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The nineteenth-century chemist

This topic has 4 expert replies and 6 member replies
rx_11 Senior | Next Rank: 100 Posts
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The nineteenth-century chemist

Post Sun Oct 31, 2010 7:14 am
Elapsed Time: 00:00
  • Lap #[LAPCOUNT] ([LAPTIME])
    The nineteenth-century chemist Humphry Davy presented the results of his early experiments in his “Essay on Heat and Light,” a critique of all chemistry since Robert Boyle as well as a vision of a new chemistry that Davy hoped to found.

    (A) a critique of all chemistry since Robert Boyle as well as a vision of a
    (B) a critique of all chemistry following Robert Boyle and also his envisioning of a
    (C) a critique of all chemistry after Robert Boyle and envisioning as well
    (D) critiquing all chemistry from Robert Boyle forward and also a vision of
    (E) critiquing all the chemistry done since Robert Boyle as well as his own envisioning of










































    OA is A.

    But why is E wrong?

    The OE says E is confused in the assertion that Davy critiqued his own vision of chemistry.

    However, I think we can also say that Humphry Davy critiqued all the chemistry done since Robert Boyle as well as his own envision.. So how do we know what is the original meaning of the author? I mean what if the author wanted to express information just as E or D does? I find the meaning in E and D also make sense. (In fact, A sounds weird for me.)

    Can anyone help me?

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    clock60 Legendary Member Default Avatar
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    Post Sun Oct 31, 2010 8:05 am
    as far as i see the sentence
    .........chemist Humphry Davy presented the results of his experiments......,critiquing.......his own envisioning of .....
    here we have the same pronoun his and his , and in most cases the same pronouns have the only antecedent -here chemist Humphry Davy

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    pellucide Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
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    Post Sun Oct 31, 2010 8:54 am
    rx_11 wrote:
    The nineteenth-century chemist Humphry Davy presented the results of his early experiments in his “Essay on Heat and Light,” a critique of all chemistry since Robert Boyle as well as a vision of a new chemistry that Davy hoped to found.

    (A) a critique of all chemistry since Robert Boyle as well as a vision of a
    (B) a critique of all chemistry following Robert Boyle and also his envisioning of a
    (C) a critique of all chemistry after Robert Boyle and envisioning as well
    (D) critiquing all chemistry from Robert Boyle forward and also a vision of
    (E) critiquing all the chemistry done since Robert Boyle as well as his own envisioning of


    OA is A.

    But why is E wrong?

    The OE says E is confused in the assertion that Davy critiqued his own vision of chemistry.

    However, I think we can also say that Humphry Davy critiqued all the chemistry done since Robert Boyle as well as his own envision.. So how do we know what is the original meaning of the author? I mean what if the author wanted to express information just as E or D does? I find the meaning in E and D also make sense. (In fact, A sounds weird for me.)

    Can anyone help me?
    I also chose E because I assumed the intent of the author. I can see why A is the correct answer. Following reasons.
    - The construct "a critique of all chemistry since Robert Boyle as well as a vision of a new chemistry that Davy hoped to found" is parallel
    - This construct shows that there were two purposes of "Essay on Heat and Light"
    1. a critique of all chemistry since Robert Boyle
    and
    2. a vision of a new chemistry that Davy hoped to found

    - by using a gerund "critiquing", which modifies the whole clause
    all the chemistry done since Robert Boyle as well as his own envisioning of new chemistry that Davy hoped to found",
    the option E does change the meaning of the statement. Option E seems to suggest that Humphry Davy wrote "Essay on Heat and light" critiquing his own vision of new chemistry that he hoped to find.
    By adding the phrase hoped to find, the original statemment conveys that he had not found the new chemistry at the time of his writing "Essay on Light and Heat". So he cant be critiquing the future.

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    taneja.niks Senior | Next Rank: 100 Posts Default Avatar
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    Post Sun Oct 31, 2010 10:07 am
    A correct and as per ur question why E is wrong. The use of as well as his own envisioning of and then reference of davy's name in the part of the sentence following it makes it sound ambiguous if u read the whole sentence in a go u will find tht. More over here its the “Essay on Heat and Light” tht is referred as a critique which (A) does tht properly.

