06th November, 2016 (CSAT)


1. In the past 50 years, people with problems have spent untold millions of hours in therapists’ offices, and millions more reading self-help books, trying to turn negative thoughts into positive ones. For many people, the very definition of psychotherapy is the process of changing self-defeating attitudes into constructive ones. But the latest studies have established that trying to get people to think more positively can actually have a negative effect.

Which of the following, if true, explains the ironical observation in the argument given above?

(a) In the process of fighting negative feelings, we not only often fail but can also make things worse.

(b) It is usually seen that people need to accept their negative thoughts and feelings rather than try to reject and fight them.

(c) The unfavourable thoughts about ourselves intrude very easily and hence make us feel worse than before.

(d) Those of us with low self-esteem take a positive alternative as a belief as to how awful we are.


2. Whenever a major airplane accident occurs, there is a dramatic increase in the number of airplane mishaps reported in the media, a phenomenon that may last for as long as a few months after the accident. Airline officials assert that the publicity given the gruesomeness of major airplane accidents focuses media attention on the airline industry, and the increase in the number of reported accidents is caused by an increase in the number of news sources covering airline accidents, not by an increase in the number of accidents.

Which of the following if true, would seriously weaken the assertions of the airline officials?

(a) Airline accidents tend to occur far more often during certain peak travel months

(b) The publicity surrounding airline accidents is largely limited to the country in which the crash occurred

(c) News organisations do not have any guidelines to help them decide how severe an accident is

(d) Airplane accidents receive coverage by news sources only when the news sources find it advantageous to do so

Tomorrow: Next questions for practice

For previous questions refer yesterday’s post

Click on MAINS and PRELIMS pages also.