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In Forces of Production, David Noble examines the transformation of th

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In Forces of Production, David Noble examines the transformation of th  [#permalink]

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In Forces of Production, David Noble examines the transformation of the machine-tool industry as the industry moved from reliance on skilled artisans to automation. Noble writes from a Marxist perspective, and his central argument is that management, in its decisions to automate, conspired against labor: the power that the skilled machinists wielded in the industry was intolerable to management. Noble fails to substantiate this claim, although his argument is impressive when he applies the Marxist concept of “de-skilling”—the use of technology to replace skilled labor—to the automation of the machine-tool industry. In automating, the industry moved to computer-based, digitized “numerical-control” (N/C) technology, rather than to artisan-generated “record-playback” (R/P) technology.

Although both systems reduced reliance on skilled labor, Noble clearly prefers R/P, with its inherent acknowledgment of workers’ skills: unlike N/C, its programs were produced not by engineers at their computers, but by skilled machinists, who recorded their own movements to “teach” machines to duplicate those movements. However, Noble’s only evidence of conspiracy is that, although the two approaches were roughly equal in technical merit, management chose N/C. From this he concludes that automation is undertaken not because efficiency demands it or scientific advances allow it, but because it is a tool in the ceaseless war of capitalists against labor.
1. The author of the passage is primarily concerned with

(A) reexamining a political position and defending its validity
(B) examining a management decision and defending its necessity
(C) analyzing a scholarly study and pointing out a central weakness
(D) explaining a trend in automation and warning about its dangers
(E) chronicling the history of an industry and criticizing its development



VRC000289-01
2. According to information in the passage, the term “de-skilling” refers to the

(A) loss of skills to industry when skilled workers are replaced by unskilled laborers
(B) substitution of mechanized processes for labor formerly performed by skilled workers
(C) labor theory that automation is technologically comparable to skilled labor
(D) process by which skilled machinists “teach” machines to perform certain tasks
(E) exclusion of skilled workers from participation in the development of automated technology



3. Which of the following best characterizes the function of the second paragraph of the passage?

(A) It develops a topic introduced in the first paragraph.
(B) It provides evidence to refute a claim presented in the first paragraph.
(C) It gives examples of a phenomenon mentioned in the first paragraph.
(D) It presents a generalization about examples given in the first paragraph.
(E) It suggests two possible solutions to a problem presented in the first paragraph.



VRC000289-02
4. The passage suggests which of the following about N/C automation in the machine-tool industry?

(A) It displaced fewer skilled workers than R/P automation did.
(B) It could have been implemented either by experienced machinists or by computer engineers.
(C) It was designed without the active involvement skilled machinists.
(D) It was more difficult to design than R/P automation was.
(E) It was technically superior to R/P automation.



5. Which of the following phrases most clearly reveals the attitude of the author of the passage toward Noble’s central argument?

(A) “conspired against” (line 6)
(B) “intolerable to management” (line 7)
(C) “impressive when he applies the Marxist concept” (line 9)
(D) “clearly prefers” (line 16)
(E) “only evidence of conspiracy” (line 21)



6. The author of the passage commends Noble’s book for which of the following?

(A) Concentrating on skilled as opposed to unskilled workers in its discussion of the machine-tool industry
(B) Offering a generalization about the motives behind the machine-tool industry’s decision to automate
(C) Making an essential distinction between two kinds of technology employed in the machine-tool industry
(D) Calling into question the notion that managers conspired against labor in the automation of the machine-tool industry
(E) Applying the concept of de-skilling to the machine tool industry



VRC000289-04
7. Which of the following best characterizes Forces of Production as it is described in the passage?

(A) A comparison of two interpretations of how a particular industry evolved
(B) An examination of the origin of a particular concept in industrial economics
(C) A study that points out the weakness of a particular interpretation of an industrial phenomenon
(D) A history of a particular industry from an ideological point of view
(E) An attempt to relate an industrial phenomenon in one industry to a similar phenomenon in another industry



Originally posted by anilnandyala on 07 Nov 2010, 20:26.
Last edited by SajjadAhmad on 05 Aug 2019, 03:23, edited 5 times in total.
Updated complete topic (74).
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Re: In Forces of Production, David Noble examines the transformation of th  [#permalink]

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New post 05 Feb 2018, 22:18
7
Tridhipal wrote:
Reg Q5...how is it the Ans option E?

