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# Asian American poetry from Hawaii,the Pacific island state of the Unit

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Asian American poetry from Hawaii,the Pacific island state of the Unit  [#permalink]

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Updated on: 06 Sep 2019, 08:03
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New Project RC Butler 2019 - Practice 2 RC Passages Everyday
Passage # 161, Date : 22-APR-2019
This post is a part of New Project RC Butler 2019. Click here for Details

Asian American poetry from Hawaii,the Pacific island state of the United States,is generally characterizable in one of two ways: either as portraying a model multicultural paradise,or as exemplifying familiar Asian American literary themes such as generational conflict.In this light,the recent work of Wing Tek Lum in Expounding the Doubtful Points is striking for its demand to be understood on its own terms. Lum offers no romanticized notions of multicultural life in Hawaii,and while he does explore themes of family,identity,history,and literary tradition,he does not do so at the expense of attempting to discover and retain a local sensibility. For Lum such a sensibility is informed by the fact that Hawaii’s population,unlike that of the continental U.S.,has historically consisted predominantly of people of Asian and Pacific island descent,making the experience of its Asian Americans somewhat different than that of mainland Asian Americans.

In one poem,Lum meditates on the ways in which a traditional Chinese lunar celebration he is attending at a local beach both connects him to and separates him from the past.In the company of new Chinese immigrants,the speaker realizes that while ties to the homeland are comforting and necessary,it is equally important to have “a sense of new family” in this new land of Hawaii,and hence a new identity—one that is sensitive to its new environment. The role of immigrants in this poem is significant in that,through their presence,Lum is able to refer both to the traditional culture of his ancestral homeland as well as to the flux within Hawaiian society that has been integral to its heterogeneity.Even in a laudatory poem to famous Chinese poet Li Po (701–762 A.D.), which partly serves to place Lum’s work within a distinguished literary tradition,Lum refuses to offer a stereotypical nostalgia for the past,instead pointing out the often elitist tendencies inherent in the work of some traditionally acclaimed Chinese poets.

Lum closes his volume with a poem that further points to the complex relationships between heritage and local culture in determining one’s identity. Pulling together images and figures as vastly disparate as a famous Chinese American literary character and an old woman selling bread,Lum avoids an excessively romantic vision of U.S.culture, while simultaneously acknowledging the dream of this culture held by many newly arrived immigrants.

The central image of a communal pot where each person chooses what she or he wishes to eat but shares with others the “sweet soup / spooned out at the end of the meal”is a hopeful one; however,it also appears to caution that the strong cultural emphasis in the U.S.on individual drive and success that makes retaining a sense of homeland tradition difficult should be identified and responded to in ways that allow for a healthy new sense of identity to be formed.

1. Which one of the following most accurately expresses the main point of the passage?

(A) The poetry of Lum departs from other Asian American poetry from Hawaii in that it acknowledges its author’s heritage but also expresses the poet’s search for a new local identity.
(B) Lum’s poetry is in part an expression of the conflict between a desire to participate in a community with shared traditions and values and a desire for individual success.
(C) Lum writes poetry that not only rejects features of the older literary tradition in which he participates but also rejects the popular literary traditions of Hawaiian writers.
(D) The poetry of Lum illustrates the extent to which Asian American writers living in Hawaii have a different cultural perspective than those living in the continental U.S.
(E) Lum’s poetry is an unsuccessful attempt to manage the psychological burdens of reconciling a sense of tradition with a healthy sense of individual identity.

2. Given the information in the passage, which one of the following is Lum most likely to believe?

(A) Images in a poem should be explained in that poem so that their meaning will be widely understood.
(B) The experience of living away from one’s homeland is necessary for developing a healthy perspective on one’s cultural traditions.
(C) It is important to reconcile the values of individual achievement and enterprise with the desire to retain one’s cultural traditions.
(D) One’s identity is continually in transition and poetry is a way of developing a static identity.
(E) One cannot both seek a new identity and remain connected to one’s cultural traditions.

3. The author of the passage uses the phrase “the flux within Hawaiian society” primarily in order to

(A) describe the social tension created by the mix of attitudes exhibited by citizens of Hawaii
(B) deny that Hawaiian society is culturally distinct from that of the continental U.S.
(C) identify the process by which immigrants learn to adapt to their new communities
(D) refer to the constant change to which the culture in Hawaii is subject due to its diverse population
(E) emphasize the changing attitudes of many immigrants to Hawaii toward their traditional cultural norms

4. According to the passage,some Asian American literature from Hawaii has been characterized as which one of the following?

