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Before there were books, before, even, there was the written word

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Before there were books, before, even, there was the written word  [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 11 Oct 2018, 18:36
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Before there were books, before, even, there was the written word in civilization, there must surely have been stories told. Relating stories to one another is a unique way that we, as humans, communicate thoughts, needs, desires, and instruction. Whether it be the true story of what happened on the way to the well yesterday—a story meant to instruct about the latest water situations—or a dramatic retelling of a long-ago battle—a cautionary tale meant to warn against unnecessary warfare—stories have the unique ability to bring home information and instruct in a way a mere recitation of the facts cannot.

The Tale, the Parable, and the Fable are all common and popular modes of conveying instruction—each being distinguished by its own special characteristics. The true Fable, if it rises to its high requirements, ever aims at one great end and purpose: the representation of human motive, and the improvement of human conduct, and yet it so conceals its design under the disguise of fictitious characters, by clothing with speech the animals of the field, the birds of the air, the trees of the wood, or the beasts of the forest, that the reader receives the advice without perceiving the presence of the adviser. Thus the superiority of the counsellor, which often renders counsel unpalatable, is kept out of view, and the lesson comes with the greater acceptance when the reader is led, unconsciously to himself, to have his sympathies enlisted on behalf of what is pure, honourable, and praiseworthy, and to have his indignation excited against what is low, ignoble, and unworthy.

The true fabulist, therefore, is charged with a most important function. He is neither a narrator, nor an allegorist, he is a great teacher, a corrector of morals, a censor of vice, and a commender of virtue. In this consists the superiority of the Fable over the Tale or the Parable. The fabulist is to create a laugh, but yet, under a merry guise, to convey instruction. Phaedrus, the great imitator of Aesop, plainly indicates this double purpose to be the true office of the writer of fables.

The Fable partly agrees with, and partly differs from the Tale and the Parable. It will contain, like the Tale, a short but real narrative; it will seek, like the Parable, to convey a hidden meaning, not so much by the use of language, as by the skilful introduction of fictitious characters; and yet unlike to either Tale or Parable, it will ever keep in view, as its high prerogative, and inseparable attribute, the great purpose of instruction, and will necessarily seek to inculcate some moral maxim, social duty, or political truth.
The Tale consists simply of the narration of a story either founded on facts, or created solely by the imagination, and not necessarily associated with the teaching of any moral lesson. The Parable is the designed use of language purposely intended to convey a hidden and secret meaning other than that contained in the words themselves; and which may or may not bear a special reference to the hearer, or reader.

1. The passage suggests that the fable is superior to the parable and the tale for none of the following reasons EXCEPT:

I. the fable contains a moral lesson within its narrative.
II. the parable‘s message may be too enigmatic for a reader to comprehend.
III. the tale is a chronicle of recent historical events.

A. I only
B. I and II
C. II and III
D. I, II, and III
E. None of the above
Spoiler: :: OA
B

Spoiler: :: OE
1) First translate the language: look for "none of the...reasons EXCEPT" means look for a reason. Where does the author talk about the superiority of the fable? ¶s 4 and 5. Evaluate RN I: The author argues that unlike the other two forms of narrative, the fable always keeps its moral in mind. RN I fits, eliminate (C). RN II is a bit tougher to evaluate. Can we infer that the parable‘s message might be too enigmatic? Yes. The Parable is "intended to convey a hidden...meaning" which "may or may not bear a special reference to the hearer" (¶5), while the fable conveys a hidden meaning for "the great purpose of instruction." The parable therefore can be too enigmatic in comparison. RN II is also correct, eliminate (C). Finally, check RN III. Even though the statement might be true, it does nothing to explain why the fable is superior, and so can be eliminated.
(A): Opposite. As described above.
(B): The correct answer
(C): Opposite. As above.
(D): Opposite. As above.
(E): Opposite. As above.


2. According to the passage, which of the following is NOT a requirement for a narrative text to be classified as a fable?