Reg Q7...how is the option D right...why not C?

Quote:
5. Which of the following phrases most clearly reveals the attitude of the author of the passage toward Noble’s central argument?

The author states that Noble fails to substantiate the claim that management conspired against labor. In other words, Noble claims that management conspired against labor, but the author believes that Noble does not provide substantial evidence to back up this claim.

Quote:
(A) “conspired against” (line 6)

This refers to Noble's claim, not the author's attitude. Eliminate (A).

Quote:
(B) “intolerable to management” (line 7)

According to Noble, "the power that the skilled machinists wielded in the industry was intolerable to management." Again, this is part of Noble's claim, not the author's attitude. Eliminate (B).

Quote:
(C) “impressive when he applies the Marxist concept” (line 9)

Here the author is giving Noble some credit. The author basically says, "Noble's argument is weak, but the way that Noble applies the Marxist concept is impressive." However, the author's overall attitude is not one of praise but rather one of criticism, so this choice is not appropriate. Eliminate (C).

Quote:
(D) “clearly prefers” (line 16)

The author uses this phrase to describe Nobel's point of view, but this does capture the attitude of the author. Eliminate (D).

Quote:
(E) “only evidence of conspiracy” (line 21)

As stated above, the author believes that Nobel does not present sufficient evidence to back up the claim. In this sentence, the author accuses Nobel of providing only one piece of evidence. From the author's tone, we can infer that the author believes this one piece of evidence is weak.

The author basically says, "Nobel does not substantiate his conspiracy claim; in fact, his ONLY evidence of conspiracy is..." This phrase captures the author's believe that Nobel has failed to sufficiently back up his conspiracy claim, so (E) is the best answer.

Quote:
7. Which of the following best characterizes Forces of Production as it is described in the passage?

(A) A comparison of two interpretations of how a particular industry evolved

(B) An examination of the origin of a particular concept in industrial economics

(C) A study that points out the weakness of a particular interpretation of an industrial phenomenon

(D) A history of a particular industry from an ideological point of view

(E) An attempt to relate an industrial phenomenon in one industry to a similar phenomenon in another industry

Forces of Production is a work by David Noble. The author criticizes Nobel's work, but the work itself does not "point out the weakness of a particular interpretation of an industrial phenomenon."

From a Marxist perspective, Noble "examines the transformation of the machine-tool industry as the industry moved from reliance on skilled artisans to automation." In other words, "from an ideological point of view" (Marxist perspective), Forces of Production describes "a history of a particular industry" (the machine-tool industry). Choice (D) is spot on.
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Re: In Forces of Production, David Noble examines the transformation of th  [#permalink]

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New post 26 Nov 2010, 07:08
13
1. The author of the passage is primarily concerned with
(A) reexamining a political position and defending its validity - n (though marxism is mentioned but that is not the theme of passage.)
(B) examining a management decision and defending its necessity - n (this is just one point mentioned in the passage. also there is no defense stated in the passage for its necessity)

(C) analyzing a scholarly study and pointing out a central weakness - y (study is of the book written by a marxist scholar and the weakness is the conspiracy theory propogated without any substatntial evidence)

(D) explaining a trend in automation and warning about its dangers - n (there is no trend shown. david noble might be warning about its dangers but the author is not)
(E) chronicling the history of an industry and criticizing its development - n (no history is chronicled)

Ans: C


2. According to information in the passage, the term “de-skilling” refers to the
(A) loss of skills to industry when skilled workers are replaced by unskilled laborers - n
(B) substitution of mechanized processes for labor formerly performed by skilled workers - y (clearly mentioned after the dash in line no 7)
(C) labor theory that automation is technologically comparable to skilled labor - n (no mention of labor theory)
(D) process by which skilled machinists “teach” machines to perform certain tasks - n (that is mentioned later in the passage not for this)
(E) exclusion of skilled workers from participation in the development of automated technology - n (again mentioned later but there is no mention of exclusion though)