(A) inimical to the process of developing a local sensibility
(B) centered on the individual’s drive to succeed
(C) concerned with conflicts between different age groups
(D) focused primarily on retaining ties to one’s homeland
(E) tied to a search for a new sense of family in a new land

5. The author of the passage describes Expounding the Doubtful Points as “striking” primarily in order to

(A) underscore the forceful and contentious tone of the work
(B) indicate that the work has not been properly analyzed by literary critics
(C) stress the radical difference between this work and Lum’s earlier work
(D) emphasize the differences between this work and that of other Asian American poets from Hawaii
(E) highlight the innovative nature of Lum’s experiments with poetic form

6. With which one of the following statements regarding Lum’s poetry would the author of the passage be most likely to agree?

(A) It cannot be used to support any specific political ideology.
(B) It is an elegant demonstration of the poet’s appreciation of the stylistic contributions of his literary forebears.
(C) It is most fruitfully understood as a meditation on the choice between new and old that confronts any human being in any culture.
(D) It conveys thoughtful assessments of both his ancestral homeland tradition and the culture in which he is attempting to build a new identity.

• Source: LSAT Official PrepTest 53 (Dec 2007)
• Difficulty Level: 650

Originally posted by aurobindomahanty on 29 Apr 2017, 05:44.
Last edited by SajjadAhmad on 06 Sep 2019, 08:03, edited 5 times in total.
Updated - Complete topic (439).
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Posts: 1
Re: Asian American poetry from Hawaii,the Pacific island state of the Unit  [#permalink]

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30 Sep 2018, 13:50
1
srravii wrote:
Hi,

As I see it, per the part of the passage below the answer to Q4 could either have been related to conflicts between different age groups or to the cultural diversity in Hawaii.

Therefore, D is out because it refers to neither.

"Asian American poetry from Hawaii, is...,characterizable in one of two ways:...portraying a model multicultural paradise,or as exemplifying...themes such as generational conflict."

Hope this helps.
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Re: Asian American poetry from Hawaii,the Pacific island state of the Unit  [#permalink]

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30 Sep 2018, 20:02
2
srravii wrote:
Hi,

Hi srravii,
The question stem is
Quote:
According to the passage,some Asian American literature from Hawaii has been characterized as which one of the following?

In the passage, refer to the following lines:
Quote:
Asian American poetry from Hawaii,the Pacific island state of the United States,is generally characterizable in one of two ways: either as portraying a model multicultural paradise,or as exemplifying familiar Asian American literary themes such as generational conflict.

So basically the two ways Asian American literature from Hawaii has been characterized is either portraying multicultural paradise,( none of the options have this stated), or portraying themes such as generational conflict.
Looking at option C
Quote:
(C) concerned with conflicts between different age groups
, This fits the characteristic.
Hence C is the correct option.
Hope its clear
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Re: Asian American poetry from Hawaii,the Pacific island state of the Unit  [#permalink]

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06 May 2019, 22:21
4
I felt this passage was very difficult for me in the sense that I could not understand the purpose behind certain sentences. I have tried to put down my understanding here in this post.

Gist of the passage:
First Paragraph: Discussing the work of Wing Tek Lum in the context of Asian American Poetry from Hawaii.
Second Paragraph: This paragraph discusses one poem from his volume of work. In this poem he says that while ties to the homeland are comforting and necessary,it is equally important to have a new identity.
Third Paragraph: The author further discusses Lum's work. He discusses Lum's closing poem which further describes the complex relation between heritage and local culture in determining one’s identity.
Final Paragraph: Homeland tradition is important but a healthy new sense of identity needs to be formed.

1. Which one of the following most accurately expresses the main point of the passage?

(A) The poetry of Lum departs from other Asian American poetry from Hawaii in that it acknowledges its author’s heritage but also expresses the poet’s search for a new local identity. This is the recurring theme in every paragraph.
(B) Lum’s poetry is in part an expression of the conflict between a desire to participate in a community with shared traditions and values and a desire for individual success. There is no expression of conflict in Lum's poetry according to the given passage.
(C) Lum writes poetry that not only rejects features of the older literary tradition in which he participates but also rejects the popular literary traditions of Hawaiian writers. Lum talks about older traditions/culture not older 'literary tradition'. In addition, Lum acknowledges his heritage and older traditions not rejects them.
(D) The poetry of Lum illustrates the extent to which Asian American writers living in Hawaii have a different cultural perspective than those living in the continental U.S. This is just mentioned in one paragraph. Not a repetitive theme.
(E) Lum’s poetry is an unsuccessful attempt to manage the psychological burdens of reconciling a sense of tradition with a healthy sense of individual identity. Success of Lum's poetry is out of scope of the passage.