A. Use of fictional characters, such as personified animals and natural objects
B. Inclusion of social, moral, or political references relevant to contemporary readers
C. Constant awareness of and attention to a particular instructional goal
D. Figurative or poetic language to demonstrate the author‘s creative talent
E. Every fable must have a ‗moral‘ at the end
Spoiler: :: OA
D

Spoiler: :: OE
What are the criteria of a fable? Either eliminate answer choices that can be found in the text or find an answer choice that is clearly not a quality of a fable. While three of the answer choices are details from the passage, (D) suggests that a fable‘s author uses figurative language to display his own talent, while the passage argues in ¶2 that the author in a fable should be invisible.
(A): Opposite. This is mentioned at the beginning of ¶2.
(B): Opposite. This is mentioned at the end of ¶4.
(C): Opposite. This is also mentioned at the end of ¶4.
(D): The correct answer
(E): Opposite. This is also mentioned at the end of ¶4.


3. Which of the following best characterizes the claim that the fabulist is a ―great teacher, a corrector of morals, a censor of vice, and a commender of virtue?‖
A. It is an analysis of the importance of the fabulist‘s role in society.
B. It is a conclusion that fabulists should be honoured above writers of parables or tales.
C. It is appreciation for the fabulist‘s ability to multi-task.
D. It advocates increased honour and respect for the fabulist.
E. It suggests that more and more people should become fabulists
Spoiler: :: OA
C

Spoiler: :: OE
A question asking you to characterize a claim will usually be an evaluation question. Why does the author make this point about fabulists in the third paragraph? Predict: the fabulist has several functions in society. Look for an answer choice that fits this. While (A) may be tempting, (C) is the only answer choice that captures the fact that the fabulist has many roles.
(A): Distortion. Though the author believes that the fabulist has an important role, the comment isn‘t analysing the role, and is more concerned with making the point that the fabulist has several roles.
(B): Distortion. Though the author believes that fables are a better means of communicating instruction, there‘s no indication in the passage that those who tell fables are more worthy of honour than are those who tell other sorts of tales.
(C): The correct answer
(D): Distortion. As above, though the author has a high opinion of fabulists, there‘s no argument in the passage that they should get more respect than they are now.
(E): The claim makes no such suggestions.


_________________

Kaustubh


Originally posted by mehtakaustubh on 04 Dec 2014, 21:07.
Last edited by workout on 11 Oct 2018, 18:36, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Before there were books, before, even, there was the written word  [#permalink]

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New post 28 Dec 2014, 06:13
2
Time take 11 mins. Plz share OE.

Before there were books, before, even, there was the written word in civilization, there must surely have been stories told. Relating stories to one another is a unique way that we, as humans, communicate thoughts, needs, desires, and instruction. Whether it be the true story of what happened on the way to the well yesterday—a story meant to instruct about the latest water situations—or a dramatic retelling of a long-ago battle—a cautionary tale meant to warn against unnecessary warfare—stories have the unique ability to bring home information and instruct in a way a mere recitation of the facts cannot.
#1: Introduction abt the whole para. We are going to read abt the story telling.

The Tale, the Parable, and the Fable are all common and popular modes of conveying instruction—each being distinguished by its own special characteristics. The true Fable, if it rises to its high requirements, ever aims at one great end and purpose: the representation of human motive, and the improvement of human conduct, and yet it so conceals its design under the disguise of fictitious characters, by clothing with speech the animals of the field, the birds of the air, the trees of the wood, or the beasts of the forest, that the reader receives the advice without perceiving the presence of the adviser. Thus the superiority of the counsellor, which often renders counsel unpalatable, is kept out of view, and the lesson comes with the greater acceptance when the reader is led, unconsciously to himself, to have his sympathies enlisted on behalf of what is pure, honourable, and praiseworthy, and to have his indignation excited against what is low, ignoble, and unworthy.
#2: Talks abt Fable, one of the most popular mode, and why is that so.

The true fabulist, therefore, is charged with a most important function. He is neither a narrator, nor an allegorist, he is a great teacher, a corrector of morals, a censor of vice, and a commender of virtue. In this consists the superiority of the Fable over the Tale or the Parable. The fabulist is to create a laugh, but yet, under a merry guise, to convey instruction. Phaedrus, the great imitator of Aesop, plainly indicates this double purpose to be the true office of the writer of fables.
#3: Talks abt the fabulist and why thy r superior compared to othrs.

