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# Unlike many United States cities, where a river is no longer the focal

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Manager
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Unlike many United States cities, where a river is no longer the focal  [#permalink]

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03 Mar 2019, 03:51
Hi GMATNinja.

I'm still don't understand why B is incorrect.
IMO, B is better than E in that E compares the phrase between "The US no longer has river as ....... " and " the river winds through the middle of the business district." That is , I think in E there is wrong comparison.

Could be please explain why B is incorrect?

Thank you.
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Re: Unlike many United States cities, where a river is no longer the focal  [#permalink]

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10 Mar 2019, 05:57
A – wrongly compares ‘cities’ with ‘river’
B – weak comparison. Would be better to compare ‘river’ to ‘river’ directly
C – wrongly compares ‘river’ with San Antonio
D – essential information has been put between parenthetical commas
E – correct

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Re: Unlike many United States cities, where a river is no longer the focal  [#permalink]

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23 Mar 2019, 06:38
3
ballest127 wrote:
Hi GMATNinja.

I'm still don't understand why B is incorrect.
IMO, B is better than E in that E compares the phrase between "The US no longer has river as ....... " and " the river winds through the middle of the business district." That is , I think in E there is wrong comparison.

Could be please explain why B is incorrect?

Thank you.

Good question! When we use "like" or "unlike" we have to compare nouns or noun phrases.

For example, "Philadelphia, like Boston, is a wonderful city, but it has an inferiority complex." (In case any Philly people are tempted to throw batteries at me: I LOVE Philly, and have family there. But it totally has an inferiority complex.) In this case, we're demonstrating a similarity between two cities, "Philadelphia" and "Boston." That's fine. What I can't do is write, "Philadelphia, like in Boston..." because now I'm demonstrating a similarity between a city and a prepositional phrase, and that would make no sense.

(B) has a similar problem. Here we have "Unlike the river..., in San Antonio," so we're comparing "the river" and the prepositional phrase, "in San Antonio." Even if the sentence said, "Unlike the river, San Antonio...," the construction still would be wrong, since we'd be comparing a river to a city.

Because (E) doesn't contain the word "unlike", we're under no obligation to compare nouns directly. Instead, we're comparing contrasting clauses, as indicated by "but." Because there's a logical contrast in the ideas expressed in each clause -- in most cities rivers aren't a focal point of life, but in San Antonio they are -- this construction is logical.

I hope that helps!
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Re: Unlike many United States cities, where a river is no longer the focal  [#permalink]

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30 Mar 2019, 05:16
why choice d is wrong?

I think "few " is different from "a few" and means "nearly Zero". so, choice d is correct.

pls, explain
thanks
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30 Mar 2019, 05:28
To all those who are saying that
1) the comparison is wrong in B- cities are being compared to rivers and,
2) which refers to United States

You need to update your understanding of critical concepts. Neither the comparison is flawed not the usage of which is incorrect.

"Unlike river A, In XX the river " is poor but still a valid comparison imo. In XX is just a modifier providing additional information about the river.
Which can refer to the noun/noun clause. Whatever is written after unlike is anyway a noun clause and which can certainly modify that.

The only problem i see in B is the usage of "the river"-implying that a single river is a focal point of many cities.daagh and egmat are requested to confirm that.
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Unlike many United States cities, where a river is no longer the focal  [#permalink]

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Updated on: 30 Mar 2019, 08:26
Top Contributor
Darshak wrote

Quote:
To all those who are saying that
1) the comparison is wrong in B- cities are being compared to rivers and,
2) which refers to the United States

You need to update your understanding of critical concepts. Neither the comparison is flawed not the usage of which is incorrect.

"Unlike river A, In XX the river" is poor but still a valid comparison imo. In XX is just a modifier providing additional information about the river.
Which can refer to the noun/noun clause? Whatever is written after unlike is anyway a noun clause and which can certainly modify that.

The only problem I see in B is the usage of "the river"-implying that a single river is a focal point of many cities. Daagh and egmat are requested to confirm that.

