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# If Marcel Prousts memory had not been stirred by the

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Senior Manager
Joined: 25 Jul 2009
Posts: 258

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18 Apr 2010, 11:13
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Question Stats:

89% (00:36) correct 11% (00:51) wrong based on 114 sessions

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If Marcel Proust’s memory had not been stirred by the felicitous taste of a Madeleine, he might never have been moved to write Remembrance of Things Past.

had not been stirred by means of the felicitous taste of a madeleine
were not to be stirred by the felicitous taste of a madeleine
were not to be stirred by the taste of a felicitous madeleine
should not be stirred by the felicitous taste of a madeleine

I thought it is subjunctive but OA reveals it is not. Why it can't be a subjunctive?
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18 Apr 2010, 12:11
angel2009 wrote:
If Marcel Proust’s memory had not been stirred by the felicitous taste of a Madeleine, he might never have been moved to write Remembrance of Things Past.

had not been stirred by means of the felicitous taste of a madeleine
were not to be stirred by the felicitous taste of a madeleine
were not to be stirred by the taste of a felicitous madeleine
should not be stirred by the felicitous taste of a madeleine

I thought it is subjunctive but OA reveals it is not. Why it can't be a subjunctive?

Let me try..

Subjunctive mood is used in the following cases..

to command
to demand
to desire
to insist
to propose
to recommend
to request
to suggest
to urge

Sometime "should" is also used as Subjunctive, but only in British English..!!! GMAT..American..!!

"were" can be used for wishes.., but in the given question, there are no wishes granted..or made..!!

Out of A and B, A is short and concise.. IMO A.

OA plz.
VP
Joined: 17 Feb 2010
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19 Apr 2010, 08:53
It is very tempting to pick an option which has "were" because we have read so many times that if there is "IF...." use "were" in the sentence.

But this sentence is not a subjunctive mood.

The sentence says....

If X's memory had not been stirred by Y, he might never have been moved to write Z

I pick A.

B is wordy.
Intern
Joined: 16 Apr 2010
Posts: 37

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19 Apr 2010, 10:32
If Marcel Proust’s memory had not been stirred by the felicitous taste of a Madeleine, he might never have been moved to write Remembrance of Things Past.
had not been stirred by means of the felicitous taste of a madeleine
were not to be stirred by the felicitous taste of a madeleine
were not to be stirred by the taste of a felicitous madeleine
should not be stirred by the felicitous taste of a madeleine

IF past perfect + COMMA +Perfect conditional:

Note the conditionals:
1. If +Present +Present
2. If +Present +Future
3. If +Past simple +Would/Could/Might +Verb
4. If +past perfect+Perfect conditional.

The given sentence follows "if +past perfect+,+Perfect conditional."
Only A meets the criterion.

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Joined: 19 Feb 2010
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02 May 2010, 17:53
4. If +past perfect+Perfect conditional.

The given sentence follows "if +past perfect+,+Perfect conditional."
Only A meets the criterion.
[/size]

I agree with you about the structure.
But not only A meets the criterion. B also follows the same structure.
Between A and B:
I guess that "by means of" is really awkward in B. Answer B is wordy compared to A.
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Re: If Marcel Prousts memory had not been stirred by the  [#permalink]

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03 Mar 2012, 09:26
all choices are wrong. although A seems the best choice, it too is grammatically incorrect because 'he' is ambiguous. it cannot refer to marcel proust’s memory.
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Re: If Marcel Prousts memory had not been stirred by the  [#permalink]

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23 Jan 2016, 11:01
Keeping aside the possessive noun + non-possessive pronoun bungling for a while, we may see that this belongs to the third conditional of "an if clause with a past perfect tense and the main clause with a conditional perfect tense"—“
"if Marcel Proust’s memory had not been stirred --- he might not have been moved’. So A and B survive. However, B is wordy with the unnecessary intrusion of the phrase ‘means of’
This is not subject to a subjunctive mood because the 'if clause' is not a hypothetical case; It has actually happened and is real. Therefore, there is no need to put it the unreal hypothetical mode.
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Re: If Marcel Prousts memory had not been stirred by the &nbs [#permalink] 23 Jan 2016, 11:01
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