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Meaning Based: Heartless human beings

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Meaning Based: Heartless human beings [#permalink]

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07 Dec 2011, 09:45
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This question is the first practice problem meaning based questions and tests proper placement of modifiers. Correct and best explanation will get a Kudos from us and a free subscription for 1 month to our[highlight]OG Verbal 2 solutions for Sentence Correction[/highlight]. OG Verbal 2 solutions contain solutions to all SC questions using e-GMAT 3 step process- amounting to 14 hrs of audio visual content. Currently 50 solutions are uploaded. The set will be completed by the end of the month.

Heartless human beings are like wild animals, which will rip its own kin at the slightest of need and that too without a sign of remorse.

A. Heartless human beings are like wild animals, which will rip its own kin at the slightest of need
B. Heartless human beings were like wild animals, which have ripped their own kin at the slightest of need
C. Human beings are like heartless wild animals, which rip their own kin in the slightest of need
D. Human beings are like heartless wild animals, which rip at its own kin in the slightest of need
E. Heartless human beings are like wild animals, which rip their own kin in the slightest of need.

We will provide the official answer soon.

Also Check out 5 strategies that GMAT uses to distort the meaning of the original sentence
5-strategies-that-gmat-uses-to-distort-meaning-124296.html
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

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Last edited by egmat on 16 Jul 2012, 10:09, edited 4 times in total.

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Re: Meaning Based: Heartless human beings [#permalink]

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07 Dec 2011, 09:56
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Heartless human beings are like wild animals, which will rip its own kin at the slightest of need and that too without a sign of remorse.

A. Heartless human beings are like wild animals, which will rip its own kin at the slightest of need singular pronoun for plural antecedent
B. Heartless human beings were like wild animals, which have ripped their own kin at the slightest of need PAST tense with PRESENT doesn't match
C. Human beings are like heartless wild animals, which rip their own kin in the slightest of need CHANGE IN MEANING
D. Human beings are like heartless wild animals, which rip at its own kin in the slightest of need CHANGE IN MEANING
E. Heartless human beings are like wild animals, which rip their own kin in the slightest of need. correct

+1 E
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Re: Meaning Based: Heartless human beings [#permalink]

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08 Dec 2011, 03:12
egmat wrote:

Heartless human beings are like wild animals, which will rip its own kin at the slightest of need and that too without a sign of remorse.

A. Heartless human beings are like wild animals, which will rip its own kin at the slightest of need
B. Heartless human beings were like wild animals, which have ripped their own kin at the slightest of need
C. Human beings are like heartless wild animals, which rip their own kin in the slightest of need
D. Human beings are like heartless wild animals, which rip at its own kin in the slightest of need
E. Heartless human beings are like wild animals, which rip their own kin in the slightest of need.

"its" does not match with wild animals, so A and D are out.

We need special kind of human beings who are heartless, not all human beings. Therefore, C is eliminated.

In choice B, it have two problem. We talk about general idea, so present perfect is not need. Furthermore, "at" used in B as show the specific point rather than "in" used as show the space in... (I don't know how to show this idea ). Thus, use "at" is wrong.

The correct choice is E.
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Re: Meaning Based: Heartless human beings [#permalink]

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08 Dec 2011, 06:13
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I was confused with C.. good question.. +1E too.

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Re: Meaning Based: Heartless human beings [#permalink]

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08 Dec 2011, 06:23
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I plead to know what exactly a meaning –based question is. I think that many perceive it mainly focusing of distortion of meaning, altered intent, or not carrying the original intent intact and so on. Some also profess that whereupon the original text displays a ridiculous meaning, we have a right to choose something more sensible and logical. However, is this any thing new? This has been there all through in the past. Then what does GMAT intend to convey by saying it is changing over to more meaning – focused questions?

We have so far realized that, after dumping all those ungrammatical choices, the final choice will fall upon the one that is more logical over the one that is grammatical, yet less logical.

Let us delve into the issue at hand.

A. Heartless human beings are like wild animals, which will rip its own kin at the slightest of need --- its is wrong pronoun – a grammar error
B. Heartless human beings were like wild animals, which have ripped their own kin at the slightest of need ----- This is a generalization and the use of were is wrong tense; a grammar error
C. Human beings are like heartless wild animals, which rip their own kin in the slightest of need –----- The sweeping remark that all human beings are heartless is absurd; a sever distortion of original intent
D. Human beings are like heartless wild animals, which rip at its own kin in the slightest of need------ Same as C
E. Heartless human beings are like wild animals, which rip their own kin in the slightest of need. ----The remnant that corrects the errors

Aren’t these old types of questions? Can some lead me on to some thing new about these questions?

