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Greek tragedy, one of the enduring pillars of our belief

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New post 20 Dec 2012, 10:08
Can someone explain an argument?
I am unable to figure out what author as a whole trying to say.
Especially what statement below implies.

Nonetheless, today the
public broadly supports bankruptcy protection, family welfare and other “social safety net”
programs that shield the destitute in the face of their hardships, at taxpayer expense.

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New post 20 Dec 2012, 12:21
+1 for C
I cannot figure out how E is OA
Kindly explain.
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New post 20 Dec 2012, 16:29
Aristocrat wrote:
Can someone explain an argument?
I am unable to figure out what author as a whole trying to say.
Especially what statement below implies.

Nonetheless, today the
public broadly supports bankruptcy protection, family welfare and other “social safety net”
programs that shield the destitute in the face of their hardships, at taxpayer expense.


hey
I will try to help you with this one...In simple words argument says "If some one makes a mistake it is he who should pay or suffer for it (this is described to happen in ancient culture), but hings are changing i.e govt has set up some plans from tax payers money to save people or institutions from bankruptcy"

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Re: Greek tragedy, one of the enduring pillars of our belief  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Dec 2012, 19:30
trap argument: Misfortunes are people's own fault, but others help anyway.
trap answer (c): Greeks say it's their own fault, show that it isn't. Society is to blame, not the individual.

real argument: People support helping others today, even though Ancient Greeks told us it's their own fault.
real answer (e): Why do people support helping others? because their religion tells them to.

I also went to C first, probably because I forgot to go back and focus on the conclusion.
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New post 20 Dec 2012, 21:19
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Aristocrat wrote:
Can someone explain an argument?
I am unable to figure out what author as a whole trying to say.
Especially what statement below implies.

Nonetheless, today the
public broadly supports bankruptcy protection, family welfare and other “social safety net”
programs that shield the destitute in the face of their hardships, at taxpayer expense.


The argument talks about the Western culture. He says that the belief system of the west is based on the concept that
the misfortune a person suffers is that person’s “fault". The misfortune could be anything - losing a job, getting orphaned, injury in natural disasters etc. A person suffers because of his own deeds. Hence, it is surprising that their govt has various plans (which are supported by the general public) e.g. bankruptcy protection, family welfare, unemployment schemes etc. Under these schemes, people are paid money by the govt if they undergo some misfortune. e.g. if a person loses his job, he gets unemployment benefits i.e. the govt pays him a fixed income regularly for some time.
The paradox here is that though the belief system says that the person's misfortune is his own fault, still people broadly support social welfare plans.

As discussed above, (C) is incorrect because it says 'Some people insist' though the plans are broadly supported. This doesn't help resolve the paradox why people generally support these welfare programs.

(E) is correct because it offers an alternative belief system that people follow today. Their religion tells them that people suffering through hardships e.g. natural disasters are innocent (it's not their own fault) and that one needs to assist them. That is why people support the welfare programs.
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Re: Greek tragedy, one of the enduring pillars of our belief  [#permalink]

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New post 21 Dec 2012, 02:42
VeritasPrepKarishma wrote:
Aristocrat wrote:
Can someone explain an argument?
I am unable to figure out what author as a whole trying to say.
Especially what statement below implies.

Nonetheless, today the
public broadly supports bankruptcy protection, family welfare and other “social safety net”
programs that shield the destitute in the face of their hardships, at taxpayer expense.


The argument talks about the Western culture. He says that the belief system of the west is based on the concept that
the misfortune a person suffers is that person’s “fault". The misfortune could be anything - losing a job, getting orphaned, injury in natural disasters etc. A person suffers because of his own deeds. Hence, it is surprising that their govt has various plans (which are supported by the general public) e.g. bankruptcy protection, family welfare, unemployment schemes etc. Under these schemes, people are paid money by the govt if they undergo some misfortune. e.g. if a person loses his job, he gets unemployment benefits i.e. the govt pays him a fixed income regularly for some time.
The paradox here is that though the belief system says that the person's misfortune is his own fault, still people broadly support social welfare plans.

As discussed above, (C) is incorrect because it says 'Some people insist' though the plans are broadly supported. This doesn't help resolve the paradox why people generally support these welfare programs.

(E) is correct because it offers an alternative belief system that people follow today. Their religion tells them that people suffering through hardships e.g. natural disasters are innocent (it's not their own fault) and that one needs to assist them. That is why people support the welfare programs.


I would like to post my views on this question and more generally on how you resolve paradoxes.

Let us consider the following statements.

