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PrepTest 73, Logical Reasoning 2, Question 9


Question nine asks how a statement figures into the argument. We call that a role of a statement question. And our job on role of a statement questions is to recognize in the answer choices a correct description of how a part of the argument factors into the overall argument. Describe the function or the way it's used.

The thing we're being asked about is the statement, that there is no evidence that Bosch was a member of the Brethren. But before we can figure out how it figures in the argument, we have to understand the argument. The argument's conclusion is this first sentence. Fraenger asserted that this artist Bosch belonged to the Brethren of the Free Spirit, a nonmainstream religious group.

And our author says that that assertion is unlikely to be correct. We get some evidence for that. Actually, the next sentence isn't evidence for that conclusion, but rather a piece of counter-evidence that the author dismisses. So Fraenger's hypothesis, well sure, it does explain Bosch's weird subject matter. So that might be a reason that you would support Fraenger, but our author has evidence against him.

He says first, there is evidence that Bosch was a member of a mainstream church, the Brethren aren't mainstream. And then the second thing is there's no evidence that Bosch was a member of the Brethren. So each of those last two pieces of evidence are used to argue against Fraenger's assertion.

And we're being asked about the second of them, so it's evidence against Fraenger. That's what we're looking for in the answer choices. Answer choice A, it's a premise. Well sure, it is a premise. But this answer choice goes too far, because it says that the premise guarantees the falsity of Fraenger's assertion, and our author only said that Fraenger was unlikely to be correct.

We can't pick an answer that misdescribes what happened, so A's not the answer. Answer choice B, it's used to support the claim that Bosch was a member of a mainstream church. The author does say that Bosch is a member of a mainstream church, but that second part doesn't support it. So B is not our answer.

C, it's used to dispute Fraenger's hypothesis. Sure, that much works, but our author didn't question Fraenger's credibility. That would be calling Fraenger a liar, and the author never said that. He just said he doesn't have evidence. So C's not the answer. D, it is intended to cast doubt on Fraenger's hypothesis.

Well, sure it does that by questioning the sufficiency of Fraenger's evidence, sure. He shows that Fraenger doesn't have enough evidence. So his evidence is not sufficient. D is what we want. It's exactly the part of the argument we're being asked about, described in the right way.

So then, why is E wrong? The author never said this at all. The author never said that Bosch's choice of subject matter remains unexplained. So this is a complete non-sequitur. So thus, our answer was answer choice D.

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