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Woodrow Wilson was referring to the liberal idea of the

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Re: Woodrow Wilson was referring to the liberal idea of the  [#permalink]

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New post 08 May 2017, 04:29
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Can someone please tell me how can we tag this RC as sub 600 level?

I didn't even get a single word of this passage. I realized a similar passage came on my last official GMAT.

Are these really sub 600? :o

I started my RC prep today and this 1st passage has demotivated me completely. :(

Please someone help me completely decode this passage.
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Re: Woodrow Wilson was referring to the liberal idea of the  [#permalink]

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New post 25 Nov 2017, 06:21
Hello abhimahna,

I think you will start ignoring my posts from today :P , since I have been asking for so much help lately with my advanced studies.

Coming back to the passage at hand. I don't really understand how this passage "criticises the inflexibility of American economic mythology".

--In the first para, the author introduces "maximum freedom" and "openness".
--The very next line states that : "Fascination with this ideal has made Americans defy the “Old World”". --> This means that americans are indeed interested in change. ---Another line that supports this thinking is "We did not base our system on property but opportunity—which meant we based it not on stability but on mobility".
--Another supportive evidence: "But Americans imagined a condition in which speculators, self-makers, runners are always using the new opportunities given by our land".

--In the second para, author calls "reform" futile, but still states that "There is no attempt to call off the race. Since our only stability is change, America seems not to honor the quiet work that achieves social interdependence and stability"
--The people are ashamed of their past but still he states that "in the Wonderland race we must all run".

In short what I understood from the passage is that the author is mainly talking about the old vs new thoughts. I don't really understand how the main point of passage is the criticism of American mythology. That's is just discussed in the second passage for a few lines. But, passage as a whole is talking about the old vs new school of thoughts.

Could you please point out the holes in my understanding because I am clearly missing the point here.

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Re: Woodrow Wilson was referring to the liberal idea of the  [#permalink]

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New post 07 Dec 2017, 05:14
I found the language of the passage really complex and highly convoluted. The more questions I answered, I feel the less I actually understood the passage. I request someone to summarize the passage with special emphasis on question 7 and 9.
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Woodrow Wilson was referring to the liberal idea of the  [#permalink]

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New post 13 Dec 2017, 19:20
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piyush1995 wrote:
I found the language of the passage really complex and highly convoluted. The more questions I answered, I feel the less I actually understood the passage. I request someone to summarize the passage with special emphasis on question 7 and 9.

As described in the Ultimate RC Guide for Beginners, it helps to get engaged and think about the PURPOSE of each paragraph. You might not understand all of the details in the first paragraph, but force yourself to think about WHY it is there. What is the author trying to accomplish?

I might not get everything the author says, but I see that he/she is comparing two drastically different things. The "Old World" economics are described by words/phrases such as settled possessiveness, cupidity of retention, a 'status quo' defended, property, haves and have-nots, non-starters, stability, and authority. Meanwhile, the "liberal idea of the economic market" in America is described with words/phrases such as unsettling deprivation, cupidity of seizure, 'status quo' attacked, a wheel spinning faster and faster, opportunity (not property), and mobility (not stability), with speculators/self-starters/runners being economic leaders and agents of change.

These comparisons are not all clear to me, but instead of trying to muscle my way through the facts (the what), let me think about the purpose (the why) of the first paragraph. The author is clearly trying to compare the "settled" and "stable" state of "Old World" economics to the instability and hectic nature of the free enterprise system in America. In other words, the first paragraph compares the highly-regulated and manipulated race of the Old World to the hectic and scrambled race of the free enterprise system.

The purpose of the second paragraph is to explain how things like reform, serving others, and helping those in need have been hindered because America can't let go of the "race". American legends glorify the race and those that run it but not those who quietly keep the system working and create social interdependence and stability. I might not understand all of the details of the second paragraph, but I see that the author is explaining problems with America's economic "racing".

Next, ask yourself, "What was the purpose of the entire passage?" Again, the point is to get engaged and think about what you are reading. Trying to think about WHY everything is there is more important than understanding all of the details.

See if that helps you tackle questions 7 and 9!

To post additional questions not already addressed in this thread, feel free to use the request verbal experts' reply button. Try to be as specific as possible and to let us know your thoughts so far. Thanks, and welcome to GMAT Club!!
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Re: Woodrow Wilson was referring to the liberal idea of the  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Dec 2017, 12:12
A really amazing read, didn't even feel like a RC till I did the questions :P.
got 5/9 (TERRIBLE) I agree, but I got why my answers were wrong except for this one:

According to the passage, “Old World” values were based on
(A) ability
(B) property--> The only word which cues to this is 'settled possessiveness' and I don't understand how it is property - it can also mean hierarchy 'cause you 'possess' it. Would love an expert opinion on this
(C) family connections
(D) guild hierarchies
(E) education
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Woodrow Wilson was referring to the liberal idea of the  [#permalink]

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New post 27 Dec 2017, 18:45
GMATNinja wrote:

See if that helps you tackle questions 7 and 9!

