207. "Rituals and ceremonies help define a culture. Without them, societies or groups of people have a diminished sense of who they are."
1. I agree with the speaker insofar as one purpose of ritual and ceremony in today’s world is to preserve cultural identity.
2. Nevertheless, preserving cultural identity cannot be the only purpose of ritual and ceremony.
3. Nor are ritual and ceremony the only means of preserving cultural identity.
227. "To remain vigorous, any academic field needs to be led by truly independent thinkers who are willing to ignore established boundaries and challenge long-standing assumptions."
It seems self-contradictory to require academic leaders to ignore established boundaries and challenge long-standing assumptions.
1. There is no doubt that academic leaders should be independent thinkers.
2. However, an academic leader in any field is supposed to represent an established paradigm in that field.
3. What might also be important is the academic leader’s ability to organize the scholars of his field to promote academic development.
241. "An individual's greatness cannot be judged objectively by his or her contemporaries; the most objective evaluators of a person's greatness are people who belong to a later time."
Agree with concession
1. An individual’s contemporaries may be emotionally connected with him or her.
2. It takes time for the significance of an individual’s deeds to be recognized.
3. Admittedly, there are still plenty of cases in which people’s greatness were instantaneously recognized and judged objectively by their contemporaries.
82. "Government should never censor the artistic works or historical displays that a museum wishes to exhibit."
1. Museum exhibitions are an influential way of public education.
2. If the artistic works or historical displays of a museum cause destructive social conflicts, then government should step in to prohibit such exhibitions.
3. Admittedly, government should always take care not to abuse its authority.
96. "Although, critics who write about the arts tend to deny the existence of any objective standards for evaluating works of art, they have a responsibility to establish standards by which works of art can be judged."
1. Works of art are created for people to appreciate rather than for critics to judge.
2. Setting standards for works of art tends to hinder artists’ creations.
3. Unfortunately, the reality is that too often critics have turned the public into passive audience of arts.
101. "Governments should provide funding for artists so that the arts can flourish and be available to all people."
Government’s funding for artists is a double-edged sword.
1. On the one hand, without government’s funding, many artists could hardly survive in real life.
2. On the other hand, government’s funding could create dependent artists who serve not the interests of the public but those of the government.
3. It is crucial that government does not interfere with the artists’ freedom of expression while granting them financial aids.