GRE Reading Comprehension

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Source: CHP

Typically the queen honeybee is mother to all the bees in a hive; after mating with several male drones from other colonies, she lays fertilized eggs that develop into all-female worker bees and lays unfertilized eggs that become all-male drones. According to natural selection theory, a worker would enhance her fitness --or ability to propagate her genes-by hatching her own eggs in addition to or in place of the queen's. But a typical worker's fitness would be diminished if other workers' sons, who have less genetic material in common with the worker, supplanted the queen's sons (the worker's brothers). Researchers, testing the hypothesis that workers usually somehow block each other's attempts to reproduce, put unfertilized eggs laid by workers and by the queen into a hive. Other workers quickly devoured the workers' eggs while leaving the queen's eggs alone.

Question List: 1 2 3

The inner workings in a honeybee hive that regulate reproduction, as they are described in the passage, are most similar to which of the following types of human societies?

  • A A totalitarian society in which citizens' "policing" of each other's actions helps to maintain the status quo.
  • B A pacifist state in which the individuals are strongly opposed to the use of violence or aggression to settle disputes.
  • C A democratic society in which the voice of the majority rules.
  • D A parliamentary society in which a few members, organized as a cabinet wield executive power.
  • E An anarchic state in which order and stable social structures are lacking

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