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#16 - Most commentators on Baroque painting consider

PB410
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I don't understand how E justifies the conclusion. When I saw E, I thought it would allow for one part of the conclusion to occur. If E were true, wouldn't it yield a conclusion that rejects Mather's definition, since opulence, heroic sweep, and extravagance are not present, and accepts the majority of commentators opinion? If those traits are not present in Caravaggio's paintings, wouldn't we be directed to dismiss Mather's and accept the other opinion? I was looking for an answer that would allow a conclusion that creates a decision between the two views, but I don't see how E does that.
Zach Marino
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The conclusion effectively states that Baroque paintings can either be in line with Mather's definition or the consensus of most commentators, and that the two are mutually exclusive. If, as E says, opulence, heroic sweep, and extravagance are absent from Caravaggio's work, then yes, we must dismiss Mather's view. The conclusion of the argument presents an either/or distinction between the two points of view, stating that they cannot both occur. Therefore, if Mather's view is rejected because as E says, Caravaggio's work lacks opulence, heroic sweep, and extravagance, that forces us into a world where only one (at most) of the two competing opinions is possible.

I hope this clears things up! :-D
T.B.Justin
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If a realistic painting usually does not depict the world as opulent, heroic, or extravagant, does this sufficiently disprove both opinions?
Adam Tyson
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I don't believe so, T.B. Justin - I think both opinions are consistent with that claim, which is expressed in answer choice D. Let's take a look at both and see why:

Opinion 1: Caravaggio was realistic and was an early Baroque painter
Answer D: Realistic painting usually does not depict the world as opulent, heroic, or extravagant
Analysis: So what? Who said anything about any of that stuff? And in any event, "usually" allows for exceptions, so maybe Caravaggio displayed both realism and opulence.

Opinion 2: For a painting to be considered Baroque, it must display opulence, heroic sweep, and extravagance
Answer D: Realistic painting usually does not depict the world as opulent, heroic, or extravagant
Analysis: So what? Even if realistic painting usually doesn't do that, it still could do so sometimes. There could be exceptions, and maybe Caravaggio is one of them.

That's why answer D doesn't justify the conclusion that you have to reject one of those two opinions. You could accept answer D as true and still accept both of the opinions. But if Caravaggio is NOT an exception - if he doesn't have the things Mather says you need - then if Mather is right, the majority is wrong about Caravaggio, and if the majority is right then Mather is wrong about the requirements for Baroque painting. You have to reject at least one of those opinions!
Adam M. Tyson
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T.B.Justin
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Hey Adam,

Thanks for the breakdown that we must reject at least one of those opinions, and that "usually" leaves the possibility for exceptions. That got me to the correct answer choice in a jiffy!

:-D