To post additional questions not already addressed in this thread, feel free to use the request verbal experts' reply button. Try to be as specific as possible and to let us know your thoughts so far. Thanks, and welcome to GMAT Club!!


Hi GMATNinja,

7. It can be inferred from the passage that Woodrow Wilson’s ideas about the economic market
(A) encouraged those who “make the system work” (lines 45-46)
(B) perpetuated traditional legends about America
(C) revealed the prejudices of a man born wealthy
(D) foreshadowed the stock market crash of 1929
(E) began a tradition of presidential proclamations on economics

Initially i picked C for Q7, but in the second passage:

"....There is no pride in being an employee (Wilson asked for a return to the time when everyone was an employer).... "
hence the Ans
(B) perpetuated traditional legends about America.

Please let me know if my reasoning is correct.

Thanks and regadrs
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New post 27 Dec 2017, 19:46
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TheRzS wrote:
Hi GMATNinja,

7. It can be inferred from the passage that Woodrow Wilson’s ideas about the economic market
(A) encouraged those who “make the system work” (lines 45-46)
(B) perpetuated traditional legends about America
(C) revealed the prejudices of a man born wealthy
(D) foreshadowed the stock market crash of 1929
(E) began a tradition of presidential proclamations on economics

Initially i picked C for Q7, but in the second passage:

"....There is no pride in being an employee (Wilson asked for a return to the time when everyone was an employer).... "
hence the Ans
(B) perpetuated traditional legends about America.

Please let me know if my reasoning is correct.

Thanks and regadrs

That's right! The sentence you highlighted, along with the preceding sentence ("There is, in our legends, no heroism of the office clerk, no stable industrial work force of the people who actually make the system work.") indicate that (B) is the best answer.

ssyohee wrote:
For question 3, why C is a better answer over E?

Thank you so much!

So we are looking for someone who acts as a "regulative hand"--an authority that can call things to a halt. This would accurately describe a judge in a courtroom because the judge can regulate the trial, give orders to the attorneys/witnesses/jury/observers, decide when there will be breaks, and, sometimes, end the trial altogether.

However, I'll admit that this isn't a great question, and I don't think you'd see something like this on the GMAT. This is not an official passage, so I wouldn't worry too much about this question!
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New post 09 Jul 2018, 20:17
I started today's prep with a plan of trying at least 4 700 level RC passages and ended up facing this first. This kind of passage is real dampener :roll:
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Re: Woodrow Wilson was referring to the liberal idea of the  [#permalink]

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New post 25 Oct 2018, 04:29
By Far one of the toughest passages that I have come across , didn't understand a thing in the passage .
Left reading the passage half way in between as I realized it was a waste of time coz I was not registering anything.

Obviously , Questions took more time.
Took 15 minutes to complete the passage , though got 2 Questions incorrect.( including the one with Treadmill as the asnwer option )

GMATNinja , any thoughts on the strategy used for such tough passages ?
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Re: Woodrow Wilson was referring to the liberal idea of the  [#permalink]

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New post 25 Oct 2018, 20:17
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Arpitkumar wrote:
By Far one of the toughest passages that I have come across , didn't understand a thing in the passage .
Left reading the passage half way in between as I realized it was a waste of time coz I was not registering anything.

Obviously , Questions took more time.
Took 15 minutes to complete the passage , though got 2 Questions incorrect.( including the one with Treadmill as the asnwer option )

GMATNinja , any thoughts on the strategy used for such tough passages ?

That strategy won't get you very far, unfortunately. If you don't take the time to fully understand the structure and purpose of the passage, it's going to be really hard to be accurate with the questions -- and virtually possible to be efficient. If your goal is an elite score, you have no choice but to understand the passage thoroughly before you tackle the questions. (For more thoughts on how to approach RC in general, check out this post.)

To be fair, though, this passage is TOUGH. And it's also an LSAT passage, which tend to be tougher than those on the GMAT. So it certainly isn't a sign of the apocalypse if you struggled on it, but in a perfect world, we don't want you to abandon passages unless you have absolutely no other choice. And maybe that was the case here, but fight to avoid making that a habit.

I hope this helps!
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New post 23 Nov 2018, 21:37
GMATGuruNY's explanations

On my first reading, I try only to get the big idea of each paragraph and the tone and the purpose of the passage:

Paragraph 1:
In America the old view of ownership is less important; each person can make his own opportunity.