Thanks
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Re: Meaning Based: Heartless human beings [#permalink]

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08 Dec 2011, 06:59
Its E

A---->invalid Subject verb agreement
B---->No need to use any perfect tense
C---->Change in meaning
D---->Change in meaning
E----->Correct(both Subject verb agreement,concise and meaning is preserved)

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Re: Meaning Based: Heartless human beings [#permalink]

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08 Dec 2011, 09:23
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@daagh

In my opinion, (understanding) Meaning has been central to solving Sentence Correction questions since OG 11 and therfore an integral part e-GMAT Sentence Correction course. OG 12, released in April 2010, continued this emphasis and had more questions in which one had to understand the intent of the sentence based on the original choice to be able to respond correctly.

However, this emphasis on meaning came as a surprise to quite a few individuals and a few experts. People on GMATClub and BTG panicked (you can read their posts on the forums) after realizing they could no longer do well in Sentence Correction purely on grammatical issues without understand the intended meaning. This was further accentuated when GMAC openly stated that a sentence correction questions may have more than one grammatically correct answer choice, but only one of them would communicate the intended meaning.

Since the egmat SC course is probably one of the few courses that has such a clear emphasis on meaning, and since a good amount of confusion still exists, we decided to share our research through various ways. We have a free concept accessible to everyone who registers on e-GMAT. We also conduct a free live session on "importance on meaning" every month. In addition we decided to write this article with the aim to:

1. Help those who have been ignoring the meaning and primarily been following the splits approach to understand the various strategies that GMAC uses to distort the meaning.

2. Provide them with an modified approach (we call it the e-GMAT 3 step process) so that they can attain higher accuracy on the GMAT.

we have only detailed one approach in this article so far and will be outlining other approaches over the next 10 days. Those who are planning to take the exam in the next 4-5 days can download the document and go through the OG questions that we have outlined in the table.
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Re: Meaning Based: Heartless human beings [#permalink]

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08 Dec 2011, 17:19
Thanks for the elucidation from e-gmat and agreeing with me that this meaning-based affair is indeed an ongoing one and not a new concept. I was wondering whether those making noise about it now had anything fresh, up their sleeve as a surprise.
apparently there seems to be none.

Still I have a gut-feeling that there is more to it than meets the eye, though I am not able to give a concrete shape to it.But my feeling may just be a fancy of my own. Let’s wait and see
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Re: Meaning Based: Heartless human beings [#permalink]

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12 Dec 2011, 08:21
Quote:
Heartless human beings are like wild animals, which will rip its own kin at the slightest of need and that too without a sign of remorse.

A. Heartless human beings are like wild animals, which will rip its own kin at the slightest of need
B. Heartless human beings were like wild animals, which have ripped their own kin at the slightest of need
C. Human beings are like heartless wild animals, which rip their own kin in the slightest of need
D. Human beings are like heartless wild animals, which rip at its own kin in the slightest of need
E. Heartless human beings are like wild animals, which rip their own kin in the slightest of need.

Here is the official explanation for this question:

Understand the Meaning of the Original Sentence

The sentence presents a similarity (use of word like) between heartless human beings and wild animals. Heartless human beings are like wild animals. These wild animals rip their own kin when the need arises and they do not even feel any sign of remorse.

Find the Errors in the Original Sentence

1. Heartless human beings are like wild animals,
2. which will rip its own kin at the slightest of need and that too without a sign of remorse.
The sentence structure of the sentence is as shown above. The two SV pairs agree in number and logically make sense. The simple present tense “are” is appropriate as this sentence states a fact that is true in the present context. However, use of future tense “will rip” appears incorrect. This is a general fact about the wild animals and hence should be stated in simple present tense. Furthermore, “its” pronoun refers to wild animals but it does not agree in number. It should be “their”.

Choice B – use of past tense “were” implies that heartless humans beings are no longer like wild animals. This distorts the intended meaning. Furthermore, “have ripped” is incorrect since it now no longer communicates a general fact about wild animals. It states as if the action of “have ripped” is a one-time action that has been completed.

Choice C – This choice changes the intended meaning of the sentence. It now implies that “human beings” in general are like “heartless wild animals”. Note that the original sentence implied that “heartless human beings” are like “wild animals”. Thus, by changing the placement of the modifier “heartless”, the meaning of the sentence has changed. Note that this sentence is otherwise grammatically sound.

Choice D – This choice changes the intended meaning of the sentence as choice C does. It also has pronoun error as choice A does. Also, the expression “rip at its own kin” distorts the meaning of the expression “rip its own kin”.

Choice E – Correct Choice.

TAKE AWAYS

1. Understand the intended meaning of the sentence and then select the choice that correctly communicates that meaning. Understand the role of each modifier in the sentence and note for any changes in the placement of these modifiers.

