B) Napoleon was notorious for refusing to share power with any of his political associates.
(C) Tocqueville said he knew that if his father had not suffered ill health, his family would have had a steady income and a comfortable standard of living.
(D) Although Tocqueville asserted that United States political life was democratic, the United States of the nineteenth century allowed political power to be concentrated in a few institutions.
(E) Tocqueville once wrote in a letter that, although his childhood was terribly impoverished, it was not different from the experience of his friends and neighbors in Normandy.
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03 Nov 2005, 06:35
It should be C.
It nulifies the claim of the biographers that napolean's rule was responsible.
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03 Nov 2005, 06:45
I go for C

in order to refute the claim made my the biographers, one must find another reason for the poverty of Tocqueville in his childhood, which did not result from the rule of Napoleon.

C gives such an explanation.
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03 Nov 2005, 09:15
How do we reject A?
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03 Nov 2005, 09:25
IMO,

Even though today it is known that the bad harvest was responsible for the economic conditions, in the 19th century, this was unknown.
So the intention, which let Tocqueville to write that napoleons rule was responsible for the bad economic conditions, still remains valid.

lets wait for OA anyways
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06 Nov 2005, 09:38
I vote for C.

Biographers want us to believe that Tocqueville blamed Napolean because of his poverty (Causual relationship). However if we find another reason why T. suffered poverty then this casual relationship is weakened.
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06 Nov 2005, 12:11
OA is indeed C.
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09 Nov 2005, 22:09
Whats wrong with A plz ??
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09 Nov 2005, 22:45
The assumption is that Tocqueville was against centralized power because Napoleon, who applied centralized power, impoverished his childhood.

a) Out: distorts the argument and says nothing about T's childhood
b) Out of scope
c) Keep- Implies that his father is to blame for poverty
d) Out of scope
e) Out: does not weaken the argument

I pick C because it provide an alternative to why T was poor and not a result of Napolean's rule
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12 Nov 2005, 01:20
Bhai wrote:
How do we reject A?

By not accepting it
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12 Nov 2005, 09:19
One more C.

C weakens the validity of the evidence that Tocqueville disliked centralized government because he blamed Napoleonâ€™s rule for the poverty of his childhood in Normandy.
12 Nov 2005, 09:19
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