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English Language RC - Feb 20 2021

Here we are providing new series of English Language Questions for upcoming exams, so the aspirants can practice it on a daily basis.

Read the passage and answer the following questions.

Almost 170 years later, a picture of two slaves, a father and daughter, is at the center of a dispute over who should own the fruits of American slavery. The images identified by their first names, Renty and Delia, were commissioned by a professor at Harvard and are now stored in a museum on

campus as precious cultural artifacts. But to the Lanier family, they are records of a personal family history.

On Wednesday, Ms. Lanier’s mother, Tamara, 54, filed a lawsuit in Massachusetts saying that she is a direct descendant of Renty and Delia, and that the valuable photographs are rightfully hers. The case renews focus on the role that the country’s oldest universities played in slavery, and comes amid a growing debate over whether the descendants of enslaved people are entitled to reparations — and what those reparations might look like. “It is unprecedented in terms of legal theory and reclaiming property that was wrongfully taken,” Benjamin Crump, one of Ms. Lanier’s lawyers, said. “Renty’s descendants may be the first descendants of slave ancestors to be able to get their property rights.”Universities in recent years have acknowledged and expressed contrition for their ties to slavery. Harvard Law School abandoned an 80–year–old shield based on the crest of a slaver family that helped endow the institution. Georgetown University decided to give an advantage in admissions to descendants of enslaved people who were sold to fund the school. A series of federal laws has also compelled museums to repatriate human remains and sacred objects to Native American tribes. The law suit says the images are the “spoils of theft,” because as slaves Renty and Delia were unable to give consent. It says that the university is illegally profiting from the images by using them for “advertising and commercial purposes,” such as by using Renty’s image on the cover of a $40anthropology book. And it argues that by holding on to the images, Harvard has perpetuated the hallmarks of slavery that prevented African–Americans from holding, conveying or inheriting personal property.

“I keep thinking, tongue in cheek a little bit, this has been 169 years a slave, and Harvard still won’t free Papa Renty,” said Mr. Crump, who in 2012 represented the family of Trayv on Martin, an unarmed black teenager killed by a community watch member in Florida. Ms. Lanier is also represented by Josh Kosk off, a lawyer who represents families of the Sandy Hook elementary school massacre victims. Renty and Delia were among seven slaves who appeared in 15 images made using the daguerreotype process, an early form of photography imprinted on silvered copper plates. The pictures are haunting and voyeuristic, with the subjects staring at the camera with detached expressions. The daguerreotypes were commissioned by Louis Agassiz, a Swiss–born zoologist and Harvard professor who is sometimes called the father of American natural science. Agassiz, a rival of

Charles Darwin, subscribed to polygenesis, the theory that black and white people descended from different origins. The theory, later discredited, was used to promote the racist idea that black people were inferior to whites. Agassiz viewed the slaves as anatomical specimens to document his beliefs,

according to historical sources. The daguerreotypes were forgotten until they were discovered in an unused storage cabinet in the attic of Harvard’s Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology in1976. They were thought to be the earliest known photographs of American slaves. “That photograph is like a hostage photograph,” Mr. Coates said of Renty’s image. “This is an enslaved black man with no choice being forced to participate in white supremacist propaganda — that’s what that photograph was taken for.” He said he understood how Ms. Lanier felt seeing the pictures at a conference. “I get why it would bother her,” he said. “I wasn’t aware of all that at the time.”Interviewed at her home in Norwich, Ms. Lanier, a retired chief probation officer for the State of Connecticut, said she had not heard of the photos until about 2010, when she began tracing her genealogy for a family project. Her mother, Mattye Pearl Thompson–Lanier, who died that year, had passed down a strong oral tradition of their family’s lineage from an African ancestor called “Papa Renty.” Shonrael, Ms. Lanier’s daughter, wrote a fifth–grade project about her ancestor in 1996.

The lawsuit could hinge on evidence of that chain of ancestry. Ms. Lanier’s amateur sleuthing led to death records, census records and a handwritten inventory from 1834 of the slaves on the plantation of Col. Thomas Taylor in Columbia and their dollar values. The slave inventory lists a Big Renty and a Renty, and listed under the latter is Delia. Ms. Lanier believes that Big Renty is her “PapaRenty” and the father of Renty and Delia, and has traced them to her mother, who was born to share croppers in Montgomery, Ala. “I’d be very excited to work with Tamara,” said Dr. Hecimovich, who is chairman of the English department at Furman University. “But the bigger issue is it would bevery hard to make a slam–dunk case that she believes she has.” Molly Rogers, the author of a book about the images called “Delia’s Tears,” said that tracing families under slavery was extremely complex. “It’s not necessarily by blood,” she said. “It could be people who take responsibility for each other. Terms, names, family relationships are very much complicated by the fact of slavery.”One intellectual property lawyer, Rick Kurnit, said he thought Ms. Lanier would have a hard time claiming ownership of the daguerreotypes. He said the famous photograph “V–J Day in Times Square,” for instance, belonged to the photographer and not to the sailor or the nurse who are kissing. But that image, of course, was taken in a public space. Yxta Maya Murray, a professor at Loyola Law School, Los Angeles, said that images taken by force were tantamount to robbery. “If

she’s a descendant, then I would stand for her,” Professor Murray said of Ms. Lanier. One argument for keeping the daguerreotypes in a museum is that they are fragile physical objects, which degrade when exposed to light, said Robin Bernstein, a professor of cultural history at Harvard who has studied them. The question remains what Ms. Lanier would do with the images of Renty and Delia if she were to win her case in court. Ms. Lanier, who is asking for a jury trial and unspecified punitive and emotional damages, says she does not know, and would have to have a family meeting about it. She does not rule out licensing the images. Mr. Crump, her lawyer, had another idea. The daguerreo types, he said, should be taken on a tour of America, so that everyone can see them.

1) Which of the following is not mentioned as a possible use of Renty’s daguerreotype?

a) Ms. Lanier licensing the image.

b) Preserving the daguerreotype in a museum.

c) Taking the daguerreotype on a tour so everyone can see it.

d) Using the daguerreotype for research on atrocities perpetrated on slaves.

e) None of the above

2) Which of the following does not relate to the lawsuit filed by the Laniers laying claim to the slaves’ daguerreotypes?

a) The case relates to compensation for slaves, descendants.

b) Universities in recent years have acknowledged and expressed contrition for their ties to slavery.

c) The case rests on evidence collected by Ms. Lanier’s amateur sleuthing.

d) It is not an open and shut case.

e) None of the above

3) Which of the following is the most likely author of the passage given above?

a) An ethnologist

b) A legal expert

c) A news reporter

d) A family disputes reporter

e) None of the above

4) Which of the following is true about the universities mentioned in the passage?

a) The universities are storehouses of historical evidence.

b) As a gesture of repentance, universities have contributed to slaves’ descendants’ education.

c) The universities were often battlegrounds of professors with rival views.

d) All the above

e) None of the above

5) Which of the following is true about the tone of the passage?

a) The tone supports the rights of the slaves’ descendants.

b) The tone supports the government and institutions owning works of historical importance.

c) The tone is neutral and represents diverse points of views.

d) The tone is neutral and tilts opinion in favor of slaves’ rights.

e) None of the above


1) Answer: D

By reading the full passage this question can be answered.

2) Answer: B

All other relate to the case filed by Ms. Lanier.

3) Answer: C

The passage is a general report on a court case and includes information from other experts.

4) Answer: B

Georgetown University decided to give an advantage in admissions to descendants of enslaved people who were sold to fund the school

5) Answer: C

By reading the full passage this question can be answered.