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Although European decisions during the 16th and 17th centuries to expl

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Although European decisions during the 16th and 17th centuries to expl  [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 21 May 2018, 05:45
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66% (00:24) correct 34% (00:23) wrong based on 128

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Source: Platinum GMAT

Although European decisions during the 16th and 17th centuries to explore, trade with, and colonize large portions of the world brought tremendous economic wealth and vast geographic influence, the enormous success of European maritime ventures during the age of exploration also engendered a litany of unintended consequences for most of the nations with which Europe interacted. Due to their incredible military force, religious zeal, and uncompromising goal of profit, Europeans often imposed their traditions, values, and customs on the people with whom they traded. They frequently acted without regard to the long-term welfare of others as their principal concern was short-term economic gain. Since many nations that traded with Europe placed high value on their historical customs, some natives became deeply disconcerted by the changes that occurred as a result of European power. These factors, coupled with perennial domestic political instability, caused numerous countries to grow increasingly resistant to European influence.

One potent example of this ideological shift can be seen in the actions of the Tokugawa government of Japan. In its Seclusion Edict of 1636, the government attempted to extricate cultural interactions with Europe from the intimate fabric of Japanese society. The Edict attempted to accomplish this by focusing on three areas. First, it sought to curb cultural exchange by eliminating people bringing European ideas into Japan. The Edict stated, "Japanese ships shall by no means be sent abroad….All Japanese residing abroad shall be put to death when they return home." Second, the Edict focused on limiting trade. Articles 11 through 17 of the Edict imposed stringent regulations on trade and commerce. Third, the government banned Christianity, which it saw as an import from Europe that challenged the long-established and well-enshrined religious traditions of Japan. The government went to considerable lengths to protect its culture. Article eight of the Edict stated, "Even ships shall not be left untouched in the matter of exterminating Christians."

With the example of Japan and the examples of other countries that chose a different response to European influence, it is perhaps not too far of a stretch to conclude that Japan made the right decision in pursuing a path of relative isolationism. As history unfolded during the next 400 years, in general, countries that embraced European hegemony, whether by choice or by force, tended to suffer from pernicious wealth inequality, perennial political instability, and protracted underdevelopment.

1. It can best be inferred from the passage that in 1636, the Japanese government:

A) Saw its citizens living abroad as potential threats
B) Considered all foreign religions a danger
C) Disagreed with the European philosophy that trade brought wealth
D) Foresaw the economic dangers of European trade and imperialism
E) Believed that ideas coming into Japan via foreign interactions provided no positive impact to Japanese society


2. Which of the following best characterizes the most significant motivation for Europe's behavior with Japan during the 17th century?

A) Religious zeal
B) Long-term political concerns
C) Short-term economic self-interest
D) Cultural imperialism
E) Territorial aggrandizemen


3. The author most likely included the quotation from Article Eight of the Edict at the end of the second paragraph to:

A) Highlight the venomous anger many Japanese leaders felt toward the importation of foreign religions
B) Emphasize the determination of the Japanese government to protect itself from foreign influences it saw as damaging
C) Illustrate how pervasive foreign religious influence had become in Japanese society
D) Emphasize that European economic influence offered no justification for the Edict and the government relied instead on foreign religious influence to justify the Edict
E) Provide an example of Japan's effort to curb cultural and economic exchange


4. Based upon the passage, the author would likely agree most strongly with which of the following statements:

A) European decisions made during the 16th and 17th centuries in dealing with Japan represent an aberration from the typical pattern of European decisions
B) Japanese rulers who responded with ferocity to European influence bear part of the responsibility for the caustic European-Japanese relationship that ensued
C) With the hindsight of history, Japan likely made the appropriate decision in extricating itself from European influence
D) European religious and cultural values conflicted with European economic behavior toward Japan
E) The width and breadth of Japan's cultural fabric suffered from its seclusionist policies


5. According to the passage, which of the following constituted the biggest reason for the Seclusion Edict of 1636?

A) Japanese economic potential would be hampered in the long-term
B) European trade amounted to a disproportionate transfer of wealth
C) With growing European influence, the potential for European military action against the Japanese government became too large
D) Traditional Japanese culture and way of life were threatened by European influence
E) Japanese rulers feared the arrival of additional traders and cultural imperialists


6. According to the passage, the Japanese government took all of the following actions in an attempt to protect Japanese culture and way of life EXCEPT:

