AP English Language and Composition Practice Test 19

Test Information

Question 11 questions

Time 12 minutes

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Questions 1-11 refer to the following information.

This passage is an excerpt from a book about the world's black people written in the mid-20th century.

Let's imagine a mammoth flying saucer from Mars landing, say, in a peasant Swiss
village and debouching swarms of fierce-looking men whose skins are blue and
whose red eyes flash lightning bolts that deal instant death. The inhabitants are all
the more terrified because the arrival of these men had been predicted. The religious
5myths of the Western world-the Second Coming of Christ, the Last Judgment, etc.,
have conditioned Europeans for just such an improbable event. Hence, those Swiss
natives will feel that resistance is useless for a while. As long as the blue strangers are
casually kind, they are obeyed and served. They become the Fathers of the people.
Is this a fragment of paperback science fiction? No. It's more prosaic than that. The
10image I've sketched above is the manner, by and large, in which white Europe overran
Asia and Africa.
But why did Europe do this? Did it only want gold, power, women, raw materials? It
was more complicated than that. The fifteenth-, sixteenth-, and seventeenth-century
neurotic European, sick of his thwarted instincts, restless, filled with self-disgust, was
15looking for not only spices and gold and slaves when he set out; he was looking for
an Arcadia, a Land's End, a Shangri-la, a world peopled by shadow men, a world that
would permit free play for his repressed instincts. Stripped of tradition, these misfits,
adventurers, indentured servants, convicts and freebooters were the most advanced
individualists of their time. Rendered socially superfluous by the stifling weight of the
20Church and nobility, buttressed by the influence of the ideas of Hume and Descartes,
they had been brutally molded toward attitudes of emotional independence and
could doff the cloying ties of custom, tradition, and family. The Asian-African native,
anchored in family-dependence systems of life, could not imagine why or how these
men had left their homelands, could not conceive of the cold, arid emotions sustaining
25them. . . .
Living in a waking dream, generations of emotionally impoverished
colonial European whites wallowed in the quick gratification of greed, reveled in the cheap
superiority of racial domination, slaked their sensual thirst in illicit sexuality, draining
off the dammed-up libido1 that European morality had condemned, amassing
30through trade a vast reservoir of economic fat, thereby establishing vast accumulations
of capital which spurred the industrialization of the West. Asia and Africa thus
became a neurotic habit that Europeans could forgo only at the cost of a powerful
psychic wound, for this emotionally crippled Europe had, through the centuries,
grown used to leaning upon this black crutch. But what of the impact of those white
35faces upon the personalities of the native? Steeped in dependence systems of family
life and anchored in ancestor-worshiping religions, the native was prone to identify
those powerful white faces falling athwart his existence with the potency of his dead
father who has sustained him in the past. Temporarily accepting the invasion, he
transferred his loyalties to those white faces, but, because of the psychological, racial,
40and economic luxury which those faces derived from their denomination, the native
was kept at bay.

1 sexual drive

1. The subject of the passage is introduced in the first paragraph by means of

2. In context, the word "Fathers" (line 8) is best interpreted as having which of the following meanings?

3. Which of the following words is grammatically and thematically parallel to "restless" (line 14)?

4. The speaker mentions Arcadia, a Land's End, Shangri-la (line 16) as examples of which of the following?

5. The phrase "advanced individualists" (lines 18–19) is best described as an example of

6. The characteristics of the colonial European described in the clause beginning on line 21 ("they had been. . ." ) is referred to elsewhere in all of the following phrases EXCEPT

7. Which rhetorical device is most evident in line 28: "slaked their sensual thirst in illicit sexuality"?

8. Which of the following best describes the prevailing tone of the passage?

9. Throughout the passage, the speaker contrasts the European colonists and the Asian-African natives on the basis of

10. The speaker's repeated use of questions (lines 9, 12, and 34–35) serves which of the following rhetorical purposes?

11. Throughout the passage, which of the following rhetorical strategies is most in evidence?