Based on the passage, which one of the following scenarios is most similar to some legal scholars' use of the utility...

Connor on October 28, 2021

Explanation Please

Could I get an explanation for this question, please? Thanks.

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Emil on January 26, 2022

Hi Connor, this passage concerns two theories of crime deterrence- one that calls for better social conditions and the other that calls for stricter penalties and enforcement. The author then outlines an economic principle that shows the views are not really in conflict.

This is an analogy question, it is asking us to apply the broad framework of part of the passage to a different situation. The right answer will be one where the actor in the answer choice does the same high level thing as the actor in the passage did. The question is asking about the scholars' use of the utility maximizing principle in the deterrence debate, so our first task will be to understand how the scholars use the principle.

In the passage, scholars use a principle from the discipline of economics by showing that two points of view which are thought to be in conflict are really not in conflict, and in fact are compatible with each other. At a high level, the legal scholars are using information from one discipline to resolve an apparent conflict in their own discipline. We are looking for an answer choice where the subject is doing the same (or a very similar) thing.

A involves an astronomer using a paradox discovered by ancient astronomers as a metaphor for a new discovery. This misses a few parts of the passage: it uses a paradox instead of resolving an apparent discrepancy, there is only one discipline, and the idea of new discoveries is completely unrelated to the passage. We can eliminate A.

B involves an artist using a principle from optics to show that two lines that appear to be diverging are actually parallel. This is a pretty close match to our understanding. Someone uses a principle from another field to prove a point about their own field. While the points appear different at first, they are actually quite similar. We are proving that two lines that appear to be moving apart are not doing so, while in the passage we are proving that two points of view that appear to be very different are not actually do. This is not a 1-1 match, but it is close enough that B looks very strong.

C has a botanist using a quote to make a point. This doesn't involve any resolution of an apparent discrepancy between two things so we cal eliminate C.

D Is similar to C in that it also involves a person using something from another discipline to make a point about their discipline, and also lacks the resolution of an apparent discrepancy. We can eliminate D for the same reason.

E has a similar issue, the goal is setting a tone rather than resolving a discrepancy. We can eliminate E.

While B was not exactly perfect it was by far the closest analogy. I would recommend checking out the office hours for this question type.