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#5 - Some people believe that advertising is socially

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Complete Question Explanation

Main Point-FIB. The correct answer choice is (C)

This stimulus contains a very simple argument with clear structural indicators. It begins with the common “some people say” rhetorical device, in which the author presents an argument, attributed to some other individual or group, with which the author disagrees. In this case, “Some people believe that advertising is socially pernicious,” because “it changes consumers’ preferences.” Essentially, the advertising overcomes a consumer’s will, and causes consumers to “want” things they do not actually want.

To counter this view, the author raises another mechanism by which an individual’s preference is changed, but that is not perceived to be pernicious—classes in music and art appreciation. The author points out that these classes “change people’s preferences for various forms of art and music,” but there is “nothing wrong” with them.

In this Main Point—Fill in the Blank question, our prephrase is that, based on the analogy between advertisements and the art and music appreciation classes, the fact that advertisements change peoples’ preferences does not by itself make advertisements pernicious. Note that this prephrase matches our intuition from the use of the “some people say” device, from which we would infer that the author disagrees with the belief of some people that advertising is socially pernicious.

Answer choice (A): The author did not deny that advertising changes people’s preferences, so this answer choice is inconsistent with argument.

Answer choice (B): We prephrased that the author disagrees with the view that advertising is socially pernicious. This answer choice runs counter to the author’s conclusion.

Answer choice (C): This is the correct answer choice, because the author, by analogy, established another circumstance in which changing a consumer’s preference is not bad. So while there may be some other problem with advertisements, the author would conclude that changing someone’s preference is not, by itself, evidence that advertisements are bad.

Answer choice (D): This answer choice goes too far. Just because the author would not say that changing consumers’ preferences is bad does not mean that the changes to their preferences produced by advertising are positive.

Answer choice (E): The author does not deny that advertising change people’s preferences.