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# William Butler Yeats' stirring poem Meditations in Time of

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William Butler Yeats' stirring poem Meditations in Time of [#permalink]

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09 Dec 2010, 14:02
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22% (00:03) correct 78% (01:08) wrong based on 15 sessions

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William Butler Yeats' stirring poem Meditations in Time of Civil War which uses imagery first depicting Ireland's overall struggle and then the poet ’ s personal experiences, allows for a large number of interpretations of individual word choice but little debate over his overall meaning .

a large number of interpretations of individual word choice but little debate over his overall meaning
a large number of interpretations of individual word choice but less debate over his overall meaning
a large amount of interpretations of individual word choice but little debate over his overall meaning
a large amount of interpretations of individual word choice but less debate over his overall meaning
large amounts of interpretations of individual word choice but little debates over his overall meaning

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09 Dec 2010, 15:16
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sheru34766 wrote:
William Butler Yeats' stirring poem Meditations in Time of Civil War which uses imagery first depicting Ireland's overall struggle and then the poet ’ s personal experiences, allows for a large number of interpretations of individual word choice but little debate over his overall meaning .

a large number of interpretations of individual word choice but little debate over his overall meaning
a large number of interpretations of individual word choice but less debate over his overall meaning
a large amount of interpretations of individual word choice but little debate over his overall meaning
a large amount of interpretations of individual word choice but less debate over his overall meaning
large amounts of interpretations of individual word choice but little debates over his overall meaning

As we often see in GMAT sentence correction, we have a long descriptive phrase to ignore. We should read the sentence to ourselves as:
Quote:
William Butler Yeats' stirring poem ...allows for a large number of interpretations of individual word choice but little debate over his overall meaning .

(I moved the underline one word to the right, since none of the answers, including (A), include "for".)

Now that the extraneous material is gone, it's easier to analyze the sentence. The original sounds pretty good, so let's scan the choices looking for differences.

The first thing we likely see is "number" vs "amount". We use number for countables and amounts for non-countables. Can you count "interpretations"? Sure - you could have 1, 2, 3 4 or 500 interpretations. Since interpretations are countable, we need "number": eliminate C, D and E.

Now we scan A and B for a difference and we note "little" vs "less". Do little and less mean the same thing? No - little is simply a quantifier and less implies a comparison. Are we comparing the amount of debate about Yeats' meaning to some other amount of debate? Nope - therefore "less" changes the meaning of the sentence to something nonsensical and we can eliminate B.

Our original instincts prove correct - choose A!

As a small aside, even if you just notice that "less" changes the meaning of the sentence, that's good reason to choose A over B. The correct answer to a SC question will always reflect the author's intended meaning and the original sentence is our best guide to the author's intentions.

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09 Dec 2010, 19:56
Thanks Skovinsky. That is a great explanation and offcourse, the OA is A.

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09 Dec 2010, 20:13
William Butler Yeats' stirring poem Meditations in Time of Civil War which uses imagery first depicting Ireland's overall struggle and then the poet ’ s personal experiences, allows for a large number of interpretations of individual word choice but little debate over his overall meaning .

a large number of interpretations of individual word choice but little debate over his overall meaning
a large number of interpretations of individual word choice but less debate over his overall meaning
a large amount of interpretations of individual word choice but little debate over his overall meaning
a large amount of interpretations of individual word choice but less debate over his overall meaning
large amounts of interpretations of individual word choice but little debates over his overall meaning

Surmise the q has a lot of typo's or the q is a messed up one.
What does hs refer to?
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09 Dec 2010, 22:49
mailnavin1 wrote:
William Butler Yeats' stirring poem Meditations in Time of Civil War which uses imagery first depicting Ireland's overall struggle and then the poet ’ s personal experiences, allows for a large number of interpretations of individual word choice but little debate over his overall meaning .

What does hs refer to?

Good call, Navin.
His is a possesive Pronoun.Hence,it can refer back to a possesive Noun that is Yeats' stirring poem, Yeat's here.

Example - Mikes' swimming is as good as his dancing.

I agree with the second question.The which here certainly refers to immidiate Noun here and that is War.

I believe this will help.
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10 Dec 2010, 06:19
skovinsky has done a commendable job in explaining things so elaborately.

But for those who want a quick shot, here is something: Interpretations are countable and hence require a countable quantifier such as ‘number’ rather than the volume - marker ‘amount’. C, D and E are out instantly

Though ‘less’ can describe the non-countable (in this context )debate, still less is appropriate only when an actual comparison with another debate exists . Hence B is out. A is left as the royal choice
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Re: Yeats   [#permalink] 10 Dec 2010, 06:19
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# William Butler Yeats' stirring poem Meditations in Time of

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