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Double Shifts

The passage provides an in-depth analysis of how to approach text completion questions on the GRE, focusing on understanding the function of 'reversers' like 'notwithstanding' and their impact on sentence structure and meaning.
  • Understanding 'notwithstanding' and similar words ('nonetheless', 'regardless') as reversers that split the sentence into contrasting parts is crucial.
  • The complexity of sentences in text completion questions often involves multiple shifts or reversals in meaning, necessitating careful analysis of each part of the sentence.
  • Identifying the correct word to complete the sentence requires understanding the overall sentiment or meaning being conveyed, especially in the presence of reversers that alter sentence direction.
  • The example provided illustrates how to dissect a sentence to find clues that lead to the correct answer by understanding the role of reversers and the overall sentence structure.
Understanding Reversers
Analyzing Sentence Complexity
Choosing the Correct Word

Q. Why doesn’t consideration work as the answer?

A. Consideration does fit, but not nearly as well as exaltation. Here's why:

  • The sentence is setting up a contrast ("Notwithstanding") between public opinion of the diva ("idolatrous reception from adoring fans") and "those close to her" ("familiar with her myriad shortcomings").
  • Because it's a contrast, and the word in the blank is preceded by a negating phrase ("hardly worthy"), we want to fill the blank with a word that means as close to "idolatrous reception from adoring fans" as possible. That's why "exaltation" fits best, since "hardly worthy of exaltation" is truly the opposite of "idolatrous reception from adoring fans.”
  • The reason that "consideration" doesn’t work is because it's too neutral of a word. While "consideration" can mean "high regard, esteem," it can also mean considering someone, or taking someone/something in to account. "Exaltation" is definitely closer to the overwhelming positive connotation of "adoration" and the phrase "idolatrous reception from adoring fans.”