CAT 2007

Instructions

Each of the following questions has a paragraph from which the last sentence has been deleted. From the given options, choose the sentence that completes the paragraph in the most appropriate way.

Question 61

Nevertheless, photographs still retain some of the magical allure that the earliest daguerreotypes inspired. As objects, our photographs have changed; they have become physically flimsier as they have become more technologically sophisticated. Daguerre produced pictures on copper plates; today many of our photographs never become tangible thins, but instead remain filed away on computers and cameras, part of the digital ether that envelops the modern world. At the same time, our patience for the creation of images has also eroded. Children today are used to being tracked from birth by digital cameras and video recorders and they expect to see the results of their poses and performances instantly. The space between life as it is being lived and life as it is being displayed shrinks to a mere second.

Question 62

Mma Ramotswe had a detective agency in Africa, at the foot of Kgale Hill. These were its assets; a tiny white van, two desks, two chairs, a telephone, and an old typewriter. Then there was a teapot, in which Mma Ramotswe - the only private lady detective in Botswana - brewed red bush tea. And three mugs - one for herself, one for her secretary and one for the client. What else does a detective agency really need? Detective agencies rely on human intuition and intelligence, both of which Mma Ramotswe had in abundance.

Instructions

The passage given below is followed by a set of three questions. Choose the most appropriate answer to each question.

To discover the relation between rules, paradigms, and normal science, consider first how the historian isolates the particular loci of commitment that have been described as accepted rules. Close historical investigation of a given specialty at a given time discloses a set of recurrent and quasi-standard illustrations of various theories in their conceptual, observational, and instrumental applications. These are the community's paradigms, revealed in its textbooks, lectures, and laboratory exercises. By studying them and by practicing with them, the members of the corresponding community learn their trade. The historian, of course, will discover in addition a penumbral area occupied by achievements whose status is still in doubt, but the core of solved problems and techniques will usually be clear. Despite occasional ambiguities, the paradigms of a mature scientific community can be determined with relative ease.

That demands a second step and one of a somewhat different kind. When undertaking it, the historian must compare the community's paradigms with each other and with its current research reports. In doing so, his object is to discover what isolable elements, explicit or implicit, the members of that community may have abstracted from their more global paradigms and deploy it as rules in their research. Anyone who has attempted to describe or analyze the evolution of a particular scientific tradition will necessarily have sought accepted principles and rules of this sort. Almost certainly, he will have met with at least partial success. But, if his1 9 experience has been at all like my own, he will have found the search for rules both more difficult and less satisfying than the search for paradigms. Some of the generalizations he employs to describe the community's shared beliefs will present more problems. Others, however, will seem a shade too strong. Phrased in just that way, or in any other way he can imagine, they would almost certainly have been rejected by some members of the group he studies. Nevertheless, if the coherence of the research tradition is to be understood in terms of rules, some specification of common ground in the corresponding area is needed. As a result, the search for a body of rules competent to constitute a given normal research tradition becomes a source of continual and deep frustration.

Recognizing that frustration, however, makes it possible to diagnose its source. Scientists can agree that a Newton, Lavoisier, Maxwell, or Einstein has produced an apparently permanent solution to a group of outstanding problems and still disagree, sometimes without being aware of it, about the particular abstract characteristics that make those solutions permanent. They can, that is, agree in their identification of a paradigm without agreeing on, or even attempting to produce, a full interpretation or rationalization of it. Lack of a standard interpretation or of an agreed reduction to rules will not prevent a paradigm from guiding research. Normal science can be determined in part by the direct inspection of paradigms, a process that is often aided by but does not depend upon the formulation of rules and assumption. Indeed, the existence of a paradigm need not even imply that any full set of rules exists.

Question 63

What is the author attempting to illustrate through this passage?

Question 64

The term ‘loci of commitment’ as used in the passage would most likely correspond with which of the following?

Question 65

The author of this passage is likely to agree with which of the following?


Instructions

There are four sentences. Each sentence has pairs of words/phrases that are italicized and highlighted.

From the italicized and highlighted word(s)/phrase(s), select the most appropriate word(s)/phrase(s) to form correct sentences. Then, from the options given, choose the best one.

