SAT Sentence Completion Practice Question 57: Answer and Explanation

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Question: 57

12. Although in most of Jorge Edwards' stories the references to politics are subtle, in one of his recent works his criticism of the government is -------.

A. astute
B. discreet
C. scathing
D. impersonal
E. uninspiring

Correct Answer: C

Explanation:

Skill: Determining the meaning of words

Explanation for Correct Answer C :

Choice (C) is correct. "Scathing" means bitterly severe or caustic. If one were to insert this term into the text, the sentence would read "Although in most of Jorge Edwards' stories the references to politics are subtle, in one of his recent works his criticism of the government is scathing." The word "although" indicates that there will be a contrast between the subtle references to politics in most of Edwards' stories and his criticism of the government in a recent work. "Scathing" in this context directly contrasts the meaning of "subtle."

Explanation for Incorrect Answer A :

Choice (A) is incorrect. "Astute" means shrewd. If one were to insert this term into the text, the sentence would read "Although in most of Jorge Edwards' stories the references to politics are subtle, in one of his recent works his criticism of the government is astute." The word "astute" does not contrast with "subtle."

Explanation for Incorrect Answer B :

Choice (B) is incorrect. "Discreet" means having good judgment in conduct and speech. If one were to insert this term into the text, the sentence would read "Although in most of Jorge Edwards' stories the references to politics are subtle, in one of his recent works his criticism of the government is discreet." The word "although" indicates that the missing term will contrast the meaning of "subtle." "Discreet," however, is similar to "subtle."

Explanation for Incorrect Answer D :

Choice (D) is incorrect. "Impersonal" means having no personal connection. If one were to insert this term into the text, the sentence would read "Although in most of Jorge Edwards' stories the references to politics are subtle, in one of his recent works his criticism of the government is impersonal." The claim that Edwards' recent criticism of the government is "impersonal" does not contrast with the fact that his past political references were "subtle."

Explanation for Incorrect Answer E :

Choice (E) is incorrect. "Uninspiring" means not influencing. If one were to insert this term into the text, the sentence would read "Although in most of Jorge Edwards' stories the references to politics are subtle, in one of his recent works his criticism of the government is uninspiring." The claim that Edwards' recent criticism of the government is "uninspiring" does not contrast with the fact that his past political references were "subtle."

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