2. Given the information in the passage, which one of the following is Lum most likely to believe?
When you don't have a specific line to refer to in the passage, elimination is the best strategy for such questions.

(A) Images in a poem should be explained in that poem so that their meaning will be widely understood. Out of scope. Nothing about images is mentioned in the passage.
(B) The experience of living away from one’s homeland is necessary for developing a healthy perspective on one’s cultural traditions. Out of scope.
(C) It is important to reconcile the values of individual achievement and enterprise with the desire to retain one’s cultural traditions. This is directly mentioned in the passage.
Quote:
strong cultural emphasis in the U.S.on individual drive and success that makes retaining a sense of homeland tradition difficult should be identified and responded to in ways that allow for a healthy new sense of identity to be formed.

(D) One’s identity is continually in transition and poetry is a way of developing a static identity. Nothing of this sort is mentioned in the passage.
(E) One cannot both seek a new identity and remain connected to one’s cultural traditions. Quite opposite of what Lum was stating. Lum stated that it is important to acknowledge/remain connected to one's cultural traditions and still develop a new identity.

3. The author of the passage uses the phrase “the flux within Hawaiian society” primarily in order to

Quote:
The role of immigrants in this poem is significant in that,through their presence, Lum is able to refer both to the traditional culture of his ancestral homeland as well as to the flux within Hawaiian society that has been integral to its heterogeneity

(A) describe the social tension created by the mix of attitudes exhibited by citizens of Hawaii. Lum never indicated in his poems that there is social tension created by the mix of attitudes.
(B) deny that Hawaiian society is culturally distinct from that of the continental U.S. Lum did mention that the culture of Continental U.S citizens is different from Hawaiian citizens but not in this context.
(C) identify the process by which immigrants learn to adapt to their new communities. The context of this line is culture not process.
(D) refer to the constant change to which the culture in Hawaii is subject due to its diverse population. Yes, Right answer. Lum is showing a contrast between traditional culture and changing culture according to the quoted text above.
(E) emphasize the changing attitudes of many immigrants to Hawaii toward their traditional cultural norms. Lum never mentioned that there is a change in attitude of many immigrants to Hawaii toward their traditional cultural norms. He just mentioned that traditional culture should be acknowledged.

4. According to the passage,some Asian American literature from Hawaii has been characterized as which one of the following?

Quote:
Asian American poetry from Hawaii is generally characterizable in one of two ways: either as portraying a model multicultural paradise,or as exemplifying familiar Asian American literary themes such as generational conflict

(A) inimical to the process of developing a local sensibility. Not either of the ways.
(B) centered on the individual’s drive to succeed. Not either of the ways.
(C) concerned with conflicts between different age groups. Correct answer. This option is talking about generational conflict.
(D) focused primarily on retaining ties to one’s homeland. Not either of the ways.
(E) tied to a search for a new sense of family in a new land. Not either of the ways.

5. The author of the passage describes Expounding the Doubtful Points as “striking” primarily in order to

Quote:
In this light,the recent work of Wing Tek Lum in Expounding the Doubtful Points is striking for its demand to be understood on its own terms.

Here striking is used in a positive tone similar to - stressing for its demand to be understood....

(A) underscore the forceful and contentious tone of the work. Negative tone.
(B) indicate that the work has not been properly analyzed by literary critics Negative tone.
(C) stress the radical difference between this work and Lum’s earlier work. Lum's earlier work was not discussed in the entirety of the passage.
(D) emphasize the differences between this work and that of other Asian American poets from Hawaii. Positive tone. 'Striking-Emphasizing' similar in meaning.
(E) highlight the innovative nature of Lum’s experiments with poetic form. Innovative nature of Lum's poetic form was never discussed in the passage. out of scope.

6. With which one of the following statements regarding Lum’s poetry would the author of the passage be most likely to agree?

