RC: Questions & Discussions for CAT 2014 (plus XAT,IIFT n other Exams).

Hello Puys, Lets get started with the Reading Comprehensions for CAT 2014 n Other Exams. RC: the most important part of the Verbal Section in CAT. So #Practice Daily #Read & Lets Discuss out the Important Tips. Link for 2013 RC t…

Hello Puys,

Lets get started with the Reading Comprehensions for CAT 2014 n Other Exams.

RC: the most important part of the Verbal Section in CAT. So #Practice Daily #Read & Lets Discuss out the Important Tips.

Link for 2013 RC thread :



All The BEST Puys!!

#A Sample Question.

Answer the question based on the information given below.

Plato, like Xenophon, was a pupil of Socrates, but Xenophon only wanted to be the clerk of Socrates; and Plato, as an enthusiastic disciple, was at the same time very faithful and very unfaithful to Socrates. He was a faithful disciple to Socrates in never failing to place morality in the foremost rank of all philosophical considerations; in that he never varied. He was an unfaithful disciple to Socrates in that, imaginative and an admirable poet, he bore back philosophy from earth to heaven; he did not forbid himself - quite the contrary - to pile up great systems about all things and to envelop the universe in his vast and daring conceptions. He invincibly established morality, the science of virtue, as the final goal of human knowledge, in his brilliant and charming Socratic Dialogues; he formed great systems in all the works in which he introduces himself as speaking in his own name. He was very learned, and acquainted with everything that had been written by all the philosophers before Socrates, particularly Heraclitus, Pythagoras, Parmenides, and Anaxagoras. He reconsidered all their teaching and he himself brought to consideration, a force and a wealth of mind which appeared to have had no parallel in the world.

It is clear from the passage that:


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I urge a 16th amendment, because "manhood suffrage", or a man's government, is civil, religious, and social disorganization. The male element is a destructive force, stern, selfish, aggrandizing, loving war, violence, conquest, acquisition, breeding in the material and moral world alike, discord, disorder, disease, and death. See what a record of blood and cruelty the pages of history reveal! Through what slavery, slaughter and sacrifice, through what inquisitions and imprisonments pains and persecutions, black codes and gloomy creeds, the soul of humanity has struggled for centuries, while mercy has veiled her face and all hearts have been dead alike to love and hope!

The male element has held high carnival thus far; it has fairly run riot from the beginning, overpowering the feminine element everywhere, crushing out all the diviner qualities in human nature, until we know but little of true manhood and womanhood, of the latter comparatively nothing, for it has scarce been recognized as a power until within the last century. Society is but the reflection of man himself, untempered by woman's thought; the hard iron rule we feel alike in the church, the state and the home. No one need wonder at the disorganization, at the fragmentary condition of everything, when we remember that man, who represents but half a complete being, with but half an idea on every subject, has undertaken the absolute control of all sublunary matters.

People object to the demands of those whom they choose to call the strong-minded, because they say "the right of suffrage will make the women masculine". That is the difficulty in which we are involved today. Though disfranchised, we have few women in the best sense; we have simply so many reflections, varieties and dilutions of the masculine gender. The strong, natural characteristics of womanhood are repressed and ignored in dependence, for so long as man feeds woman she will try to please the giver and adapt herself to his condition. To keep a foothold in society, woman must be as near like man as possible, reflect his ideas, opinions, virtues, motives, prejudices and vices. She must respect his statutes, though they strip her of every inalienable right and conflict with that higher law written by the finger of God on her own soul.

She must look at everything from its dollar-and-cent point of view, or she is a mere romancer. She must accept things as they are and make the best of them. To mourn over the miseries of others, the poverty of the poor, their hardships in jails, prisons, asylums, the horrors of war, cruelty, and brutality in every form, all this would be mere sentimentalizing. To protest against the intrigue,

bribery, and corruption of public life, to desire that her sons might follow some business that did not involve lying, cheating and, a hard, grinding selfishness would be arrant nonsense.

In this way man has been moulding woman to his ideas by direct and positive influences, while she, if not a negation, has used indirect means to control him, and in most cases developed the very characteristics both in him and herself that needed repression. And now man himself stands appalled at the results of his own excesses, and mourns in bitterness that falsehood, selfishness and violence are the law of life. The need of this hour is not territory, gold mines, railroads or specie payments but a new evangel of womanhood, to exalt purity, virtue, morality, true religion, to lift man up into the higher realms of thought and action.

We ask woman's enfranchisement, as the first step toward the recognition of that essential element in government that can only secure the health, strength and prosperity of the nation. Whatever is done to lift woman to her true position will help to usher in a new day of peace and perfection for the race.

In speaking of the masculine element, I do not wish to be understood to say that all men are hard, selfish and brutal, for many of the most beautiful spirits the world has known have been clothed with manhood; but I refer to those characteristics, though often marked in woman, that distinguish what is called the stronger sex. For example, the love of acquisition and conquest, the very pioneers of civilization, when expended on the earth, the sea, the elements, the riches and forces of nature, are powers of destruction when used to subjugate one man to another or to sacrifice nations to ambition.