Statement 1: He has always followed righteous behavior
Statement 2: He has lied sometimes

The statements seem to go against each other. It seems that both cannot be true at the same time. But you resolve it by considering the fact that he had lied when he had to safeguard a greater righteousness. So he has in effect been always righteous. Paradoxes happen when two facts apparently clash against each other. Paradoxes are usually resolved by taking the big picture into account and therefore enhancing the scope of the given facts. That way the restrictions imposed at the lower level would vanish. You also resolve paradoxes by considering a new information that reconciles the apparently contradicting facts and so on

But in the given problem, the paradox is resolved by replacing the fact with an alternative fact. That is, instead of people following the Greek system, it is taken that people are following current religious practices. Though this looks somewhat weird because you are replacing one of the components causing the paradox itself by some other component. I am not sure how valid is this practice of resolving a paradox. I request that students and also the experts share their views.
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New post 21 Dec 2012, 10:46
I really dislike this question. I suppose it's a difficult question, but for the wrong reasons: it's difficult because the right answer doesn't make much sense. It's obviously not an official question. Answer C cannot be right, because knowing what "some people" think does nothing to explain why *most* people think something (we know that "the public *broadly supports*" social programs". That really only leaves E, but I don't think it's a good answer, and I find the OE (quoted above) especially problematic:

hermit84 wrote:

I got OE for this, hope it helps.

The statements above present a paradox. If, as the author implies, the ethos of
Greek tragedy still holds as an "enduring pillar of our belief system," an ethos
declaring each person's misfortune that person's fault, then the majority of the
public should not support "social safety net" programs,
which are based on the
philosophical position that someone's misfortune is not necessarily his or her
fault.


I've highlighted in red an assumption here that is completely unwarranted. It is perfectly possible for the public to believe that people are to blame for their own misfortune, and yet that these people deserve to be supported anyway. So there's no paradox to begin with unless you make the (in my opinion, bizarre) assumption that I've highlighted in red above, and that's the crux of the question. E only gets at this issue in the most oblique of ways, so I just don't think the question is well constructed.
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New post 28 Dec 2012, 18:42
I wrongly chose D and eliminate E first hand. Because E is too specific about charities and hurricans. But after reviewing the argument, which is based on 'belief system'. And only E solve this paradoxy by explaining today's 'religion' has changed for many people. Hope this helps understand why E is the key
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New post 07 Feb 2014, 19:55
in the zeal by prep companies to make 700 level questions, they sometimes engineer questions (variant of OGs) and ans choices which cant be unambiguously eliminated. We can find several such questions in this forum.

I eliminated E, since it mentioned only about natural disasters. I would more likely help a person affected by Huricane than a person who lost all his money in gambling.
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New post 07 Mar 2015, 08:26
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souvik101990 wrote:
This question is part of the GMAT Club Critical Reasoning : Paradox Revision Project.

Greek tragedy, one of the enduring pillars of our belief system, dramatized the concept that the misfortune a person suffers is not an accident, but rather a logical outcome of flaws in that person’s nature; the misfortune is thus that person’s “fault.” Nonetheless, today the public broadly supports bankruptcy protection, family welfare and other “social safety net” programs that shield the destitute in the face of their hardships, at taxpayer expense.

Which of the following, if true, would best resolve the paradox in the statements above?

A. The ancient Greeks had few, if any, such social safety net programs in their society.

B. The majority of the public is more familiar with the works of Shakespeare than those of Greek tragedy.

C. Some people insist that society, not the individual, is to blame for most accidents.

D. Many people in financial difficulties feel too ashamed to declare bankruptcy or to take advantage of other social safety net programs.

E. The religions practiced by most people today strongly encourage people to contribute to charities that assist innocent people injured in natural disasters, such as hurricanes.


Paradox: from Greeks Tragedy , The misfortune is thus that person’s “fault.” then why public broadly supports bankruptcy protection, family welfare and other “social safety net” programs, let them pay their sins posting.php?mode=quote&f=139&p=1494296#?

A. The ancient Greeks had few, if any, such social safety net programs in their society.
--Greeks believe that all misfortune is persons flaw so having such safety net programs woould not have been applied or accepted.
B. The majority of the public is more familiar with the works of Shakespeare than those of Greek tragedy.
-- if people are more familiar with works of Shakespeare then how would that help explain why we have safety net for bankruptcy and all.
C. Some people insist that society, not the individual, is to blame for most accidents.
'some' people insist but largely part still thinks that it is individual's flaw so why there are safety nets ? still unexplained.

D. Many people in financial difficulties feel too ashamed to declare bankruptcy or to take advantage of other social safety net programs.
question is not whether people take advantage of such programs , question is that why such a plan is in place.

E. The religions practiced by most people today strongly encourage people to contribute to charities that assist innocent people injured in natural disasters, such as hurricanes.
--here we go , so it is the religion which is encouraging people to contribute to charities and assist innocent
( which as per Greeks does not exist as all misfortune is result of flaw in individual) and thats why we have such plans in place.

Suggestions and discussion are welcomed . Please feel free to fill gaps in my reasoning.

