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Complete Question Explanation

Flaw in the Reasoning—CE. The correct answer choice is (A)

The author of this stimulus seeks to explain the violent portrayal of half-human/half-horse mythical characters. Since myth is sometimes used to express unconscious thoughts, the author concludes that it was unconscious thoughts and fears of horses which led to the violent portrayals of the mythical creatures. The flaw here is that the author presumes that thoughts about horses get ascribed to these mythical creatures. The creatures are half-human as well—maybe the violence comes from associations to humans. Or from neither.

Answer choice (A): This is the correct answer choice. The author makes presumptions based on an implicit link between people’s perceptions of horses and those of the referenced mythical creature.

Answer choice (B): There is no reason to consider the validity of the rationale behind fear of horses. The questionable part is the link between the mythical creatures and horses.

Answer choice (C): There is no reference to subconscious thought suppression, and this has nothing to do with the author’s argument, so this answer choice is incorrect.

Answer choice (D): The derivation of the myth does not come into play when assessing the argument presented in the stimulus, so this is certainly not the flaw that we seek.

Answer choice (E): Again, there is no reason to explain why people express subconscious thoughts through myth. The point is to assess the argument about the source of one attribute of one mythical creature.
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I really liked B for this question. If you had good reason, that means means that it's not an unconscious fear! The conclusion is destroyed/casted doubt upon entirely!!
 James Finch
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Hi Diana,

The stimulus is trying to show that ancient cultures unconsciously feared horses, not that they had good reason or should have feared them, and the myths are evidence of this fear. However, the stimulus fails to make a link that shows how the myths represented horses, especially in light of the other premise stating that horses were held to be noble and gentle by these cultures. So there is a clear logical gap; as a flaw question, this is what we have been asked to identify in the correct answer choice. (A) restates this logical gap in the stimulus, and is the correct answer choice, while (B) deals with something that is not present in the stimulus and irrelevant to its argument.

Hope this helps!
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I can see how A is the correct answer, but I originally identified the flaw to be the leap from the idea that many cultures use myths in order to express their unconscious thoughts to the definite conclusion that that must be what this culture is doing with their mythical half-horse/half-human. In other words, I thought the problem was that they made an unsupported leap from a pattern common among 'many' cultures to the idea that this is 'obviously' what is happening here. Would this be considered an additional flaw? Thank you for help! :)
 Adam Tyson
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It is indeed, lsatstudying11! Many arguments have multiple flaws, and thankfully the authors will only give us an answer choice about one of them. Here, and answer that said something like "the argument presumes that what happens in many cases must be happening in the particular cases under consideration" would be a good one, too!

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