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The theoretical physicist, despite his mathematical training

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The theoretical physicist, despite his mathematical training [#permalink] New post 08 Dec 2018, 07:50
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The theoretical physicist, despite his mathematical training, oftentimes must deal with questions that fall under the realm of the philosophical. Nonetheless, he will often marshal formulae when they serve to (i) ______ a theory, notwithstanding the fact that many such theories are not (ii) ______ empirical analysis, as those theories deal with questions whose answers may ultimately be unknowable.




Blank (i) Blank (ii)
(A) undermine (D) unrelated to
(B) conflate (E) commensurate with
(C) undergird (F) amenable to
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

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Re: The theoretical physicist, despite his mathematical training [#permalink] New post 09 Dec 2018, 12:13
Can anybody explain please?
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Re: The theoretical physicist, despite his mathematical training [#permalink] New post 16 Jan 2019, 10:35
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The theoretical physicist, despite his mathematical training, oftentimes must deal with questions that fall under the realm of the philosophical.

These scientists have to deal with questions that are more on the philosophical side than on the pure quantum one.



Nonetheless, he will often marshal formulae when they serve to (i) ______ a theory,

Considering this, they must gather all the information at stake to manage (undergid) a theory and analyze it


notwithstanding the fact that many such theories are not (ii) ______ empirical analysis, as those theories deal with questions whose answers may ultimately be unknowable.

Considering also the fact that such theories are not easy to tame (administrate if we wanna make even more clear the idea we are talking about) just because those theories are borderline.

Dissect the phrase ALWAYS piece by piece

Hope this helps.

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Re: The theoretical physicist, despite his mathematical training [#permalink] New post 16 Jan 2019, 22:31
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The author sets up a base by stating that the theoretical physicist, despite his mathematical base, needs to deal with philosophical questions. The "nonetheless" at the beginning of the next sentence hints that he will do the opposite - in other words, even though he oftentimes deals with philosophical questions, he will and is ready to deal with mathematical theories. Our word for the blank should convey such a sentiment- only undergrid does the job. The sentence continues and the word "notwithstanding" further hints at an opposite idea being expressed - namely, such theories are not really sound - and the only way such an idea could be confirmed would be by choosing not amenable to empirical analysis.

Another way around is to actually fill the second blank.

We have:

such theories are not (ii) ______ empirical analysis, as those theories deal with questions whose answers may ultimately be unknowable.

The sense being expressed is : such theories cannot be verified by empirical analysis as they deal with questions whose answers are ultimately unknowable.Therefore, the correct choice is "amenable to".

The "notwithstanding" in the same sentence fragment suggests an opposite idea being expressed in the preceding fragment:

he will often marshal formulae when they serve to (i) ______ a theory

In other words, even though they are not amenable to empirical analysis he will still try to do something similar. That is, he will try to support the theory using empirical methods (marshaling formulae). So the choice is undergrid, which means to support or provide a firm base.
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Re: The theoretical physicist, despite his mathematical training [#permalink] New post 06 Sep 2020, 02:38
It is not said that he is gathering the formulae to support a theory. Why can't the blank (1) be undermine?
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Re: The theoretical physicist, despite his mathematical training [#permalink] New post 06 Sep 2020, 03:17
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I explained the sentence above, though. However I will explain once again why the first blank is C

The theoretical physicist, despite his mathematical training, oftentimes must deal with questions that fall under the realm of the philosophical. philosophy

When they find themselves in this scenario they have to take into account that their theories could NOT being supported by the analysis on the field, in the real world (empirical analysis).

I.E they have to find a way NOT to undermine but to SUPPORT their theories.

hence the answer is C


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Re: The theoretical physicist, despite his mathematical training [#permalink] New post 26 Oct 2020, 07:07
The sentence says that physicists must sometimes deal with philosophical questions, but may answer them using formulae when necessary. The first blank is obvious here, the physicist will only use formulae when they support his theory in philosophical answers, so we choose 'undergird' which means 'to support/form a firm base'. Then comes the word 'notwithstanding' which means 'in spite of'. So in spite of the physicists use of formulae, some questions may not be able to be answered. So we choose 'amenable to'. Our answer is C,F
Re: The theoretical physicist, despite his mathematical training   [#permalink] 26 Oct 2020, 07:07
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