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Early administrative decisions in China’s Ming Dynasty eventually caus

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Early administrative decisions in China’s Ming Dynasty eventually caus [#permalink]

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The Official Guide for GMAT Verbal Review 2018
Practice Question
Sentence Correction
Question no. 293

Early administrative decisions in China’s Ming Dynasty eventually caused a drastic fall in tax revenues, a reduction in military preparedness, the collapse of the currency system, and failed to make sufficient investment in vital transportation infrastructure.

A. the collapse of the currency system, and failed
B. the collapse of the currency system, and failing
C. and the collapse of the currency system, also failed
D. the collapse of the currency system, as well as failing
E. and the collapse of the currency system, as well as a failure
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

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Re: Early administrative decisions in China’s Ming Dynasty eventually caus [#permalink]

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AbdurRakib wrote:
Early administrative decisions in China’s Ming Dynasty eventually caused a drastic fall in tax revenues, a reduction in military preparedness, the collapse of the currency system, and failed to make sufficient investment in vital transportation infrastructure.

A. the collapse of the currency system, and failed
B. the collapse of the currency system, and failing
C. and the collapse of the currency system, also failed
D. the collapse of the currency system, as well as failing
E. and the collapse of the currency system, as well as a failure

Dear AbdurRakib,

I'm happy to respond. :-)

A great question about parallelism!

We have four elements
1) a drastic fall in tax revenues = fixed, before the underline
2) a reduction in military preparedness = fixed, before the underline
3) some form of "the collapse of the currency system"
4) something about failing "to make sufficient investment in vital transportation infrastructure"

The prompt has
[noun], [noun], [noun], and [verb] = an obvious failure of parallelism

Correct possibilities:
1) We could have parallelism with three nouns and then have a verb after it:
[noun], [noun], and [noun], and [verb]
That verb would be parallel to the first verb, so the parallelism of the nouns would be nested inside the parallelism of the verbs.
No answer choice does this.

2) We could have four nouns
[noun], [noun], [noun], and [noun],
No answer choice does this.

3) We could have three nouns in parallel and than an additive phrase
[noun], [noun], and [noun], as well as [noun]
Choice (E) does this. This is the only choice that does something correct.

OA = (E)

Does all this make sense?
Mike
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Re: Early administrative decisions in China’s Ming Dynasty eventually caus [#permalink]

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New post 04 Aug 2017, 09:04
Hi, could you please clarify 2 things:

1) Why "failing" couldn't be considered as a noun? Or if we want to use it as a noun, then we need an article?
2) Isn't the use of both "and" and "as well as" in option E redundant? I would be much better to eliminate "and" in this case, in my view.

I chose D instead of E because of these 2 considerations.

Thanks.

mikemcgarry wrote:
AbdurRakib wrote:
Early administrative decisions in China’s Ming Dynasty eventually caused a drastic fall in tax revenues, a reduction in military preparedness, the collapse of the currency system, and failed to make sufficient investment in vital transportation infrastructure.

A. the collapse of the currency system, and failed
B. the collapse of the currency system, and failing
C. and the collapse of the currency system, also failed
D. the collapse of the currency system, as well as failing
E. and the collapse of the currency system, as well as a failure

Dear AbdurRakib,

I'm happy to respond. :-)

A great question about parallelism!

We have four elements
1) a drastic fall in tax revenues = fixed, before the underline
2) a reduction in military preparedness = fixed, before the underline
3) some form of "the collapse of the currency system"
4) something about failing "to make sufficient investment in vital transportation infrastructure"

The prompt has
[noun], [noun], [noun], and [verb] = an obvious failure of parallelism

Correct possibilities:
1) We could have parallelism with three nouns and then have a verb after it:
[noun], [noun], and [noun], and [verb]
That verb would be parallel to the first verb, so the parallelism of the nouns would be nested inside the parallelism of the verbs.
No answer choice does this.

2) We could have four nouns
[noun], [noun], [noun], and [noun],
No answer choice does this.

