Comprehension Practice Set
From UGC NET June 2015
Directions: Read the following passage carefully and answer the questions given below it. You are required to select your answers based on the contents of the passage and opinion of the author only.
Story telling is not in our genes. Neither it is an evolutionary history. It is the essence of what makes us Human.
Human beings progress by telling stories. One event can result in a great variety of stories being told about it. Sometimes those stories differ greatly. Which stories are picked up and repeated and which ones are dropped and forgotten often determine how we progress. Our history, knowledge and understanding are all the collections of the few stories that survive. This includes the stories that we tell each other about the future. And how the future will turn out depends partly, possibly largely, on which stories we collectively choose to believe.
Some stories are designed to spread fear and concern. This is because some story-tellers feel that there is a need to raise some tensions. Some stories are frightening , they are like totemic warnings : "Fail to act now and we are all doomed." Then there are stories that indicate that all will be fine so long as we leave everything upto a few especially able adults. Currently, this trend is being led by those who call themselves "rational optimists". They tend to claim that it is human nature to compete and to succeed and also to profit at the expense of others. The rational optimists however, do not realize how humanity has progressed overtime through amiable social networks and how large groups work in less selfishness and in the process accommodate rich and poor, high and low alike. This aspect in story-telling is considered by the 'Practical Possibles', who sit between those who say all is fine and cheerful and be individualistic in your approach to a successful future, and those who ordain pessimism and fear that we are doomed. What the future holds for us is which stories we hold on to and how we act on them.
1. Our knowledge is a collection of
(a) all stories that we have heard during our life-time.
(b) some stories that we remember.
(c) a few stories that survive.
(d) some important stories.
2. Story-telling is
(a) an art
(b) a science
(c) in our genes
(d) the essence of what makes us human
3. How the future will turn out to be, depends upon the stories
(a) We collectively choose to believe in
(b) Which are repeatedly narrated
(c) Designed to spread fear and tension
(d) Designed to make prophecy
4. Rational optimists :
(i) Look for opportunities
(ii) Are sensible and cheerful
(iii)Are selfishly driven
(a) (i), (ii) and (iii)
(b) (i) only
(c) (i) and (ii) only
(d) (ii) and (iii) only
5. Humans become less selfish when
(a) they work in large groups
(b) they listen to frightening stories
(c) they listen to cheerful stories
(d) they work in solitude
6. 'Practical Possibles' are the ones who
(a) follow Midway Path
(b) are doom-mongers
(c) are self-centered
(d) are cheerful and carefree