reading-comprehension

Reading Comprehension

Reading Comprehension: English Reading Comprehension Exercises with Answers, Sample Passages for Reading Comprehension Test for GRE, CAT, IELTS preparation

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English Reading Comprehension Test Questions and Answers. Improve your ability to read and comprehend English Passages

Q356. > Economist, ethicists and business experts persuade us that honesty is > the best policy, but their evidence is weak. We hoped to find data > that would support their theories and thus, perhaps, encourage higher > standards of business behaviour. To our surprise, their pet theories > failed to stand up. Treachery, we found, can pay. There is no > compelling economic reason to tell the truth or keep one’s word. > Punishment for the treacherous in the real world is neither swift nor > sure. > Honesty is, in fact, primarily a moral choice. Business people do tell themselves that, in the long run, they will do well by doing > good. But there is little factual or logical basis for this > conviction. Without values, without a basic preference of right over > wrong, trust based on such delusion would crumble in the face of > temptation. Most of us choose virtue because we want to believe in > ourselves and because others respect and believe us. > And due to this, we should be happy. We can be proud of a system in which people are honest because they want to be, not because they > have to be. Materially, too, trust based on morality provides great > advantages. It allows us to join in great and exciting enterprises > that we could never undertake if we relied on economic incentives > alone. > Economists tell us that trust is enforced in the market place through retaliation and reputation. If you violate a trust, your > victim is apt to seek revenge and others are likely to stop doing > business with you, at least under favourable terms. A man or woman > with a reputation for fair dealing will prosper. Therefore, profit > maximisers are honest. This sounds plausible enough until you look for > concrete examples. Cases that apparently demonstrate the awful > consequences of trust turn out to be few and weak, while evidence that > treachery can pay seems compelling. Which of the following phrases is most nearly the same in meaning as the word ‘persuade’ as it has been used in the passage?

  1.  Give an assurance
  2.  Give an opinion
  3.  Try to convince
  4.  Cheat
  5.  Compel

Solution : Try to convince
Q357. > Economist, ethicists and business experts persuade us that honesty is > the best policy, but their evidence is weak. We hoped to find data > that would support their theories and thus, perhaps, encourage higher > standards of business behaviour. To our surprise, their pet theories > failed to stand up. Treachery, we found, can pay. There is no > compelling economic reason to tell the truth or keep one’s word. > Punishment for the treacherous in the real world is neither swift nor > sure. > Honesty is, in fact, primarily a moral choice. Business people do tell themselves that, in the long run, they will do well by doing > good. But there is little factual or logical basis for this > conviction. Without values, without a basic preference of right over > wrong, trust based on such delusion would crumble in the face of > temptation. Most of us choose virtue because we want to believe in > ourselves and because others respect and believe us. > And due to this, we should be happy. We can be proud of a system in which people are honest because they want to be, not because they > have to be. Materially, too, trust based on morality provides great > advantages. It allows us to join in great and exciting enterprises > that we could never undertake if we relied on economic incentives > alone. > Economists tell us that trust is enforced in the market place through retaliation and reputation. If you violate a trust, your > victim is apt to seek revenge and others are likely to stop doing > business with you, at least under favourable terms. A man or woman > with a reputation for fair dealing will prosper. Therefore, profit > maximisers are honest. This sounds plausible enough until you look for > concrete examples. Cases that apparently demonstrate the awful > consequences of trust turn out to be few and weak, while evidence that > treachery can pay seems compelling. Which of the following is false according to the passage?

  1.  All dishonest men are not caught
  2.  Economists believe that all businessmen are dishonest
  3.  Generally people are honest so as to earn self-respect
  4.  Virtuous behaviour earns the respect of others
  5.  Honesty is good for business to prosper

Solution : Economists believe that all businessmen are dishonest

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Q358. > Economist, ethicists and business experts persuade us that honesty is > the best policy, but their evidence is weak. We hoped to find data > that would support their theories and thus, perhaps, encourage higher > standards of business behaviour. To our surprise, their pet theories > failed to stand up. Treachery, we found, can pay. There is no > compelling economic reason to tell the truth or keep one’s word. > Punishment for the treacherous in the real world is neither swift nor > sure. > Honesty is, in fact, primarily a moral choice. Business people do tell themselves that, in the long run, they will do well by doing > good. But there is little factual or logical basis for this > conviction. Without values, without a basic preference of right over > wrong, trust based on such delusion would crumble in the face of > temptation. Most of us choose virtue because we want to believe in > ourselves and because others respect and believe us. > And due to this, we should be happy. We can be proud of a system in which people are honest because they want to be, not because they > have to be. Materially, too, trust based on morality provides great > advantages. It allows us to join in great and exciting enterprises > that we could never undertake if we relied on economic incentives > alone. > Economists tell us that trust is enforced in the market place through retaliation and reputation. If you violate a trust, your > victim is apt to seek revenge and others are likely to stop doing > business with you, at least under favourable terms. A man or woman > with a reputation for fair dealing will prosper. Therefore, profit > maximisers are honest. This sounds plausible enough until you look for > concrete examples. Cases that apparently demonstrate the awful > consequences of trust turn out to be few and weak, while evidence that > treachery can pay seems compelling. Which of the following best describes what the author is trying to point out through the last sentence of the passage, ‘Cases that…..compelling’?

  1.  The consequences of business
  2.  Theories seem ambiguous
  3.  Economists predict incorrectly
  4.  The contradictions is unreal
  5.  The consequences of truth are good and pleasant in most cases and drawbacks are minimum.