Ans: B


3. Which of the following best characterizes the function of the second paragraph of the passage?
(A) It develops a topic introduced in the first paragraph. - y (it goes on to describe the two different ways of autmating introduced in first passage)
(B) It provides evidence to refute a claim presented in the first paragraph. - n (no claim is refuted)
(C) It gives examples of a phenomenon mentioned in the first paragraph. - n (there is no phenomenon mentioned)
(D) It presents a generalization about examples given in the first paragraph. - n (its the other way round)
(E) It suggests two possible solutions to a problem presented in the first paragraph. - n (there are no solutions provided)

Ans: A


4. The passage suggests which of the following about N/C automation in the machine-tool industry?
(A) It displaced fewer skilled workers than R/P automation did. - n (no comparison of such nature is mentioneD)
(B) It could have been implemented either by experienced machinists or by computer engineers. - n (it could be implemented only by comp eng)

(C) It was designed without the active involvement skilled machinists. - y (this is clearly mentioned)
(D) It was more difficult to design than R/P automation was. - n (no such comparison is mentioned)
(E) It was technically superior to R/P automation. - n (no mention of this)

Ans: c


5. Which of the following phrases most clearly reveals the attitude of the author of the passage toward Noble’s central argument?
(A) “conspired against” (line 6) - n (Noble's view, not author's)
(B) “intolerable to management” (line 7) - n (Noble's view, not author's)
(C) “impressive when he applies the Marxist concept” (line 9) -n (this is not the noble's central argument)
(D) “clearly prefers” (line 16) - n (Noble's view, not author's)
(E) “only evidence of conspiracy” (line 21) - y (yes)

Ans: E


6. The author of the passage commends Noble’s book for which of the following?
(A) Concentrating on skilled as opposed to unskilled workers in its discussion of the machine-tool industry - n (though Noble mentions only skilled workers but that does not mean the author commends him)
(B) Offering a generalization about the motives behind the machine-tool industry’s decision to automate - n
(C) Making an essential distinction between two kinds of technology employed in the machine-tool industry - n (though mentioned but author does not commend him for this)
(D) Calling into question the notion that managers conspired against labor in the automation of the machine-tool industry - n (though mentioned but author does not commend him for this)
(E) Applying the concept of de-skilling to the machine tool industry - y (authhor is impressed by this)

Ans: E

7. Which of the following best characterizes Forces of Production as it is described in the passage?
(A) A comparison of two interpretations of how a particular industry evolved - n (there are no two interpretations mentioned)
(B) An examination of the origin of a particular concept in industrial economics - n (this is taking the argument too far)
(C) A study that points out the weakness of a particular interpretation of an industrial phenomenon - n

(D) A history of a particular industry from an ideological point of view - y (marxist point of view)
(E) An attempt to relate an industrial phenomenon in one industry to a similar phenomenon in another industry -n

Ans: D
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New post 03 Jan 2012, 06:50
2
Got C,B,A,C,E,E,D in 6:30 mins.
Q.1 C,The author is analysing a book of someone else and this is the only answer specifying the same.
Q.2 B,The definition of de skilling is given in the passage
Quote:
“de-skilling”—the use of technology to replace skilled labor

Q.3 A,It provides information on R/P and N/C which was introduced in last lines of first paragraph.
Q.4 C,
Quote:
Noble clearly prefers R/P, with its inherent acknowledgment of workers’ skills: unlike N/C, its programs were produced not by engineers at their computers, but by skilled
machinists,

Q 5,E
Quote:
“only evidence of conspiracy”
author is sceptical about Noble's evidence in the entire paragraph and mentions that only one evidence has been provided.
Q 6,E
Quote:
although his argument is impressive when he applies the Marxist concept of “de-skilling”

Q 7,D Noble has published the book using Marxist point of view which can be called ideological.
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Re: In Forces of Production, David Noble examines the transformation of th  [#permalink]

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New post 04 Jul 2018, 20:22
1
robu1 : I got this wrong too - would recommend reading GMATNinja's explanation above.

