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# Polygamy in Africa has been a popular topic for social resea

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Polygamy in Africa has been a popular topic for social resea [#permalink]  26 Oct 2017, 05:48
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Polygamy in Africa has been a popular topic for social research over the past half-century; it has been analyzed by many distinguished minds and in various well-publicized works. In 1961, when Remi Clignet published his book Many Wives, Many Powers, he was not alone in sharing the view that in Africa co-wives may be perceived as direct and indirect sources of increased income and prestige. For instance, some observers argued that polygamous marriages are more able than monogamous marriages to produce many children, who can legitimately be seen as a form of wealth as well as of “this-world” immortality connected to the transmission of family names (as opposed to “other-world” immortality in an afterlife). Moreover, polygamy is rooted in and sanctioned by many ancient traditions, both cultural and religious; therefore, some assert that polygamy can provide a stabilizing function within societies frequently under stress from both internal and external forces.

By the 1970s, such arguments had become crystallized and popular. Many other African scholars who wrote on the subject became the new champions of this philosophy. For example, in 1983, John Mbiti proclaimed that polygamy is an accepted and respectable institution serving many useful social purposes. Similarly, G.K. Nukunya, in his paper “Polygamy as a Symbol of Status,” reiterated Mbiti's idea that a plurality of wives is a legitimate sign of affluence and power in African society.

However, the colonial missionary voice provided consistent opposition to polygamy by viewing the practice as unethical and destructive of family life. While the missionaries propagated this view citing the authority of the Bible, they were convinced that Africans had to be coerced into partaking in the vision of monogamy understood by the Western culture. The missionary viewpoint even included, in some instances, dictating immediate divorce in the case of newly converted men who had already contracted polygamous marriages. Unfortunately, both the missionary voice and the scholarly voice did not consider the views of African women important. Although there was some awareness that women regarded polygamy as both a curse and a blessing, the distanced, albeit scientific, perspective of an outside observer predominated both on the pulpit and in scholarly writings.

Contemporary research in the social sciences has begun to focus on the protagonist's voice in the study of culture, recognizing that the views and experiences of those who take part in a given reality ought to receive close examination. This privileging of the protagonist seems appropriate, particularly given that women in Africa have often used literary productions, which feature protagonists and other “actors” undergoing ordeals and otherwise taking active part in real life, to comment on marriage, family, and gender relations.
Which of the following best describes the main purpose of the passage above?

(A) To discuss scholarly works that view polygamy as a sign of prestige, respect, and affluence in the African society
(B) To trace the origins of the missionary opposition to African polygamy
(C) To argue for imposing restrictions on polygamy in the African society
(D) To explore the reasons for women's acceptance of polygamy
(E) To discuss multiple perspectives on African polygamy and contrast them with contemporary research

[Reveal] Spoiler: OA
E

The third paragraph of the passage plays which of the following roles?

(A) Discusses the rationale for viewing polygamy as an indication of prestige and affluence inAfrican society.
(B) Supports the author's view that polygamy is unethical and destructive of family life.
(C) Contrasts the views of the colonial missionary with the position of the most recentcontemporary research.
(D) Describes the views on polygamy held by the colonial missionary and indicates a flaw in thisvision.
(E) Demonstrates that the colonial missionary was ignorant of the scholarly research on monogamy

[Reveal] Spoiler: OA
D

The passage provides each of the following, EXCEPT

(A) the year of publication of Remi Clignet's book Many Wives, Many Powers
(B) the year in which John Mbiti made a claim that polygamy is an accepted institution
(C) examples of African women's literary productions devoted to family relations
(D) reasons for missionary opposition to polygamy
(E) current research perspectives on polygamy

[Reveal] Spoiler: OA
C

According to the passage, the colonial missionary and the early scholarly researchers sharedwhich of the following traits in their views on polygamy?

(A) Both considered polygamy a sign of social status and success.
(B) Neither accounted for the views of local women.
(C) Both attempted to limit the prevalence of polygamy.
(D) Both pointed out polygamy's destructive effects on family life.
(E) Both exhibited a somewhat negative attitude towards polygamy.

[Reveal] Spoiler: OA
B

Which of the following statements can most properly be inferred from the passage?

(A) Nukunya's paper “Polygamy as a Symbol of Status” was not written in 1981.
(B) John Mbiti adjusted his initial view on polygamy, recognizing that the experiences of African women should receive closer attention.
(C) Remi Clignet's book Many Wives, Many Powers was the first well-known scholarly work to proclaim that polygamy can be viewed as a symbol of prestige and wealth.
(D) Under the influence of the missionary opposition, polygamy was proclaimed illegal in African as a practice “unethical and destructive of family life.”
(E) A large proportion of the scholars writing on polygamy in the 1970s and 1980s were of African descent.

[Reveal] Spoiler: OA
A

Which of the following examples fit the model of cultural studies cited in the final paragraph of the passage?

Indicate $$all$$ that apply.

A documentary about the modern-day slave trade that relied on interviews with those who had been enslaved
A study of relationship changes caused by long-term separation, using letters exchanged between prisoners and their loved ones
An experimental theater piece about blindness in which audience members were required to wear a blindfold

[Reveal] Spoiler: OA
A,B

Select the sentence in the first two paragraphs that cite a specific benefit of polygamy without mentioning the economic ramifications.

[Reveal] Spoiler: OA
therefore, some assert that polygamy can provide a stabilizing function within societies frequently under stress from both internal and external forces.

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Re: Polygamy in Africa has been a popular topic for social resea [#permalink]  23 Feb 2018, 15:31
For question 7, why the answer does not include the first part of the sentence?
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Re: Polygamy in Africa has been a popular topic for social resea [#permalink]  24 Feb 2018, 00:35
Expert's post
Because is just that. The sentence that shows the benefit of polygamy is the conclusion from therefore ahead.

make sense now ??
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Re: Polygamy in Africa has been a popular topic for social resea [#permalink]  30 Mar 2018, 03:47
For question 7, can the benefit of "transmission of family names" noted in the first paragraph be possible answer?
Re: Polygamy in Africa has been a popular topic for social resea   [#permalink] 30 Mar 2018, 03:47
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