3) We could have three nouns in parallel and than an additive phrase
[noun], [noun], and [noun], as well as [noun]
Choice (E) does this. This is the only choice that does something correct.

OA = (E)

Does all this make sense?
Mike

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Re: Early administrative decisions in China’s Ming Dynasty eventually caus [#permalink]

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New post 04 Aug 2017, 10:08
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CorporateFinancier wrote:
Hi, could you please clarify 2 things:

1) Why "failing" couldn't be considered as a noun? Or if we want to use it as a noun, then we need an article?
2) Isn't the use of both "and" and "as well as" in option E redundant? I would be much better to eliminate "and" in this case, in my view.

I chose D instead of E because of these 2 considerations.

Thanks.

Dear CorporateFinancier,

I'm happy to respond. :-)

1) First of all, let's use the proper terminology. When a verb form ending in -ing is used as a noun, this is called a gerund. Just "failing" by itself is a simple gerund. When we add an article, "the failing," then it becomes a complex gerund. As a general rule, we put only complex gerunds in parallel with ordinary nouns, not simple gerunds. Furthermore, there is something incredibly awkward about using a complex gerund form when there's a very clear ordinary noun form of the same word. We wouldn't say "the failing of X" because we can say "the failure of X."

2) The use of "and" and "as well as" in (E) is not redundant, because there's a subtle distinction at work here--it's not pure parallelism. When we say "both P and Q as well as R," we are putting P & Q at the same level, side-by-side, but we are saying that somehow R is a slightly different thing, not quite the equivalent of P & Q. In this sentence we have
Early administrative decisions in China’s Ming Dynasty eventually caused
(P1) a drastic fall in tax revenues,
(P2) a reduction in military preparedness,
and

(P3) the collapse of the currency system,
(additional) as well as a failure to make sufficient investment in vital transportation infrastructure.
The three elements in parallel, P1, P2, and P3, were all immediate and pressing problems that the early Ming Dynasty had to face. The addition item is something that might not have seemed immediate and pressing at the time, but later evolved into a big problem, as infrastructural debt became to mount. Because of the different moments in time when these played out, the author logically separated out this additional element to distinguish it.

Does all this make sense?
Mike :-)
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Re: Early administrative decisions in China’s Ming Dynasty eventually caus [#permalink]

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mikemcgarry wrote:
AbdurRakib wrote:
Early administrative decisions in China’s Ming Dynasty eventually caused a drastic fall in tax revenues, a reduction in military preparedness, the collapse of the currency system, and failed to make sufficient investment in vital transportation infrastructure.

A. the collapse of the currency system, and failed
B. the collapse of the currency system, and failing
C. and the collapse of the currency system, also failed
D. the collapse of the currency system, as well as failing
E. and the collapse of the currency system, as well as a failure

Dear AbdurRakib,

I'm happy to respond. :-)

A great question about parallelism!

We have four elements
1) a drastic fall in tax revenues = fixed, before the underline
2) a reduction in military preparedness = fixed, before the underline
3) some form of "the collapse of the currency system"
4) something about failing "to make sufficient investment in vital transportation infrastructure"

The prompt has
[noun], [noun], [noun], and [verb] = an obvious failure of parallelism

Correct possibilities:
1) We could have parallelism with three nouns and then have a verb after it:
[noun], [noun], and [noun], and [verb]
That verb would be parallel to the first verb, so the parallelism of the nouns would be nested inside the parallelism of the verbs.
No answer choice does this.

2) We could have four nouns
[noun], [noun], [noun], and [noun],
No answer choice does this.

3) We could have three nouns in parallel and than an additive phrase
[noun], [noun], and [noun], as well as [noun]
Choice (E) does this. This is the only choice that does something correct.

OA = (E)

Does all this make sense?
Mike

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Re: Early administrative decisions in China’s Ming Dynasty eventually caus [#permalink]

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New post 17 Aug 2017, 11:00
How can we be so sure that answer A) is incorrect? I was thinking of the following parallelism:

i) Decisions caused:
- noun
- noun
- noun

,and failed to make

Is this infeasible because of the 'to make' and especially the 'to', which would ne parallelism?

