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There is a widespread belief in the United States and Western Europe

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There is a widespread belief in the United States and Western Europe  [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 30 Nov 2018, 03:54
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A
B
C
D
E

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Question Stats:

70% (01:17) correct 30% (01:27) wrong based on 1110 sessions

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There is a widespread belief in the United States and Western Europe that young people have a smaller commitment to work and a career than their parents and grandparents and that the source of the change lies in the collapse of the "work ethic."


(A) a smaller commitment to work and a career than their parents and grandparents

(B) less of a commitment to work and a career than their parents and grandparents

(C) a smaller commitment to work and a career than that of their parents and grandparents

(D) less of a commitment to work and a career than their parents and grandparents had

(E) a lessening of the commitment to work and a career that their parent and grandparents had


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Originally posted by vikramm on 24 Oct 2005, 18:27.
Last edited by Bunuel on 30 Nov 2018, 03:54, edited 3 times in total.
Edited the question.
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Re: There is a widespread belief in the United States and Western Europe  [#permalink]

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New post 23 Aug 2010, 16:47
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noboru wrote:
There is a widespread belief in the US and Western Europe that young
people have a smaller commitment to work and a career than their parents and
grandparents
and that the source of the change lies in the collapse of the 'work
ethic'.

A. a smaller commitment to work and a career than their parents and grandparents
B. less of a commitment to work and a career than their parents and grandparents
C. a smaller commitment to work and a career than that of their parents and
grandparents
D. less of a commitment to work and a career than their parents and grandparents
had
E. a lessening of the commitment to work and a career than their parents and
grandparents had


First of all in such type of Qs, i look for keywords such as THAN here. Both sides of THAN should be parallel.
A: Out as we cant compare commitment TO parents and grandparents
B: Out : same reason as above
E: lessening of commitment : act of decreasing that changes meaning : so out

Left with C and D.Both are correct in regard to Comparison as one is having THAT and the other is having HAD.

Next check is Modifier of Commitment.
As commitment is an Uncountable Noun so we use Less not Smaller

So C: Out

Answer : D..
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Re: There is a widespread belief in the United States and Western Europe  [#permalink]

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New post 20 May 2008, 22:01
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I have a few questions for gurus :)

1. Why is the use "had" but not "did" in "less of a commitment to work and a career than their parents and grandparents had" correct?

2. Is it possible to use "a smaller commitment" instead of "less of a commitment"

Thanks in advance.
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Re: There is a widespread belief in the United States and Western Europe  [#permalink]

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New post 28 May 2008, 20:47
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walker wrote:
I have a few questions for gurus :)

1. Why is the use "had" but not "did" in "less of a commitment to work and a career than their parents and grandparents had" correct?

2. Is it possible to use "a smaller commitment" instead of "less of a commitment"

Thanks in advance.


had is parallel with "young people have"

smaller is something physical, less is something abstract
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Re: There is a widespread belief in the United States and Western Europe  [#permalink]

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New post 28 May 2008, 20:53
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Walker look at the statement: young people "have" in the beginning (bold red) makes it a perfect tense statement (perfect tense = have, had, having etc.). did is simple past tense, had is perfect past tense. It makes sense now to use perfect tenses consistently across this statement. Hence we require had.

It can't be smaller in this context --> if you read the sentence, you can clearly see that there is a comparison. Think of a simpler comparative statement using commitment :

bsd has a smaller commitment than walker <-- awkward to use smaller .. than in this comparison, as the guy above posted, smaller is physical, lesser is abstract.
bsd is less committed than walker

or another
gluttony is smaller of the two evils
gluttony is the lesser evil

vikramm wrote:
There is a widespread belief in the United States and Western Europe that young people have a smaller commitment to work and a career than their parents and grandparents and that the source of the change lies in the collapse of the "work ethic".
1) ".."
2) less of a commitment to work and a career than their parents and grandparents
3) a smaller commitment to work and a career than that of their parents and grandparents
4) less of a commitment to work and a career than their parents and grandparents had
5) a lessening of the commitment to work and a career that their parent and grandparents had
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Re: There is a widespread belief in the United States and Western Europe  [#permalink]

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New post 28 May 2008, 22:11
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I think you can use "did" here instead of "had" and it would still be correct. But it is not among the answer choices.
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New post 28 May 2008, 22:31
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I disagree with bsd_lover regarding the perfect tense used there. I think it's just a simple present and then a simple past. In this case I prove chineseburned's opinion - young people "make"/do/have less bla-bla-bla than their parents and grandparents "made"/did/had
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Re: There is a widespread belief in the United States and Western Europe  [#permalink]

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New post 28 May 2008, 22:56
Wow, thanks for discussion! Now, I will post links to my problem posts in my signature :)

smaller/less - physical/abstract - I get it!

had/did - I just thought that "I have a pen" is present simple tense and we can use had/did equally....