The Fable partly agrees with, and partly differs from the Tale and the Parable. It will contain, like the Tale, a short but real narrative; it will seek, like the Parable, to convey a hidden meaning, not so much by the use of language, as by the skilful introduction of fictitious characters; and yet unlike to either Tale or Parable, it will ever keep in view, as its high prerogative, and inseparable attribute, the great purpose of instruction, and will necessarily seek to inculcate some moral maxim, social duty, or political truth.
The Tale consists simply of the narration of a story either founded on facts, or created solely by the imagination, and not necessarily associated with the teaching of any moral lesson.
The Parable is the designed use of language purposely intended to convey a hidden and secret meaning other than that contained in the words themselves; and which may or may not bear a special reference to the hearer, or reader.
#4: Continues on the line #3 and xplains how fable party agrees and at the same time differs from T and P.

1. The passage suggests that the fable is superior to the parable and the tale for none of the following reasons EXCEPT:
I. the fable contains a moral lesson within its narrative.
II. the parable‘s message may be too enigmatic for a reader to comprehend.
III. the tale is a chronicle of recent historical events.
A. I only
B. I and II
C. II and III
D. I, II, and III
E. None of the above
>> I marked A here. From passage its clear that F is easily understood compared to P but I cant infer if P is too enigmatic for ppl.

2. According to the passage, which of the following is NOT a requirement for a narrative text to be classified as a fable?
A. Use of fictional characters, such as personified animals and natural objects
B. Inclusion of social, moral, or political references relevant to contemporary readers
C. Constant awareness of and attention to a particular instructional goal
D. Figurative or poetic language to demonstrate the author‘s creative talent
E. Every fable must have a =moral‘ at the end
>>D: By POE.
3. Which of the following best characterizes the claim that the fabulist is a ?great teacher, a corrector of morals, a censor of vice, and a commender of virtue??
A. It is an analysis of the importance of the fabulist‘s role in society.
B. It is a conclusion that fabulists should be honoured above writers of parables or tales.
C. It is appreciation for the fabulist‘s ability to multi-task.
D. It advocates increased honour and respect for the fabulist.
E. It suggests that more and more people should become fabulists
>>C: true fabulist, therefore, is charged with a most important function.
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Re: Before there were books, before, even, there was the written word  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Oct 2018, 06:34
mehtakaustubh wrote:
Before there were books, before, even, there was the written word in civilization, there must surely have been stories told. Relating stories to one another is a unique way that we, as humans, communicate thoughts, needs, desires, and instruction. Whether it be the true story of what happened on the way to the well yesterday—a story meant to instruct about the latest water situations—or a dramatic retelling of a long-ago battle—a cautionary tale meant to warn against unnecessary warfare—stories have the unique ability to bring home information and instruct in a way a mere recitation of the facts cannot.

The Tale, the Parable, and the Fable are all common and popular modes of conveying instruction—each being distinguished by its own special characteristics. The true Fable, if it rises to its high requirements, ever aims at one great end and purpose: the representation of human motive, and the improvement of human conduct, and yet it so conceals its design under the disguise of fictitious characters, by clothing with speech the animals of the field, the birds of the air, the trees of the wood, or the beasts of the forest, that the reader receives the advice without perceiving the presence of the adviser. Thus the superiority of the counsellor, which often renders counsel unpalatable, is kept out of view, and the lesson comes with the greater acceptance when the reader is led, unconsciously to himself, to have his sympathies enlisted on behalf of what is pure, honourable, and praiseworthy, and to have his indignation excited against what is low, ignoble, and unworthy.

The true fabulist, therefore, is charged with a most important function. He is neither a narrator, nor an allegorist, he is a great teacher, a corrector of morals, a censor of vice, and a commender of virtue. In this consists the superiority of the Fable over the Tale or the Parable. The fabulist is to create a laugh, but yet, under a merry guise, to convey instruction. Phaedrus, the great imitator of Aesop, plainly indicates this double purpose to be the true office of the writer of fables.

