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The literary development of Kate Chopin, author of The Awakening (1899

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The literary development of Kate Chopin, author of The Awakening (1899  [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 13 Oct 2019, 09:05
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New Project RC Butler 2019 - Practice 2 RC Passages Everyday
Passage # 388, Date: 13-Oct-2019
This post is a part of New Project RC Butler 2019. Click here for Details


The literary development of Kate Chopin, author of The Awakening (1899), took her through several phases of nineteenth-century women’s fiction. Born in 1850, Chopin grew up with the sentimental novels that formed the bulk of the fiction of the mid–nineteenth century. In these works, authors employed elevated, romantic language to portray female characters whose sole concern was to establish their social positions through courtship and marriage. Later, when she started writing her own fiction, Chopin took as her models the works of a group of women writers known as the local colorists.

After 1865, what had traditionally been regarded as “women’s culture” began to dissolve as women entered higher education, the professions, and the political world in greater numbers. The local colorists, who published stories about regional life in the 1870s and 1880s, were attracted to the new worlds opening up to women, and felt free to move within these worlds as artists. Like anthropologists, the local colorists observed culture and character with almost scientific detachment. However, as “women’s culture” continued to disappear, the local colorists began to mourn its demise by investing its images with mythic significance. In their stories, the garden became a paradisal sanctuary; the house became an emblem of female nurturing; and the artifacts of domesticity became virtual totemic objects.

Unlike the local colorists, Chopin devoted herself to telling stories of loneliness, isolation, and frustration. But she used the conventions of the local colorists to solve a specific narrative problem: how to deal with extreme psychological states without resorting to the excesses of the sentimental novels she read as a youth. By reporting narrative events as if they were part of a region’s “local color,” Chopin could tell rather shocking or even melodramatic tales in an uninflected manner.

Chopin did not share the local colorists’ growing nostalgia for the past, however, and by the 1890s she was looking beyond them to the more ambitious models offered by a movement known as the New Women. In the form as well as the content of their work, the New Women writers pursued freedom and innovation. They modified the form of the sentimental novel to make room for interludes of fantasy and parable, especially episodes in which women dream of an entirely different world than the one they inhabit. Instead of the crisply plotted short stories that had been the primary genre of the local colorists, the New Women writers experimented with impressionistic methods in an effort to explore hitherto unrecorded aspects of female consciousness. In The Awakening, Chopin embraced this impressionistic approach more fully to produce 39 numbered sections of uneven length unified less by their style or content than by their sustained focus on faithfully rendering the workings of the protagonist’s mind.

1. Which one of the following statements most accurately summarizes the content of the passage?

(A) Although Chopin drew a great deal of the material for The Awakening from the concerns of the New Women, she adapted them, using the techniques of the local colorists, to recapture the atmosphere of the novels she had read in her youth.
(B) Avoiding the sentimental excesses of novels she read in her youth, and influenced first by the conventions of the local colorists and then by the innovative methods of the New Women, Chopin developed the literary style she used in The Awakening.
(C) With its stylistic shifts, variety of content, and attention to the internal psychology of its characters, Chopin’s The Awakening was unlike any work of fiction written during the nineteenth century.
(D) In The Awakening, Chopin rebelled against the stylistic restraint of the local colorists, choosing instead to tell her story in elevated, romantic language that would more accurately convey her protagonist’s loneliness and frustration.
(E) Because she felt a kinship with the subject matter but not the stylistic conventions of the local colorists, Chopin turned to the New Women as models for the style she was struggling to develop in The Awakening.


2. With which one of the following statements about the local colorists would Chopin have been most likely to agree?

(A) Their idealization of settings and objects formerly associated with “women’s culture” was misguided.
(B) Their tendency to observe character dispassionately caused their fiction to have little emotional impact.
(C) Their chief contribution to literature lay in their status as inspiration for the New Women.
(D) Their focus on regional life prevented them from addressing the new realms opening up to women.
(E) Their conventions prevented them from portraying extreme psychological states with scientific detachment.


3. According to the passage, which one of the following conventions did Chopin adopt from other nineteenth century women writers?