2. Use appropriate verb tense to communicate the intended logical meaning. This implies that you should understand two things
a. The function of each verb tense – grammatical knowledge
b. The intent of the sentence – What does the sentence want to communicate? – meaning

Note: The attachment at http://gmatclub.com/forum/5-strategies-that-gmat-uses-to-distort-meaning-124296.html contains the document with Strategies for Meaning Change and the questions with detailed solutions. Note that this is a "living" document. We add the strategies, questions, and explanations in this document as we add them on the forum. So be sure to download the latest version!
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Re: Meaning Based: Heartless human beings [#permalink]

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12 Dec 2011, 10:06
Nice explanation Payal.. (assuming its you...) this egmat process is great for SC. thanks for this again.

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Re: Meaning Based: Heartless human beings [#permalink]

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14 Dec 2011, 08:44
can someone explain why A) its is the wrong pronoun? wild animlas–its///// animals (plural) its is plural as well no? or is this where I am worng.. Its is singular and their is plural?

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Re: Meaning Based: Heartless human beings [#permalink]

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14 Dec 2011, 09:48
johndepp wrote:
Nice explanation Payal.. (assuming its you...) this egmat process is great for SC. thanks for this again.

@johndepp, yes that's me Payal... I am glad you like the process...
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Re: Meaning Based: Heartless human beings [#permalink]

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14 Dec 2011, 10:01
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can someone explain why A) its is the wrong pronoun? wild animlas–its///// animals (plural) its is plural as well no? or is this where I am worng.. Its is singular and their is plural?

@marcelosada, "its" is not plural. I think your confusion may have stemmed from the "s" in "its". Yes typically we add "s" after a noun to make that a plural noun - for example:
rat - rats
table - tables
apple - apples

But there is yet another use of "s" - it is to provide a sense of possession. When we add 's we add a sense of possession or "of". For example:

Tom - Tom's work - work of Tom
Cat - Cat's feet - feet of cat

This is the way 's' has been used with 'it' in "its" (notice however that there is no '. This is an exception and you should keep this in mind)
it - its - singular
its color is black. - The color of "it" is black.
its material is solid. - The material of "it" is solid.

Here are the singular-plural forms of it.
it singular - they plural
its singular - their plural

I hope this clarifies your doubt. Also, the errors in choice A have been listed in my solution above.

Payal
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Re: Meaning Based: Heartless human beings [#permalink]

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07 Jan 2012, 02:38
E. I guess to late to receive kudos as best explanation is already there!

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Re: Meaning Based: Heartless human beings [#permalink]

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22 Jan 2012, 13:12
Got it wrong the first time

Heartless human beings are like wild animals, which will rip its own kin at the slightest of need and that too without a sign of remorse.

A. Heartless human beings are like wild animals, which will rip its own kin at the slightest of need
B. Heartless human beings were like wild animals, which have ripped their own kin at the slightest of need
C. Human beings are like heartless wild animals, which rip their own kin in the slightest of need
D. Human beings are like heartless wild animals, which rip at its own kin in the slightest of need
E. Heartless human beings are like wild animals, which rip their own kin in the slightest of need.

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Re: Meaning Based: Heartless human beings [#permalink]

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08 Apr 2012, 00:07
I picked E, but could not understand "that too" in the sentence. Could someone help me?

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Re: Meaning Based: Heartless human beings [#permalink]

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23 Dec 2012, 06:22
OA :E
I got this one even before going through your article and looking at the OA...
May I please request you to come up with some more difficult Qs like 700+ related to this article as then only we'll get to know how well we've been in implementing the knowledge and the strategies, learnt from you excellent article,in real GMAT like situation.

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Re: Meaning Based: Heartless human beings [#permalink]

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18 Sep 2013, 10:14
Bumping for review and further discussion*.

*New project from GMAT Club!!! Check HERE

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Consider +1 KUDOS if you find this post useful

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Re: Meaning Based: Heartless human beings [#permalink]

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18 Sep 2013, 16:28
looking forward to the discussion. BTW did you sign up for the ISB/Babson Webinar

http://try.e-gmat.com/isb-info-webinar-page/
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Re: Meaning Based: Heartless human beings [#permalink]

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11 Sep 2016, 04:24
Hello from the GMAT Club VerbalBot!

Thanks to another GMAT Club member, I have just discovered this valuable topic, yet it had no discussion for over a year. I am now bumping it up - doing my job. I think you may find it valuable (esp those replies with Kudos).

Want to see all other topics I dig out? Follow me (click follow button on profile). You will receive a summary of all topics I bump in your profile area as well as via email.

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Re: Meaning Based: Heartless human beings   [#permalink] 11 Sep 2016, 04:24

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