We ought to pay attention only to the intrinsic properties of a work of art. Its other, extrinsic properties are irr...

Sangwook on November 30, 2014

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This is a strengthen with sufficient question, isn't it? To figure out this type of question, you have taught we must find the conclusion first. However, I am confused about which sentence is the conclusion on this stimulus. Since "therefore" is the most common conclusion flag, the last sentence seems like the one.("what is really aesthetically.....") However, I can't help but wonder if the first sentence is the conclusion("We ought to pay attention only to...."). Please, explain this. Thanks,

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Melody on December 10, 2014

You have correctly identified this as a Strengthen with Sufficient Premise question.

The conclusion, however, is the last sentence. The first sentence helps support the conclusion.

Why is it aesthetically relevant what a painting directly presents for one to experience as opposed to what the painting symbolizes? Because we should pay attention to the intrinsic properties of a work of art because extrinsic properties are not relevant to our aesthetic interactions with it. See how the first sentence is used to support the last? A conclusion will never be used to support any other sentence.

Now, let's diagram:

"We ought to pay attention only to the intrinsic properties of a work of art."

P1: PA ==> not EP (not EP = IP, but we want to keep variables consistent)
EP ==> not PA

"extrinsic properties are irrelevant to our aesthetic interactions with" a work of art.

P2: EP ==> not AR (not aesthetically relevant)
AR ==> not EP

"What is really aesthetically relevant, therefore, is not what a painting symbolizes, but what it directly presents to experience."

C: AR ==> not S
S ==> not AR

Answer choice (A) states: "What an artwork symbolizes involves only extrinsic properties of that work."

(A): S ==> EP
not EP ==> not S

Does this strengthen? Yes.

Answer choice (A) explains that what artwork symbolizes is only considered extrinsic properties of that work and we are told in the argument that "extrinsic properties are irrelevant to our aesthetic interactions with art.

Thus, our conclusion is strengthened because what a painting symbolizes is not aesthetically relevant due to it only involving extrinsic properties.

Does answer choice (A) guarantee the conclusion? Yes.

We can connect the contrapositive of P2 to (A) like so: AR ==> not EP ==> not S to conclude--through the transitive property--that AR ==> not S, which is our conclusion. Hence, answer choice (A) guarantees the conclusion.

Hope that helps! Please let us know if you have any other questions.