(A) elevated, romantic language
(B) mythic images of “women’s culture”
(C) detached narrative stance
(D) strong plot lines
(E) lonely, isolated protagonists


As it is used by the author, “women’s culture” (Highlighted) most probably refers to a culture that was expressed primarily through women’s

(A) domestic experiences
(B) regional customs
(C) artistic productions
(D) educational achievements
(E) political activities


5. The author of the passage describes the sentimental novels of the mid–nineteenth century (Text in red) primarily in order to

(A) argue that Chopin’s style represents an attempt to mimic these novels
(B) explain why Chopin later rejected the work of the local colorists
(C) establish the background against which Chopin’s fiction developed
(D) illustrate the excesses to which Chopin believed nostalgic tendencies would lead
(E) prove that women’s literature was already flourishing by the time Chopin began to write


6. The passage suggests that one of the differences between The Awakening and the work of the New Women was that The Awakening

(A) attempted to explore aspects of female consciousness
(B) described the dream world of female characters
(C) employed impressionism more consistently throughout
(D) relied more on fantasy to suggest psychological states
(E) displayed greater unity of style and content


7. The primary purpose of the passage is to

(A) educate readers of The Awakening about aspects of Chopin’s life that are reflected in the novel
(B) discuss the relationship between Chopin’s artistic development and changes in nineteenth century women’s fiction
(C) trace the evolution of nineteenth-century women’s fiction using Chopin as a typical example
(D) counter a claim that Chopin’s fiction was influenced by external social circumstances
(E) weigh the value of Chopin’s novels and stories against those of other writers of her time


8. The work of the New Women, as it is characterized in the passage, gives the most support for which one of the following generalizations?

(A) Works of fiction written in a passionate, engaged style are more apt to effect changes in social customs than are works written in a scientific, detached style.
(B) Even writers who advocate social change can end up regretting the change once it has occurred.
(C) Changes in social customs inevitably lead to changes in literary techniques as writers attempt to make sense of the new social realities.
(D) Innovations in fictional technique grow out of writers’ attempts to describe aspects of reality that have been neglected in previous works.
(E) Writers can most accurately depict extreme psychological states by using an uninflected manner.



  • Source: LSAT Official PrepTest 63 (June 2011)
  • Difficulty Level: 700

Originally posted by hero_with_1000_faces on 09 Oct 2019, 04:55.
Last edited by SajjadAhmad on 13 Oct 2019, 09:05, edited 1 time in total.
Updated - Complete topic (959).
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Re: The literary development of Kate Chopin, author of The Awakening (1899  [#permalink]

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New post 10 Oct 2019, 00:40
I got 6 right out of 8. Can you explain the answers of Q2 and Q4
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Re: The literary development of Kate Chopin, author of The Awakening (1899  [#permalink]

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New post 11 Oct 2019, 05:50
any good explanation of q-2,3,4,8?
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please explain quesstion 2
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Re: The literary development of Kate Chopin, author of The Awakening (1899  [#permalink]

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New post 13 Oct 2019, 09:18
Paragraph Summaries

Para 1: Chopin grew up with sentimental novelists. She instead took the local colorists as her model.

Para 2: The local colorists mythologized the dying world of “women’s culture”.

Para 3: Chopin used the conventions of local color to describe extreme psychological states without drama.

Para 4: Later, Chopin took a more impressionistic approach to writing.

Analysis

This passage is not an argument. Instead, it’s a description of a specific author: Kate Chopin. The passage traces her career and stylistic influences.

On a passage like this, it’s important to keep track of every major group.

Women’s culture: The old domestic world of women, from a time when women’s major life goal was marrying well. The garden, the house, and domestic tools were the common features of women’s lives.

Local Color: By the 1870s, “women’s culture” was beginning to disappear as women sought lives outside the home. The local colorists were nostalgic about this dying world, and they invested elements of “women’s culture” with mythic significance.

Early Kate Chopin: This is in the third paragraph. Kate Chopin wasn’t a local colorist. But she used the styles of local color to tell dramatic stories without melodrama. The passage isn’t very clear about this phase of Chopin’s career, or how local color lets you tell a story without drama. But what I wrote is all you need to know.

Late Kate Chopin/Impressionism/New Women: These novels were not straightforward narratives. Instead, the writers tried to explore female consciousness. For example, a book might look at how a woman feels and thinks, rather than a story which brings her from event to event.

There’s no overall argument to understand in this passage. Instead, you should have an understanding of the elements I wrote about above, and where to find them. When a question asks about a specific detail, you should know where to find it in the passage. The Awakening is the product of this later period in Chopin’s life. By this point she had moved past the local colorists and on to Impressionism.