Question 66

The cricket council that was [A] / were [B] elected last March is [A] / are [B] at sixes and sevens over new rules.

The critics censored [A] / censured [B] the new movie because of its social inaccessibility.

Amit’s explanation for missing the meeting was credulous [A] / credible [B].

She coughed discreetly [A] / discretely [B] to announce her presence.

Question 67

The further [A] / farther [B] he pushed himself, the more disillusioned he grew.

For the crowds it was more of a historical [A] / historic [B] event; for their leader, it was just another day.

The old man has a healthy distrust [A] / mistrust [B] for all new technology.

This film is based on a real [A] / true [B] story.

One suspects that the compliment [A] / complement [B] was backhanded

Question 68

Regrettably [A] / Regretfully [B] I have to decline your invitation.

I am drawn to the poetic, sensual [A] / sensuous [B] quality of her paintings.

He was besides [A] / beside [B] himself with rage when I told him what I had done.

After brushing against a stationary [A] / stationery [B] truck my car turned turtle.

As the water began to rise over[A]/above[B] the danger mark, the signs of an imminent flood were clear.

Instructions

The passage given below is followed by a set of three questions. Choose the most appropriate answer to each question.

The difficulties historians face in establishing cause-and-effect relations in the history of human societies are broadly similar to the difficulties facing astronomers, climatologists, ecologists, evolutionary biologists, geologists, and palaeontologists. To varying degrees each of these fields is plagued by the impossibility of performing replicated, controlled experimental interventions, the complexity arising from enormous numbers of variables, the resulting uniqueness of each system, the consequent impossibility of formulating universal laws, and the difficulties of predicting emergent properties and future behaviour. Prediction in history, as in other historical sciences, is most feasible on large spatial scales and over long times, when the unique features of millions of small-scale brief events become averaged out. Just as I could predict the sex ratio of the next 1,000 newborns but not the sexes of my own two children, the historian can recognize factors that made2 1 inevitable the broad outcome of the collision between American and Eurasian societies after 13,000 years of separate developments, but not the outcome of the 1960 U.S. presidential election. The details of which candidate said what during a single televised debate in October 1960 Could have given the electoral victory to Nixon instead of to Kennedy, but no details of who said what could have blocked the European conquest of Native Americans. How can students of human history profit from the experience of scientists in other historical sciences? A methodology that has proved useful involves the comparative method and so-called natural experiments. While neither astronomers studying galaxy formation nor human historians can manipulate their systems in controlled laboratory experiments, they both can take advantage of natural experiments, by comparing systems differing in the presence or absence (or in the strong or weak effect) of some putative causative factor. For example, epidemiologists, forbidden to feed large amounts of salt to people experimentally, have still been able to identify effects of high salt intake by comparing groups of humans who already differ greatly in their salt intake; and cultural anthropologists, unable to provide human groups experimentally with varying resource abundances for many centuries, still study long-term effects of resource abundance on human societies by comparing recent Polynesian populations living on islands differing naturally in resource abundance.

The student of human history can draw on many more natural experiments than just comparisons among the five inhabited continents. Comparisons can also utilize large islands that have developed complex societies in a considerable degree of isolation (such as Japan, Madagascar, Native American Hispaniola, New Guinea, Hawaii, and many others), as well as societies on hundreds of smaller islands and regional societies within each of the continents. Natural experiments in any field, whether in ecology or human history, are inherently open to potential methodological criticisms. Those include confounding effects of natural variation in additional variables besides the one of interest, as well as problems in inferring chains of causation from observed correlations between variables. Such methodological problems have been discussed in great detail for some of the historical sciences. In particular, epidemiology, the science of drawing inferences about human diseases by comparing groups of people (often by retrospective historical studies), has for a long time successfully employed formalized procedures for dealing with problems similar to those facing historians of human societies. In short, I acknowledge that it is much more difficult to understand human history than to understand problems in fields of science where history is unimportant and where fewer individual variables operate. Nevertheless, successful methodologies for analyzing historical problems have been worked out in several fields. As a result, the histories of dinosaurs, nebulae, and glaciers are generally acknowledged to belong to fields of science rather than to the humanities.

Question 69

Why do islands with considerable degree of isolation provide valuable insights into human history?

Question 70

According to the author, why is prediction difficult in history?

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