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Re: Greek tragedy, one of the enduring pillars of our belief  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Jun 2015, 04:24
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Greek tragedy, one of the enduring pillars of our belief system, dramatized the concept that the misfortune a person suffers is not an accident, but rather a logical outcome of flaws in that person’s nature; the misfortune is thus that person’s “fault.” Nonetheless, today the public broadly supports bankruptcy protection, family welfare and other “social safety net” programs that shield the destitute in the face of their hardships, at taxpayer expense.

Which of the following, if true, would best resolve the paradox in the statements above?
Namely explain why we all have the greek tragedy in our belief system, but have "social safety net" programs

A. The ancient Greeks had few, if any, such social safety net programs in their society.
The author is talking about our belief system and not the one of ancient Greeks. That's why this information does NOT contribute to finding resolving the paradox. Irrelevant
B. The majority of the public is more familiar with the works of Shakespeare than those of Greek tragedy.
Shakespeare is never mentioned. Out of scope and irrelevant for resolving the paradox
C. Some people insist that society, not the individual, is to blame for most accidents.
While this answer choice goes in the right direction and explains that the society is to blame for the misfortunes of the individuals and the tax-payer has to stand for them, I think the word "Some" is crucial. It just is not strong enough to resolve the paradox
D. Many people in financial difficulties feel too ashamed to declare bankruptcy or to take advantage of other social safety net programs.
Out of scope and irrelevant for resolving the paradox
E. The religions practiced by most people today strongly encourage people to contribute to charities that assist innocent people injured in natural disasters, such as hurricanes.
CORRECT. (E) provides a clear explanation as to who encourages the version that natural disasters (and accidents) do harm to "innocent people". This is contrary to what the Greek had believed. Additionally, we have the word "most", which is significantly stronger than "some" in (C).

One thing I want to reiterate though is - I think the crucial element, which decides whether (C) or (E) is the correct answer here are the words "some" and "most". If we would have had (C) with most, it could also have been the correct answer. This partially explains while the majority has gone with answer choice (C).
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New post 01 Jan 2016, 00:14
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Greek tragedy, one of the enduring pillars of our belief system, dramatized the concept that the misfortune a person suffers is not an accident, but rather a logical outcome of flaws in that person’s nature; the misfortune is thus that person’s “fault.” Nonetheless, today the public broadly supports bankruptcy protection, family welfare and other “social safety net” programs that shield the destitute in the face of their hardships, at taxpayer expense.

Which of the following, if true, would best resolve the paradox in the statements above?

A. The ancient Greeks had few, if any, such social safety net programs in their society.

B. The majority of the public is more familiar with the works of Shakespeare than those of Greek tragedy.

C. Some people insist that society, not the individual, is to blame for most accidents.

D. Many people in financial difficulties feel too ashamed to declare bankruptcy or to take advantage of other social safety net programs.

E. The religions practiced by most people today strongly encourage people to contribute to charities that assist innocent people injured in natural disasters, such as hurricanes.
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Re: Greek tragedy, one of the enduring pillars of our belief  [#permalink]

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New post 01 Jan 2016, 12:22
One of the better questions. Thank you for curating this question.
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New post 01 Jan 2016, 13:29
Greek tragedy......says the misfortune is thus that person’s “fault.”
Nonetheless, today the public broadly supports bankruptcy protection, family welfare and other “social safety net” programs that shield the destitute in the face of their hardships, at taxpayer expense.

Which of the following, if true, would best resolve the paradox in the statements above?

A. The ancient Greeks had few, if any, such social safety net programs in their society..............this exaggerates issue as why greek tragedy or people at that time did not support those initiatives then.

B. The majority of the public is more familiar with the works of Shakespeare than those of Greek tragedy...........we don't any info which says that Shakespeare works support things like bankruptcy protection.

C. Some people insist that society, not the individual, is to blame for most accidents...........some insistence does not address everyone and paradox.

D. Many people in financial difficulties feel too ashamed to declare bankruptcy or to take advantage of other social safety net programs.................This exaggerates the paradox as then why are they doing so now.

E. The religions practiced by most people today strongly encourage people to contribute to charities that assist innocent people injured in natural disasters, such as hurricanes...........so now people think and follow differently.
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New post 10 Jan 2016, 20:55
souvik101990 wrote:
Greek tragedy, one of the enduring pillars of our belief system, dramatized the concept that the misfortune a person suffers is not an accident, but rather a logical outcome of flaws in that person’s nature; the misfortune is thus that person’s “fault.” Nonetheless, today the public broadly supports bankruptcy protection, family welfare and other “social safety net” programs that shield the destitute in the face of their hardships, at taxpayer expense.

Which of the following, if true, would best resolve the paradox in the statements above?