1. I never said the comparison is wrong. I only said it is weak. Because in B, the comparison is not forthright. The introductory prepositional modifier namely 'in Santanio' does not just modify 'the river' alone but the entire long clause that follows. I think you also admit that when you say the comparison is poor.

2. "Which" refers to the river that is at least two nouns away. Additionally, you seem to be mistaking a noun phrase for a noun clause. Relative pronouns as they imply should refer to specific nouns rather than nouns nested with many modifiers.

In this connection, Please also look into what Ninja says in this very thread about why B is not the preferred choice. To make you feel more at home about this, please visit the link given in MGMAT, wherein Ron candidly explains why B is wrong.

https://www.manhattanprep.com/gmat/forums/unlike-many-united-states-cities-where-a-river-is-no-longer-t2350.html

Just as an aside, would you ask Ninja and Ron also to update their understanding of this issue?
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Originally posted by daagh on 30 Mar 2019, 07:42.
Last edited by daagh on 30 Mar 2019, 08:26, edited 1 time in total.
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30 Mar 2019, 08:01
daagh
Hi Sir. Sincere apologies for the reply. I genuinely didn't mean that your understanding is wrong. My comment was focused on those students who said "the comparison is wrong". I,infact, wanted to highlight the very same thing you have mentioned ""the comparison is weak"".

And I just tagged you so that you can elaborate more so that those who commented can improve their understanding.

I have tremendous respect for you and I follow you regularly to improve my understanding of GMAT verbal.

Once again, please accept my sincere apologies and continue Guiding me towards 800:-)

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Re: Unlike many United States cities, where a river is no longer the focal  [#permalink]

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30 Mar 2019, 08:22
Top Contributor
Dharshak
Please do not think I got offended. I also see that your thinking is deep. Keep it up. I always with you in the forum
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Re: Unlike many United States cities, where a river is no longer the focal  [#permalink]

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08 Apr 2019, 04:23
marcodonzelli wrote:
Unlike many United States cities, where a river is no longer the focal point of urban life, the river in San Antonio winds through the middle of the business district, and the River Walk, or Paseo del Rio, is the city's most popular attraction.

(A) Unlike many United States cities, where a river is no longer the focal point of urban life, the river in San Antonio

(B) Unlike the river in many cities in the United States, which is no longer the focal point of urban life, in San Antonio the river

(C) Today the river in many cities in the United States is no longer the focal point of urban life, unlike San Antonio, where it

(D) In few United States cities today, a river is the focal point of urban life, but the river in San Antonio

(E) No longer do many cities in the United States have a river as the focal point of urban life, but in San Antonio the river

choice d is wrong because

"in few " mean "in no" which is a negative phrase. negative phrase at the beginning of the sentence require the order of question

in few cities today, IS RIVER THE FOCUL POINT..." is correct

look at choice E
"no longer do..." is order of question.

am i correct ?
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11 May 2019, 01:57
choice d is wrong because "few" is negative , like "no longer". so, we need question order. the correct version should be "is a river". "a river is " is wrong
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Re: Unlike many United States cities, where a river is no longer the focal  [#permalink]

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05 Jul 2019, 22:37
The only reason why D is wrong is changing the original meaning.

The original meaning : in many cities, the river used to be the focal point, but now it is not.
D meaning : in many cities, the river is not the focal point. It does not show the change which is the critical idea of the whole sentence.

The critical idea in the whole sentence : for another cities, situation changed (river is no longer the focal point), but in San Antonio, the situation does not change.
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Re: Unlike many United States cities, where a river is no longer the focal  [#permalink]

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20 Jul 2019, 00:40
1
Hi,

Please correct me if I'm wrong GMATNinja daagh egmat , but my take on this question was slightly different.

