QUESTION TEXT: The passage most strongly suggests that the…
DISCUSSION: When you read a passage, you should take note of any words that indicates an opinion towards the subject under discussion. Even subtle words have great meaning.
- Troublesome (line 34): This indicates the author believes that there’s a major obstacle to Steele’s theory.
- The repeated use of the word “claim”, referring to Steele: The author is not prepared to believe Steele’s claims without evidence.
- Lines 44-45: The author admits Steele’s process is possible. So while they doubt Steele is right, they’re not dismissing him outright.
It’s important to see nuance. The author doubts Steele, but they believe Steele has presented a coherent theory, and it’s possible that we might find evidence.
- Lines 44-45 show the author is doubtful.
- This didn’t happen.
Example of answer: How dare Steele diverge from Darwin! Why that horrible, crazed upstart! We ought to expel Steele from the biological society!
- The author doesn’t doubt Steele’s ideas because they’re new. They doubt Steele’s ideas because they’re unproven.
- CORRECT. This is the best answer. If you read the last paragraph, you’ll see that the author does give Steele a fair hearing, but they also express skepticism with repeated use of the word “claim”, and also with the words “not so easily swayed”.
- This goes too far. Lack of rigor would mean that Steele hadn’t even made a coherent argument. But Steele did make a plausible argument that could be true. The reasons for doubting Steele, given in the fourth paragraph, are that we lack evidence his theory is true, and there’s a plausible alternate explanation.
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