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Question:

Which choice best describes the overall structure of the passage?

A D. A list of advantages is followed by a list of disadvantages.
Explaination

Choice D is the best answer. The passage begins by listing some of the advantages Wharton enjoyed: being born into “one of the leading families of New York,” maintaining “multiple establishments,” traveling “in the highest style, with a host of servants,” having “several inheritances,” being the author of “best-selling fiction,” and earning $130,000 in a Depression year. The passage concludes with a list of disadvantages Wharton labored under: women in her “social set” were expected to be “ornamental, well-sheltered, intellectually idle agents of their interwoven clans,” and Wharton was “awkward,” “teased” by her older brothers, and “out of sympathy with her intensely conventional mother.” Choice A is incorrect because the passage does not follow a chronological structure. Choice B is incorrect because the passage conveys only one theme of Wharton’s work (“mother-daughter disharmony”). Choice C is incorrect because the passage focuses on Wharton exclusively.