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Similar to other early Mississippi Delta

This topic has 3 expert replies and 1 member reply
boomgoesthegmat Senior | Next Rank: 100 Posts Default Avatar
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Similar to other early Mississippi Delta

Post Wed May 04, 2016 4:49 am
Similar to other early Mississippi Delta blues singers, the music of Robert Johnson arose from an oral tradition beginning with a mixture of chants, fiddle tunes, and religious music and only gradually evolved into the blues.

A) Similar to other early Mississippi Delta blues singers, the music of Robert Johnson arose from an oral tradition beginning with

B) Similar to that of other early Mississippi Delta blues singers, Robert Johnson made music that arose from an oral tradition that began with

C) As with other early Mississippi Delta blues singers, Robert Johnson made music that arose from an oral tradition beginning as

D) Like other early Mississippi Delta blues singers, Robert Johnson’s music arose from an oral tradition beginning with

E) Like the music of other early Mississippi Delta blues singers, the music of Robert Johnson arose from an oral tradition that began as

OA: E

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Post Thu May 05, 2016 11:12 am
aflaam wrote:
Thank you for a great explanation.


In like X, Y--> comparison is between X and Y.
What actually is the comparison in construction As with X, Y (option C).

GMAT seems not really like this particular, as it is pretty much incorrect option all the time.
Is there any way to knock off answer choice containing this construction much more confidently?
You're very welcome!

You're right: "As with X, Y" is not a construction that I can ever recall seeing on a right answer on the GMAT.

The construction is generally understood to mean "as is the case with." Consider:
As with any major restructuring, the company ran into setbacks after merging with a partner company.

Not the most elegant way of phrasing that idea, but arguably correct. The parallelism is:
The company might run into setbacks with any major restructuring, and the company ran into setback with this merger.

In our example above, we're comparing Johnson directly other other singers (or his music to the music of other singers). We're not comparing something that he did WITH something to something that he did WITH something else.

Does that clarify?

Here's one of my colleagues with more on the topic:
https://www.manhattanprep.com/gmat/forums/sc-the-usage-of-as-with-t17648.html

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aflaam Master | Next Rank: 500 Posts Default Avatar
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Post Wed May 04, 2016 5:36 pm
ceilidh.erickson wrote:
This question is SC #101 in OG 2016. It's primarily testing COMPARISONS.

The GMAT often tests logical comparisons by beginning a sentence with a comparison word:
Unlike...
Like...
Similar to...
In contrast to...


Any of these words at the beginning of a sentence signal that we're modifying the MAIN SUBJECT of the sentence by comparing it to something else. In the construction
Similar to X, Y is...
the X and the Y must be comparable.

In the original sentence here, we want to compare other people's music to Robert Johnson's music, but what we're actually comparing (structurally) is singers to music. This is not a logical comparison.

Quote:
Similar to other early Mississippi Delta blues singers, the music of Robert Johnson arose from an oral tradition beginning with a mixture of chants, fiddle tunes, and religious music and only gradually evolved into the blues.
Looking at the other answer choices...

B) Similar to that of other early Mississippi Delta blues singers, Robert Johnson made music that arose from an oral tradition that began with

This one is comparing "that of" (i.e. the music of other people) to Robert Johnson himself. Illogical.


C) As with other early Mississippi Delta blues singers, Robert Johnson made music that arose from an oral tradition beginning as

This is implying that Robert Johnson is doing something WITH the other singers. Illogical.


D) Like other early Mississippi Delta blues singers, Robert Johnson’s music arose from an oral tradition beginning with

Same issue as the original: comparing singers to music.


E) Like the music of other early Mississippi Delta blues singers, the music of Robert Johnson arose from an oral tradition that began as

This one compares music to music. It's the only logical comparison.

The answer is E.
Thank you for a great explanation.


In like X, Y--> comparison is between X and Y.
What actually is the comparison in construction As with X, Y (option C).

GMAT seems not really like this particular, as it is pretty much incorrect option all the time.
Is there any way to knock off answer choice containing this construction much more confidently?

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Post Wed May 04, 2016 4:14 pm
This question is SC #101 in OG 2016. It's primarily testing COMPARISONS.

The GMAT often tests logical comparisons by beginning a sentence with a comparison word:
Unlike...
Like...
Similar to...
In contrast to...


Any of these words at the beginning of a sentence signal that we're modifying the MAIN SUBJECT of the sentence by comparing it to something else. In the construction
Similar to X, Y is...
the X and the Y must be comparable.

In the original sentence here, we want to compare other people's music to Robert Johnson's music, but what we're actually comparing (structurally) is singers to music. This is not a logical comparison.

Quote:
Similar to other early Mississippi Delta blues singers, the music of Robert Johnson arose from an oral tradition beginning with a mixture of chants, fiddle tunes, and religious music and only gradually evolved into the blues.
Looking at the other answer choices...

B) Similar to that of other early Mississippi Delta blues singers, Robert Johnson made music that arose from an oral tradition that began with

This one is comparing "that of" (i.e. the music of other people) to Robert Johnson himself. Illogical.


C) As with other early Mississippi Delta blues singers, Robert Johnson made music that arose from an oral tradition beginning as

This is implying that Robert Johnson is doing something WITH the other singers. Illogical.


D) Like other early Mississippi Delta blues singers, Robert Johnson’s music arose from an oral tradition beginning with

Same issue as the original: comparing singers to music.


E) Like the music of other early Mississippi Delta blues singers, the music of Robert Johnson arose from an oral tradition that began as

This one compares music to music. It's the only logical comparison.

The answer is E.

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Manhattan Prep GMAT & GRE instructor
EdM in Mind, Brain, and Education
Harvard Graduate School of Education


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Post Wed May 04, 2016 4:17 pm

_________________


Ceilidh Erickson
Manhattan Prep GMAT & GRE instructor
EdM in Mind, Brain, and Education
Harvard Graduate School of Education


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