The Fable partly agrees with, and partly differs from the Tale and the Parable. It will contain, like the Tale, a short but real narrative; it will seek, like the Parable, to convey a hidden meaning, not so much by the use of language, as by the skilful introduction of fictitious characters; and yet unlike to either Tale or Parable, it will ever keep in view, as its high prerogative, and inseparable attribute, the great purpose of instruction, and will necessarily seek to inculcate some moral maxim, social duty, or political truth.
The Tale consists simply of the narration of a story either founded on facts, or created solely by the imagination, and not necessarily associated with the teaching of any moral lesson. The Parable is the designed use of language purposely intended to convey a hidden and secret meaning other than that contained in the words themselves; and which may or may not bear a special reference to the hearer, or reader.
1. The passage suggests that the fable is superior to the parable and the tale for none of the following reasons EXCEPT:

I. the fable contains a moral lesson within its narrative.
II. the parable‘s message may be too enigmatic for a reader to comprehend.
III. the tale is a chronicle of recent historical events.

A. I only
B. I and II
C. II and III
D. I, II, and III
E. None of the above
Spoiler: :: OA
B

Spoiler: :: OE
1) First translate the language: look for "none of the...reasons EXCEPT" means look for a reason. Where does the author talk about the superiority of the fable? ¶s 4 and 5. Evaluate RN I: The author argues that unlike the other two forms of narrative, the fable always keeps its moral in mind. RN I fits, eliminate (C). RN II is a bit tougher to evaluate. Can we infer that the parable‘s message might be too enigmatic? Yes. The Parable is "intended to convey a hidden...meaning" which "may or may not bear a special reference to the hearer" (¶5), while the fable conveys a hidden meaning for "the great purpose of instruction." The parable therefore can be too enigmatic in comparison. RN II is also correct, eliminate (C). Finally, check RN III. Even though the statement might be true, it does nothing to explain why the fable is superior, and so can be eliminated.
(A): Opposite. As described above.
(B): The correct answer
(C): Opposite. As above.
(D): Opposite. As above.
(E): Opposite. As above.


2. According to the passage, which of the following is NOT a requirement for a narrative text to be classified as a fable?

A. Use of fictional characters, such as personified animals and natural objects
B. Inclusion of social, moral, or political references relevant to contemporary readers
C. Constant awareness of and attention to a particular instructional goal
D. Figurative or poetic language to demonstrate the author‘s creative talent
E. Every fable must have a ‗moral‘ at the end
Spoiler: :: OA
D

Spoiler: :: OE
What are the criteria of a fable? Either eliminate answer choices that can be found in the text or find an answer choice that is clearly not a quality of a fable. While three of the answer choices are details from the passage, (D) suggests that a fable‘s author uses figurative language to display his own talent, while the passage argues in ¶2 that the author in a fable should be invisible.
(A): Opposite. This is mentioned at the beginning of ¶2.
(B): Opposite. This is mentioned at the end of ¶4.
(C): Opposite. This is also mentioned at the end of ¶4.
(D): The correct answer
(E): Opposite. This is also mentioned at the end of ¶4.


3. Which of the following best characterizes the claim that the fabulist is a ―great teacher, a corrector of morals, a censor of vice, and a commender of virtue?‖
A. It is an analysis of the importance of the fabulist‘s role in society.
B. It is a conclusion that fabulists should be honoured above writers of parables or tales.
C. It is appreciation for the fabulist‘s ability to multi-task.
D. It advocates increased honour and respect for the fabulist.
E. It suggests that more and more people should become fabulists
Spoiler: :: OA
C

Spoiler: :: OE
A question asking you to characterize a claim will usually be an evaluation question. Why does the author make this point about fabulists in the third paragraph? Predict: the fabulist has several functions in society. Look for an answer choice that fits this. While (A) may be tempting, (C) is the only answer choice that captures the fact that the fabulist has many roles.
(A): Distortion. Though the author believes that the fabulist has an important role, the comment isn‘t analysing the role, and is more concerned with making the point that the fabulist has several roles.
(B): Distortion. Though the author believes that fables are a better means of communicating instruction, there‘s no indication in the passage that those who tell fables are more worthy of honour than are those who tell other sorts of tales.
(C): The correct answer
(D): Distortion. As above, though the author has a high opinion of fabulists, there‘s no argument in the passage that they should get more respect than they are now.
(E): The claim makes no such suggestions.