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New post 13 Oct 2019, 09:30
Hello awasthiji Hea234ven Kanvi

Explanation


2. With which one of the following statements about the local colorists would Chopin have been most likely to agree?

Difficulty Level: 750

Explanation

First 2 lines of Para 4 answer this question: Chopin “didn’t share the local colorists nostalgia for the past.” This is the only direct opinion of Chopin’s about the local colorists.

A. CORRECT. By the 1870s and 1880s, women’s culture was in decline. The local colorists were fascinated with the objects of the former women’s culture, and the local colorists invested these objects with mythic significance. (lines: However, as “women’s culture” continued to disappear, the local colorists began to mourn its demise by investing its images with mythic significance. In their stories, the garden became a paradisal sanctuary; the house became an emblem of female nurturing; and the artifacts of domesticity became virtual totemic objects.).

B. Chopin did not agree with this nostalgia (lines: Chopin did not share the local colorists’ growing nostalgia for the past, however, and by the 1890s she was looking beyond them to the more ambitious).

C. Chopin was the one who described scenes dispassionately. See paragraph three.

D. The local colorists were an inspiration for Chopin, but not necessarily for the New Women. The fourth paragraph doesn’t say who inspired the New Women.
Also, we’re looking for Chopin’s opinion, not what is true in the passage.

Lines: (The local colorists, who published stories about regional life in the 1870s and 1880s, were attracted to the new worlds opening up to women, and felt free to move within these worlds as artists) say that the local colorists were able to move through these new worlds as artists. It sounds like the local colorists were able to explore these new worlds. Also, we’re looking for Chopin’s opinion, not what is true in the passage.

E. The third paragraph describes how Chopin used the conventions of the local colorists to describe scenes with scientific detachment. So Chopin would disagree with this answer.

Answer: A


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New post 13 Oct 2019, 09:39
Hea234ven

Explanation


3. According to the passage, which one of the following conventions did Chopin adopt from other nineteenth century women writers?

Difficulty Level: 700

Explanation

A. Chopin avoided romantic, sentimental language. See lines (how to deal with extreme psychological states without resorting to the excesses of the sentimental novels she read as a youth. By reporting narrative events as if they were part of a region’s “local color,” Chopin could tell rather shocking or even melodramatic tales in an uninflected manner.)

B. Lines (Chopin did not share the local colorists’ growing nostalgia for the past, however, and by the 1890s she was looking beyond them to the more ambitious) contradict this: Chopin did not mythologize the past.

C. CORRECT. Lines (how to deal with extreme psychological states without resorting to the excesses of the sentimental novels she read as a youth. By reporting narrative events as if they were part of a region’s “local color,” Chopin could tell rather shocking or even melodramatic tales in an uninflected manner.) describe Chopin’s detached narrative. She used the conventions of local color to accomplish this detachment.

D. Lines (Instead of the crisply plotted short stories that had been the primary genre of the local colorists, the New Women writers experimented with impressionistic methods in an effort to explore hitherto unrecorded aspects of female consciousness) describe how Chopin’s stories avoided crisp plots.

E. Lines (Unlike the local colorists, Chopin devoted herself to telling stories of loneliness, isolation, and frustration.) do say that Chopin used lonely protagonists. But the passage never says why Chopin does this.

Answer: C


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New post 13 Oct 2019, 09:50
awasthiji Hea234ven

Explanation


4. As it is used by the author, “women’s culture” (Highlighted) most probably refers to a culture that was expressed primarily through women’s

Difficulty Level: 650

Explanation

Lines 11-13 say that women’s culture disappeared as women went to university, work and politics.

Before that, women were in the home. Lines 18-23 describe this more explicitly: the garden, the house, the artifacts of domesticity. This was the world of women.

It’s hard to conceive of the extent women were in the home, pre-1865. My grandmothers were both homemakers….after they married. Before marrying, one grandmother left home to work in the city, and the other got a university degree and worked as a schoolteacher.

Pre-1865, this was not possible. Women….stayed….at….home. They read, they knitted, they played piano, they walked in the garden. If they left the house, they did so in the company of a male relative. They went to balls, and received suitors at home. If there was a match, they went to their new husband’s house, and the cycle began again.

That was their life.
___________

A. CORRECT. “Domestic” experiences means experiences in the home. Which is where women were before 1865. See lines 11-13 and 18-23.

