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Raj Aryan Sharma
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A professor at the university has taken a sabbatical to research on

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A professor at the university has taken a sabbatical to research on James Baldwin's books that Baldwin wrote in France while he was living there .
A) on James Baldwin's books that Baldwin wrote in France while he was living there
B) about the books James Baldwin wrote in France
C) into James Baldwin's books written while in France
D) on the books of James Baldwin, written while he lived in France
E) the books James Baldwin wrote while he lived in France

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GMATwithCJ
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Top Pick from GMAT with CJ

Solution

Sentence Analysis

The sentence says that a professor has taken a sabbatical to do something i.e. to research books written by James Baldwin. He wrote these books while he lived in France.

The sentence has the following errors:

  1. The sentence is redundant to the point of hilarity! Do we need to say that James Baldwin?s books were written by Baldwin?! Or do we need to say that he wrote the books in France while he lived in France? If he didn?t live there, how would he write the books there?
  2. When ?research? is used as a verb, the object of the research should immediately follow the verb without any preposition. Therefore, "to research on the books" is incorrect. We need to have "to research the books". (If ?research? is used as a noun, then ?research on? is fine e.g. He conducted research on fatty acids.) A bit of caution: these rules may not be universally applicable.

Option Analysis

(A) Incorrect . For the reasons mentioned above.

(B) Incorrect . ?research about? is non-idiomatic.

(C) Incorrect . ?research into? is non-idiomatic. Also, "while" is France seems to illogically modify "books", meaning that the books were in France.

(D) Incorrect . "research on" is non-idiomatic.

(E) Correct . The option is idiomatic and concise. Please note: ?that? has been skipped after ?books?. The option, with ?that?, will read "the books that JB wrote_". ?that? can be skipped when ?that? is acting as an object in its clause.

answered Jun 10, 2017 by Beginner (1 point)
gmatclubforum
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Top Pick from GMAT Club Forum

Comparing the differences in the answer choices, I'm going to focus on the part that comes right before the underlined part. To research on? To research into? To research about? The only one that makes sense is to research the books.
If you're not familiar with that idiom, or rather, that there is no prepositional phrase comes after to research, separate the answer choices based on wrote or written.
The choices that say written make it ambiguous as to who was doing the writing. I would focus on ABE first.
At that point hopefully you will notice that to research on and to research about are both incorrect. E is the answer.
Farrell Dyan Hehn, MBA
Admissions Consultant & Verbal Strategist MBAPrepCoach.com

answered Jun 10, 2017 by Beginner (21 points)
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