A. The ancient Greeks had few, if any, such social safety net programs in their society.

B. The majority of the public is more familiar with the works of Shakespeare than those of Greek tragedy.

C. Some people insist that society, not the individual, is to blame for most accidents.

D. Many people in financial difficulties feel too ashamed to declare bankruptcy or to take advantage of other social safety net programs.

E. The religions practiced by most people today strongly encourage people to contribute to charities that assist innocent people injured in natural disasters, such as hurricanes.


I went with B. My reasoning was that if people did not base their beliefs on Greek tragedy then they would not fault the individual for any misfortune that happens to him/her, and thereby would contribute towards their welfare.

My problem with E is that it talks about innocent people injured in natural disasters like hurricanes. Whereas the argument stem does not talk about natural disasters. It talks about financial hardships. Totally different.
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New post 11 Jan 2016, 12:00
souvik101990 wrote:
Greek tragedy, one of the enduring pillars of our belief system, dramatized the concept that the misfortune a person suffers is not an accident, but rather a logical outcome of flaws in that person’s nature; the misfortune is thus that person’s “fault.” Nonetheless, today the public broadly supports bankruptcy protection, family welfare and other “social safety net” programs that shield the destitute in the face of their hardships, at taxpayer expense.

Which of the following, if true, would best resolve the paradox in the statements above?

A. The ancient Greeks had few, if any, such social safety net programs in their society.

B. The majority of the public is more familiar with the works of Shakespeare than those of Greek tragedy.

C. Some people insist that society, not the individual, is to blame for most accidents.

D. Many people in financial difficulties feel too ashamed to declare bankruptcy or to take advantage of other social safety net programs.

E. The religions practiced by most people today strongly encourage people to contribute to charities that assist innocent people injured in natural disasters, such as hurricanes.


Between E and D, I chose D :roll: many people who are in difficult situations believe that its their fault but don't ask for help and the society has many programs to help them.

Still don't understand why E is correct. :|
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New post 11 Jan 2016, 22:19
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zxcvbnmas wrote:
souvik101990 wrote:
Greek tragedy, one of the enduring pillars of our belief system, dramatized the concept that the misfortune a person suffers is not an accident, but rather a logical outcome of flaws in that person’s nature; the misfortune is thus that person’s “fault.” Nonetheless, today the public broadly supports bankruptcy protection, family welfare and other “social safety net” programs that shield the destitute in the face of their hardships, at taxpayer expense.

Which of the following, if true, would best resolve the paradox in the statements above?

D. Many people in financial difficulties feel too ashamed to declare bankruptcy or to take advantage of other social safety net programs.

E. The religions practiced by most people today strongly encourage people to contribute to charities that assist innocent people injured in natural disasters, such as hurricanes.


Between E and D, I chose D :roll: many people who are in difficult situations believe that its their fault but don't ask for help and the society has many programs to help them.

Still don't understand why E is correct. :|


The paradox here is the change of thinking in public.

as per D, if people are too ashamed to take advantage of social safety net programs then that does not explain and instead exaggerated the paradox as of why there is change in thing of public.

Coming to E it helps to understand why the public has changed its way of thinking. They practice a religion which teaches them to be kind and helpful to needy instead of thinking that it is their fault.
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Re: Greek tragedy, one of the enduring pillars of our belief  [#permalink]

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New post 06 Feb 2017, 03:37
The statements above present a paradox. If, as the author implies, the ethos of Greek tragedy still holds as an "enduring pillar of our belief system," an ethos declaring each person's misfortune that person's fault, then the majority of the
public should not support "social safety net" programs, which are based on the philosophical position that someone's misfortune is not necessarily his or her fault.
(A) This choice does not resolve the paradox. The observation that the ancient Greeks had few social safety net programs does not explain why the public today supports such programs, while holding onto the ethos of Greek tragedy.
(B) This is an irrelevant comparison. This choice does not say that the public is actually unfamiliar with Greek tragedy, and its greater familiarity with Shakespeare does not explain the paradox.
(C) The fact that "some" people insist that society is to blame for misfortune does not explain why the public today "broadly supports" social safety net programs.
(D) This choice does not resolve the paradox. Perhaps many destitute people do not take advantage of social safety net programs because they feel ashamed -- maybe even guilty, as if they caused their own misfortunes (whether or not they
did), in accordance with the ethos of Greek tragedy. However, this observation does not explain why these programs enjoy the broad support of the public.
(E) CORRECT. This statement undermines the author’s assumption that the ethos of the ancient Greeks is the only operative component of the public's belief system. If most people believe in helping innocent victims of natural disasters, then they must believe that there can be "innocent victims" and that not all misfortune is due to the actions and flaws of the individual in question.
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New post 19 May 2017, 04:24
I really don't see how E can be the right anwser, though i read all the previous posts.
Anyway.....
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