Here that great conservator of woman's love, if permitted to assert itself, as it. naturally would in freedom against oppression, violence and war, would hold all these destructive forces in check, for woman knows the cost of life better than man does, and not with her consent, would one drop of blood ever be shed, one life sacrificed in vain.

1.This is an extract of the speech given by Elizabeth Cady Stanton in 1868 at Women's suffrage

convention in Washington D.C. What should be the title of the speech?

(a) The Destructive Male

(b) The Power of Womanhood

(c) Woman Enfranchisement and a Better World

(d) Resurrection of Women

2. Which cluster best represents the masculine values portrayed in the passage:

(a) Individualism, Materialism, Aggrandizement, and Violence

(b) Egoism, Competition, Materialism, Greed

(c) Violence, Immorality, Competition, Anger

(d) All of the options

3.According to the passage why are women subjugated to men?

(a) Women do not have voting rights

(b) Women do not have economic power

(c) Women are intrinsically weak

(d) Both options (1) and (2) are correct

4. Which cluster portrays values of womanhood alluded to in the passage:

(a) Love, Life, Compassion

(b) Purity, Virtue, Morality

(c) Sentiments, Divinity, Forgiveness

(d) Both options (1) and (2) are correct

5. The author of the speech is:

(a) A Feminist

(b) A Man-hater

(c) An Activist

(d) A Misogynist

6. According to the passage which statement is correct:

(a) Men are destructive and selfish and women try to clone male qualities in order to survive

(b) Men destroy and women preserve.

(c) Subjugation of women has caused societies to become cruel, selfish and destructive

(d) Women are like nature, who always try to balance

7. What is the key inference that we can make from the passage:

(a) Female values which are life sustaining have got annihilated

(b) Male values are not balanced by female values

(c) Unchecked and untempered male values have caused destruction and misery in the world

(d) All inferences are correct

Para #2

Once surrounded and protected by vast wilderness, many of the national parks are adversely affected by activities outside their boundaries. The National Park Organic Act established the national park system and empowered the Secretary of the Interior to manage activities within the parks. Conditions outside park boundaries are not subject to regulation by the Park Service unless they involve the direct use of park resources.

Several approaches to protecting the national parks from external degradation have been proposed, such as one focusing on enacting federal legislation granting the National Park Service broader powers over lands adjacent to the national parks. Legislation addressing external threats to the national parks twice passed the House of Representatives but died without action in the Senate. Also brought to the table as a possible remedy is giving the states bordering the parks a significant and meaningful role in developing federal park management policy.

Because the livelihood of many citizens is linked to the management of national parks, local politicians often encourage state involvement in federal planning. But, state legislatures have not always addressed the fundamental policy issues of whether states should protect park wildlife.

Timber harvesting, ranching and energy exploration compete with wildlife within the local ecosystem. Priorities among different land uses are not generally established by current legislation. Additionally, often no mechanism exists to coordinate planning by the state environmental regulatory agencies. These factors limit the impact of legislation aimed at protecting park wildlife and the larger park ecosystem.

Even if these deficiencies can be overcome, state participation must be consistent with existing federal legislation. States lack jurisdiction within national parks themselves, and therefore state solutions cannot reach activities inside the parks, thus limiting state action to the land adjacent to the national parks. Under the supremacy clause, federal laws and regulations supersede state action if state law conflicts with federal legislation, if Congress precludes local regulation, or if federal regulation is so pervasive that no room remains for state control. Assuming that federal regulations leave open the possibility of state control, state participation in policy making must be harmonized with existing federal legislation.

The residents of states bordering national parks are affected by park management policies. They in turn affect the success of those policies. This interrelationship must be considered in responding to the external threats problem. Local participation is necessary in deciding how to protect park wildlife. Local interests should not, however, dictate national policy, nor should they be used as a pretext to ignore the threats to park regions.


1. What is the main purpose of the author in writing the passage?

A. argue that rampant timber harvesting is degrading national parks

B. describe a plan of action to resolve an issue

C. discuss different approaches to dealing with a problem

D. suggest that local participation is necessary to solve the problem described

E. to assert that national parks are adversely affected by activities outside their boundaries

2. The passage provides support for which of the following assertions?

A. The National Park Organic Act gave the Secretary of the Interior the right to overrule state government policy in lands adjacent to national parks.

B. The federal government has been selling national park land to state governments in order to raise money for wildlife conservation.

C. The actions of state governments have often failed to promote the interests of national park wildlife.

D. Local politicians want the federal government to turn control of national parks over to state governments.

E. Timber harvesting and energy exploration have not had any impact on national parks

3. In the context of the passage, the phrase external degradation (line 10) refers to which of the following:

A. threats to national parks arising from the House of Representative's willingness to address environmental issues.

B. threats to national parks arising from state government environmental policies.

C. threats to national parks arising from local politicians' calls for greater state involvement in national park planning.

D. threats to national parks arising from the National Park Organic Act.

E. threats to national parks arising from the lack of local support

4. According to the passage, which of the following developments is most likely if environmental cooperation between the federal government and state governments does not improve?

