The passage states which one of the following?

Dalaal on March 5, 2020

Question 8

Violence is distinct from self-expression sufficient for survival under normal condition, Self-expression required for survival is generally nonaggressive, I am not quite sure I understand the difference between these two statements. I realize that required is a necessary condition that defers from a sufficient condition, but in this context, we are not dealing with conditional statements. Thus, I understood the two statements to mean the same thing.

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shunhe on March 5, 2020

Hi @Dalaal,

Thanks for the question! Part of what’s going on here is that there’s a difference between “the self-expression required for survival” and “the self-expression sufficient for survival under normal conditions,” which don’t refer to the same entity. For example, the amount of food required for survival and the amount of food sufficient for survival under normal conditions can be two different things. Three meals a day is certainly sufficient for survival, but is not required for survival. Also, just because violence is distinct from this self-expression does not mean that the self-expression required for survival is generally nonaggressive. It could be aggressive, but a less extreme form of aggression.

Hope this helps! Feel free to ask any further questions that you might have.

Dalaal on March 7, 2020

So "required" is stronger than "sufficient" meaning required is like saying 'must' but sufficient is like saying 'would do the job'.

AndreaK on March 17, 2020

Hi @Dalaal,

Necessary and sufficient are two different things, like Shunhe described above in his example with an amount of food that is required for survival and an amount that is sufficient.

Necessary refers to the bare minimum that you would need in order for a conclusion to even be possible. Or, in other words, the conclusion could not be possible without that necessary information.

Sufficient, on the other hand, is enough to guarantee that the conclusion of an argument is true. On the spectrum of strengthen with necessary/sufficient premise, sufficient is a much higher bar.

That being said, the way you worded it isn’t quite how I would recommend thinking of it. Whether or not necessary conditions are “stronger” depends on what you’re trying to do with the argument. Necessary conditions can be strong in a sense because they are very restrictive. If the necessary is not met, then you know for sure the sufficient is not met (that’s the contrapositive). Spotting unmet necessary conditions that need to be met can be useful for working your way through answer choices on some questions quickly. That being said, sufficient is the stronger strengthener of the two. Thus, whether or not it’s “stronger” as you say really depends on what you’re trying to do in a question, so I personally would be hesitant to think of the terms in the context of that language.

You are correct that a necessary condition is saying something is “required,” and if something is “required” it is the same as saying “must.”

Sufficient is also something like saying “would do the job.” However, I prefer language like “guarantees” or “enough” because a sufficient assumption “guarantees” the truth of a conclusion, or in other words, is “enough” to prove a conclusion is true.

Hope this helps clarify this for you! Feel free to follow up if you have any questions.