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Re: Early administrative decisions in China’s Ming Dynasty eventually caus [#permalink]

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New post 17 Aug 2017, 11:27
mikemcgarry wrote:
CorporateFinancier wrote:
Hi, could you please clarify 2 things:

1) Why "failing" couldn't be considered as a noun? Or if we want to use it as a noun, then we need an article?
2) Isn't the use of both "and" and "as well as" in option E redundant? I would be much better to eliminate "and" in this case, in my view.

I chose D instead of E because of these 2 considerations.

Thanks.

Dear CorporateFinancier,

I'm happy to respond. :-)

1) First of all, let's use the proper terminology. When a verb form ending in -ing is used as a noun, this is called a gerund. Just "failing" by itself is a simple gerund. When we add an article, "the failing," then it becomes a complex gerund. As a general rule, we put only complex gerunds in parallel with ordinary nouns, not simple gerunds. Furthermore, there is something incredibly awkward about using a complex gerund form when there's a very clear ordinary noun form of the same word. We wouldn't say "the failing of X" because we can say "the failure of X."

2) The use of "and" and "as well as" in (E) is not redundant, because there's a subtle distinction at work here--it's not pure parallelism. When we say "both P and Q as well as R," we are putting P & Q at the same level, side-by-side, but we are saying that somehow R is a slightly different thing, not quite the equivalent of P & Q. In this sentence we have
Early administrative decisions in China’s Ming Dynasty eventually caused
(P1) a drastic fall in tax revenues,
(P2) a reduction in military preparedness,
and

(P3) the collapse of the currency system,
(additional) as well as a failure to make sufficient investment in vital transportation infrastructure.
The three elements in parallel, P1, P2, and P3, were all immediate and pressing problems that the early Ming Dynasty had to face. The addition item is something that might not have seemed immediate and pressing at the time, but later evolved into a big problem, as infrastructural debt became to mount. Because of the different moments in time when these played out, the author logically separated out this additional element to distinguish it.

Does all this make sense?
Mike :-)

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Re: Early administrative decisions in China’s Ming Dynasty eventually caus [#permalink]

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Vezax27 wrote:
How can we be so sure that answer A) is incorrect? I was thinking of the following parallelism:

i) Decisions caused:
- noun
- noun
- noun

,and failed to make

Is this infeasible because of the 'to make' and especially the 'to', which would ne parallelism?

Dear Vezax27,

I'm happy to respond. :-)

My friend, the problem with this interpretation is that, for the three nouns in parallel, we would need an additional "and" before the third noun. We would need
Decision caused:
Noun #1
Noun #2
and
Noun #3
and failed to make . . . .

The "and" already in (A) is for the parallelism between the two verbs, "caused" & "failed." The second "and" would have to be added for the parallelism of the three nouns.

If we added that additional "and," then (A) would become correct.
Early administrative decisions in China’s Ming Dynasty eventually caused a drastic fall in tax revenues, a reduction in military preparedness, and the collapse of the currency system, and failed to make sufficient investment in vital transportation infrastructure.

Does this make sense?
Mike :-)
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Re: Early administrative decisions in China’s Ming Dynasty eventually caus [#permalink]

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New post 25 Sep 2017, 08:51
For A

In this case, we would have grammatical parallelism, but not logical parallelism, correct? With your changes, if I get rid of all the fluff, the sentence would say “Decisions caused...” and “Decisions failed to make sufficient investment”. The second part is illogical, right? Decisions can’t make investments.

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New post 25 Sep 2017, 11:24
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PurpleDrank3000 wrote:
For A

In this case, we would have grammatical parallelism, but not logical parallelism, correct? With your changes, if I get rid of all the fluff, the sentence would say “Decisions caused...” and “Decisions failed to make sufficient investment”. The second part is illogical, right? Decisions can’t make investments.



Hello PurpleDrank3000,

I must say you have done a brilliant analysis of Choice A with regards to the parallelism between caused and failed.

Your meaning-based analysis is absolutely correct. Even of we add and before the third noun entity the collapse of the currency system, then also the choice will remain incorrect because decisions cannot make investments.