Thanks!
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Re: There is a widespread belief in the United States and Western Europe  [#permalink]

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New post 28 May 2008, 23:25
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Actually walker I take it back. I am an idiot. Sorry for the confusion everyone.

Present perfect has a : have + past participle. I have a pen is simple present. Young people have a commitment is simple present and hence did is just as correct (in fact probably more correct) than had.

This is not to be confused by present perfect - which shows the currently ongoing nature of an activity.

Example of present perfect :
I have lived a full life

Simple present:
I have a full life.

I hope this is clearer.
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Re: There is a widespread belief in the United States and Western Europe  [#permalink]

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New post 19 Oct 2008, 06:05
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OA (D)

To maintain parallelism, HAD is required. The comparison is done between the commitment that young generation HAVE and older generation HAD.

Hope it makes sense....
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Re: There is a widespread belief in the United States and Western Europe  [#permalink]

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New post 10 Sep 2010, 15:42
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Commitment is uncountable and hence small cannot be used. hence A and C is ruled out.
B is ruled out because the comparison is between the commitment towards work and not between children and their parents.
E is ruled out because the word Lessening is used in a wrong context.
Hence D is the correct answer
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Re: There is a widespread belief in the United States and Western Europe  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Dec 2010, 19:49
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People have danced around this issue here, but let's make it explicit:

"Smaller" and "larger" refer to physical size:

My dog is larger...
Your foot is smaller...
His house is smaller...

Since there is no physical size of "commitment," you really can't use "smaller" or "larger" to describe it.

"Less" and "more" can refer to magnitude:

I am less excited than you are.
You are more committed than I am.

Good times in GMAT land!
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Re: There is a widespread belief in the United States and Western Europe  [#permalink]

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New post 02 Jan 2011, 05:46
Young people HAVE less of x.... than their parents and grandparents HAD

If 'had' is not added then I think quite literally the comparison does not work...

Young ppl have less of something (i.e., a category of persons having something) vs. their parents and grandparents (a category of persons simpliciter)

"ellipsis" as far as I am aware refers to omission of words when you quote someone and put ....... dots to lessen the length of the quote...

one place where a word can be omitted (according to the MGMAT SC book) is a word after a possessive noun

Sam's build is more muscular than Joe's. [one doesnt have to write Joe's build as that is implicit]
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Re: There is a widespread belief in the United States and Western Europe  [#permalink]

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New post 02 Jan 2011, 12:24
My point is that "had" is also implicit in this question.
Thoughts on that?
Thanks in advance.

gmat1011 wrote:
Young people HAVE less of x.... than their parents and grandparents HAD

If 'had' is not added then I think quite literally the comparison does not work...

Young ppl have less of something (i.e., a category of persons having something) vs. their parents and grandparents (a category of persons simpliciter)

"ellipsis" as far as I am aware refers to omission of words when you quote someone and put ....... dots to lessen the length of the quote...

one place where a word can be omitted (according to the MGMAT SC book) is a word after a possessive noun

Sam's build is more muscular than Joe's. [one doesnt have to write Joe's build as that is implicit]
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Re: There is a widespread belief in the United States and Western Europe  [#permalink]

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New post 02 Jan 2011, 17:44
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noboru,

Great question! As codesnooker describes, this question really deals with comparisons. Remember that comparisons are just a special form of parallelism, so the items that you are comparing must be parallel.

Consider this example:

"I ate more pizza than you."
"I ate more pizza than you did."

Here, we are trying to compare the relative quantities of pizza eaten by you and I. However, the first example doesn't do that; the first example says that I ate more pizza than "you" (as if "you" is something else than I ate -- apparently less of").

You could say "I ate more pizza than salad" if you are trying to compare the nouns "pizza" and "salad." However, when you are comparing how much pizza I ATE to how much pizza YOU ATE, you need to keep that noun, verb structure parallel by using the noun (you) and the verb (did) in the second half just as you used the noun (I) and verb (ate) in the first half.

Check out codesnooker's explanation for how this works in this problem.

