SAT Sentence Completion Practice Question 205: Answer and Explanation

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Question: 205

1. Although Eudora Welty and William Faulkner wrote in distinctively different style, ------- between the two is ------- because they both lived in and wrote about Mississippi.

A. comparison… inevitable
B. cooperation… destructive
C. discord…legendary
D. similarity… unlikely
E. rivalry… redundant

Correct Answer: A

Explanation:

Explanation for Correct Answer A :

Choice (A) is correct. "Comparison" means to consider the similarities between two things, and "inevitable" means unavoidable. If one were to insert these terms into the text, the sentence would read "Although Eudora Welty and William Faulkner wrote in distinctively different styles, comparison between the two is inevitable because they both lived in and wrote about Mississippi." The word "although" signals that the second part of the sentence will contradict the first. Given that Welty and Faulkner are very different, one would not expect them to be studied for their similarities, thus a "comparison" between the two fits the logic of the sentence. Moreover, the information provided at the end of the sentence, that Welty and Faulkner are both from Mississippi, explains why this unlikely "comparison" is in fact unavoidable.

Explanation for Incorrect Answer B :

Choice (B) is incorrect. "Cooperation" means working together, and "destructive" means likely to destroy. If one were to insert these terms into the text, the sentence would read "Although Eudora Welty and William Faulkner wrote in distinctively different styles, cooperation between the two is destructive because they both lived in and wrote about Mississippi." There is no reason to believe that anything would have been destroyed if Welty and Faulkner had worked together. "Cooperation" between people is typically helpful, not "destructive."

Explanation for Incorrect Answer C :

Choice (C) is incorrect. "Discord" means disagreement, and "legendary" in this context means so well known that people tell stories about it. If one were to insert these terms into the text, the sentence would read "Although Eudora Welty and William Faulkner wrote in distinctively different styles, discord between the two is legendary because they both lived in and wrote about Mississippi." The word "although" signals that the second part of the sentence will contradict the first. However, disagreement between writers who write in different styles is not particularly unexpected.

Explanation for Incorrect Answer D :

Choice (D) is incorrect. "Similarity" means being alike, and "unlikely" means not probable. If one were to insert these terms into the text, the sentence would read "Although Eudora Welty and William Faulkner wrote in distinctively different styles, similarity between the two is unlikely because they both lived in and wrote about Mississippi." It is not sensible to say that "similarity" is "unlikely" between two people who lived in and wrote about the same state. Two writers who lived in and wrote about Mississippi would be relatively alike.

Explanation for Incorrect Answer E :

Choice (E) is incorrect. "Rivalry" means a competition, and "redundant" means repeating something unnecessarily. If one were to insert these terms into the text, the sentence would read "Although Eudora Welty and William Faulkner wrote in distinctively different styles, rivalry between the two is redundant because they both lived in and wrote about Mississippi." A competition between two people would not be referred to as "redundant." If a competition between two people is repeated, one would assume that the repetition of the competition is in some way necessary.

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