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# Either or parallelism confusion

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Intern
Joined: 12 Feb 2018
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28 Feb 2018, 23:06
IfAmerica allows China and Russia to establish regional hegemonies, either consciously or because its politics are too dysfunctional to muster a response, it will have given them a green light to pursue their interests by brute force.

This is an extract from the economist.please explain the parallel structure of either x or y in this sentence.

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Re: Either or parallelism confusion  [#permalink]

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01 Mar 2018, 10:08
marinerindrajeet wrote:
IfAmerica allows China and Russia to establish regional hegemonies, either consciously or because its politics are too dysfunctional to muster a response, it will have given them a green light to pursue their interests by brute force.

This is an extract from the economist.please explain the parallel structure of either x or y in this sentence.

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As per the rule, in 'either X or Y', X and Y should be parallel, i.e. they should stand for similar entities.

In the given sentence, X and Y are the causes why America may allow China and Russia to establish regional hegemonies.
America may allow it consciously or they may allow it because they cannot muster a response. So both X and Y are explanations as to why Russia and China may be allowed to establish regional hegemonies.
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Intern
Joined: 12 Feb 2018
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Re: Either or parallelism confusion  [#permalink]

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01 Mar 2018, 17:55
So basically these 2 are acting as adverbs.i thought it should come grammatically parallel.

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Re: Either or parallelism confusion  [#permalink]

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01 Mar 2018, 19:43
Hi marinerindrajeet, normally you would not see this kind of structure on GMAT.

In the construct Either X or Y, X and Y have to be grammatically similar.

Here, X is a phrase while Y is a dependent clause. This is not grammatically similar.

Of course, GMAT does occasionally throw curveballs, but they are (thankfully) very rare.
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Re: Either or parallelism confusion  [#permalink]

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08 Mar 2018, 13:25
1
marinerindrajeet wrote:
IfAmerica allows China and Russia to establish regional hegemonies, either consciously or because its politics are too dysfunctional to muster a response, it will have given them a green light to pursue their interests by brute force.

This is an extract from the economist.please explain the parallel structure of either x or y in this sentence.

Sent from my SM-G935F using GMAT Club Forum mobile app

A good approach is to try breaking the parallel structure into two pieces. Then, fit each piece back into the sentence, and make sure that it fits correctly. If each piece fits separately, and the two pieces have basically the same grammatical role (here, they're modifiers), the parallelism is good.

Here's what that would look like here:

1. If America allows China and Russia to establish regional hegemonies, consciously, it will have given them a green light to pursue their interests by brute force.
2. If America allows China and Russia to establish regional hegemonies, because its politics are too dysfunctional to muster a response, it will have given them a green light to pursue their interests by brute force.

Those are both good sentences, so you're almost certainly good with the parallelism.
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Re: Either or parallelism confusion   [#permalink] 08 Mar 2018, 13:25
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