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Re: There is a widespread belief in the United States and Western Europe  [#permalink]

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New post 03 Jan 2011, 04:34
I agree with your pizza example because in that case (I ate more pizza than you), there is ambiguity:
Meaning 1: I ate 4 slices and you only ate 2 slices.
Meaning 2: I ate 4 kgs of pizza and only 2 kgs of you (yes, I love you with tomatos and fries).

However, in this question I dont see where is the ambiguity. I would appreciate if you could explain the 2 possible meanings of the sentence if there were no "had" removing the supposed ambiguity that I am trying to discover.

Many thanks in advance.

BKimball wrote:
noboru,

Great question! As codesnooker describes, this question really deals with comparisons. Remember that comparisons are just a special form of parallelism, so the items that you are comparing must be parallel.

Consider this example:

"I ate more pizza than you."
"I ate more pizza than you did."

Here, we are trying to compare the relative quantities of pizza eaten by you and I. However, the first example doesn't do that; the first example says that I ate more pizza than "you" (as if "you" is something else than I ate -- apparently less of").

You could say "I ate more pizza than salad" if you are trying to compare the nouns "pizza" and "salad." However, when you are comparing how much pizza I ATE to how much pizza YOU ATE, you need to keep that noun, verb structure parallel by using the noun (you) and the verb (did) in the second half just as you used the noun (I) and verb (ate) in the first half.

Check out codesnooker's explanation for how this works in this problem.

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Re: There is a widespread belief in the United States and Western Europe  [#permalink]

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New post 04 Jan 2011, 18:01
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Try this out:

(B) less of a commitment to work and a career than their parents and grandparents: Here, they are less committed to work and career than to their parents and grandparents. That's not the intended meaning.

(D) less of a commitment to work and a career than their parents and grandparents had. Here, they are less committed to work than their parents and grandparents were. That makes more sense in context.

Does that help?

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Re: There is a widespread belief in the United States and Western Europe  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Apr 2016, 03:29
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vikramm wrote:
There is a widespread belief in the United States and Western Europe that young people have a smaller commitment to work and a career than their parents and grandparents and that the source of the change lies in the collapse of the "work ethic".
1) ".."
2) less of a commitment to work and a career than their parents and grandparents
3) a smaller commitment to work and a career than that of their parents and grandparents
4) less of a commitment to work and a career than their parents and grandparents had
5) a lessening of the commitment to work and a career that their parent and grandparents had


Can someone explain why option C is wrong :( :(

is that only becuase smaller is physical and less is abstract?

IMO - Option C - young people have a smaller commitment to work and a career than commitment of their parents and grandparents

whats wrong in it..Please advise
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Re: There is a widespread belief in the United States and Western Europe  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Apr 2016, 03:40
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smartguy595 wrote:
vikramm wrote:
There is a widespread belief in the United States and Western Europe that young people have a smaller commitment to work and a career than their parents and grandparents and that the source of the change lies in the collapse of the "work ethic".
1) ".."
2) less of a commitment to work and a career than their parents and grandparents
3) a smaller commitment to work and a career than that of their parents and grandparents
4) less of a commitment to work and a career than their parents and grandparents had
5) a lessening of the commitment to work and a career that their parent and grandparents had


Can someone explain why option C is wrong :( :(

is that only becuase smaller is physical and less is abstract?

IMO - Option C - young people have a smaller commitment to work and a career than commitment of their parents and grandparents

whats wrong in it..Please advise


Hi,

there are two errors--


1) firstly as mentioned by you is usage of smaller instead of less...
smaller is an adjective actually talking of the size ..
boeing 757 is smaller than airbus xyz..
less is more for abstract things.. and means smaller extent etc..

2) 'what does " that of" stands for..
that cannot be smaller commitment ...
the Verb have should be the one used in later half to show parallelism--had--

example --
I have a smaller car than that of my father --WRONG
I have a smaller car than my father had..
OR
My car is smaller than that of my father..

Hope it helps
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Re: There is a widespread belief in the United States and Western Europe  [#permalink]

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New post 22 Jun 2016, 21:18
Commitment is uncountable hence you need less not smaller.
Eliminate A and C
Option B incorrectly compares commitments to parents and grandparents. Eliminate

Between D and E, option E changes the meaning by using lessening.

Correct Option: D
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Re: There is a widespread belief in the United States and Western Europe   [#permalink] 22 Jun 2016, 21:18

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