B. Regional life was what the local colorists explored, after women escaped from the home. See lines 13-16.

C. The local colorists were the only artists mentioned (line 16-17), and their movement arose after women’s culture ended. I’m not sure what else this answer could refer to, but it certainly doesn’t refer to the world of women’s culture.

D. Women did not go to university until women’s culture dissolved. See lines 11-13.

E. Same as D. Politics was off limits to women until women’s culture started dissolving. See lines 11-13.

Answer: A


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New post 13 Oct 2019, 09:58
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Hea234ven

Explanation


8. The work of the New Women, as it is characterized in the passage, gives the most support for which one of the following generalizations?

Difficulty Level: 750

Explanation

The New Women are discussed only in the fourth paragraph. Most of the answers discuss things that never happened anywhere in the passage, or only happened in other paragraphs. Note that you must think broadly. Answer D mentions “aspects of reality that had been neglected”. That specific phrase wasn’t in paragraph four, but it corresponds exactly with lines 41-43.

I worked first by eliminating those answers that were clearly wrong, then skimmed through paragraph four to find the lines that justify D.
___________

A. The passage never talks about literature changing social customs. We don’t know why social customs change.

B. We’re not told whether the New Women advocated social change, and regret is never mentioned.

C. The passage didn’t say this. “Inevitably” is a strong word. We only know about one change in social custom: the dissolution of women’s culture. Further, the dissolution of women’s culture was in paragraph two. The passage doesn’t say whether the New Women cared about the dissolution of women’s culture. The New Women were only mentioned in paragraph 4.
D. CORRECT. Lines 41-43 support this directly. The New Women experimented with impressionism in order to describe female consciousness. This consciousness had been neglected in prior works.

E. The local colorists were dispassionate and uninflected. See line 37, where Chopin was using their techniques. We don’t even know if the New Women were uninflected, so this answer has no support.

Answer: D


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New post 23 Oct 2019, 04:50
Passage Discussion

The passage discusses the evolution of Kate Chopin’s literary style by focusing on its formative
relationship to several phases of nineteenth-century women’s fiction.

Paragraph 1 Overview

The first paragraph introduces Kate Chopin and describes the literary milieu in which she grew
up. Pay attention to the viewpoint expressed by the sentimental novelists (lines 4-9) and notate the
date (1850s): they employed elevated, romantic language to portray women whose sole concern
was to establish their social positions through marriage. The reference to local colorists at the end
of the paragraph (line 12) prefigures a more detailed discussion of their role in the development of
Chopin’s literary style.

Paragraph 2 Overview

The second paragraph describes the local colorists, who published stories about regional life in
the 1870s and 1880s at a time when “women’s culture” began to dissolve (notate the date and the
viewpoint). Note how the author likens the local colorists to anthropologists observing the world
with almost scientific detachment while also mourning the past. Given the importance test-makers
attribute to analogies, metaphors, and other figures of speech, make sure to highlight this comparison
and use it to your advantage in summarizing the local colorists’ viewpoint.

Paragraph 3 Overview

The third paragraph examines the relationship between Kate Chopin’s writing and that of the local
colorists. Chopin adopted their detached narrative style in order to describe extreme psychological
states in an uninflected manner, but did not feel a kinship with their subject matter, choosing instead
to tell stories of loneliness, isolation, and frustration. Since the primary focus of the passage is
Chopin herself, it is important to fully understand the differences and similarities between her and
the local colorists, and expect to be tested on that understanding.

Paragraph 4 Overview

The final paragraph begins by making one last point of distinction between Chopin and the local
colorists (they were nostalgic for the past; she was not), before describing in detail the works of
the New Women. Notate the new viewpoint and the date—1890s. The New Women writers were
different from both the sentimental novelists and the local colorists: they modified the sentimental
novel by introducing interludes of fantasy and dreams, and replaced the “crisply plotted stories” of
the local colorists with impressionistic methods. In The Awakening, Chopin embraced these methods
even more fully.

Summary

The author traces the evolution of Kate Chopin’s literary style in the context of three phases of
nineteenth-century women’s fiction: the sentimental novelists, the local colorists, and the New
Women. The presentation style mixes a variety of viewpoints, and this “compare-and-contrast”
format generates greater complexity in the passage. To combat this, always make sure to carefully
track each viewpoint within the passage and match each viewpoint with the appropriate date.
Here is a summary of the various viewpoints expressed throughout the passage and their relationship
to the literary evolution of Kate Chopin:

Viewpoint: Sentimental novelists
Structure: 1st paragraph
Argument: Used romantic language to portray women seeking to establish their social positions through marriage.
Relationship to Chopin: Chopin grew up with the sentimental novelists, but did not adopt their style or subject matter.