(A) It cannot be used to support any specific political ideology. Political ideology was never mentioned in the passage. Out of scope.
(B) It is an elegant demonstration of the poet’s appreciation of the stylistic contributions of his literary forebears. Stylistic contributions of literary forebears was never discussed. Out of scope.
(C) It is most fruitfully understood as a meditation on the choice between new and old that confronts any human being in any culture. This statement is general and talks about all human beings and the paragraph speaks about Asian Americans in Hawaii.
(D) It conveys thoughtful assessments of both his ancestral homeland tradition and the culture in which he is attempting to build a new identity. Mainpoint of the passage. Author will agree with this.
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Re: Asian American poetry from Hawaii,the Pacific island state of the Unit  [#permalink]

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20 May 2019, 21:14
2
I felt so desperate when I read the passage as this type of passage discussing literature is always hard to grasp for me. 4/6 correct

1. Which one of the following most accurately expresses the main point of the passage?
(A) The poetry of Lum departs from other Asian American poetry from Hawaii in that it acknowledges its author’s heritage but also expresses the poet’s search for a new local identity. correct
(B) Lum’s poetry is in part an expression of the conflict between a desire to participate in a community with shared traditions and values and a desire for individual success. - not quite: while the last para implies this, the MP is that Lum's poetry shays away from traditional Hawaiian poetry
(C) Lum writes poetry that not only rejects features of the older literary tradition in which he participates but also rejects the popular literary traditions of Hawaiian writers. - the first para actually says that he did speak about family, history, etc.
(D) The poetry of Lum illustrates the extent to which Asian American writers living in Hawaii have a different cultural perspective than those living in the continental U.S. contrast is not the MP, Lum's breaking tradition is
(E) Lum’s poetry is an unsuccessful attempt to manage the psychological burdens of reconciling a sense of tradition with a healthy sense of individual identity.

2. Given the information in the passage, which one of the following is Lum most likely to believe?
(A) Images in a poem should be explained in that poem so that their meaning will be widely understood.
(B) The experience of living away from one’s homeland is necessary for developing a healthy perspective on one’s cultural traditions.
(C) It is important to reconcile the values of individual achievement and enterprise with the desire to retain one’s cultural traditions. correct, because this is basically the idea of the last para
(D) One’s identity is continually in transition and poetry is a way of developing a static identity.
(E) One cannot both seek a new identity and remain connected to one’s cultural traditions. in para two we learn that he both felt connected to the past and felt separated from it

3. The author of the passage uses the phrase “the flux within Hawaiian society” primarily in order to
(A) describe the social tension created by the mix of attitudes exhibited by citizens of Hawaii
(B) deny that Hawaiian society is culturally distinct from that of the continental U.S.
(C) identify the process by which immigrants learn to adapt to their new communities flux is not a process
(D) refer to the constant change to which the culture in Hawaii is subject due to its diverse population correct: heterogeneity later in the sentence helps to link the underlined phrase to this answer choice
(E) emphasize the changing attitudes of many immigrants to Hawaii toward their traditional cultural norms

4. According to the passage, some Asian American literature from Hawaii has been characterized as which one of the following?
(A) inimical to the process of developing a local sensibility
(B) centered on the individual’s drive to succeed
(C) concerned with conflicts between different age groups correct: generational conflict is mentioned in the beginning of the passage; as for others, we can't quite be sure because we are just told that Asian American literature from Hawaii is generally characterizable in one of two ways
(D) focused primarily on retaining ties to one’s homeland
(E) tied to a search for a new sense of family in a new land

5. The author of the passage describes Expounding the Doubtful Points as “striking” primarily in order to
(A) underscore the forceful and contentious tone of the work
(B) indicate that the work has not been properly analyzed by literary critics
(C) stress the radical difference between this work and Lum’s earlier work
(D) emphasize the differences between this work and that of other Asian American poets from Hawaii correct: the first sentence in the first para sets the scene for this
(E) highlight the innovative nature of Lum’s experiments with poetic form

6. With which one of the following statements regarding Lum’s poetry would the author of the passage be most likely to agree?
(A) It cannot be used to support any specific political ideology.
(B) It is an elegant demonstration of the poet’s appreciation of the stylistic contributions of his literary forebears. Lum shays away from traditional writing, so he can't really appreciate the stylistic contributions of his literary forebears
(C) It is most fruitfully understood as a meditation on the choice between new and old that confronts any human being in any culture.
(D) It conveys thoughtful assessments of both his ancestral homeland tradition and the culture in which he is attempting to build a new identity. correct
Re: Asian American poetry from Hawaii,the Pacific island state of the Unit   [#permalink] 20 May 2019, 21:14
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