A. A further decline in the land area of national parks

B. A further increase in federal ownership of land adjacent to national parks

C. A further growth in the powers of the National Park Service

D. A further loss of species in national parks

E. A further increase in timber harvesting activities

#Para 3:

India is rushing headlong towards economic success and modernization, counting on high-tech industries such as information technology and biotechnology to propel the nation to prosperity. India's recent announcement that it would no longer produce unlicensed inexpensive generic pharmaceuticals bowed to the realities of the World Trade Organization while at the same time challenging the domestic drug industry to compete with the multinational firms. Unfortunately, its weak higher education sector constitutes the Achilles' heel of this strategy. Its systematic disinvestment in higher education in recent years has yielded neither world-class research nor many highly trained scholars, scientists or managers to sustain high-tech development.

India's main competitors – especially China, but also Singapore, Taiwan and South Korea – are investing in large and differentiated higher education systems. They are providing access to a large number of students at the bottom of the academic system while at the same time building some research – based universities that are able to compete with the world's best institutions. The recent London Times Higher Education Supplement ranking of the world's top 200 universities included three in China, three in Hong Kong, three in South Korea, one in Taiwan and one in India. These countries are positioning themselves for leadership in the knowledge-based economies of the coming era.

There was a time when countries could achieve economic success with cheap labour and low-tech manufacturing. Low wages still help, but contemporary large-scale development requires a sophisticated and at least partly knowledge-based economy. India has chosen that path, but will find a major stumbling block in its university system.

India has significant advantages in the 21st century knowledge race. It has a large higher education sector – the third largest in the world in terms of number of students, after China and the United States. It uses English as a primary language of higher education and research. It has a long academic tradition. Academic freedom is respected. There are a small number of high quality institutions, departments and centres that can form the basis of quality sector in higher education. The fact that the States, rather than the Central Govt., exercise major responsibility for higher education creates a rather cumbersome Structure, but the system allows for a variety of policies and approaches.

Yet the weaknesses far outweigh the strengths. India educates approximately 10 % of its young people in higher education compared to more than half in the major industrialized countries and 15 % In China. Almost all of the world's academic systems resemble a pyramid, with a small, high-quality tier at the top and a massive sector at the bottom. India has tiny top tier. None of its universities occupies a solid position at the top. A few of the best universities have some excellent departments and centres and there are a small number of outstanding undergraduate colleges. The University Grants Commission's recent major support to five universities to build on their recognized strength is a step towards recognizing a differentiated academic system and fostering excellence. These universities, combined, enroll well under one percent of the student population.

1. Which of the following is TRUE in the context of the passage?

(a) The top five universities in India educate more than 10% of Indian student population.

(b) India's higher education sector is the largest in the world.

( c) In the past, countries could progress economically through low manufacturing cost as well as low wages of labourers.

(d) India has recently invested heavy sums in the higher education sector leading to world-class research.

(e) All are true.

2. What does the phrase “Achilles heel” mean as used in the passage?

(a) Weakness (b) Quickness

(c) Low quality (d) Nimbleness

(e) Advantage

3. Which of the following is/are India's strength/s in terms of higher education?

(1) Its system of higher education allows variations.

(2) Medium of instruction for most higher learning is English.

(3) It has the paraphernalia, albeit small in number, to build a high-quality higher educational sector.

(a) Only (2) (b) Only (1) and (2)

(c) Only (3) (d) Only (2) and (3)

(e) All the three

4. What are the Asian countries, other than India, doing to head towards a knowledge-based economy?

(1) Building competitive research-based universities.

(2) Investing in diverse higher education systems.

(3) Providing access to higher education to select few students.

(a) Only (1) (b) Only (1) and (2)

(c) Only (2) and (3) (d) Only (2)

(e) All the three

5. Which of the following is possibly the most appropriate title for the passage?

(a) The Future of Indian Universities

(b) Methods of overcoming the Educational Deficit in India

(c) India and the Hunt for a Knowledge-based Economy

(d) Indian Economy Verses Chinese Economy

(e) Indian economy and its features

6. What did India agree to do at the behest of the World Trade Organization?

(a) It would stop manufacturing all types of pharmaceuticals.

(b) It would ask its domestic pharma companies to compete with the international ones.

(c) It would buy licensed drugs only from the USA.

(d) It would not manufacture cheap common medicines without a licence.

(e) None of these.

7. Which of the following is/are India's weakness/es when it comes to higher education?

(1) Indian universities do not have the requisite teaching faculty to cater to the needs of the higher education sector.

(2) Only five Indian universities occupy the top position very strongly in the academic pyramid when it comes to higher education.

(3) India has the least percentage of young population taking to higher education as compared to the rest of the comparable countries.

(a) Only (1) and (2) (b) Only (2)

(c) Only (3) (d) Only (1) and (3)

(e) All the three

8. Which of the following, according to the passage, is/are needed for the economic success of a country?

(1) Cheap labour

(2) Educated employees

(3) Research Institutions to cater to the needs of development.

(a) Only (1) and (2) (b) Only (2)

(c) Only (3) (d) Only (2) and (3)

(e) All the three

Suspicious as they are of American intentions, and bolstered by court rulings that seem to give them license to seek out and publish any and all government secrets, the media's distrust of our government, combined with their limited understanding of the world at large,

damages our ability to design and conduct good policy in ways that the media rarely imagine.

