CAT 2004 Question Paper


Directions for the following ten questions: Fill up the blanks, numbered [1], [2] up to [10], in the two passages below with most appropriate word from the options given for each blank.

First Passage:

"Between the year 1946 and the year 1955, I did not file any income tax returns." With that [1] statement, Ramesh embarked on an account of his encounter with the income tax department. "I originally owned Rs. 20,000 in unpaid taxes. With [2] and [3], the 20,000 became 60,000. The Income tax Department then went into action, and I learned first hand just how much power the Tax Department wields. Royalties and trust funds can be [4]; automobiles may be [5], and auctioned off. Nothing belongs to the [6] until the case is settled."

Second Passage:

"At that time the white house was as serene as a resort hotel out of season. The corridors were [7]. In the various offices, [8] gray men in waistcoats talked to one another in low-pitched voices. The only color, or choler, curiously enough, was provided by President Eisenhower himself. Apparently, his [9] was easily set off; he scowled when he [10] the corridors.

Question 81

Blank Number [8]

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Question 82

Blank Number [9]

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Question 83

Blank Number [10]

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The painter is now free to paint anything he chooses. There are scarcely any forbidden subjects, and today everybody is prepared to admit that a painting of some fruit can be as important as a painting of a hero dying. The Impressionists did as much as anybody to win this previously unheard-of freedom for the artist. Yet, by the next generation, painters began to abandon the subject altogether, and began to paint abstract pictures. Today the majority of pictures painted are abstract.

Is there a connection between these two developments? Has art gone abstract because the artist is embarrassed by his freedom? Is it that, because he is free to paint anything, he doesn’t know what to paint? Apologists for abstract art often talk of it as the art of maximum freedom. But could this be the freedom of the desert island? It would take too long to answer these questions properly. I believe there is a connection. Many things have encouraged the development of abstract art. Among them has been the artists’ wish to avoid the difficulties of finding subjects when all subjects are equally possible.

I raise the matter now because I want to draw attention to the fact that the painter’s choice of a subject is a far more complicated question than it would at first seem. A subject does not start with what is put in front of the easel or with something which the painter happens to remember. A subject starts with the painter deciding he would like to paint such-and-such because for some reason or other he finds it meaningful. A subject begins when the artist selects something for special mention. (What makes it special or meaningful may seem to the artist to be purely visual - its colours or its form.) When the subject has been selected, the function of the painting itself is to communicate and justify the significance of that selection.

It is often said today that subject matter is unimportant. But this is only a reaction against the excessively literary and moralistic interpretation of subject matter in the nineteenth century. In truth, the subject is literally the beginning and end of a painting. The painting begins with a selection (I will paint this and not everything else in the world); it is finished when that selection is justified (now you can see all that I saw and felt in this and how it is more than merely itself).

Thus, for a painting to succeed it is essential that the painter and his public agree about what is significant. The subject may have a personal meaning for the painter or individual spectator; but there must also be the possibility of their agreement on its general meaning. It is at this point that the culture of the society and period in question precedes the artist and his art. Renaissance art would have meant nothing to the Aztecs -and vice versa. If, to some extent, a few intellectuals can appreciate them both today it is because their culture is an historical one; its inspiration is history and therefore it can include within itself, in principle if not in every particular, all known developments to date.

When a culture is secure and certain of its values, it presents its artists with subjects. The general agreement about what is significant is so well established that the significance of a particular subject accrues and becomes traditional. This is true, for instance, of reeds and water in China, of the nude body in Renaissance, of the animal in Africa. Furthermore, in such cultures the artist is unlikely to be a free agent: he will be employed for the sake of particular subjects, and the problem, as we have just described it, will not occur to him.

When a culture is in a state of disintegration or transition, the freedom of the artist increases - but the question of subject matter becomes problematic for him: he, himself, has to choose for society. This was at the basis of all the increasing, crises in European art during the nineteenth century. It is too often forgotten how many of the art scandals of that time were provoked by the choice of subject (Gericault, Courbet, Daumier, Degas, Lautrec, Van Gogh, etc.).