that the reader receives the advice without perceiving the presence of the adviser. Thus the superiority of the counsellor, which often renders counsel unpalatable, is kept out of view, and the lesson comes with the greater acceptance when the reader is led, unconsciously to himself

Not sure how OA/OE of 2nd question is justifiable when the quoted text says that there are no clear laid down instructions and the reader himself understands the lesson.
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Re: Before there were books, before, even, there was the written word  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Oct 2018, 06:35
Hi Karishma, GmatNinja. Can you please check above comment and help with it ?
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Re: Before there were books, before, even, there was the written word  [#permalink]

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New post 14 Oct 2018, 08:12
1
vishusahni9

let me try.
———
You stated:
that the reader receives the advice without perceiving the presence of the adviser. Thus the superiority of the counsellor, which often renders counsel unpalatable, is kept out of view, and the lesson comes with the greater acceptance when the reader is led, unconsciously to himself

Not sure how OA/OE of 2nd question is justifiable when the quoted text says that there are no clear laid down instructions and the reader himself understands the lesson.
————
The question is —>
2. According to the passage, which of the following is NOT a requirement for a narrative text to be classified as a fable?

A. Use of fictional characters, such as personified animals and natural objects
B. Inclusion of social, moral, or political references relevant to contemporary readers
C. Constant awareness of and attention to a particular instructional goal
D. Figurative or poetic language to demonstrate the author‘s creative talent
E. Every fable must have a ‗moral‘ at the end
————
My interpretation of the question:
What are the requirements to classify a text as ‘a fable’? once we understand this, it’s easy to find what are NOT the requirements.

My analysis:
The snippet that you highlighted indicates that superiority of the storyteller (fabulist) is kept out of view. e.g. If the fabulist is very experienced in the subject matter.
it means —> The reader will be able to accept the gist of the story as long as the reader is “unconsciously” able to relate himself to the story. That way, the reader will be able to sympathies and align with the underlying message.

if the reader finds out who is telling the fable, what is the experience level, what are the qualifications of the narrator/fabulist etc then the reader may feel that the story/fable is biased. This is exactly what needs to be avoided. so in conclusion, the question is asking about requirements of text to be classified as a fable. thus the para you highlighted can’t be interpreted as —>there are no clear laid down instructions.

If we go through all the choices —> those are the requirements of fable except choice D. To find out why this is not a requirement, see the first section of the last para:

The Fable partly agrees with, and partly differs from the Tale and the Parable. It will contain, like the Tale, a short but real narrative; it will seek, like the Parable, to convey a hidden meaning, not so much by the use of language, as by the skilful introduction of fictitious characters; and yet unlike to either Tale or Parable, it will ever keep in view, as its high prerogative, and inseparable attribute, the great purpose of instruction, and will necessarily seek to inculcate some moral maxim, social duty, or political truth.

Option D says that fable needs to be figurative or poetic. But that is not the case. As per the highlighted text, it can be interpreted that the fable need not have a particular style (e.g. poetic) OR use of language.

I hope this is clear now. JarvisR already highlighted POE so i will not repeat that. let me know if you need more help.

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Before there were books, before, even, there was the written word  [#permalink]

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New post 14 Oct 2018, 08:52
1
mehtakaustubh, workout: thanks for posting the para. the question 1 is really interesting, it's classic example of double negation.

vishusahni9, JarvisR --> For question 1, we will have to infer the meaning by referring to 4th para. let me try.
———
The question is —>
1. The passage suggests that the fable is superior to the parable and the tale for none of the following reasons EXCEPT:

I. the fable contains a moral lesson within its narrative.
II. the parable‘s message may be too enigmatic for a reader to comprehend.
III. the tale is a chronicle of recent historical events.

A. I only
B. I and II
C. II and III
D. I, II, and III
E. None of the above
————
My interpretation of the question:
What are the reasons to call out the fable superior to parable/tale?

