Verse and Meter: Question Set 1

by Lincoln Smith

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    00:00 Let's kick this off with question 1. Which of the following conclusions about verse is most defensible? Based on the information in the passage, the word that jumps up to me here is "most." We're looking for an answer that may not be perfect but is backed up by more evidence than the other ones.

    00:20 C and D aren’t really discussed. Prose uses no "high-key" language for C or for D, verse is a more important art form in prose.

    00:35 That leaves us between A and B. Verse does not persuade through logic, A and B, verse must be accompanied by music to be fully understood.

    00:45 I think we need a citation to distinguish between these two. Let's move over to the passage.

    00:51 The citation I used is "As music ever introduces emotion which is indeed her proper and only means of persuading, so the natural language of verse will be keyed higher.

    01:03 So, the "natural language of verse" is intricately tied to music per the arguments of the passage.

    01:12 And music persuades through emotion. So I think the most defensible, the most reasonable conclusion we could drop is that verse does not persuade through logic answer choice A.

    01:25 Question 2 drills down into a similar portion of the passage.

    01:30 Which of the following statements most accurately describes the relationship between music and emotion as explained by the author? Let me maybe start by drawing out how the author distinguishes verse from prose in the passage.

    01:44 We traced out that difference to music which verse never quite forgets.

    01:50 Music ever introduces emotion into verse and then that emotion becomes a point of "persuading." Once we understand this framework, we have a pretty direct understanding that the answer choice D, music introduces emotion into verse would be the correct answer selection.

    02:09 Question 3 states "What could be said about individuals who believed Calliope was more of a scribe than a musician?" As we saw from the passage, Calliope is the Muse of the Epic.

    02:25 An epic is an example of verse and therefore we can view Calliope as kind of a stand-in for the discussion of verse.

    02:34 Our question can then be brought down to "What do these individuals in the question feel about verse?" So for that, you need a few quotes.

    02:45 So we take these statues of the muse from the Vatican, noble but no early date and Calliope is holding a stylus and a tablet.

    02:55 So in other words, verse is not intricately type of music, it's strictly something that is a written discipline.

    03:04 Then, we have yet the earlier Calliope states through the voice of Homer "For what purpose does the poet wish for a thousand tongues but to sing? For what purpose of thousand hands, but to pluck the wires?" So the earlier Calliope ties verse more to music.

    03:24 So, those who believed that Calliope was more of a scribe than a musician accept more of the Vatican view of Calliope than those who accept the Homer version.

    03:37 This aligns best to answer choice C, these individuals might be more reluctant to see music as the defining feature of verse because they view Calliope as holding that stylus and tablet.

    03:48 Question 4 then states "How does the author assess Coleridge's hypothesis about the origins of meter?" We got a number of great quotes concerning Coledrige but the ones I want to focus on are right here.

    04:03 But in any rate, on the principle that the 2 hypotheses each in itself adequate we should choose the simpler, I suggest we should do better with our own than Coleridge's, which has the further disadvantage of being scarcely amenable to positive evidence.

    04:19 As we look to the answer selections, is Coleridge simply incorrect? Is he inadequate? Is he more complex than the author's thesis or is it essentially the same but in a more philosophical fashion? We need to look at what's highlighted first here.

    04:36 This is known as Occam's razor, where given two competing hypotheses of equal merit, the simpler of the two should be accepted.

    04:45 And that aligns best to answer selection C that the author is simply saying Coleridge's hypothesis is more complex and for that reason alone minus superior." Question 5 states "The author consistently presents a particular type of evidence in support of his argument about the nature of verse.

    05:06 Which of the following pieces of evidence is least consistent with that type of evidence?" We actually pointed out this type of evidence as we walk through the passage so take a moment to see if you can recall how the author like to poster his points of view.

    05:20 Okay? So, what we saw is that the author likes to cite well-known historical examples where this maybe gets a little confusing is the word least here.

    05:31 So we're looking for all the answer selections that will have historical examples, they will choose the one that maybe doesn't.

    05:39 We look through B, C, and D, we cite ancient Athens, we cite Homer's Iliad, D cites Homer's Odyssey whereas A simply cites Writing and Rhythm.

    05:51 That's a book that quite frankly no one's heard about, but the author is being enlisted and to read the whole answer choice here according to Writing and Rhythm verse results from divine inspiration while prose is a distinctly human endeavour.

    06:05 That would maybe suggest that the author was bolstering his viewpoints by contrasting divine inspiration with human endeavour.

    06:12 Something that we don't see throughout the passage.

    06:14 So we can safely select answer choice A as being least consistent with how the author posted his points of view.

    06:21 Lastly for this passage, question 6 states "In the final paragraph, the author points out a challenge concerning evidence with Coleridge's hypothesis about verse.

    06:31 Which of the following pieces of evidence will be most likely to address that challenge? For these types of questions, it is good to read the answer selections first before going through our own logic because they're necessary before we start that process.

    06:44 Answer selection A states a poem by Sappho about her creative process.

    06:48 Answer choice B states a vase painting showing an audience charmed by a poet.

    06:53 Answer choice C states a book of lyric poetry predating Homer.

    06:57 And answer choice D states a critical essay praising the muses.

    07:02 I think we also need a good quote here. So let's jump over to the passage.

    07:07 As Coleridge states, and first for the origin of meter, this I would trace to the balance in the mind effected by that spontaneous effort which strives to hold and check the workings of passion.

    07:18 And then further the author states that Coleridge's hypothesis has the disadvantage of being scarcely amenable to positive evidence.

    07:26 Therefore, we want to look for the answer selection that Coleridge's hypothesis can't be evaluated by positive evidence.

    07:34 Since Coleridge talks about Sappho, a poet whose works are notably famous in ancient Greece but kind of lost in terms of their recorded form, if somehow we were able to recover it for answer selection A, a poem by her about how she created her work then there actually would be positive evidence to evaluate 4 origins to Coleridge's hypothesis.

    07:59 So we would choose answer selection A for question 6.

    About the Lecture

    The lecture Verse and Meter: Question Set 1 by Lincoln Smith is from the course CARS Passage Walkthroughs.

    Author of lecture Verse and Meter: Question Set 1

     Lincoln Smith

    Lincoln Smith

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