Paragraph 2:
Criticizes how America focuses not enough on interdependence and too much on competition.

When I'm asked about something specific in the passage, I take the following steps:

1. Find in the passage the window that will contain the answer (usually about 5 lines above to 5 lines below what the question is asking about).
2. Read carefully.
3. Try to answer the question in my own words -- before I look at the answer choices.
4. Look for the answer choice that best matches the way I answered the question for myself.

Most of the correct answers should support the author's view: that America focuses too much on competition. So let's get some points!

1. The primary purpose of the passage is to. To criticize America for being too focused on competition.

(A) criticize the inflexibility of American economic mythology. - Correct
(B) contrast “Old World” and “New World” economic ideologies
(C) challenge the integrity of traditional political leaders
(D) champion those Americans whom the author deems to be neglected
(E) suggest a substitute for the traditional metaphor of a race

2. According to the passage, “Old World” values were based on: ownership

(A) ability
(B) property = ownership
(C) family connections
(D) guild hierarchies
(E) education

3. In the context of the author’s discussion of regulating change, which of the following could be most probably regarded as a “strong referee” (line 30) in the United States? Someone to give them a strong position in the race...a regulative hand...an authority..

(A) A school principal
(B) A political theorist
(C) A federal court judge Closest to the description above.
(D) A social worker
(E) A government inspector

4. The author sets off the word “Reform” (line 35) with quotation marks in order to: Reform is "sterile". No "attempt to call off the race". We refuse to change our ways.

(A) emphasize its departure from the concept of settled possessiveness
(B) show his support for a systematic program of change
(C) underscore the flexibility and even amorphousness of United States society
(D) indicate that the term was one of Wilson’s favorites
(E) assert that reform in the United States has not been fundamental - Correct

5. It can be inferred from the passage that the author most probably thinks that giving the disenfranchised “a piece
of the action” (line 38) is: A bad idea. We should be more willing to "call off the race".

(A) a compassionate, if misdirected, legislative measure - Correct
(B) an example of Americans’ resistance to profound social change
(C) an innovative program for genuine social reform
(D) a monument to the efforts of industrial reformers
(E) a surprisingly “Old World” remedy for social ills

6. Which of the following metaphors could the author most appropriately use to summarize his own assessment of the American economic system (lines 35-60)? It's a race.

(A) A windmill
(B) A waterfall
(C) A treadmill - Correct
(D) A gyroscope
(E) A bellows

7. It can be inferred from the passage that Woodrow Wilson’s ideas about the economic market In our legends, no heroism in being an office clerk or part of the stable work force. Woodrow agreed: he wanted everyone to be an employer, not an employee.

(A) encouraged those who “make the system work” (lines 45-46)
(B) perpetuated traditional legends about America - Correct
(C) revealed the prejudices of a man born wealthy
(D) foreshadowed the stock market crash of 1929
(E) began a tradition of presidential proclamations on economics

8. The passage contains information that would answer which of the following questions? Gotta check each one.

I. What techniques have industrialists used to manipulate a free market? Not discussed. Eliminate A and D.
II. In what ways are “New World” and “Old World” economic policies similar? Passage says they're different. Eliminate B and E. The correct answer is C.
III. Has economic policy in the United States tended to reward independent action? No need to check this since we already determined the correct answer, but the passage criticizes America for focusing too much on competition and not enough on interdependence.

(A) I only
(B) II only
(C) III only
(D) I and II only
(E) II and III only

9. Which of the following best expresses the author’s main point? Critical of America for focusing too much on competition.

(A) Americans’ pride in their jobs continues to give them stamina today.
(B) The absence of a status quo ante has undermined United States economic structure.
(C) The free enterprise system has been only a useless concept in the United States. Too strong.
(D) The myth of the American free enterprise system is seriously flawed. Better.
(E) Fascination with the ideal of “openness” has made Americans a progressive people.


Ron's thought on this passage-

Quote:
oh.
my.
lord.

whoever wrote this passage should immediately step away from the keyboard, and should never again attempt to write a GMAT passage.
this looks like something written by one of the 1950's beat generation poets.

in fact, this passage is so un-GMAT-like that i am seriously inclined to believe that it's a practical joke -- i.e., that someone actually wrote it while thinking, "haha i'm going to write this ridiculous thing and see whether anyone on the forums actually takes it seriously."

ignore.
no, really, guys -- ignore this passage. it is not worth discussing, at all, in any way.

does anyone have the link to the document from which this problem came?
i'd like to look at it -- i really, really, really hope that all one thousand problems aren't as worthless as this one.
yikes


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