Viewpoint: Local colorists
Structure: 2nd and 3rd paragraphs
Argument: Published stories about regional life, narrated with detachment and mournful of the past.
Relationship to Chopin: Chopin adopted their detached narrative style, but not their subject matter. Instead of sharing the local colorists’ nostalgia for the past, Chopin focused on telling stories of loneliness and isolation.

Viewpoint: New Women writers
Structure: 4th paragraph
Argument: Used fantasy, parable, and impressionistic methods in order to explore hitherto unrecorded aspects of female consciousness.
Relationship to Chopin: In The Awakening, Chopin embraced the impressionistic approach of the New Women even more fully than they had in their own work.
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Question 2. Solution

The correct answer choice is (A)

This question tests your understanding of two key viewpoints: Kate Chopin’s and that of the local colorists. In approaching each answer choice, you need to adopt Chopin’s perspective in evaluating the work of the local colorists. As always, it is advantageous to have an understanding of the structure of the passage: the section most relevant to proving the correct answer choice would be the third paragraph of the passage, as well as the beginning of the fourth paragraph.

Answer choice (A): This is the correct answer choice. The local colorists mourned the demise of the “women’s culture” (lines 23-24), but Chopin did not share this nostalgia (lines 38-39). It would be reasonable to conclude, then, that Chopin would consider the local colorists’ idealization of settings and objects formerly associated with “women’s culture” to be misguided.

Answer choice (B): This is a half-right, half-wrong answer choice. The local colorists did observe their characters dispassionately, but Chopin never saw this as a downside. On the contrary: she adopted their conventions to “solve a specific narrative problem” (lines 31-32). This answer choice is incorrect.

Answer choice (C): There is no evidence to corroborate the view that the local colorists inspired the New Women, let alone that this was their chief contribution to literature. This answer choice is incorrect.

Answer choice (D): This is another half-right, half-wrong answer choice. The local colorists did focus on regional life, but Chopin would not agree with the assertion that their focus somehow prevented them from addressing the new realms opening up to women. This answer choice is incorrect.

Answer choice (E): This is the Opposite answer. Chopin actually adopted the conventions of the local colorists in portraying extreme psychological states without sentimentality (lines 32-34).
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Question 1. Solution

The correct answer choice is (B)
Because the passage traces the evolution of Kate Chopin as a writer in the historical context of nineteenth-century women’s literature, the author’s main point is of secondary importance. As a result, the Main Point question merely asks us to summarize the content of the passage. As long as you understand the relationship between Kate Chopin and the trends in nineteenth-century literature described throughout the passage, you should be able to eliminate four of the five answer choices relatively quickly.

Answer choice (A): Chopin indeed drew a great deal of the material for The Awakening from the concerns of the New Women, but she never sought to recapture the atmosphere of the sentimental novels she had read in her youth. Chopin modeled her early fiction after the local colorists instead.
This answer choice is incorrect.

Answer choice (B): This is the correct answer choice. In developing her literary style, Chopin avoided the excesses of the sentimental novelists (1st paragraph), but drew influence both from the conventions of the local colorists (3rd paragraph) and from the impressionistic methods of the New Women (4th paragraph).

Answer choice (C): This answer choice contains an exaggeration: there is no evidence to support the assertion that Chopin’s The Awakening was unlike any work of fiction written during the nineteenth century.

Answer choice (D): Although there is some evidence to support the view that Chopin devoted herself to telling stories of loneliness and frustration (3rd
paragraph), this answer choice has two problems: First, Chopin did not rebel against the stylistic restraint of the local colorists; on the contrary—she employed their conventions to solve a particular narrative problem (line 32). Second, the author never described the language in The Awakening as elevated or romantic—these are attributes of the sentimental novelists that Chopin made sure to avoid. This answer choice is incorrect.

Answer choice (E): This answer choice may seem attractive, as it accurately summarizes the influence of the New Women on Kate Chopin’s writing. However, the first clause contains a reversal: Chopin did not feel a kinship with the subject matter of the local colorists, but did embrace their stylistic conventions. This answer choice is incorrect.
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New post 23 Oct 2019, 05:03
Question No. 3

The correct answer choice is (C)
Once again, this question tests your understanding of the relationship between Chopin’s fiction and the conventions expressed elsewhere in the passage.