The leak through which sensitive information flows from the government to the press is detrimental to policy in so far as it almost completely precludes the possibility of serious discussion. The fear that anything they say, even in what is construed as a private forum, may appear in print, makes many people, whether our own government officials or the leaders of foreign countries, unwilling to speak their minds.

Must we be content with the restriction of our leaders' policy discussions to a handful of people who trust each other, thus limiting the richness and variety of ideas that could be brought forward through a larger group because of the nearly endemic nature of this problem? It is vitally important for the leaders of the United States to know the real state of affairs internationally, and this can occur only if foreign leaders feel free to speak their minds to our diplomats.

Until recently, it looked as if the media had convinced the public that journalists were more reliable than the government; however, this may be changing. With the passage of time, the media have lost lustre. They €”having grown large and powerful €”provoke the same public skepticism that other large institutions in the society do. A series of media scandals has contributed to this. Many Americans have concluded that the media are no more credible than the government, and public opinion surveys reflect much ambivalence about the press.

While leaks are generally defended by media officials on the grounds of the public's ۥright to know, in reality they are part of the Washington political power game, as well as part of the policy process. The "leaker" may be currying favour with the media, or may be planting information to influence policy. In the first case, he is helping himself by enhancing the prestige of a journalist; in the second, he is using the media as a stage for his preferred policies. In either instance, it closes the circle: the leak begins with a political motive, is advanced by a politicized media, and continues because of politics. Although some of the journalists think they are doing the work, they are more often than not instruments of the process, not prime movers. The media must be held accountable for their activities, just like every other significant institution in our society, and the media must be forced to earn the public's trust.


Based on the passage, when the media now challenge the actions of a public official, the public assumes that:

A. the official is always wrong.

B. the media is always wrong.

C. the media may be wrong.

D. the official and the media may both be wrong.

E. the public ignores this piece of news completely

No one is eager to touch off the kind of hysteria that preceded the government's decision to move against Alar, the growth regulator once used by apple growers. When celebrities like Meryl Streep spoke out against Alar and the press fanned public fears, some schools and parents rushed to pluck apples out of the mouths of children. Yet all this happened before scientists had reached any consensus about Alar's dangers.

Rhetoric about dioxin may push the same kind of emotional buttons.The chemical becomes relatively concentrated in fat-rich foods— including human breast milk. Scientists estimate that a substantial fraction of an individual's lifetime burden of dioxin—as much as 12%— is accumulated during the first year of life. Nonetheless, the benefits of breast-feeding infants, the EPA and most everyone else would agree, far outweigh the hazards. Now environmentalists say dioxin and scores of other chemicals pose a threat to human fertility—as scary an issue as any policymakers have faced.

But in the absence of conclusive evidence, what are policymakers to do? What measure can they take to handle a problem whose magnitude is unknown? Predictably, attempts to whipsaw public opinion have already begun. Corporate lobbyists urge that action be put on hold until science resolves the unanswered questions. Environmentalists argue that evidence for harm is too strong to permit delay. This issue is especially tough because the chemicals under scrutiny are found almost everywhere.


In the context of the passage, the author uses the term ―whipsaw public opinion‖ (line 23) to refer to:

A. changing the needs of the community.

B. convincing citizens to accept a polarized viewpoint on health hazards.

C. offering a variety of alternatives for health hazards.

D. acting irrationally in response to government policy.

E. convincing citizens to take decisions lacking in common sense

Arguments abound over whether marijuana should be legalized. Many of these arguments pertain to the lengthy federal guidelines for prison sentences meted out for what is considered a relatively petty crime. Others point out that marijuana is a drug that could, and should, be used for medicinal purposes. But most proponents of legalization ignore the mounting evidence which points to the long term damage to the user and for society as a whole.

In the Netherlands, marijuana has been legally available since 1976.Coffee shops sell cannabis over the counter in many parts of the 10 country. However, more people have tried cannabis since it has been legalized.

Medical research has repeatedly provided evidence that marijuana use causes permanent physical, psychological, and thus emotional damage to those who regularly use it. Studies at the University of Maryland and UCLA indicated that the regular smoking of only two marijuana cigarettes a day would tend to promote toe fungus and thrush. But over the years, much stronger claims have surfaced: heavy marijuana users perform poorly at work or school, are more likely to be delinquent and develop psychiatric problems, or have abnormal brain waves. Repeatedly, however, such studies encounter the same objection: are the problems caused by smoking marijuana, or is it just that people with problems are more likely to end up using marijuana heavily?

Marijuana is addictive. According to Wayne Hall, director of the National

Drug and Alcohol Research Centre at the University of New South Wales, Sydney, cannabis is not generally regarded as a drug of dependence because it does not have a clearly defined withdrawal syndrome. But that, he says, is an old-fashioned definition of addiction.

