DISCUSSION: Both passages are trying to figure out what evolutionary role music played, if any. Their common assumption is that evolution is what leads to humans having certain abilities.
Unusually, you can’t answer this question merely by citing passage references. So, in the right answer I’ve highlighted a few areas that explain how both passages think that principle is central.
- I may have missed it, but I’m not sure either passage mentioned animals.
- I found this very tempting, but it’s too broad. On the LSAT, you must be literal. It’s true that both authors think that evolution is important for explaining human capacities. But, it’s a bit extreme to say that every human capability can be explained only in terms of evolutionary advantage.
In fact, passage A thinks this is false, since they think music arose by coincidence. Language offered an evolutionary advantage, and music arose as a byproduct of the neurological capacities that came with language. So the author of passage B thinks that music is not explained by its evolutionary advantage.
- Only passage A talks about this (lines 19-21). Passage B doesn’t mention language or a shared neurological basis between music and language.
- I don’t even know what this answer refers to, frankly. What would the “essence” of music be? As far as I know, neither author uses that language, so this answer has no support.
- CORRECT. Passage B thinks this: they mention a study of mothers in lines 41-49. And, passage A also mentions this, in lines 12-18. They use evidence from modern cultures to show that humans are not universally good at music. This indirectly supports the author’s later point that language, not music, was the dominant feature.
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