Which one of the following most accurately describes the organization of the passage?

Ceci on January 15, 2019


Hello, I thought this was definitely a a problem that "smells arent considered art" and not a question. I picked E instead of D and just wanted to know why it's a question. Simply because there's a question mark in the first paragraph? If so, it only mentions a question there, it mentions the *problem* that smell isnt considered art everywhere else on the passage. Thanks for clarifying in advance!

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Ravi on February 19, 2019


Great question. Let's take a look.

The question asks, "Which one of the following most accurately
describes the organization of the passage?"

You said you picked (E) instead of (D).

(E) says, "The first paragraph outlines a problem, the middle
paragraphs present two consequences of that problem, and the final
paragraph attempts to identify the parties that are responsible for
the problem."

The reason why (E) is wrong isn't because it says the first paragraph
outlines a problem. In the first paragraph, the author of the passage
does pose a question, but because he's frustrated that perfume is not
considered a great art, it's fine for us to accept this answer choice
referring to that as a problem. The real problem with (E) lies with
how it classifies the middle paragraphs. In the middle paragraphs, the
author does not discuss two consequences of the problem from the first
paragraph; rather, the author discusses why it's a problem, for the
reason that great perfume is extremely similar to other types of art
forms. Thus, the problem with (E) is that it incorrectly identifies
the purpose of the middle paragraphs of the passage, so we can get rid
of this answer choice.

(D) says, "The first paragraph poses a question, the middle paragraphs
present a case that helps to justify the posing of that question, and
the final paragraph presents a possible answer to the question."

The main purpose of the first paragraph of the passage is to present
the question mentioned in line 7: "Why is great perfume not taken more
seriously?" The following two paragraphs do not provide an answer to
that question, but they do present additional reasons as to why great
perfumes are truly works of art and should thus be taken more
seriously. In doing so, the middle two paragraphs serve as a means for
the author to justify the initial question she poses, which makes it
seem nonsensical that great perfume isn't taken more seriously. In the
last paragraph of the passage, the author presents one potential
answer to her question, which is contained in lines 44-47 when she
says, "Perhaps one of reason that truly great smells are so often
undervalued is that perfumes are today made and distributed under the
not particularly watchful gaze of a few large corporations." (D)
captures the true functions of each of the paragraphs in the passage,
so it's our correct answer choice.

Does this make sense? Do you see why (E) is wrong now? Let us know if
you have any more questions!