5.R.10 & 6.R.10 (medium)
Answer Choices B and B are the correct answers because Lines 34-38 describes the Swede acknowledging the narrator by saying to his son, “‘You know who this is?’ the Swede said the boy. ‘The guy who wrote those books. Nathan Zuckerman.’” This shows a meaningful irony (something that happens contrary to expectations) because, while the narrator had admired the Swede as young boy, now we see the Swede showing admiration for Zuckerman. Answer Choice B best captures this by saying that the Swede, “appreciated the narrator’s accomplishments as an adult.” Answer Choice A is incorrect because neither our Passage nor our Text describe the Swede training his son to follow in the narrator’s footstep. Answer Choice C is incorrect because neither the Passage nor our Text describe the Swede’s failure to achieve his earlier promise. Answer Choice D is incorrect because while it recognizes the irony that the Swede now shows appreciation for the narrator in their adult lives, it goes too far by describing this appreciation as envy.
How to solve this? Question 5 asks, “A meaningful irony in the passage is that, while the narrator had admired the young Swede’s accomplishments, the Swede [...]?” Because this is a Paired Question we should first to the answer choices for Question 6 and look for an end to the Question which would complete the irony. Because an irony is something that violates our reasonable expectations, we should expect that an irony related to the narrator admiring the Swede in their youth would involve the Swede now admiring the narrator in their adulthood, and we should look for an option like this.
For Question 6, Answer Choice A describes the narrator seeing the Swede and his son from afar and approaching them. This answer choice doesn’t provide us with any possible irony, so we should eliminate this option. Answer Choice B describes the Swede recognizing and acknowledging the narrator, finally saying to his son, “‘You know who this is?’ the Swede said the boy. ‘The guy who wrote those books. Nathan Zuckerman.’” This shows a degree of admiration that the Swede now has for the narrator, so we should keep this option. Answer Choice C shows a simple farewell that the Swede gives to the narrator, but doesn’t show any meaningful irony, so we should eliminate this option. Answer Choice D shows another character laughing and stating that “the greatest athlete in the history of Weequahic High called you ‘Skip.’” This answer choice might seem plausible, because it completes the irony by showing how the Swede used an affectionate and personal name with the narrator, showing a reversal in admiration or respect. We can keep this option, although we should note that the Swede calling the narrator ‘Skip’ shows a smaller level of appreciation than recognizing him as the author of certain books. Moreover, as we’ll see later, this comment is made in a tongue-in-cheek fashion, rendering it less useful to us here.
For Question 5, Answer Choice A says that the Swede “had trained his son to follow in [the narrator’s] footsteps.” This would show a meaningful irony, but we should note that the phrase “follow in his footsteps” is a relatively “loud” answer choice, and carries a large burden of proof which the Text just doesn’t provide, so we can eliminate this option. Answer Choice B says that the Swede now appreciates “the narrator’s accomplishments as an adult.” This is fairly neutral answer choice, and matches our two possible Texts, so we can keep this option. Answer Choice C says that the Swede “had failed to achieve his promise as the years went by.” This wouldn’t perfectly complete the irony set up in the question, since the irony involves the narrator appreciating the Swede early on and the Swede appreciating the narrator later in life, not that the Swede failed in later life. More importantly, neither our Texts nor our Passage supports this claim, so we can eliminate this option. Answer Choice D says that the Swede “envied the achievements of his more scholarly classmates.” This answer choice might seem to vaguely match our two texts and complete the irony, but it has a few things wrong with it. First, it has too much [pejorative flair], making it unlikely to be our answer choice unless it has very strong evidence to support it. Second, it uses the plural classmates, whereas the only possible envy he might feel that we would know about would have to address Zuckerman directly. And third, there’s just no evidence in our Passage or our Text that the Swedge feels envy, only a kind of appreciation or admiration. This leaves us with Answer Choice B for Question 5.
Now we have to decide between Answer Choice B and D for Question 6. Earlier we mentioned a few problems for Question 6, that the Swede calling the narrator ‘Skip’ shows a smaller level of appreciation than recognizing him as the author of certain books. Now that we chose Answer Choice B for Question 5, we should also note that only the Text for Answer Choice B shows the Swede appreciating the narrator for his accomplishments, thus we should choose Answer Choice B for Question 5.