Research into marijuana's use as a medicine has proven either inconclusive or tended to show that its side effects rendered cannabis unsuitable as a drug. For instance, one study surveyed the use of cannabinoids to combat nausea following chemotherapy. While the tablets or injections were slightly more effective than standard treatments, their side effects, plus the recent development of new, more powerful drugs, makes them a poor choice for nausea relief. In her study, ۥCannabinoids were no more effective than codeine in controlling acute and chronic pain and they had undesirable effects in depressing the central nervous system, comments Eija Kalso of Helsinki University Hospital. Yet, under mounting pressure, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency has reluctantly agreed to provide funds for once again testing the 40 efficacy of marijuana as a medicine.


Which of the following can be inferred from the information in the passage?

A. It has now been proved without a doubt that marijuana is indeed harmful to humans

B. Marijuana has been unreasonably criticized by doctors

C. Netherland will soon make marijuana illegal

D. Marijuana has several harmful effects and probably some beneficial

ones as well

E. The US Drug enforcement Agency has decided to ban the use of


Henry Varnum Poor, editor of American Railroad Journal, drew the important elements of the image of the railroad together in 1851, ―Look at the results of this material progress...the vigor, life, and executive energy that followed in its train, rapidly succeeded by wealth, the refinement and intellectual culture of a high civilization. All this is typified, in a degree, by a locomotive. The combination in its construction of nice art and scientific application of power, its speed surpassing that of our proudest courser, and its immense strength, are all characteristic of our age and tendencies. To us, like the telegraph, it is essential, it constitutes a part of our nature, is a condition of our being what we are.‖

In the third decade of the nineteenth century, Americans began to define their character in light of the new railroads. They liked the idea that it took special people to foresee and capitalize on the promise of science. Railroad promoters, using the steam engine as a metaphor for what they thought Americans were and what they thought Americans were becoming, frequently discussed parallels between the locomotive and national character, pointing out that both possessed youth, power, speed, single-mindedness, and bright prospects.

Poor was, of course, promoting acceptance of railroads and enticing his readers to open their pocketbooks. But his metaphors had their dark side. A locomotive was quite unlike anything Americans had ever seen. It was large, mysterious and dangerous; many thought that it was a monster waiting to devour the unwary. There was a suspicion that a country founded upon Jeffersonian agrarian principles had bought a ticket and boarded a train pulled by some iron monster into the dark recesses of an unknown future.

To ease such public apprehensions, promoters, poets, editors, and writers alike adopted the notion that locomotives were really only ―iron horses, an early metaphor that lingered because it made steam technology ordinary and understandable. Iron horse metaphors assuaged fears about inherent defects in the national character, prompting images of a more secure future, and made an alien technology less frightening, and even comforting and congenial.

Essayist Ralph Waldo Emerson saw the locomotive as an agent of domestic harmony. He observed that ―the locomotive and the steamboat, like enormous shuttles, shoot every day across the thousand various threads of national descent and employment and bind them fast in one web,‖ adding ―an hourly assimilation goes forward, and there is no danger that local peculiarities and hostilities should be preserved. To us Americans, it seems to have fallen as a political aid. We could not else have held the vast North America together, which we now engage to do.

Q1. According to the passage, which of the following is most likely to be true about Ralph Waldo

Emerson's beliefs?

Directions for question: The passage given below is followed by a set of questions. Choose the best answer to each question.