Answer choice (A): Chopin avoided the elevated, romantic language of the sentimental novelists described in the first paragraph. This answer choice is incorrect.

Answer choice (B): While the mythic images of “women’s culture” do belong to the works of the local colorists, recall that Chopin did not share their nostalgia for the past (line 39). She only adopted their narrative style, not their subject matter.

Answer choice (C): This is the correct answer choice. The third paragraph of the passage proves that Chopin adopted the detached narrative stance of the local colorists in order to portray extreme psychological states (lines 31-34).

Answer choice (D): The literary convention of strong plot lines certainly belonged to the local colorists (line 48). However, there is no evidence to support the assertion that Chopin adopted this particular convention in her own fiction. This answer choice is incorrect.

Answer choice (E): This answer choice is attractive, but also incorrect. Chopin was clearly devoted to telling stories about lonely, isolated protagonists. Unfortunately, this is not a convention she adopted from other nineteenth-century writers. On the contrary—it is a point of distinction between her and the local colorists (lines 29-30).
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Re: The literary development of Kate Chopin, author of The Awakening (1899  [#permalink]

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New post 23 Oct 2019, 06:20
Can I have the explanation of Q6 please?
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Re: The literary development of Kate Chopin, author of The Awakening (1899  [#permalink]

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New post 23 Oct 2019, 10:32
Mansoor50 wrote:
Can I have the explanation of Q6 please?


Explanation


6. The passage suggests that one of the differences between The Awakening and the work of the New Women was that The Awakening

Difficulty Level: 700

Explanation

To answer a question like this, you must reread the section of the passage that talks about The Awakening.

The Awakening is discussed in lines (Women writers experimented with impressionistic methods in an effort to explore hitherto unrecorded aspects of female consciousness. In The Awakening, Chopin embraced this impressionistic approach more fully to produce 39 numbered sections of uneven length unified less by their style or content than by their sustained focus on faithfully rendering the workings of the protagonist’s mind.) It used impressionism more fully than the New Women did.

A. The New Women did this too: lines (Women writers experimented with impressionistic methods in an effort to explore hitherto unrecorded aspects of female consciousness.)

B. The New Women did this too: lines (They modified the form of the sentimental novel to make room for interludes of fantasy and parable, especially episodes in which women dream of an entirely different world than the one they inhabit.)

C. CORRECT. Lines (In The Awakening, Chopin embraced this impressionistic approach more fully to produce 39 numbered sections) say this directly.

D. Total nonsense. Lines (In The Awakening, Chopin embraced this impressionistic approach more fully to produce 39 numbered sections of uneven length unified less by their style or content than by their sustained focus on faithfully rendering the workings of the protagonist’s mind.) don’t mention fantasy. Only lines 37-38 mentions fantasy: The New Women used it.

E. Line 44 contradicts this: The Awakening was not unified by style or content.

Answer: C


Hope it helps
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Re: The literary development of Kate Chopin, author of The Awakening (1899  [#permalink]

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New post 24 Oct 2019, 06:18
Thank you.......idid miss the "more fully".....however, i was reading the following:

In The Awakening, Chopin embraced this impressionistic approach more fully to produce 39 numbered sections of uneven length unified less by their style or content than by their sustained focus on faithfully rendering the workings of the protagonist’s mind.

some how, the "less by style" to me implied that the impressionistic approach wasnt all that used.

so in a way, i felt this sentence to be self contradictory

Can you shed light on my thinking and correct me?

i guess the question is: is STYLE the same thing as the "impressionistic approach"?
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Re: The literary development of Kate Chopin, author of The Awakening (1899  [#permalink]

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New post 19 Nov 2019, 10:50
hi SajjadAhmad - can you please post an explanation of Q7
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New post 19 Nov 2019, 11:05
saurabh9gupta wrote:
hi SajjadAhmad - can you please post an explanation of Q7


Official Explanation


7. The primary purpose of the passage is to

Difficulty Level: 650

Explanation

(A) We’re not told anything about Chopin’s life. Were her books successful? Did she marry? Where did she live? We have no idea.

(B) CORRECT. The best answer. We see the evolution of women’s literature from sentiment to local color to New Women, and we’re told how this influenced Chopin.

