LSAT PrepTest 57 LR Section 2 - Q24

nobody17
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LSAT PrepTest 57 LR Section 2 - Q24

Postby nobody17 » Tue Jul 09, 2013 9:50 pm

Here is a discussion about this question:

http://www.manhattanlsat.com/forums/q24 ... 9bb770127f

We're given that sometimes a person believes that great poems express contradictory ideas, and that no one who writes a great poem intends to communicate contradictory ideas. From this, the author then concludes that the meaning of a poem isn't whatever the author intends to communicate. It seems to me that this argument requires that how the reader understands a poem (ie what ideas the reader believes the poem expresses) must be what the poet intended to communicate. If the reader's interpretation is different from the author's intended meaning, then we can have a situation where the reader can think a great poem is expressing contradictory ideas, the poem author had a different intended meaning. In this case it's not wrong to say that the meaning of a poem is what the author intended to communicate.

This is the same point that's raised in the last post of the thread (so sadly no one ever responded to it). Can someone explain why this is wrong (it would suggest D as the answer), and why E is the better answer?

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JWP1022
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Re: LSAT PrepTest 57 LR Section 2 - Q24

Postby JWP1022 » Tue Jul 09, 2013 11:46 pm

My head is spinning. I started typing an explanation, but basically ended up saying what was said in the linked thread without actually answering the question. I'll keep an eye on this thread!

magickware
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Re: LSAT PrepTest 57 LR Section 2 - Q24

Postby magickware » Wed Jul 10, 2013 12:55 am

One thing about D that glared out to me is the "...can discern every idea..." part. Simply put, it's too extreme and it doesn't actually at all match what the assumption in the stimulus seems to be.

necc. assumption- whatever one believes about a poem is part of the actual meaning the author wanted to convey.

Gut would have pointed me to E.

Onto the discussion-

I do have a question though, why do you think that it's relevant to consider whether the reader's interpretation is different from the author's intended meaning. In other words, why think about something that is effectively the opposite of the assumption?

If the reader's interpretation is actually different from the author's intended meaning, then this question would be void. It simply couldn't work otherwise. It would rather become a flaw question with an answer something like "This assumes that whatever the one believes about a poem is correct without just cause."

In any case, there is another, and probably the actual, reason why D is wrong-

It doesn't actually have anything to do with the assumption in of itself. It says that the reader can discern entirely what the poet wanted to express. This is quite different from the assumption that both of us initially came to.

The stimulus tells us that someone occasionally believes that a poem is contradictory. Since no poet intentionally writes contradictory poems, the meaning of this poem must not be what the author wanted to convey to the reader.

So, D effectively raises the assumption that the reader can accurately understand what the author wanted to convey. Which, in this case, is contradictory. Except authors never write poems that are contradictory. Therefore, there must be yet another assumption that must be added. This assumption is E.

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JWP1022
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Re: LSAT PrepTest 57 LR Section 2 - Q24

Postby JWP1022 » Wed Jul 10, 2013 9:26 am

I would like to point out that the stimulus on this one is strangely worded because it vacillates between "poems" in general and "great poems." One of the key premises (no author intends a great poem to express contradictory ideas) is only about great poems, while the other (some believe poems to express contradictory ideas, even great poems) is really about all poems. The conclusion of the argument is about poems in general. The answer choice is also about poems in general. E is definitely a better answer than D, but the wording of the stimulus made it a little bit tougher to get to.

I will say that A, B, and C are all very bad answer choices, so they can be easily eliminated.

nobody17
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Re: LSAT PrepTest 57 LR Section 2 - Q24

Postby nobody17 » Thu Jul 11, 2013 8:43 pm

Thank you for the responses -- I thought some more about this question and cleared things up. The explanation definitely helped!

magickware
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Re: LSAT PrepTest 57 LR Section 2 - Q24

Postby magickware » Thu Jul 11, 2013 11:04 pm

JWP1022 wrote:I would like to point out that the stimulus on this one is strangely worded because it vacillates between "poems" in general and "great poems." One of the key premises (no author intends a great poem to express contradictory ideas) is only about great poems, while the other (some believe poems to express contradictory ideas, even great poems) is really about all poems. The conclusion of the argument is about poems in general. The answer choice is also about poems in general. E is definitely a better answer than D, but the wording of the stimulus made it a little bit tougher to get to.


It's actually not a big deal, largely because the stimulus expects this and preempts you with "even if it is a great poem". Thus, poems, regardless of whether they're great or not, are not intended to give contradictory messages by their authors.

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JWP1022
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Re: LSAT PrepTest 57 LR Section 2 - Q24

Postby JWP1022 » Fri Jul 12, 2013 10:13 am

magickware wrote:
JWP1022 wrote:I would like to point out that the stimulus on this one is strangely worded because it vacillates between "poems" in general and "great poems." One of the key premises (no author intends a great poem to express contradictory ideas) is only about great poems, while the other (some believe poems to express contradictory ideas, even great poems) is really about all poems. The conclusion of the argument is about poems in general. The answer choice is also about poems in general. E is definitely a better answer than D, but the wording of the stimulus made it a little bit tougher to get to.


It's actually not a big deal, largely because the stimulus expects this and preempts you with "even if it is a great poem". Thus, poems, regardless of whether they're great or not, are not intended to give contradictory messages by their authors.


How does this actually follow? The premise says that "No author of a great poem intends for it to communicate contradictory ideas." Just because readers sometimes believe there are contradictory ideas in all sorts of poems poems (to include great poems), how can you infer that no author of ANY poem does not intend to communicate those ideas? Can you actually make that inference simply from "even if it is a great poem" ?

Note: This doesn't actually change how I came to the correct answer, since the prime gap is still "how do you determine meaning," but I'm genuinely curious here.

magickware
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Re: LSAT PrepTest 57 LR Section 2 - Q24

Postby magickware » Sat Jul 13, 2013 2:43 am

I didn't infer that the author of any poems doesn't intend to communicate contradictory ideas.

Suppose that the first sentence did not have the "even if it is a great poem" line.

In that case, the term shift between poem and great poem that occur in the conclusion becomes quite relevant, as they could be two different things. Perhaps a writer of a great poem has different approaches, can be contradictory, whatever.

But, by including the "even if it is a great poem" line, you get rid of this. The stimulus itself equates poem with great poem, and as such you don't have to make an assumption that a poem is equivalent to a great poem.

Notice that the stimulus never actually says all poems. That is an assumption in of itself. A poem does not mean all poems. This is why, iirc, the whole term shift, however minor in detail, is relevant in the first place. A poem is not a great poem, etc. A poem is not all poems, etc.




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