The loss of the ancient world's single greatest archive of knowledge, the Library of Alexandria, has been lamented for ages. But how and why it was lost is still a mystery. The mystery exists not for lack of suspects but from an excess of them. Alexandria was founded in Egypt by Alexander the Great. His successor as Pharaoh, Ptolomy II Soter, founded the Museum or Royal Library of Alexandria in 283 BC. The Museum was a shrine of the Muses modeled after the Lyceum of Aristotle in Athens. The Museum was a place of study which included lecture areas, gardens, a zoo, and shrines for each of the nine muses as well as the Library itself. It has been estimated that at one time the Library of Alexandria held over half a million documents from Assyria, Greece, Persia, Egypt, India and many other nations. Over 100 scholars lived at the Museum full time to perform research, write, lecture or translate and copy documents. The library was so large it actually had another branch or “daughter” library at the Temple of Serapis. The first person blamed for the destruction of the Library is none other than Julius Caesar himself. In 48 BC, Caesar was pursuing Pompey into Egypt when he was suddenly cut off by an Egyptian fleet at Alexandria. Greatly outnumbered and in enemy territory, Caesar ordered the ships in the harbor to be set on fire. The fire spread and destroyed the Egyptian fleet. Unfortunately, it also burned down part of the city - the area where the great Library stood. Caesar wrote of starting the fire in the harbor but neglected to mention the burning of the Library. Such an omission proves little since he was not in the habit of including unflattering facts while writing his own history. But Caesar was not without public detractors. If he was solely to blame for the disappearance of the Library it is very likely significant documentation on the affair would exist today. The second story of the Library's destruction is more popular, thanks primarily to Edward Gibbon's “The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire”. But the story is also a tad more complex. Theophilus was Patriarch of Alexandria from 385 to 412 AD. During his reign the Temple of Serapis was converted into a Christian Church (probably around 391 AD) and it is likely that many documents were destroyed then. The Temple of Serapis was estimated to hold about ten percent of the overall Library of Alexandria's holdings. After his death, his nephew Cyril became Patriarch. Shortly after that, riots broke out when Hierax, a Christian monk, was publicly killed by order of Orestes the city Prefect. Orestes was said to be under the influence of Hypatia, a female philosopher and daughter of the “last member of the Library of Alexandria”. Although it should be noted that some count Hypatia herself as the last Head Librarian. Alexandria had long been known for it's violent and volatile politics. Christians, Jews and Pagans all lived together in the city. One ancient writer claimed that there were no people who loved a fight more than those of Alexandria. Immediately after the death of Hierax a group of Jews who had helped instigate his killing lured more Christians into the street at night by proclaiming that the Church was on fire. When the Christians rushed out the largely Jewish mob slew many of them. After this there was mass havoc as Christians retaliated against both the Jews and the Pagans - one of which was Hypatia. The story varies slightly depending upon who tells it but she was taken by the Christians, dragged through the streets and murdered. Some regard the death of Hypatia as the final destruction of the Library. Others blame Theophilus for destroying the last of the scrolls when he razed the Temple of Serapis prior to making it a Christian church Still others have confused both incidents and blamed Theophilus for simultaneously murdering Hypatia and destroying the Library though it is obvious Theophilus died sometime prior to Hypatia. The final individual to get blamed for the destruction is the Moslem Caliph Omar. In 640 AD the Moslems took the city of Alexandria. Upon learning of “a great library containing all the knowledge of the world” the conquering general supposedly asked Caliph Omar for instructions. The Caliph has been quoted as saying of the Library's holdings, “they will either contradict the Koran, in which case they are heresy, or they will agree with it, so they are superfluous.” So, allegedly, all the texts were destroyed by using them as tinder for the bathhouses of the city. Even then it was said to have taken six months to burn all the documents. But these details, from the Caliph's quote to the incredulous six months it supposedly took to burn all the books, weren't written down until 300 years after the fact. These facts condemning Omar were written by Bishop Gregory Bar Hebræus, a Christian who spent a great deal of time writing about Moslem atrocities without much historical documentation. So who did burn the Library of Alexandria? Unfortunately most of the writers from Plutarch (who apparently blamed Caesar) to Edward Gibbons (a staunch atheist or deist who liked very much to blame Christians and blamed Theophilus) to Bishop Gregory (who was particularly anti-Moslem, blamed Omar) all had an axe to grind and consequently must be seen as biased. Probably everyone mentioned above had some hand in destroying some part of the Library's holdings. The collection may have ebbed and flowed as some documents were destroyed and others were added. For instance, Mark Antony was supposed to have given Cleopatra over 200,000 scrolls for the Library long after Julius Caesar is accused of burning it. It is also quite likely that even if the Museum was destroyed with the main library the outlying “daughter” library at the Temple of Serapis continued on. Many writers seem to equate the Library of Alexandria with the Library of Serapis although technically they were in two different parts of the city. The real tragedy of course is not the uncertainty of knowing who to blame for the Library's destruction but that so much of ancient history, literature and learning was lost forever.

The tone of the passage is

Since the Hawaiian Islands have never been connected to other land masses, the great variety of plants in Hawaii must be a result of the long-distance dispersal of seeds, a process that requires both a method of transport and an equivalence between the ecology of the source area and that of the recipient area. There is some dispute about the method of transport involved. Some biologists argue that ocean and air currents are responsible for the transport of plant seeds to Hawaii. Yet the results of flotation experiments and the low temperatures of air currents cast doubt on these hypotheses. More probable is bird transport, either externally, by accidental attachment of the seeds to feathers, or internally, by the swallowing of fruit and subsequent excretion of the seeds. While it is likely that fewer varieties of plant seeds have reached Hawaii externally than internally, more varieties are known to be adapted to external than to internal transport.

Hello guys. I am a CAT 14 aspirant. I did prepare for CAT13 but cudnt fare well. Now i have left my job and decided to reappear for CAT. I had attended weekend lectures of TIME last year and so have a good grasp of basics. Please give ur suggestions as to how should i proceed with my preparation as i dont wana opt for classes now.....???

The question below contains a paragraph followed by alternative summaries. Choose the option that best captures the essence of the paragraph.

In The Birth of Tragedy Nietzsche presented his theory of the ancient dualism between two types of aesthetic experience, namely the Apollonian and the Dionysian; a dualism between the plastic "art of sculpture", of lyrical dream-inspiration, identity, order, regularity, and calm repose, and, on the other hand, the non-plastic "art of music", of intoxication, forgetfulness, chaos, and the ecstatic dissolution of identity in the collective. The analogy with the world of the Greek gods typifies the relationship between these extremes: two godsons, incompatible and yet inseparable. According to Nietzsche, both elements are present in any work of art.

Which of the following statements is not implied by the passage?