Basically in Forces of Production, Noble uses the concept of Marxism- an ideology - to explain the shift to automation in the machine tool industry. I chose E as my answer since I didn't understand the word 'ideology'. But later I realized that no other industry is actually mentioned so E is wrong.
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New post 14 Jan 2019, 00:01
1
skycastle19 wrote:
Dear experts,
Could you please help explain (A) of Q7? Why can't I say that N/C and R/P are the two interpretations?

In the Forces of production, Noble did discuss how a particular industry (machine-tool industry) evolved, but he did not give two interpretations of this evolution. N/C and R/P are not two interpretations, instead they are just two different technologies. The industry decided to go with N/C technology.
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New post 08 Nov 2010, 05:26
1
1. The author of the passage is primarily concerned with

C For the reason why here the author analaysing a phenomenon, infact in the 7 answer talks about Forces of Production

2. According to information in the passage, the term “de-skilling” refers to the

B the use of technology to replace skilled labor

3. Which of the following best characterizes the function of the second paragraph of the passage?

A -> In automating, the industry moved to computer-based, digitized “numerical-control” (N/C) technology, rather than to artisan-generated “record-playback” (R/P) technology. last phrase of first paragraph

4. The passage suggests which of the following about N/C automation in the machine-tool industry?

C unlike N/C, its programs were produced not by engineers at their computers, but by skilled machinists

5. Which of the following phrases most clearly reveals the attitude of the author of the passage toward Noble’s central argument?

C Noble fails to substantiate this claim, although his argument is impressive when he applies the Marxist concept of “de-skilling”

6. The author of the passage commends Noble’s book for which of the following?

B In Forces of Production, David Noble examines the transformation of the machine-tool industry as the industry moved from reliance on skilled artisans to automation

7. Which of the following best characterizes Forces of Production as it is described in the passage?

A from the concept of Forces of Production............

A tough reading comprehension
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New post 07 Feb 2018, 15:56
1
GMATNinja wrote:
Tridhipal wrote:
Reg Q5...how is it the Ans option E?

Reg Q7...how is the option D right...why not C?

Quote:
5. Which of the following phrases most clearly reveals the attitude of the author of the passage toward Noble’s central argument?

The author states that Noble fails to substantiate the claim that management conspired against labor. In other words, Noble claims that management conspired against labor, but the author believes that Noble does not provide substantial evidence to back up this claim.

Quote:
(A) “conspired against” (line 6)

This refers to Noble's claim, not the author's attitude. Eliminate (A).

Quote:
(B) “intolerable to management” (line 7)

According to Noble, "the power that the skilled machinists wielded in the industry was intolerable to management." Again, this is part of Noble's claim, not the author's attitude. Eliminate (B).

Quote:
(C) “impressive when he applies the Marxist concept” (line 9)

Here the author is giving Noble some credit. The author basically says, "Noble's argument is weak, but the way that Noble applies the Marxist concept is impressive." However, the author's overall attitude is not one of praise but rather one of criticism, so this choice is not appropriate. Eliminate (C).

Quote:
(D) “clearly prefers” (line 16)

The author uses this phrase to describe Nobel's point of view, but this does capture the attitude of the author. Eliminate (D).

Quote:
(E) “only evidence of conspiracy” (line 21)

As stated above, the author believes that Nobel does not present sufficient evidence to back up the claim. In this sentence, the author accuses Nobel of providing only one piece of evidence. From the author's tone, we can infer that the author believes this one piece of evidence is weak.

The author basically says, "Nobel does not substantiate his conspiracy claim; in fact, his ONLY evidence of conspiracy is..." This phrase captures the author's believe that Nobel has failed to sufficiently back up his conspiracy claim, so (E) is the best answer.

Quote:
7. Which of the following best characterizes Forces of Production as it is described in the passage?

(A) A comparison of two interpretations of how a particular industry evolved

(B) An examination of the origin of a particular concept in industrial economics

(C) A study that points out the weakness of a particular interpretation of an industrial phenomenon

(D) A history of a particular industry from an ideological point of view

(E) An attempt to relate an industrial phenomenon in one industry to a similar phenomenon in another industry

Forces of Production is a work by David Noble. The author criticizes Nobel's work, but the work itself does not "point out the weakness of a particular interpretation of an industrial phenomenon."

