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 Alex Bodaken
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I think you've slightly missed the connection between most beautiful and best. If it were true that the most beautiful pieces of art were NOT the best, it would fully disrupt the connection between beauty and best. In other words, it would fully invalidate the authors conclusion, as he/she is using beauty and best basically interchangeably. If it's not true that they are related, that is very damaging to the argument...therefore the assumption negation technique appears to work here.

Hope this helps!
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I’m struggling to see why (A) is a better answer than (D).

I identified the rogue element, beauty, and my prephrase almost exactly matched (D).

In (A), the answer talks about the most beautiful works but I didn’t think we were concerned with what’s most beautiful; rather, I thought I the task was to establish that the best artworks are beautiful, not that the MOST beautiful are the best.

Appreciate any insight.

 Paul Marsh
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Hi Kyle! Nice job identifying the gap between "beauty" and "best". Being able to to identify those kind of gaps on Assumption questions like this one is the most important step to doing well on these. After realizing the gap between "beauty" and "best", we can narrow down the answer choices to (A) and (D) very quickly.

From here, this question becomes more difficult as (D) is a very tempting wrong answer choice here. This question is a good example of the key difference between Justify and Assumption questions. If this was a Justify question, (D) would be a correct answer. But the stem here is not asking for a sufficient assumption (Justify question), it is asking for a necessary one (Assumption question). It is not necessary to the argument that "Only the best artworks are beautiful". However, it is necessary to the argument that "the most beautiful artworks are the best artworks". To see this, we apply the Negation Test (which, of course, works only for Assumption questions). The negation of (D) is "Not only the best artworks are beautiful". This negation does not cause our argument to necessarily fall apart - as long as the most beautiful artworks are among the best, the argument still functions. So it fails the Negation Test. The negation of (A) is "the most beautiful artworks are not the best artworks". The argument's whole premise is that the most truthful artworks are not the best. So if the most beautiful artworks are also not the best, the whole reason for the conclusion that truth and beauty are different falls apart.

Again, the distinction between (A) and (D) is tricky. Remember that Assumption questions are asking for a necessary assumption, and always use the Negation Test if you're stuck between two answers. Hope that helps!
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I'm really confused about the explanations on this question.

(1) The admin diagramed "the most realistic pieces of art would be the best as well" as "mR ↔︎ AB." Why is this a double arrow? If I say "dogs are mammals," I don't mean "mammals are dogs." Also, what does "AB" stand for?

(2) The admin stated the conclusion introduces a new element "beauty," which is not mentioned anywhere else in the argument. But the second sentence starts with "after all, if there were no difference, then ..." The phrase "no difference" uses borrowed language. When borrowed language is put back, we get "if there were no difference between beauty and truth." So "beauty" was not only mentioned in the second sentence, which is a premise, but also it was mentioned in a conditional statement. It provides a conditional relationship that can be used to prove things.

(3) Adam did mention that "beauty" is in a "counter-premise" and explained that "counter-premise" is actually something that the author is trying to demonstrate as not true. But there's no opposing point/premise in this argument. The so called "counter-premise" in the second sentence is actually a premise that supports the conclusion.

(4) Knowing that this argument is based on formal logic, I anticipate a supporter answer choice.
The first part of the second sentence establishes a conditional relationship:

(beauty = truth) → (most realistic → best)
CP: NOT (most realistic → best) → (beauty ⧧ truth)

Thus, if we can prove "NOT (most realistic → best)," then we can trigger this conditional relationship and get to the conclusion that "beauty ⧧ truth."

The third sentence states "most realistic -[some]- NOT best," which essentially negates "most realistic → best," thus triggering the sufficient condition and makes the necessary condition a reality (beauty ⧧ truth), which is the conclusion.

Since this argument is valid, does it mean that the correct answer is a defender? Thanks!
 Adam Tyson
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As to your first question, blade21cn, "AB" stands for "Among the Best" or perhaps "Best Art" (so it could have also been BA). You may have missed that the AB is struck through in that post, meaning "not among the best". If the most realistic is not the best, then the best is also not the most realistic. That is a double arrow relationship, unlike your dog/mammal example. If X is not Y, then Y cannot be X either. That's a "no/none/never" structure that means if you are one of these things then you are not the other. But it's also not entirely conditional in this stimulus, because it's just that MANY of the most realistic ones are not among the best, so it might even be better to avoid diagramming that relationship and recognizing instead that it is denying a conditional relationship (that's the counter-premise) rather than creating one.

You're right that "no difference" refers to beauty and truth, but there is no premise telling us about a connection between "beauty" and "best", so that is the gap that needs filling. The argument is not valid, because the author has not said anything to establish that the best artworks are the most beautiful. That was an assumption rather than a premise.

The distinction between a supporter and a defender assumption is not about an inherent difference in the answers, but about the strategy that you use to get there. Thus, any supporter answer is ALSO a defender. You could approach this argument by seeing the gap and looking for something that closes that gap - the supporter strategy. Or, you could attack the argument by saying "but the most beautiful artworks are not necessarily the best ones," and then come up with a response that counters that attack - the defender strategy. Either will get you to the same prephrase and the same answer choice!

And a counter-premise is not something the author is trying to say is untrue. It's a statement that is used to deny the truth of some other statement. The author uses the last statement as a counter-premise against the "after all" statement, to show that "the most realistic pieces of art would be the best " is false.

I hope that clears things up!
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Hey powerscore, hope you guys are doing well. I just want to make sure my reasoning for understanding why choice A is the right answer is correct.

In my initial read through, I narrowed it down to A and D due to the rogue term beauty and ultimatley went with D because the use of the term "the most beautiful" in A was off putting.

I see why D is wrong i.e its too strong.

Now my reasoning for why A is correct is convoluted but I want to see if I'm on the right track.

So for beauty and truth as concepts to be different, the author must assume that at least some beautiful things are not truthful. A addresses this by saying that some things that are beautiful (the most beautiful artworks) are the best (not truthful). But when you negate it (the most beautiful artworks ARE NOT the BEST) it means you can have things that are beautiful and truthful (contrary to the author's conclusion).

Is my line of reasoning correct or have I completely missed the mark?

Thanks for taking the time to read this :)
 Adam Tyson
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You're close, desiboy96, but I think you got slightly off when you said "A addresses this by saying that some things that are beautiful (the most beautiful artworks) are the best (not truthful)". The answer is not saying "best" is the same as "not truthful." It's not dealing with "truth" at all!

The argument is saying that the most realistic (aka truthful) are not always the best, so therefore the most realistic (truthful) are not always beautiful. Truth doesn't prove beauty; they are different things.

Answer A is linking the two "rogue" elements together, and those rogue elements in the argument are "best" and "most beautiful." Answer A has nothing to do with truth or realism, but just connects those two rogue elements together for us.

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