How quickly things change in the technology business! A decade ago, IBM was the awesome and undisputed king of the computer trade, universally feared and respected. A decade ago, two little companies called Intel and Microsoft were mere blips on the radar screen of the industry, upstart start-ups that had signed on to make the chips and software for IBM's new line of personal computers. Though their products soon became industry standards, the two companies remained protected children of the market leader. What happened since is a startling reversal of fortune. IBM is being ravaged by the worst crisis in the company's 79 year history. It is undergoing its fifth restructuring in the past seven years as well as seemingly endless rounds of job cuts and firings that have eliminated 100,000 jobs since 1985. Last week IBM announced to its shell-shocked investors that it lost $4.97 billion last year – the biggest loss in American corporate history. And just when IBM is losing ground in one market after another, Intel and Microsoft have emerged as the computer industry's most fearsome pair of competitors. The numbers on Wall Street tell a stunning story. Ten years ago, the market value of the stock of Intel and Microsoft combined amounted to about a tenth of IBM's. Last week, with IBM's stock at an 11-year low Microsoft's value surpassed its old mentor's for the first time ever ($26.76 billion to $26.48 billion) and Intel ($24.3 billion) is not far behind. While IBM is posting losses, Intel's profits jumped 30% and Microsoft's rose 44%. Both Intel, the world's largest supplier of computer chips, and Microsoft, the world's largest supplier of computer software, have assumed the role long played by Big Blue as the industry's pacesetter. What is taking place is a generational shift unprecedented in the information age – one recalls a transition in the US auto industry 70 years ago, when Alfred Sloan's upstart General Motors surpassed Ford Motor as America's No. 1 car maker. The transition also reflects the decline of computer manufacturers such as IBM. Wang and Unisys and the rise of companies like Microsoft, Intel and AT&T that create the chips and software to make the computers work. “Just like Dr. Frankenstein, IBM created these two monster competitors, “says Richard Shaffer publisher of the Computer Letter “Now even IBM is in danger of being trampled by the creations it unleashed.” Although Intel and Microsoft still have close relationships with Big Blue, there is little love lost between IBM and its potent progeny. IBM had an ugly falling-out with former partner Microsoft over the future of personal-computer software. Microsoft developed the now famous disk operating system for IBM-PC – called DOS – and later created the operating software for the next generation of IBM personal computers, the Personal System/2. When PS/2 and is operating system, OS/2, failed to catch on, a feud erupted over how the two companies would upgrade the system. Although they publicly patched things up, the partnership was tattered. IBM developed its own version of OS/2, which has so far failed to capture the industry's imagination. Microsoft's competing version, dubbed New Technology, or NT, will debut in a few months and will incorporate Microsoft's highly successful Windows program, which lets users juggle several programs at once. Windows NT, however, will offer more new features, such as the ability to link many computers together in a network and to safeguard them against unauthorized use. IBM and Intel have also been parting company. After relying almost exclusively on the Santa Clara, California company for the silicon chips that serve as computer brains, IBM has moved to reduce its dependence on Intel by turning to competing vendors. In Europe, IBM last year began selling a low-cost line of PC's called Ambra, which runs on chips made by Intel rival Advanced Micro Devices. IBM also demonstrated a sample PC using a chip made by another Intel enemy, Cyrix. And that October IBM said it would begin selling the company's own chips to outsiders in direct competition with Intel. IBM clearly fells threatened. And the wounded giant still poses the biggest threat to any further dominance by Intel and Microsoft. Last year, it teamed up with both companies most bitter rivals – Apple Computers and Motorola – to develop advanced software and microprocessors for a new generation of desktop computers. In selecting Apple and Motorola, IBM bypassed its longtime partners. Just as Microsoft's standard operating system runs only on computers built around Intel's computer chips, Apple's software runs only on Motorola's chips. Although IBM has pledged that the new system will eventually run on a variety of machines, it will initially run only computer programs written for Apple's Macintosh or IBM's OS/2. Its competitive juice now flowing, IBM last week announced that it and Apple Computer will deliver the operating system in 1994 – a year ahead of schedule.

Question Below

The communities of ants are sometimes very large, numbering even up to 500, individuals: and it is a lesson to us that no one has ever yet seen quarrel between any two ants belonging to the same community. On the other hand, it must be admitted that they are in hostility not only with most other insects, including ants of different species, but even with those of the same species if belonging to different communities. I have over and over again introduced ants from one of my nests into another nest of the same species; and they were invariably attacked, seized by a leg or an antenna, and dragged out. It is evident, therefore, that the ants of each community all recognize one another, which is very remarkable. But more than this, I several times divided a nest into two halves and found that even after separation of a year and nine months they recognize one another and were perfectly friendly, while they at once attacked ants from a different nest, although of the same species.

It has been suggested that the ant of each nest have some sign or password by which they recognize one another. To test this I made some of them insensible, first I tried chloroform; but this was fatal to them, and I did not consider the test satisfactory. I decided therefore to intoxicate them. This was less easy than I had expected. None of my ants would voluntarily degrade themselves by getting drunk. However, I got over the difficulty by putting them into whisky for a few moments. I took fifty specimens - - twenty five percent from one nest and twenty five percent from another made them dead drunk, market each with a spot of paint, and put them on a table close to where other ants from one the nests were feeding. The table was surrounded as usual with a moat of water to prevent them from straying. The ants, which were feeding, soon noticed those, which I had made drunk. They seemed quite astonished to find their comrades in such a disgraceful condition, and as much at a loss to know what to do with their drunkards as we were. After a while, however, they carried them all away; the strangers they took to the edge of the moat and dropped into the water, while they bore their friends home into the nest, where by degrees they slept off the effects of the spirits. Thus it is evident that they know their friends even when incapable of giving any sign or password.

