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# When speaking of Romare Bearden, one is tempted to say, "A great Black

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When speaking of Romare Bearden, one is tempted to say, "A great Black  [#permalink]

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Updated on: 22 Sep 2019, 09:14
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New Project RC Butler 2019 - Practice 2 RC Passages Everyday
Passage # 345, Date : 22-Sep-2019
This post is a part of New Project RC Butler 2019. Click here for Details

When speaking of Romare Bearden, one is tempted to say, "A great Black American artist." The subject matter of Bearden's collages is certainly Black. Portrayals of the folk of Mecklenburg County, North Carolina, whom he remembers from early childhood, of the jazz musicians and tenement roofs of his Harlem days, of Pittsburgh steelworkers, and his reconstruction of classical Greek myths in the guise of the ancient Black kingdom of Benin, attest to this. In natural harmony with this choice of subject matter are the social sensibilities of the artist, who remains active today with the Cinque Gallery in Manhattan, which he helped found and which is devoted to showing the work of minority artists.

Then why not call Bearden a Black American artist? Because ultimately this categorization is too narrow. "What stands up in the end is structure," Bearden says. "What I try to do is amplify. If I were just creating a picture of a farm woman from back home, it would have meaning to her and people there. But art amplifies itself to something universal."

1. According to the passage, all of the following are depicted in Bearden's collages EXCEPT:

A.workers in Pittsburgh's steel mills
B.scenes set in the ancient kingdom of Benin
C.people Bearden knew as a child
D.the jazz musicians of the Harlem Bearden used to know
E.traditional representations of the classical heroes of Greek mythology

2. The author suggests that Bearden should not be called a Black American artist because

A.there are many collages by Bearden in which the subject matter is not Black
B.Bearden's work reflects the Black American experience in a highly individual style
C.through the structure of Bearden's art his Black subjects come to represent all of humankind
D.Bearden's true significance lies not so much in his own work as in his efforts to help other minority artists
E.much of Bearden's work uses the ancient Black kingdom of Benin for its setting

3. Bearden's social sensibilities and the subject matter of his collages are mentioned by the author in order to explain

A.why one might be tempted to call Bearden a Black American artist
B.why Bearden cannot be readily categorized
C.why Bearden's appeal is thought by many to be ultimately universal
D.how deeply an artist's artistic creations are influenced by he artist's social conscience
E.what makes Bearden unique among contemporary Black American artists

4. The author of the passage is chiefly concerned with

A.discussing Bearden's philosophy of art
B.acknowledging Bearden's success in giving artistic expression to the Black American experience
C.assessing the significance of the ethnic element in Bearden's work
D.pointing out Bearden's helpfulness to other minority artists
E.racing Bearden's progress toward artistic maturity.

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Originally posted by daviesj on 29 Jan 2013, 06:37.
Last edited by SajjadAhmad on 22 Sep 2019, 09:14, edited 2 times in total.
Updated - Complete topic (616).
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Re: When speaking of Romare Bearden, one is tempted to say, "A great Black  [#permalink]

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25 May 2015, 04:51
2
I thought the passage was easier because I managed to finish it in a bit over 4 minutes, and all correct.

Drilling to questions 2, 3 and 4.

Question 2 is an inference question that is answered by the second paragraph. Take note of what Bearden says: "What stands up in the end is structure...But art amplifies itself to something universal." This describes choice C and the clue is the use of the term humankind to mean universal. The other choices don't mention the "universal" aspect as depicted in the passage.

Question 3 is answered by the first paragraph. It says why RB might be called a black artist. The key lines - edited for how I read them - are: "The subject matter of Bearden's collages is certainly Black. Portrayals of...attest to this. In natural harmony with this choice of subject matter are the social sensibilities of the artist..." It's simply a case of reading the first sentence of the paragraph and seeing what flows from there. Hence the choice is A.

Question 4 is a Scope-type of question and the giveaway is the first word of each answer choice. Again, the topic sentences are helpful. In eliminating answers, I don't see a discussion (choice A) nor racing (E); there's nothing to suggest acknowledging success (B); helping minority artists is mentioned at the end of the first paragraph but it's not the whole passage. Choice C fits the bill because the first passage offers why RB may be a black artist - this is the ethnic element in the answer - and the second paragraph suggests that the black theme misses the point and therefore not significant. So that's what I was thinking when going through the answer choices.

Hope that helps...
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Re: When speaking of Romare Bearden, one is tempted to say, "A great Black  [#permalink]

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22 Sep 2019, 09:15
+1 Kudos to posts containing answer explanation of all questions
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Re: When speaking of Romare Bearden, one is tempted to say, "A great Black   [#permalink] 22 Sep 2019, 09:15
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