(A) Unlike many United States cities, where a river is no longer the focal point of urban life, the river in San Antonio - Incorrect comparison, as pointed out by many earlier
(B) Unlike the river in many cities in the United States, which is no longer the focal point of urban life, in San Antonio the river Many people are pointing the fact that comparison is incorrect, but I'd like to point out the usage of "THE" here. In the original sentence, we have "a" riven in many US cities, meaning every city has their respective river. If we say, THE RIVER, we are assuming that there is one river flowing through many US cities.
(C) Today the river in many cities in the United States is no longer the focal point of urban life, unlike San Antonio, where it Same as B
(D) In few United States cities today, a river is the focal point of urban life, but the river in San Antonio Just because we have reversed the order, doesn't mean the meaning is correct. Many could mean anywhere from 1 to 100 (CR concept)
(E) No longer do many cities in the United States have a river as the focal point of urban life, but in San Antonio the river usage of a river is correct

Thanks!
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Updated on: 20 Jul 2019, 04:09
Top Contributor
Quote:
D) In few United States cities today, a river is the focal point of urban life, but the river in San Antonio

D is a gross misinterpretation. The idea is to say that the river is "no longer" a focal point in many of the cities as it used to be before. By removing the idea of "not anymore" and by trying to feebly replace the idea by the term 'few", it is not clear why D wants to contrast San Antonio with other cities that still focus on their rivers. Please remember that 'few' does not mean "No" or " Nil". At the least, it could mean 'hardly anything" but not nothingness.
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Originally posted by daagh on 20 Jul 2019, 04:06.
Last edited by daagh on 20 Jul 2019, 04:09, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Unlike many United States cities, where a river is no longer the focal  [#permalink]

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20 Jul 2019, 04:09
daagh wrote:
D is a gross misinterpretation. The idea is to say that the river is no more a focal point in many of the cities as it used to be before. By removing the idea of "not anymore" and by trying to feebly replace the idea by the term 'few", it is not clear why D wants to contrast San Antonio with other cities that still focus on their rivers. Please remember that 'few' does not mean "No" or " Nil". At the least, it could mean 'hardly anything" but not nothingness.

Agreed. Do you agree with the rest of my explanation? Especially the usage of "The" for US rivers?

Thanks
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Re: Unlike many United States cities, where a river is no longer the focal  [#permalink]

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20 Jul 2019, 04:26
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Vishnu
Although the articles have their own subtleties, still in this case, I feel, that we are just interested in the water body called that carries water. Therefore, it is more generic in this case.
I would read it this way:

A river is the main source of water for the crops
The river is the main source of water for the crops
The rivers are the main source of water for the crops
As far as I see, they don't differ much.

I have not seen much significance in such literary nuances in general in GMAT, notwithstanding that are some cases where the use of the definite article 'the' is significant.

I do hail your effort to delve into matters. Yo, do deserve kudos for that. However, moderation also helps.
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Unlike many United States cities, where a river is no longer the focal  [#permalink]

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02 Aug 2019, 05:44
marcodonzelli wrote:
Unlike many United States cities, where a river is no longer the focal point of urban life, the river in San Antonio winds through the middle of the business district, and the River Walk, or Paseo del Rio, is the city's most popular attraction.

(A) Unlike many United States cities, where a river is no longer the focal point of urban life, the river in San Antonio

(B) Unlike the river in many cities in the United States, which is no longer the focal point of urban life, in San Antonio the river

(C) Today the river in many cities in the United States is no longer the focal point of urban life, unlike San Antonio, where it

(D) In few United States cities today, a river is the focal point of urban life, but the river in San Antonio

(E) No longer do many cities in the United States have a river as the focal point of urban life, but in San Antonio the river

Main Issue

Comparison

(A) Unlike many United States cities, where a river is no longer the focal point of urban life, the river in San Antonio - Wrong: Comparison

(B) Unlike the river in many cities in the United States, which is no longer the focal point of urban life, in San Antonio the river - Wrong: Comparison 2) Modifier ambiguity

(C) Today the river in many cities in the United States is no longer the focal point of urban life, unlike San Antonio, where it - Wrong: Comparison 2) Pronoun "it"

(D) In few United States cities today, a river is the focal point of urban life, but the river in San Antonio - Wrong: Meaning Issue

(E) No longer do many cities in the United States have a river as the focal point of urban life, but in San Antonio the river - Correct
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