108 CARS Passages (Section3, Passage4, Q21 and 23, P49)

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108 CARS Passages (Section3, Passage4, Q21 and 23, P49)

Post by diana1998l » Thu Aug 15, 2019 7:00 pm

For question 21, option A, the explanation states that: "the author does not say anything about greater diversity being formed by combining Canadian food products with Eastern European cooking."
The author does say this: "European contact with the Americas meant that food products from the New World such as maize and potatoes eventually became available, and this allowed for Eastern Europeans to experiment with, and create, still more dishes than ever more diversity than would have been possible using only Old World ingredients." [emphasis added]. Since Canada is part of the Americas, does this not qualify as an example of what's mentioned in option A?
Furthermore, I can't find any mention of option C in the last paragraph, which is where the explanation says I should look. Any elaboration on this point would be appreciated.

As for question 23, the explanation for B states that "there is no language in the passage suggesting that Eastern Europe is especially likely to experiment with cuisine, compared with other regions." However, the passage does mention several examples of Eastern Europe experimenting with food (in paragraphs 2 and 3), while not saying much about other regions. Although the passage does give examples of building on imported cuisine in North America, the entirety of the third paragraph is devoted to foreign influences in Eastern European cuisine. If Eastern Europeans had not experimented with the foreigner's cuisine, they would have effectively insulated themselves from any foreign influence, so the third paragraph is effectively examples of Eastern European culinary experimentation. I don't think you could say that North America is more likely to experiment than Eastern Europe, at most you could say that the two regions are equal.
Furthermore, there is no indication that either kohlrabi or dumplings ever made their way to North America, at least not in the passage. However, the second paragraph mentions "widespread use" of dumplings in Eastern Europe, and the question stem states that kohlrabi is already a staple of many Eastern European dishes. While "a strong history of using an ingredient does not necessarily mean that new dishes containing that ingredient will appear", it surely will increase the likelihood, especially if you consider that the passage states that "the ready availability of local ingredients" is a reason why a dish might take root in a culture. Meanwhile, if that food does not exist in a particular region, that certainly precludes any possibility of dishes using that ingredient.
My point is that while the evidence for B requires ignoring the author's point about experimentation in Eastern Europe, option A, although imperfect, is supported by evidence in multiple points of the passage.
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Re: 108 CARS Passages (Section3, Passage4, Q21 and 23, P49)

Post by NS_Tutor_Mathias » Mon Aug 19, 2019 2:45 pm

The author implies that what grew in Canada, not all the Americas, in particular had a large degree of overlap with what was growing in Europe. This is opposite answer choice A.

You are correct that the author says that what was grown in the Americas would have contributed to increased diversity, but they also say that what was grown in Canada simply contributed to the cuisine taking hold due to the large degree of similarity (When settling an area, it is a very clear advantage if you already know how to cook what is locally available!).

I would be with you on this one, for the most part.

The author's position is somewhat defensible considering their rationale, but the way the question is constructed (not giving a particular time frame for when this recipe is 'new', after an entire passage whose premise is that culinary influence is complicated, is not really setting the stage for answer B to be convincingly the best) leaves this question a little weak. CARS is an imperfect science, and occasionally gaps like this one will exist - a lot simply hinges on the question being structured without any ambiguity. Notice how on your previous question, #21, the question was actually phrased such that the potential answer choice does match up without flaw. Expect to see that kind of attention to detail on AAMC material!

In a pinch, CARS will generally prefer direct evidence when available. The direct evidence of innovation in Canada from the passage should clue you in that this is the simplest and best answer.
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