New SAT Reading Practice Test 21: George Washington Cable - On Racial Equality

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Question 11 questions

Time 14 minutes

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The following passage comes from George Washington Cable's The Silent South, published in The Century in 1885. In the passage, Cable defends attacks against his previous article, "The Freedman's Case in Equity," which advanced full civil rights and equality for the slaves freed in 1865 amid national Civil War.

1. In the article, the role that Cable plays can best be described as that of

  • A. a traditionalist attacking an article published in a magazine.
  • B. a theorist defending his views against those who misconstrue them.
  • C. an ideologue creating social unrest with his uncompromising views.
  • D. an observer describing two sides of an argument with equal sympathy.

2. Based on the information presented in Cable's article, it can be inferred that those who oppose civil equality for African-Americans

  • A. have refused to read his earlier article with adequate care.
  • B. willfully misunderstand the basic tenets of the U.S. Constitution.
  • C. believe that such equality will lead to an undesirable social mixing.
  • D. cite legal technicalities in order to further their own arguments.

3. Which choice provides the best evidence for the answer to the previous question?

  • A. Lines 8-9 ("They…Equality")
  • B. Lines 24-25 ("Nothing…privileges")
  • C. Lines 36-38 ("No…about")
  • D. Lines 39-46 ("And…preferences")

4. As used in line 23, "runs in the grooves of" most nearly means

  • A. corresponds with.
  • B. dances along to.
  • C. cuts an irregular pattern in.
  • D. breaks violently from.

5. The principal rhetorical effect of the phrase in lines 31-32 ("The North…world") is to

  • A. identify the disagreements described in the article as those of particular regions.
  • B. outline the places that have already accepted Cable's views and to encourage the South to join them.
  • C. suggest that there is widespread agreement about a single fundamental principle.
  • D. praise some parts of the United States for being more intelligent than others.

6. Cable refers to "the delicate machinery of society's self-distribution" (line 44) in order to

  • A. demonstrate that his detractors violate a natural order with a misguided set of rules.
  • B. praise the United States for its perfect alignment with natural human needs.
  • C. use figurative language that encapsulates his views on the substance of a debate.
  • D. scold readers for their belief in an unworkable and impractical system of government.

7. Which choice provides the best evidence for the answer to the previous question?

  • A. Lines 5-8 ("Many…chaos")
  • B. Lines 47-51 ("This…at all")
  • C. Lines 52-58 ("Do we…cannot be")
  • D. Lines 60-61 ("The family…succession")

8. The primary purpose of the third paragraph (lines 52-58) as it relates to the passage as a whole is to

  • A. speak ironically of people's good intentions while disparaging those who disagree.
  • B. concede the good intentions of detractors while introducing a main point.
  • C. summarize the arguments presented in the first two paragraphs in much the same language.
  • D. close the debate by refusing to acknowledge the views of another side.

9. As used in line 73, "pleasure" most nearly means

  • A. discretion.
  • B. hedonism.
  • C. manipulation.
  • D. fun.

10. In the final paragraph of the passage, Cable's attitude toward those who cite social rights (lines 61-63) can best be described as

  • A. hostile.
  • B. legalistic.
  • C. skeptical.
  • D. supportive.

11. Based on the final paragraph, Cable's definition of civil rights includes all of the following EXCEPT

  • A. legal protection for all races.
  • B. rights that can be dictated by law.
  • C. nothing about social interaction.
  • D. interactions based on personal preference.