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# Until recently, few historians were interested in analyzing the

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Until recently, few historians were interested in analyzing the  [#permalink]

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12 Oct 2017, 12:29
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Part of New RC Series- Please check this link for more questions

Until recently, few historians were interested in analyzing the similarities and differences between serfdom in Russia and slavery in the United States. Even Alexis de Tocqueville, who recognized the (5) significant comparability of the two nations, never compared their systems of servitude, despite his interest in United States slavery. Moreover, the most simultaneous abolition of Russian serfdom and United States slavery in the 1860--- riveting (10) coincidence that should have drawn more modem scholars. In a comparative study of the two systems of servitude----has failed to arouse the interest of scholars. Though some historians may have been put off by the forbidding political differences (15) between nineteenth-century Russia and the United States--<>ne an imperial monarchy, the other federal democracy-a recent study by Peter Kolchin identifies differences that are illuminating, especially with regard to the different kinds of (20) rebellion exhibited by slaves and serfs. Kolchin points out that nobles owning serfs in Russia constituted only a tiny proportion of the population, while in the southern United States, about a quarter of all White people were members (25) of slave-owning families. And although in the southern United States only 2 percent of slaves worked on plantations where more than a hundred slaves worked, in Russia almost 80 percent of the serfs worked for nobles who owned more than a (30) hundred serfs. In Russia most serfs rarely saw their owners, who tended In rely on intermediaries to manage their estates, while most southern planters lived on their land and interacted with slaves on a regular basis. (35) These differences in demographics partly explain differences in the kinds of resistance that slaves and serfs practiced in their respective countries. Both serfs and slaves engaged in a wide variety of rebellious activity, from silent sabotage, much of (40) which has escaped the historical record, In organized armed rebellions, which were more common in Russia. The practice of absentee ownership, combined with the large numbers in which serfs were owned, probably contributed (45) significantly to the four great rebellions that swept across Russia at roughly fifty-year intervals in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. The last of these, occurring between 1773 and 1774, enlisted more than a million serfs in a futile attempt In (50) overthrow the Russian nobility. Russian serfs also participated in smaller acts of collective defiance called the voinenie, which typically started with a group of serfs who complained of grievances by petition and went out on strike. Confrontations (55) between slaves and plantation authorities were also common, but they tended to be much less collective in nature than those that occurred in Russia, probably in part because the number of workers on each estate was smaller in the United States than (60) was the case in Russia.

1. Which one of the following best states the main idea of the passage?
(A) Differences in the demographics of United States slavery and Russian serfdom can help explain the different kinds of resistance practiced by slaves and serfs in their respective countries.
(B) Historians have yet to undertake an adequate comparison and contrast of Russian serfdom and United States slavery.
(C) Revolts by Russian serfs were commonly characterized by collective action.
(D) A recent study has questioned the value of comparing United States slavery In Russian serfdom, especially in light of the significant demographic and cultural differences between the two countries.
(E) De Tocqueville failed In recognize the fundamental differences between Russian serfdom and United States slavery which more recent historians have identified.

2. According In the author, de Tocqueville was similar to many modem historians in his
(A) Interest in the demographic differences between Russia and the United States during the nineteenth century
(B) Failure to undertake a comparison of Russian serfdom and United States slavery
(C) Inability to explain why United States slavery and Russian serfdom were abolished during the same decade
(D) Overestimation of the significance of the political differences between Russia and the United States
(E) Recognition of the essential comparability of Russia and the United States

3. Which one of the following assertions, if true, would provide the most support for Kolchin's principal conclusion regarding the relationship of demographics to rebellion among Russian serfs and United States slaves?
(A) Collective defiance by serfs during the nineteenth century was confined almost exclusively to their participation in the volnenie.
(B) The rebellious activity of United States slaves was more likely to escape the historical record than was the rebellious activity of Russian serfs.
(C) Organized rebellions by slaves in the Western Hemisphere during the nineteenth century were most common in colonies with large estates that normally employed more than a hundred slaves.
(D) In the southern United States during the nineteenth century, those estates that were managed by intermediaries rather than by the owner generally relied upon the labor of at least a hundred slaves.
(E) The intermediaries who managed estates in Russia during the nineteenth century were in general much more competent as managers than the owners of the estates that they managed.

