GRE Reading Comprehension

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Source: CHP

Writing of the Iroquois nation, Smith has argued that through the chiefs' council, tribal chiefs traditionally maintained complete control over the political affairs of both the Iroquois tribal league and the individual tribes belonging to the league, whereas the sole jurisdiction over religious affairs resided with the shamans. He contended that this division was maintained until the late nineteenth century. However, Smith fails to recognize that this division of power between the tribal chiefs and shamans was not actually rooted in Iroquois tradition; rather, it resulted from the Iroquois' resettlement on reservations early in the nineteenth century. Prior to resettlement, the chiefs' council controlled only the broad policy of the tribal league; individual tribes had institutions― most important, the longhouse― to govern their own affairs. In the longhouse, the tribe's chief influenced both political and religious affairs.

Question List: 1 2

It can be inferred that the author of the passage regards Smith's argument as

  • A provocative and potentially useful, but flawed by poor organization
  • B eloquently presented, but needlessly inflammatory
  • C accurate in some of its particulars, but inaccurate with regard to an important point.
  • D historically sound, but overly detailed and redundant
  • E persuasive in its time, but now largely outdated

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