So yes, as rightly pointed out by you, caused and failed are can be grammatically parallel, but they cannot be logically parallel in the given context of this official sentence.


Hope this helps. :-)
Thanks.
Shraddha
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Re: Early administrative decisions in China’s Ming Dynasty eventually caus [#permalink]

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New post 25 Sep 2017, 14:48
egmat

Hi Shraddha,

Your post reminds me of your video lessons :)

How to eliminate C? Is it because of the same reasoning mentioned above.

Regards
-Ankit

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Early administrative decisions in China’s Ming Dynasty eventually caus [#permalink]

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ankitmining wrote:
egmat

Hi Shraddha,

Your post reminds me of your video lessons :)

How to eliminate C? Is it because of the same reasoning mentioned above.

Regards
-Ankit



Hello Ankit ankitmining,

Thank you for you query. :-)


Choice C is incorrect because although the three nouns are parallel and connected properly by the marker and, the verb failed that is supposed to be parallel to the verb caused is not connected with caused by any connector.

The verb failed is preceded by also that is not a connector. And there can be no parallel list without a marker.

Take a look at the following structure per Choice C:

Early administrative decisions in China’s Ming Dynasty eventually caused

    a drastic fall in tax revenues,
    a reduction in military preparedness, and
    the collapse of the currency system,

also failed to make sufficient investment in vital transportation infrastructure.



However, the fact remains that logically failed CANNOT be parallel to caused because decisions cannot make investments. Hence, use of verb failed is incorrect in the context of this sentence.


Hope this helps. :-)
Thanks.
Shraddha
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Re: Early administrative decisions in China’s Ming Dynasty eventually caus [#permalink]

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New post 26 Sep 2017, 06:29
AbdurRakib wrote:
The Official Guide for GMAT Verbal Review 2018
Practice Question
Sentence Correction
Question no. 293

Early administrative decisions in China’s Ming Dynasty eventually caused a drastic fall in tax revenues, a reduction in military preparedness, the collapse of the currency system, and failed to make sufficient investment in vital transportation infrastructure.

A. the collapse of the currency system, and failed
B. the collapse of the currency system, and failing
C. and the collapse of the currency system, also failed
D. the collapse of the currency system, as well as failing
E. and the collapse of the currency system, as well as a failure


Option A-Parallelism issue....Early administrative decisions.............caused A,B,C and failed which is wrong(in place of failed we require action noun failure)
Option B-parallelism.....caused and failing not parallel
Option C-same problem as in b
Option D-parallelism issue same as above options
Option E-Winner

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Re: Early administrative decisions in China’s Ming Dynasty eventually caus [#permalink]

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New post 03 Oct 2017, 08:39
What a beautiful question.

Early administrative decisions in China’s Ming Dynasty eventually caused a drastic fall in tax revenues, a reduction in military preparedness, the collapse of the currency system, and failed to make sufficient investment in vital transportation infrastructure.

We need a "and" before "the collapse", because the decisions caused 3 things "fall", "reduction" and"collapse". We never say that "At the party John ate, danced, kissed"; we need a "and" before the final thing that John did at the party. The correct version would be "At the party John ate, danced and kissed".
So as per the aforesaid statements, A, B and D are out. (P.S. note the usage of "and" before D in this line)

Now obviously out of C and E, E is the correct answer because in "C" we again need a connecting "and" before "also".


"Early administrative decisions in China’s Ming Dynasty eventually caused a drastic fall in tax revenues, a reduction in military preparedness, and the collapse of the currency system, as well as a failure to make sufficient investment in vital transportation infrastructure." -->This version of sentence is absolutely correct.

A. the collapse of the currency system, and failed
B. the collapse of the currency system, and failing
C. and the collapse of the currency system, also failed
D. the collapse of the currency system, as well as failing
E. and the collapse of the currency system, as well as a failure
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Re: Early administrative decisions in China’s Ming Dynasty eventually caus   [#permalink] 03 Oct 2017, 08:39
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