4. The fact that United States slavery and Russian serfdom were abolished during the same decade is cited by the author in the first paragraph primarily in order to
(A) Emphasize that rebellions in both countries eventually led to the demise of the two institutions
(B) Cite a coincidence that de Tocqueville should have been able to foresee
(C) Suggest one reason why more historians should have been drawn to a comparative study of the two institutions
(D) Cite a coincidence that Kolchin's study has failed to explain adequately
(E) Emphasize the underlying similarities between the two institutions

5. The author cites which one of the following as a factor that might have discouraged historians from undertaking a comparative study of Russian serfdom and United States slavery?
(A) Major differences in the political systems of the two countries
(B) Major differences in the demographics of the two countries
(C) The failure of de Tocqueville to address the subject
(D) Differences in the size of the estates on which slaves and serfs labored
(E) The comprehensiveness ofKolchin's own work

6. According to the passage, Kolchin's study asserts that which one of the following was true of Russian nobles during the nineteenth century?
(A) They agreed to the abolition of serfdom in the 1860s largely as a result of their having been influenced by the abolition of slavery in the United States.
(B) They became more directly involved in the management of their estates as a result of the rebellions that occurred in the previous century.
(C) They commonly agreed to at least some of the demands that arose out of the volnenie.
(D) They had relatively little direct contact with the serfs who worked on their estates.
(E) They hastened the abolition of serfdom by failing to devise an effective response to the collective nature of the serfs' rebellious activity.

7. The passage suggests that which one of the following was true of southern planters in the United States?
(A) They were as prepared for collective protest as were their Russian counterparts.
(B) Few of them owned plantations on which fewer than a hundred slaves worked.
(C) They managed their estates more efficiently than did their Russian counterparts.
(D) Few of them relied on intermediaries to manage their estates.
(E) The size of their estates was larger on average than the size of Russian

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Re: Until recently, few historians were interested in analyzing the  [#permalink]

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22 Oct 2017, 17:58
Experts, could you please explain why Q3 is C.
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Re: Until recently, few historians were interested in analyzing the  [#permalink]

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22 Oct 2017, 19:25
Also can someone please explain how the answer for Q7 is D?

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Re: Until recently, few historians were interested in analyzing the  [#permalink]

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22 Oct 2017, 19:33
Chef wrote:
Also can someone please explain how the answer for Q7 is D?

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The passage states:
In Russia most serfs rarely saw their owners, who tended In rely on intermediaries to manage their estates, while most southern planters lived on their land and interacted with slaves on a regular basis.
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Re: Until recently, few historians were interested in analyzing the  [#permalink]

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19 Aug 2018, 04:42
Soul777 wrote:
Experts, could you please explain why Q3 is C.

Relevant text: Kolchin points out that nobles owning serfs in Russia constituted only a tiny proportion of the population, while in the southern United States, about a quarter of all White people were members (25) of slave-owning families. And although in the southern United States only 2 percent of slaves worked on plantations where more than a hundred slaves worked, in Russia almost 80 percent of the serfs worked for nobles who owned more than a (30) hundred serfs. <...> These differences in demographics partly explain differences in the kinds of resistance that slaves and serfs practiced in their respective countries.

So the author's conclusion relies on the fact that larger estates were more prone to rebellious activity than smaller ones.

(C) Organized rebellions by slaves in the Western Hemisphere during the nineteenth century were most common in colonies with large estates that normally employed more than a hundred slaves.

Hope this helps.
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Re: Until recently, few historians were interested in analyzing the  [#permalink]

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25 Oct 2018, 20:52
GMATNinja mikemcgarry
could you please explain me the main point of the passage?
according to me ,D is point
1st para tells us that few scholars look into bla bla bla
why should the difference be considered
and a new study which tries to compare the two

2nd para furthers the comparison done by new study.

si isnt D more appropriate?
Re: Until recently, few historians were interested in analyzing the   [#permalink] 25 Oct 2018, 20:52
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