By the end of the nineteenth century there were, roughly speaking, two ways in which the painter could meet this challenge of deciding what to paint and so choosing for society. Either he identified himself with the people and so allowed their lives to dictate his subjects to him, or he had to find his subjects within himself as a painter. By people, I mean everybody except the bourgeoisie. Many painters did of course work for the bourgeoisie according to their copy-book of approved subjects, but all of them, filling the Salon and the Royal Academy year after year, are now forgotten, buried under the hypocrisy of those they served so sincerely.

Question 84

When a culture is insecure, the painter chooses his subject on the basis of:

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Question 85

In the sentence, "I believe there is a connection" (second paragraph), what two developments is the author referring to?

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Question 86

Which of the following is NOT necessarily among the attributes needed for a painter to succeed:

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Question 87

In the context of the passage, which of the following statements would NOT be true?

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Question 88

Which of the following views is taken by the author?

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Recently I spent several hours sitting under a tree in my garden with the social anthropologist William Ury, a Harvard University professor who specializes in the art of negotiation and wrote the bestselling book, Getting to Yes. He captivated me with his theory that tribalism protects people from their fear of rapid change. He explained that the pillars of tribalism that humans rely on for security would always counter any significant cultural or social change. In this way, he said, change is never allowed to happen too fast. Technology, for example, is a pillar of society. Ury believes that every time technology moves in a new or radical direction, another pillar such as religion or nationalism will grow stronger in effect, the traditional and familiar will assume greater importance to compensate for the new and untested. In this manner, human tribes avoid rapid change that leaves people insecure and frightened.

But we have all heard that nothing is as permanent as change. Nothing is guaranteed. Pithy expressions, to be sure, but no more than cliches. As Ury says, people don’t live that way from day-to-day. On the contrary, they actively seek certainty and stability. They want to know they will be safe.

Even so, we scare ourselves constantly with the idea of change. An IBM CEO once said: ‘We only re-structure for a good reason, and if we haven’t re-structured in a while, that’s a good reason.’ We are scared that competitors, technology and the consumer will put us Out of business — so we have to change all the time just to stay alive. But if we asked our fathers and grandfathers, would they have said that they lived in a period of little change? Structure may not have changed much. It may just be the speed with which we do things.

Change is over-rated, anyway, consider the automobile. It’s an especially valuable example, because the auto industry has spent tens of billions of dollars on research and product development in the last 100 years. Henry Ford’s first car had a metal chassis with an internal combustion, gasoline-powered engine, four wheels with rubber types, a foot operated clutch assembly and brake system, a steering wheel, and four seats, and it could safely do 18 miles per hour. A hundred years and tens of thousands of research hours later, we drive cars with a metal chassis with an internal combustion, gasoline-powered engine, four wheels with rubber tyres a foot operated clutch assembly and brake system, a steering wheel, four seats - and the average speed in London in 2001 was 17.5 miles per hour!

That’s not a hell of a lot of return for the money. Ford evidently doesn’t have much to teach us about change. The fact that they’re still manufacturing cars is not proof that Ford Motor Co. is a sound organization, just proof that it takes very large companies to make cars in great quantities — making for an almost impregnable entry barrier.

Fifty years after the development of the jet engine, planes are also little changed. They’ve grown bigger, wider and can carry more people. But those are incremental, largely cosmetic changes.

Taken together, this lack of real change has come to man that in travel — whether driving or flying — time and technology have not combined to make things much better. The safety and design have of course accompanied the times and the new volume of cars and flights, but nothing of any significance has changed in the basic assumptions of the final product.

At the same time, moving around in cars or aero-planes becomes less and less efficient all the time. Not only has there been no great change, but also both forms of transport have deteriorated as more people clamour to use them. The same is true for telephones, which took over hundred years to become mobile or photographic film, which also required an entire century to change.

The only explanation for this is anthropological. Once established in calcified organizations, humans do two things: sabotage changes that might render people dispensable, and ensure industry-wide emulation. In the 1960s, German auto companies developed plans to scrap the entire combustion engine for an electrical design. (The same existed in the 1970s in Japan, and in the 1980s in France.) So for 40 years we might have been free of the wasteful and ludicrous dependence on fossil fuels. Why didn’t it go anywhere? Because auto executives understood pistons and carburettors, and would be loath to cannibalize their expertise, along with most of their factories

Question 89

According to the above passage, which of the following statements is true?

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Question 90

Which of the following views does the author fully support in the passage?

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