Solution : The consequences of truth are good and pleasant in most cases and drawbacks are minimum.
Q359. > The task which Gandhiji undertook was not only the achievement of > political freedom but also the establishment of a social order based > on truth and non-violence, unity and peace, equality and universal > brotherhood, and maximum freedom for all. This unfinished part of his > experiment was perhaps even more difficult to achieve than the > achievement of political freedom. Political struggle involved fight > against a foreign power and all one could do was either join it or > wish it success and give it his moral support. In establishing the > social order of this pattern, there was a lively possibility of a > conflict arising between groups and classes of our own people. > Experience shows that man values his possessions even more than his > life because in the former he sees the means for perpetuation and > survival of his descendants even after his body is reduced to ashes. A > new order cannot be established without radically changing the mind > and attitude of men towards property and, at some stage or the other, > the ‘haves’ have to yield place to the ‘have-nots’. We have seen, in > our time, attempts to achieve a kind of egalitarian society and the > picture of it after it was achieved. But this was done, by and large, > through the use of physical force. > In the ultimate analysis, it is difficult, if not impossible, to say that the instinct to possess has been rooted out or that it will > not reappear in an even worse from under a different guise. It may > even be that, like a gas kept confined within containers under great > pressure, or water held by a big dam, once a barrier breaks, the > reaction will one day sweep back with a violence equal in extent and > intensity to what was used to establish and maintain the outward > egalitarian form. This enforced egalitarianism contains, in its bosom, > the seed of its own destruction. > The root cause of class conflict is possessiveness or the acquisitive instinct. So long as the ideal that is to be achieved is > one of securing the maximum material satisfaction, possessiveness can > neither be suppressed nor eliminated but will grow on what it feeds. > Nor will it cease to be such- it is possessiveness, still, whether it > is confined to only a few or is shared by many. > If egalitarianism is to endure, it has to be based not on the possession of the maximum material goods by a few or by all but on > voluntary, enlightened renunciation of those goods which cannot be > shared by others or can be enjoyed only at the expense of others. This > calls for substitution of spiritual values for purely material ones. > The paradise of material satisfaction, that is sometimes equated with > progress these days neither spells peace nor progress. Mahatma Gandhi > has shown us how the acquisitive instinct inherent in man could be > transmuted by the adoption of the ideal of trusteeship by those who > ‘have’ for the benefit of all those who ‘have not’ so that, instead of > leading to exploitation and conflict, it would become a means and > incentive for the amelioration and progress of society, respectively. According to the passage, egalitarianism will not survive if

  1.  It is based on voluntary renunciation
  2.  It is achieved by resorting to physical force
  3.  Underprivileged people are not involved in its establishment
  4.  People’s outlook towards it is not radically changed
  5.  None of these

Solution : People’s outlook towards it is not radically changed

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Q360. > The task which Gandhiji undertook was not only the achievement of > political freedom but also the establishment of a social order based > on truth and non-violence, unity and peace, equality and universal > brotherhood, and maximum freedom for all. This unfinished part of his > experiment was perhaps even more difficult to achieve than the > achievement of political freedom. Political struggle involved fight > against a foreign power and all one could do was either join it or > wish it success and give it his moral support. In establishing the > social order of this pattern, there was a lively possibility of a > conflict arising between groups and classes of our own people. > Experience shows that man values his possessions even more than his > life because in the former he sees the means for perpetuation and > survival of his descendants even after his body is reduced to ashes. A > new order cannot be established without radically changing the mind > and attitude of men towards property and, at some stage or the other, > the ‘haves’ have to yield place to the ‘have-nots’. We have seen, in > our time, attempts to achieve a kind of egalitarian society and the > picture of it after it was achieved. But this was done, by and large, > through the use of physical force. In the ultimate analysis, it is > difficult, if not impossible, to say that the instinct to possess has > been rooted out or that it will not reappear in an even worse from > under a different guise. It may even be that, like a gas kept confined > within containers under great pressure, or water held by a big dam, > once a barrier breaks, the reaction will one day sweep back with a > violence equal in extent and intensity to what was used to establish > and maintain the outward egalitarian form. This enforced > egalitarianism contains, in its bosom, the seed of its own > destruction. The root cause of class conflict is possessiveness or the > acquisitive instinct. So long as the ideal that is to be achieved is > one of securing the maximum material satisfaction, possessiveness can > neither be suppressed nor eliminated but will grow on what it feeds. > Nor will it cease to be such- it is possessiveness, still, whether it > is confined to only a few or is shared by many. If egalitarianism > is to endure, it has to be based not on the possession of the maximum > material goods by a few or by all but on voluntary, enlightened > renunciation of those goods which cannot be shared by others or can be > enjoyed only at the expense of others. This calls for substitution of > spiritual values for purely material ones. The paradise of material > satisfaction, that is sometimes equated with progress these days > neither spells peace nor progress. Mahatma Gandhi has shown us how the > acquisitive instinct inherent in man could be transmuted by the > adoption of the ideal of trusteeship by those who ‘have’ for the > benefit of all those who ‘have not’ so that, instead of leading to > exploitation and conflict, it would become a means and incentive for > the amelioration and progress of society, respectively. According to the passage, why does man value his possessions more than his life?

  1.  He has an inherent desire to share his possessions with others
  2.  He is endowed with the possessive instinct
  3.  Only his possessions help him earn love and respect from his descendants
  4.  Through his possessions he can preserve his name even after his death
  5.  None of these

Solution : He is endowed with the possessive instinct
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