DISCUSSION: The main point of the passage is that Marcuse’s critique of advertising is wrong. See lines 35-37.
The author is only concerned with critiquing Marcuse. The author doesn’t make other claims, and they aren’t saying that ads are a good thing.
The third paragraph is interesting….the author doesn’t agree with their own argument in that paragraph!
In paragraph 3, the author says that if Marcuse is right, we’ll never figure out our real needs. But the author doesn’t think this is true. See lines 35-37: consumers are able to consciously respond to advertisements. Lines 40-44 say that we can recognize and respond to the techniques used.
So the third paragraph is not true. The argument in final paragraph is the main point. We’re not blind to our real needs. We’re able to react independently to ads, and we can purchase products to fulfill real needs.
It’s a myth that main point questions need to sum up all the paragraphs. That’s often true, but for a passage that’s an argument, the real criterion is whether the answer sums up the author’s conclusion.
- The author thinks Marcuse’s critique is wrong, but that doesn’t mean the author thinks ads are good. If one claim is wrong, the opposite isn’t necessarily right.
- This just sums up paragraph 3. It leaves out paragraph 4, which was the main critique against Marcuse. This answer also ought to have said that consumers are more autonomous than Marcuse thought.
- CORRECT. You might think this only covers the fourth paragraph. But the fourth paragraph was the central conclusion of the argument.
Paragraphs 1 and 2 described Marcuse’s arguments, “Marcuse’s arguments” in this answer allude to those paragraphs.
This answer leaves out paragraph 3, but that paragraph was actually an aside that the author doesn’t agree with (see the analysis above for more on that).
- This isn’t even true. We don’t know what critics of advertising typically do. This passage is just talking about “some critics” (line 1). We have no idea if most critics of advertising agree with Marcuse.
- The first half of this answer is good. But then…. “ignores consumers physical and psychological needs”? Marcuse was the one who talked about physical and psychological needs, see lines 15-16. This answer is just false.
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