What seemed as remarkable as the advent of the Internet has been the use of this technology to proliferate in the form of a blog what would traditionally have been a personal diary.
A What seemed as remarkable as the advent of the Internet
B The concept that had been as remarkable as the advent of the Internet
C No less remarkable than the advent of the Internet
D The advent of the Internet has been nonetheless remarkable than
E Advent of the Internet was just as remarkable as
Choices (D) & (E) are clearly grammatical trainwrecks. (B) is hopelessly wordy and indirect. As it apparent from the other posts in this thread, the real choice is between (A) and (C). This is a tricky and subtle choice.
Let's think about the comparison. We are comparing two things:
(1) the advent of the Internet itself
(2) the fact that people use the Internet to overshare highly personal, extremely private information on blogs visible to everyone on the planet (!)
The comparison is saying both these things are equally remarkable.
(A) is bizarrely indirect. Consider these two sentences:
(3) Sally is as smart as Jim.
(4) One who is as smart as Sally is Jim.
Clearly (3) is completely direct and correct, and (4) is an indirect and wordy way of saying the same thing. (3) uses a structure we hear all the time in everyday speech, and it's perfectly correct. (4) is much less natural, much more awkward.
(A) is not much wordier than (C), but it is similarly indirect and awkward. A direct comparison has one term as the subject of the independent clause and the other as the subject of the clause following the word "than" or "as"
. Here, in (A), the entire comparison ("as remarkable as") is inside a subordinate clause beginning with the word "what" --- What seemed as remarkable as (1) has been (2)
. Why bury the comparison inside a subordinate clause? That's evasive and bizarre. That's precisely what is awkward about (4) above. That's not powerful and direct. This is precisely why (A) is unacceptable as an answer.
(C) makes the direct comparison in an entirely grammatically appropriate manner. No less remarkable than (1) has been (2)
If you don't typically read, say, the NY Times
or the Economist
magazine, you may find this grammatical form somewhat unfamiliar, but it is actually quite standard in high quality writing, so it's good to know.
This is why the OA is the correct answer.
Does all this make sense? Please let me know if anyone in the thread, or anyone else reading this, has any further questions.
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