English Test 117
Directions for Questions from 1 to 3:
The passage given below is followed by a question. Choose the most appropriate answer to question.
Every civilized society lives and thrives on a silent but profound agreement as to what is to be accepted as the valid mould of experience.
Civilization is a complex system of dams, dykes, and canals warding off, directing, and articulating the influx of the surrounding fluid element; a
fertile fenland, elaborately drained and protected from the high tides of chaotic, unexercised, and inarticulate experience. In such a culture, stable
and sure of itself within the frontiers of 'naturalized' experience, the arts wield their creative power not so much in width as in depth. They do not
create new experience, but deepen and purify the old. Their works do not differ from one another like a new horizon from a new horizon, but like a
madonna from a madonna.
The periods of art which are most vigorous in creative passion seem to occur when the established pattern of experience loosens its rigidity without
as yet losing its force. Such a period was the Renaissance, and Shakespeare its poetic consummation. Then it was as though the discipline of the
old order gave depth to the excitement of the breaking away, the depth of job and tragedy, of incomparable conquests and irredeemable losses.
Adventurers of experience set out as though in lifeboats to rescue and bring back to the shore treasures of knowing and feeling which the old order
had left floating on the high seas. The works of the early Renaissance and the poetry of Shakespeare vibrate with the compassion for live
experience in danger of dying from exposure and neglect. In this compassion was the creative genius of the age. Yet, it was a genius of courage,
not of desperate audacity. For, however elusively, it still knew of harbours and anchors, of homes to which to return, and of barns in which to store
the harvest. The exploring spirit of art was in the depths of its consciousness still aware of a sc