A) Prohibit Japanese from visiting other countries, even to see family
B) Execute Japanese citizens who settled in other countries but later decided to return to Japan
C) Heavily regulate foreign economic trade
D) Destroy all remnants of Christianity
E) Prohibit criticism of the feudal shogun system of government


7. The primary purpose of the passage is to:

A) Explain the actions of the Tokugawa government of Japan
B) Compare the results of countries that pursued protectionism with those that pursued globalization
C) Explore the consequences of some European trade and exploration along with analyzing a country’s response to it
D) Argue for the success of European trade as a means to create wealth and exert influence
E) Elucidate the root of frustration with European imperialism


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Originally posted by SajjadAhmad on 07 Feb 2017, 22:31.
Last edited by SajjadAhmad on 21 May 2018, 05:45, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Although European decisions during the 16th and 17th centuries to expl  [#permalink]

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New post 08 Feb 2017, 07:50
All correct 12.34 minutes..
Nice one :)
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Re: Although European decisions during the 16th and 17th centuries to expl  [#permalink]

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New post 08 Feb 2017, 12:40
Pretty Easy and Straight forward passage. For me, It is not a 700+ passage.
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Re: Although European decisions during the 16th and 17th centuries to expl  [#permalink]

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New post 21 May 2018, 05:46
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Formatted the Question
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Re: Although European decisions during the 16th and 17th centuries to expl  [#permalink]

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New post 21 May 2018, 08:43
Ques1.
Can anyone explain why we chose A instead of E ?
Why ruled out E ?
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Although European decisions during the 16th and 17th centuries to expl  [#permalink]

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New post 21 May 2018, 11:23
narayandutta wrote:
Ques1.
Can anyone explain why we chose A instead of E ?
Why ruled out E ?


Question 1

Correct Answer: A

A. This matches a sentence from the second paragraph: "The Edict stated, 'Japanese ships shall by no means be sent abroad….All Japanese residing abroad shall be put to death when they return home.'" If those living abroad were put to death upon returning, it is safe to conclude that the government saw these individuals as threats.

B. The passage states that actions were taken against Christianity (not all religions): "Third, the government banned Christianity"

C. The passage makes no mention of Japanese economic philosophy

D. The passage makes no mention that Japan foresaw the dangers of trade with Europe. Further, the reasons given for Japan's actions are cultural not economic.

E. The phrase "provided no positive impact" is a strong statement. Although the article is clear that Japan felt that the European influence damaged its culture, this is not enough evidence to claim that absolutely nothing positive came from European "ideas".

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Re: Although European decisions during the 16th and 17th centuries to expl  [#permalink]

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New post 22 May 2018, 07:32
Can anyone explain the reason as to why B is the correct answer for question number 3
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Re: Although European decisions during the 16th and 17th centuries to expl  [#permalink]

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New post 22 May 2018, 10:54
sharathshaddy wrote:
Can anyone explain the reason as to why B is the correct answer for question number 3


Correct Answer: B

Explanation

In order to understand why the quotation was used, it is essential to examine the broader context.

Context: "Third, the government banned Christianity, which it saw as an import from Europe that challenged the long-established and well-enshrined religious traditions of Japan. The government went to considerable lengths to protect its culture."

Immediately before the quote, the author states that Japan "went to considerable lengths to protect its culture." The author proceeds to include the quote in order to provide evidence of the lengths to which Japan went. In other words, the quote serves as evidence of the determination of the Japanese government to root out cultural influences.

A. The article provides no evidence that the Japanese government hated foreign religions (strictly speaking). Instead, the article focuses on the government's dislike of the weakening of Japanese culture at the hands of these religions.

B. Since the "government went to considerable lengths to protect its culture", the quote shows the government's determination.

C. The government's decision to destroy ships associated in any way with Christianity does not mean that Christianity deeply infiltrated the society (ships would have been the first things to have been influenced). Rather, it shows how thorough Japan was in extricating Christianity.

D. European economic influence clearly provided a justification for the Edict as "Articles 11 through 17 of the Edict imposed stringent regulations on trade and commerce"

E. Although there is no doubt that this is an example of Japan's effort to curb cultural exchange, the quote does not deal with efforts to curb economic exchange. Further, the passage already provided multiple other examples of Japan's effort to curb cultural exchange (see earlier: "First, it sought to curb cultural exchange by eliminating people bringing European ideas into Japan.")

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Re: Although European decisions during the 16th and 17th centuries to expl &nbs [#permalink] 22 May 2018, 10:54
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