From a Marxist perspective, Noble "examines the transformation of the machine-tool industry as the industry moved from reliance on skilled artisans to automation." In other words, "from an ideological point of view" (Marxist perspective), Forces of Production describes "a history of a particular industry" (the machine-tool industry). Choice (D) is spot on.


Thank you so much
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New post 11 Feb 2018, 08:53
Quote:
5. Which of the following phrases most clearly reveals the attitude of the author of the passage toward Noble’s central argument?

(A) “conspired against” (line 6)

(B) “intolerable to management” (line 7)

(C) “impressive when he applies the Marxist concept” (line 9)

(D) “clearly prefers” (line 16)

(E) “only evidence of conspiracy” (line 21)


Hello GMATNinja,

Hope you are doing great nowdays :-D

I have a small question. How should we tackle such questions as quoted above?
Do such questions appear on the real exam now? If yes, how exactly are we meant to tackle them. I got all others correct but was bumped by this one.

Please enlighten me.

Regards
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Re: In Forces of Production, David Noble examines the transformation of th  [#permalink]

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New post 21 Apr 2018, 11:12
ammuseeru wrote:
GMATNinja wrote:
Tridhipal wrote:
Reg Q5...how is it the Ans option E?

Reg Q7...how is the option D right...why not C?

Quote:
5. Which of the following phrases most clearly reveals the attitude of the author of the passage toward Noble’s central argument?

The author states that Noble fails to substantiate the claim that management conspired against labor. In other words, Noble claims that management conspired against labor, but the author believes that Noble does not provide substantial evidence to back up this claim.

Quote:
(A) “conspired against” (line 6)

This refers to Noble's claim, not the author's attitude. Eliminate (A).

Quote:
(B) “intolerable to management” (line 7)

According to Noble, "the power that the skilled machinists wielded in the industry was intolerable to management." Again, this is part of Noble's claim, not the author's attitude. Eliminate (B).

Quote:
(C) “impressive when he applies the Marxist concept” (line 9)

Here the author is giving Noble some credit. The author basically says, "Noble's argument is weak, but the way that Noble applies the Marxist concept is impressive." However, the author's overall attitude is not one of praise but rather one of criticism, so this choice is not appropriate. Eliminate (C).

Quote:
(D) “clearly prefers” (line 16)

The author uses this phrase to describe Nobel's point of view, but this does capture the attitude of the author. Eliminate (D).

Quote:
(E) “only evidence of conspiracy” (line 21)

As stated above, the author believes that Nobel does not present sufficient evidence to back up the claim. In this sentence, the author accuses Nobel of providing only one piece of evidence. From the author's tone, we can infer that the author believes this one piece of evidence is weak.

The author basically says, "Nobel does not substantiate his conspiracy claim; in fact, his ONLY evidence of conspiracy is..." This phrase captures the author's believe that Nobel has failed to sufficiently back up his conspiracy claim, so (E) is the best answer.

Quote:
7. Which of the following best characterizes Forces of Production as it is described in the passage?

(A) A comparison of two interpretations of how a particular industry evolved

(B) An examination of the origin of a particular concept in industrial economics

(C) A study that points out the weakness of a particular interpretation of an industrial phenomenon

(D) A history of a particular industry from an ideological point of view

(E) An attempt to relate an industrial phenomenon in one industry to a similar phenomenon in another industry

Forces of Production is a work by David Noble. The author criticizes Nobel's work, but the work itself does not "point out the weakness of a particular interpretation of an industrial phenomenon."

From a Marxist perspective, Noble "examines the transformation of the machine-tool industry as the industry moved from reliance on skilled artisans to automation." In other words, "from an ideological point of view" (Marxist perspective), Forces of Production describes "a history of a particular industry" (the machine-tool industry). Choice (D) is spot on.


GMATNinja,
How can i conclude that Marxist perspective is ideological point of view ?

Marxism is a set of political and economic ideas. From the passage, we can infer that Marxism consists of ideas that are pro-labor and anti-management/capitalist.

An ideology is "a system of ideas and ideals, especially one that forms the basis of economic or political theory and policy." Thus, Marxism can be considered an ideology. "Perspective" and "point of view" mean the same thing here, so a Marxist perspective is certainly an ideological point of view.
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