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Shorter GRE - Reading Passage Inference Questions Strategy 2023 : General GRE Questions & Strategies

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Re: Shorter GRE - Reading Passage Inference Questions Strategy 2023 [#permalink]
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EXPLANATION of the PASSAGE



Whether the languages of the ancient American peoples were used for expressing abstract universal concepts can be clearly answered in the case of Nahuatl. Nahuatl, like Greek and German, is a language that allows the formation of extensive compounds. By the combination of radicals or semantic elements, single compound words can express complex conceptual relations, often of an abstract universal character.

The tlamatinime (those who know) were able to use this rich stock of abstract terms to express the nuances of their thought. They also availed themselves of other forms of expression with metaphorical meaning, some probably original, some derived from Toltec coinages. Of these forms, the most characteristic in Nahuatl is the juxtaposition of two words that, because they are synonyms, associated terms, or even contraries, complement each other to evoke one single idea. Used metaphorically, the juxtaposed terms connote specific or essential traits of the being they refer to, introducing a mode of poetry as an almost habitual form of expression.

Consider each of the choices separately and select all that apply.


1. Which of the following can be inferred from the passage regarding present-day research relating to Nahuatl?

A Some record or evidence of the thought of the tlamatinime is available.
B For at least some Nahuatl expressions, researchers are able to trace their derivation from another ancient American language.
C Researchers believe that in Nahuatl, abstract universal concepts are always expressed metaphorically.



2. Select the sentence in the passage in which the author introduces a specific Nahuatl mode of expression that is not identified as being shared with certain European languages.

Show: :: OA
The sentence (“Of these forms . . . one single idea”)




3. In the context in which it appears, “coinages” most nearly means

A adaptations
B creations
C idiosyncrasies
D pronunciations
E currencies






EXPLANATION of the QUESTIONS



Quote:
1. Which of the following can be inferred from the passage regarding present-day research relating to Nahuatl?


In answering this question, keep in mind the meaning of "infer"/"imply"/"suggest" on official problems: These words refer only to things that the passage SAYS, and/or the IMMEDIATE LOGICAL EQUIVALENTS AND COROLLARIES of those statements. These words are not used in the vague, handwaving kind of way that may be familiar from social conversations.

The whole passage is pretty much about Nahuatl, so there's no narrower portion of the text where we can look for answers to this question. Accordingly, let's just take the choices one by one and see whether they're logically necessary given the statements in the passage (= "inferred" as used on standardized tests).


Quote:
A Some record or evidence of the thought of the tlamatinime is available.


We're able to make specific declarations about thoughts expressed by the tlamatinime, such as those mentioned at the start of the second paragraph, so we must have some basis on which to make such assertions. Put another way—If there were NO record or evidence of their thoughts, then we wouldn't be able to say anything specifically about how they expressed those thoughts in writing.

SUPPORTED


Quote:
B For at least some Nahuatl expressions, researchers are able to trace their derivation from another ancient American language.


The second paragraph mentions specific Nahuatl constructions that were "derived from Toltec coinages"—where this derivation is stated as a fact, not as mere hypothesis or speculation.

SUPPORTED


Quote:
C Researchers believe that in Nahuatl, abstract universal concepts are always expressed metaphorically.


The passage never makes any audacious generalizations about what the Nahuatl language "always" did/does. It is limited to things that exist in Nahuatl, without any claims as to whether those phenomena are universal.

NOT SUPPORTED



Quote:
2. Select the sentence in the passage in which the author introduces a specific Nahuatl mode of expression that is not identified as being shared with certain European languages.


The first paragraph identifies common elements between Nahuatl and certain European languages. The second paragraph, on the other hand, says nothing about whether anything that appears there is shared with European languages.
Therefore, any SPECIFIC Nahuatl construction mentioned in the SECOND PARAGRAPH will constitute a correct answer to this question.

Only one sentence in the second paragraph identifies a SPECIFIC Nahuatl construction—
Of these forms, the most characteristic in Nahuatl is the juxtaposition of two words that, because they are synonyms, associated terms, or even contraries, complement each other to evoke one single idea
—so that's the sentence we want here.



Quote:
3. In the context in which it appears, “coinages” most nearly means


Here's the context in question:
They also availed themselves of other forms of expression with metaphorical meaning, some probably original, some derived from Toltec coinages

So... There are metaphorical expressions in Nahuatl that derive from Toltec "coinages".
In that context, "coinages" can't be understood to mean anything other than... linguistic expressions (from which linguistic expressions in another language were derived).
To consider the word "coinage" more specifically—A word, phrase, or expression is "coined" when it's used for the first time. So, the Toltec "coinages" would have been linguistic expressions that ORIGINATED in Toltec, or, equivalently, expressions INVENTED by Toltec speakers.

"Expressions INVENTED by..." is choice B, creations.


The other answer choices are just... not correct; they don't convey the meaning of "expressions first used in THIS language". None of them is wrong in any way that merits particular mention, except perhaps choice E—which is completely out to lunch in terms of meaning (it has nothing to do with languages at all!), but presumably plays on the idea of literal coins with monetary value. Hah.
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Re: Shorter GRE - Reading Passage Inference Questions Strategy 2023 [#permalink]
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Reading Strategy - PRACTICE





Easy Long Reading Passage https://gre.myprepclub.com/forum/readin ... %5B%5D=327

Medium Long Reading Passage https://gre.myprepclub.com/forum/readin ... %5B%5D=327

Hard Long Reading Passage https://gre.myprepclub.com/forum/readin ... %5B%5D=327

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Easy Medium Reading Passage https://gre.myprepclub.com/forum/readin ... %5B%5D=281

Medium Medium Reading Passage https://gre.myprepclub.com/forum/readin ... %5B%5D=281

Hard Medium Reading Passage https://gre.myprepclub.com/forum/readin ... %5B%5D=281
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Re: Shorter GRE - Reading Passage Inference Questions Strategy 2023 [#permalink]
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Updated and improved
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Re: Shorter GRE - Reading Passage Inference Questions Strategy 2023 [#permalink]
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