(C) The passage didn’t say whether Chopin was a typical example of women’s literature. She doesn’t appear to fit neatly into any category.

(D) The passage didn’t discuss Chopin’s external social circumstances. E.g. Was she rich/poor? In good health/sick? Married/single? Urban/rural?

(E) The passage never says whether Chopin’s books are better than other books. The author doesn’t specify what’s good and bad about Chopin compared to other authors.

Answer: B


Hope it helps
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The literary development of Kate Chopin, author of The Awakening (1899  [#permalink]

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New post 29 Nov 2019, 03:05
1
Hi everyone,
Got 7/8 correct in 15:40 minutes.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


P1

Paragraph one tells us that KC went through different phases of the woman's fiction in the 19th century. She is the author of the AWKN and when she was young she read novels in which women were segregated to the domestic sphere and the only way to enhance their social status was through courts and marriage. Later KC discovered the colorists.

Brief summary: KC read novels when young and later met colorists

P2

Paragraph 2 tells us that the women culture that was present in the novels mentioned in P1 started to disappear as more and more women got more independent. The colorists embraced this change as artists but with scientific detachment. BUT they used mythological representations. Note that the but here probably suggests that KC had nothing to do with the mythological representations

Brief summary: The colorists

P3

Paragraph 3 gives us one difference and one commonality between KC and the colorists. Kc talked about different stuff but she used the same method to solve a narrative problem: by using "regional colors" (whatever they are) she was able to describe intense psychological states without having to use the means present in the romantic novels that she read when she was little.

Brief summary: Differences and commonalities between KC and the colorists

P4

Paragraph 4 starts with giving us another difference between the colorists and KC. KC was not nostalgic as the colorists were. Note that this is linked with the end of P2 where it is stated that because of the nostalgia colorists started to use mythological images. This association leads to an inference required by one of the questions.
Furthermore we know that KC looked at more ambitious women such as the New Women. This group abandoned the sentimental novels in favor of the usage of fantasy and parables in which their dreams came true. Also the New Women were different from the colorists because they did not realize short stories and because they used an impressionistic style to depict female consciousness. Lastly we know that in the AWKN KC used the impressionistic style even more than the new women.

Brief summary: KC and the New Women


Main point

The main point into go through all the literary stages of KC

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1. Which one of the following statements most accurately summarizes the content of the passage?

Pre-thinking

Structure/main point question

Refer to Main point and summaries above


(A) Although Chopin drew a great deal of the material for The Awakening from the concerns of the New Women, she adapted them, using the techniques of the local colorists, to recapture the atmosphere of the novels she had read in her youth.
She never used the novels that she read when little

(B) Avoiding the sentimental excesses of novels she read in her youth, and influenced first by the conventions of the local colorists and then by the innovative methods of the New Women, Chopin developed the literary style she used in The Awakening.
In line with summaries and pre-thinking

(C) With its stylistic shifts, variety of content, and attention to the internal psychology of its characters, Chopin’s The Awakening was unlike any work of fiction written during the nineteenth century.
Chopin's work was a fiction of the 19th

(D) In The Awakening, Chopin rebelled against the stylistic restraint of the local colorists, choosing instead to tell her story in elevated, romantic language that would more accurately convey her protagonist’s loneliness and frustration.
Out of scope

(E) Because she felt a kinship with the subject matter but not the stylistic conventions of the local colorists, Chopin turned to the New Women as models for the style she was struggling to develop in The Awakening.
No struggle and wrong reasons

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2. With which one of the following statements about the local colorists would Chopin have been most likely to agree?

Pre-thinking

Inference question

Let's analyze the answer choices


(A) Their idealization of settings and objects formerly associated with “women’s culture” was misguided.
Let's refer to two different paragraph to understand why this is the correct answer choice:

From P2: "However, as “women’s culture” continued to disappear, the local colorists began to mourn its demise by investing its images with mythic significance."
Here we get that because colorists were disappointed, they engaged with mythical (or idealized) settings. So we have a case- effect relationship: Cause=nostalgia, effect=idealization.


From P4:"Chopin did not share the local colorists’ growing nostalgia for the past,"
Here we know that KC was not nostalgic of the past, hence she did not agree on the idealization of the settings as the colorists did.