    Using the gerund "critiquing" Modifies the sentence tht it was Davy not the Essay. so changes the meaning

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    soaring.alone Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
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    Post Mon Jan 14, 2013 11:12 am
    I believe that E changes the meaning as critiquing modifies the action of the previous clause
    whereas in A "Essay on heat and Light " is being modified.

    Am I correct in my understanding ?

    Also, can anyone one explain why is B wrong ? Does B and E share the same meaning?

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    Post Mon Jan 14, 2013 4:06 pm
    Choice E is pretty interesting in a way that hopefully opens up a lot of SC strategy to you. Let me streamline E and then see if the idea makes sense to you:

    Davy wrote an essay critiquing all the chemistry since Boyle as well as his own envisioning of new chemistry...

    What is Davy critiquing?

    Well, clearly he's critiquing "chemistry since Boyle", but since there's not a second verb after critiquing it also looks like he's critiquing "his own envisioning of new chemistry". And that doesn't make sense - why would he be criticizing his own ideas in his own essay? E doesn't make logical sense.

    B is similar - B makes it hard to determine whether the essay is a critique of "all chemistry and also his envisioning of a new chemistry", or if his essay is "a critique (of...) as well as his own envisioning". It's hard to tell what the essay is. A is better because "a critique" and "a vision" are parallel, showing that they're meant to be taken equally. The essay is two things - a critique of the old and a vision of the new.

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    insanejuxtapose Junior | Next Rank: 30 Posts Default Avatar
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    Post Tue Jan 15, 2013 9:22 am
    A)a critique of all chemistry since Robert Boyle as well as a vision of a

    Is this not ambiguous too? a critique could refer to chemist or his essay either of them?

    IS this a GMAT type question?

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    Post Tue Jan 15, 2013 1:55 pm
    insanejuxtapose wrote:
    A)a critique of all chemistry since Robert Boyle as well as a vision of a

    Is this not ambiguous too? a critique could refer to chemist or his essay either of them?

    IS this a GMAT type question?
    Since it's an appositive phrase, that modifier must refer to the noun before the comma. In this case, it's the name of the essay, and it makes sense. In any event, a person cannot be a critique.

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    Post Mon Jan 21, 2013 2:15 am
    i received a private message about this thread, specifically this question:

    soaring.alone wrote:
    I believe that E changes the meaning as critiquing modifies the action of the previous clause
    whereas in A "Essay on heat and Light " is being modified.

    Am I correct in my understanding ?
    that's a correct understanding -- but both meanings are ok (i.e., neither is incorrect).
    it's true that the essay itself was "a critique of xxxxx" -- but it's also true that the author himself critiqued xxxxxx. so, that difference doesn't determine anything.

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    Post Mon Jan 21, 2013 2:18 am
    most importantly --
    this problem is essentially a pure exercise in parallelism.
    you may just be asking about other stuff for your own edification (which is fine). but, if you happen to be asking about these things because you didn't see the errors in parallelism -- and that seems to be the case, judging from the question below -- then that's a pretty serious issue.
    parallelism is one of the most important and most consistently tested themes on the SC section, so you need to see it every time it shows up.

    Quote:
    Also, can anyone one explain why is B wrong ? Does B and E share the same meaning?
    look at the parallelism:
    (a) a critique ... a vision ...
    (b) a critique ... his envisioning ...
    this is a pretty easy decision.

    --

    there's also the fact that an essay can't be described as "his envisioning..." anyway, since that construction would refer to the actual act of envisioning something.
    but, again, the parallelism here is the important thing.

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    Post Tue Jan 29, 2013 11:28 pm
    My understanding..

    (A) a critique of all chemistry since Robert Boyle as well as a vision of a Correct
    (B) a critique of all chemistry following Robert Boyle and also his envisioning of a his may refer to Robert or Humphry So, Wrong option
    (C) a critique of all chemistry after Robert Boyle and envisioning as well Idiom is as well as
    (D) critiquing all chemistry from Robert Boyle forward and also a vision of Parallelism Critiquing and also a
    (E) critiquing all the chemistry done since Robert Boyle as well as his own envisioning of his may refer to Robert or Humphry So,Wrong option

    If my understanding is wrong please correct me. Thanks in advance

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