Although the author is a scientist, his style of writing also exhibits a quality of :-

Ten years after its birth, Google is threatening to re-open the “Browser Wars” of the 1990’s, when Microsoft’s Internet Explorer eliminated its rival, Netscape’s Navigator. This time, however, it is Google’s Chrome that promises to transform the economics underlying the entire software industry, and not only because of its technical innovation in linking very different kinds of software to an Internet browser. In doing so it eliminates the need for a program such as Windows, which previously controlled access to every kind of software. Google’s new technology is impressive, and will no doubt prove convenient for many consumers once the initial security problems are resolved. But the fundamental innovation lies elsewhere. Chrome is a breakthrough because it offers a completely novel approach to a dilemma created by the legal and regulatory regime of competition policy in the world’s two major legal jurisdictions, the United States and the European Union. Between 1995 and 1997, Explorer almost completely eradicated Navigator, although Navigator had initially opened up the World Wide Web for most users and its dominance appeared unassailable. The major advantage of Explorer was not so much a technical one, but rather that Microsoft’s Windows provided the operating software for the overwhelming majority of personal computers. As a result, an Internet browser - and, indeed, other media software - could be integrated into the Windows framework as an entire software package. The ability to have operating systems and software bundled together made life much easier for the average consumer. You simply got everything you wanted (and probably much more) with the purchase of a computer. But this also reduced the possibility of choice, of selecting and combining different software. Microsoft’s critics have complained endlessly about this, claiming that the browser’s integration into the operating system drove out inherently superior software solutions. For instance, many users preferred the word-processing program Word Perfect to Microsoft’s Word, but the ease of having a bundled solution meant that Word had the advantage of being used more widely, and thus drove its rival into extinction. Microsoft’s advantage, and its business model, goes back to another protracted legal struggle. Computer software was originally not a commodity to be bought, but a service. IBM built up a massively dominant position because it leased a carefully custom-designed and individualized package. It did not sell anything, computers or software. IBM’s leasing model seemed to challenge the entire legal philosophy of US competition policy that was established in the New Deal era. President Franklin.

Court rejected this approach, his administration started to use competition policy to challenge the positions of market-dominant companies. Competition policy, however, faces great difficulty in dealing with industries in which technical breakthroughs can create apparently instant monopolies. In line with the philosophy of challenging dominant positions, the US Department of Justice in 1969 started a major investigation of IBM, which had just revolutionized business computing with its 360 line. The case dragged on until it was dismissed in 1982 as being “without merit.” But so long as the anti-trust case remained a threat, IBM was nervous, and began to back away from its business model. Microsoft’s current position is a direct outcome of the old anti-trust case pushed against IBM. When IBM launched its personal computer, it could easily have bundled it together with its own operating software, and in this way maintained its dominance. But, worried that the US authorities would accuse it of attempting to control a new market, IBM left the Disk Operating System (DOS) for the new PCs to a tiny new company that no one saw as a threat: Microsoft. Of course, Microsoft ran into its own legal troubles when it took over IBM’s former dominant position, waging long drawn-out court cases on both sides of the Atlantic. The EU, which has looked increasingly to the US model for competition law, began proceedings against Microsoft in 1993. The US started only after Microsoft’s victory in the browser wars, with a case beginning in 1998. Initially, both cases went decisively against Microsoft, with a US ruling in 2000 that would have required the company’s break-up, although this was subsequently overturned on appeal. Google’s position is so interesting and so powerful because the legal philosophy that challenges any ascendant position, even in an industry that seems naturally to produce monopoly, remains in place. Leasing software and hardware, as IBM initially did, is problematic. But so is selling computer services on a one-time basis, in the manner of Microsoft. By contrast, on the face of it, there cannot be anything wrong with offering services or products for free, and then simply using the resulting advertising possibilities. Google’s model is a neat example of what might be termed “post-modern economics.” The amazing story of technical innovation is that it was, and remains, hard for innovators to benefit from radical technological breakthroughs. Industrial Revolution-era cotton makers in England did not make a great deal of money, even though their products revolutionized personal life and hygiene, and even extended life expectancy. In our own time, air travel has become much cheaper, but airlines lose money; telephoning is no longer unaffordable, but the telecommunications companies lost fortunes by over-bidding for mobile telephony rights. Google has taken the logic of loss-making technology to its ultimate culmination of not charging at all for its product.

49. Why does the writer say that Google’s model ‘is a neat example of what might be termed “post-modern economics”’?

Hi people , 

People say that for cracking CAT one should be a eclectic reader , but it is not possible to read on all these:- history , philosophy , sociology , literature , economy , psychology  , science , etc . So an idea came to my mind : that we can read articles / editorials for these topics . I request everyone to share all the good links that one may know of on this post (as comments) so that we all can make use of them .

I know of these :- 





Thanks in advance to all for sharing 

This should help