Hence we can infer option A


(B) Their tendency to observe character dispassionately caused their fiction to have little emotional impact.
KC liked the detachment actually

(C) Their chief contribution to literature lay in their status as inspiration for the New Women.
colorists did not inspire the New Women

(D) Their focus on regional life prevented them from addressing the new realms opening up to women.
Cannot be inferred

(E) Their conventions prevented them from portraying extreme psychological states with scientific detachment.
they actually did

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3. According to the passage, which one of the following conventions did Chopin adopt from other nineteenth century women writers?

Pre-thinking

Detail question

From the colorists: how to solve a narrative problem
From the New Women: impressionism, exploring female consciousness


(A) elevated, romantic language
She did not like it

(B) mythic images of “women’s culture”
opposite

(C) detached narrative stance
from the colorists and in line with pre-thinking

(D) strong plot lines
not in line with pre-thinking

(E) lonely, isolated protagonists
this is an inside feature of KC

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4. As it is used by the author, “women’s culture” (Highlighted) most probably refers to a culture that was expressed primarily through women’s

Pre-thinking

Inference question

"Born in 1850, Chopin grew up with the sentimental novels that formed the bulk of the fiction of the mid–nineteenth century. In these works, authors employed elevated, romantic language to portray female characters whose sole concern was to establish their social positions through courtship and marriage"


(A) domestic experiences
In line with pre-thinking

(B) regional customs
Out of context and related to the colorists

(C) artistic productions
out of scope

(D) educational achievements
out of scope

(E) political activities
out of scope

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

5. The author of the passage describes the sentimental novels of the mid–nineteenth century (Text in red) primarily in order to

Pre-thinking

Purpose question

The author presents such novel in order to tell us that KC did not like them


(A) argue that Chopin’s style represents an attempt to mimic these novels
Not in line with pre.thinking

(B) explain why Chopin later rejected the work of the local colorists
Not in line with pre.thinking

(C) establish the background against which Chopin’s fiction developed
in line with pre.thinking

(D) illustrate the excesses to which Chopin believed nostalgic tendencies would lead
Not in line with pre.thinking

(E) prove that women’s literature was already flourishing by the time Chopin began to write
Not in line with pre.thinking


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6. The passage suggests that one of the differences between The Awakening and the work of the New Women was that The Awakening

Pre-thinking

Inference question

"In The Awakening, Chopin embraced this impressionistic approach more fully to produce...."


(A) attempted to explore aspects of female consciousness
commonality

(B) described the dream world of female characters
Not in line with pre.thinking

(C) employed impressionism more consistently throughout
in line with pre.thinking

(D) relied more on fantasy to suggest psychological states
Not in line with pre.thinking

(E) displayed greater unity of style and content
Not in line with pre.thinking

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


7. The primary purpose of the passage is to

Pre-thinking

Main point question

Refer to main point and summaries above


(A) educate readers of The Awakening about aspects of Chopin’s life that are reflected in the novel
Not in line with pre.thinking

(B) discuss the relationship between Chopin’s artistic development and changes in nineteenth century women’s fiction
in line with pre.thinking

(C) trace the evolution of nineteenth-century women’s fiction using Chopin as a typical example
Not in line with pre.thinking

(D) counter a claim that Chopin’s fiction was influenced by external social circumstances
Not in line with pre.thinking

(E) weigh the value of Chopin’s novels and stories against those of other writers of her time
Not in line with pre.thinking

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8. The work of the New Women, as it is characterized in the passage, gives the most support for which one of the following generalizations?

Pre-thinking

Stengthen question

Let's refer to P4


(A) Works of fiction written in a passionate, engaged style are more apt to effect changes in social customs than are works written in a scientific, detached style.
In p4 we are given that New Women abandoned the means used in such romantic novels

(B) Even writers who advocate social change can end up regretting the change once it has occurred.
This statement seems to describe the colorists. So out of context

(C)Changes in social customs inevitably lead to changes in literary techniques as writers attempt to make sense of the new social realities.
We can associate this statement to the usage of parables, fantasies and dreams by the New Women to make true the achievements that they dreamt about. HOWEVER "inevitably" makes the statement too extreme. Hence inconsistent

(D) Innovations in fictional technique grow out of writers’ attempts to describe aspects of reality that have been neglected in previous works.
New Women tried to describe aspects neglected by previous works. New Women were innovative. Hence correct

(E) Writers can most accurately depict extreme psychological states by using an uninflected manner.
This statement is related to colorists

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The literary development of Kate Chopin, author of The Awakening (1899   [#permalink] 29 Nov 2019, 03:05
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