My analysis:
---
I. the fable contains a moral lesson within its narrative.
This is clearly given in the 2nd para:
the true Fable, if it rises to its high requirements, ever aims at one great end and purpose
Conclusion: So ‘I’ is a valid option.
---
II. the parable‘s message may be too enigmatic for a reader to comprehend.
For this refer last para:
It will contain, like the Tale, a short but real narrative; it will seek, like the Parable, to convey a hidden meaning, not so much by the use of language, as by the skilful introduction of fictitious characters; and yet unlike to either Tale or Parable, it will ever keep in view, as its high prerogative, and inseparable attribute, the great purpose of instruction,

How to interpret:
let's separate out 2 sentences:
Sentence 1:
It will contain, like the Tale, a short but real narrative; it will seek, like the Parable, to convey a hidden meaning, not so much by the use of language, as by the skilful introduction of fictitious characters
Significance: above sentence means fable and parable share similar intention of conveying hidden meaning but fable does it by using fictitious characters.

Sentence 2:
and yet unlike to either Tale or Parable, it will ever keep in view, as its high prerogative, and inseparable attribute, the great purpose of instruction
Significance: Fable unlike Parable clearly explains the great purpose of instructions.

Now if we combine significance of both of these sentences, it is clear that even though parable tries to explain the hidden meaning, it doesn't clearly call out the instructions/meaning/action, A fable does!
In another words, Parable is is difficult to comprehend. Dictionary meaning of enigmatic also refers as 'difficult to comprehend'.

Conclusion: So ‘II’ is a valid option. Fable is superior to parable as parable doesn't explain the instructions clearly.
---
III. the tale is a chronicle of recent historical events.
Again, let's refer to the first section of last para:
The Fable partly agrees with, and partly differs from the Tale and the Parable. It will contain, like the Tale, a short but real narrative;

The second section of last para calls out:
The Tale consists simply of the narration of a story either founded on facts, or created solely by the imagination, and not necessarily associated with the teaching of any moral lesson.

Significance: If we combine both of these statements, we understand that both (fable and tale ) explain the facts. Hence option 3 does not necessarily makes a fable better.

Conclusion: So ‘III’ is NOT a valid option.
---
This perfectly aligns with OA --> option B
I hope this is clear now.

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Re: Before there were books, before, even, there was the written word  [#permalink]

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New post 30 Oct 2018, 20:11
The passage suggests that the fable is superior to the parable and the tale for none of the following reasons EXCEPT:

I. the fable contains a moral lesson within its narrative.
II. the parable‘s message may be too enigmatic for a reader to comprehend.
III. the tale is a chronicle of recent historical events.

A. I only
B. I and II
C. II and III
D. I, II, and III
E. None of the above

The parable AND the tale : we have to find a quality which is superior to both X and Y
st. 1 is correct as we have the info for both.
"the fable contains a moral lesson within its narrative."
tale:" The Tale consists simply of the narration of a story either founded on facts, or created solely by the imagination, and not necessarily associated with the teaching of any moral lesson "
parable: " unlike to either Tale or Parable, it will ever keep in view, as its high prerogative, and inseparable attribute, the great purpose of instruction, and will necessarily seek to inculcate some moral maxim, social duty, or political truth."

so Fable has a ALWAYS has a moral instruction , unlike tale or parable.

st 2: I do not find any info to conclude this to be the correct as we only have info about "parable" and NOT about "tale"... The question asks us to find superiority over BOTH X and Y...Not X OR Y....
Is the message is tale enigmatic? we dont know ? it may not have a message at all !
so i disagree with The OA

(correct me if I'm wrong)

and plus this is so not like GMAT.. i mean the third question is about the roles??? the roles played by him are for a greater meaning which GMAT would have preferred . "multi tasking" seriously???
every question in GMAT has a relation with the bigger picture and so does every sentence in the passage. I hardly thibk the author would want the "roles" sentence to be signification to show the fabulist is a "MULTITASKER"...common
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Re: Before there were books, before, even, there was the written word &nbs [#permalink] 30 Oct 2018, 20:11
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Before there were books, before, even, there was the written word

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