AP World History Question 396: Answer and Explanation

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Question: 396

11. Based on the passage, which of the following statements correctly describes politics in China during the period 600 BCE to 600 CE?

  • A. Reverence for nature leads to tranquility and peaceful transitions of power.
  • B. A ruler's public actions were considered an extension of his private behavior.
  • C. Intelligence in a Chinese emperor was valued more highly than ethical behavior.
  • D. The emperor's ministers were expected to support all of his policies unconditionally.

Correct Answer: B


The orgies of Ming Tiao, which were private actions, caused the loss of the Mandate of Heaven, a public consequence. Choice (A) misleads students by using terms ("tranquility," "nature") that are secondary to the main idea. Chinese emperors were expected to meet their ethical obligations to their subjects or suffer loss of power (C). Ministers' obligations (D) are nowhere addressed in the passage.