The Bright Side In America # Improve Vocabulary

Vocabulary is indeed a very important part of preparing for IELTS. If you are preparing for IELTS, then it is very important for you to understand the vocabulary and practice it well, is important to score well in the IELTS exam. This time we are looking at an article written on TIME magazine and understand it for the vocabulary.

Source – TIME

[PARA 1]

Charity–humanity’s most benevolent impulse–is a timeless and borderless virtue, dating at least to the dawn of religious teaching. Philanthropy as we understand it today, however, is a distinctly American phenomenon, inseparable from the nation that shaped it. From colonial leaders to modern billionaires like Buffett, Gates and Zuckerberg, the tradition of giving is woven into our national DNA.

[PARA 2]

Like so many of our social structures, the formal practice of giving money to aid society traces its origin to a Founding Father. Benjamin Franklin, an icon of individual industry and frugality even in his own day, understood that with the privilege of doing well came the price of doing good. When he died in 1790, Franklin thought to future generations, leaving in trust two gifts of 1,000 lb. of sterling silver. One to the city of Boston, the other to Philadelphia. Per his instruction, a portion of the money and its dividends could not be used for 200 years.

[PARA 3]

While Franklin’s gifts lay in wait, the tradition he established evolved alongside the young nation. After the Civil War, rapid industrialization concentrated unfathomable wealth in the hands of a few, creating a period of unprecedented inequality. In response, the steel magnate Andrew Carnegie pioneered scientific philanthropy, which sought to address the underlying causes of social ills, rather than their symptoms. In his lifetime, Carnegie gave away more than $350 million, the equivalent of some $9 billion today. His 1889 essay “Wealth”–now better known as Carnegie’s “The Gospel of Wealth”–effectively launched modern philanthropy by creating a model that the wealthy continue to follow.

[PARA 4]

Two decades later, John D. Rockefeller endowed the Rockefeller Foundation, which soon became the largest such “benevolent trust” in the world. Prior to World War II, the Rockefeller Foundation provided more foreign aid than the entire federal government.

[PARA 5]

Other, often far less well-known men and women have played a critical role in philanthropy’s evolution. One of my personal heroes is Julius Rosenwald, who made his fortune building Sears, Roebuck and Co. With his giving, Rosenwald helped construct more than 5,300 schools across the segregated South and opened classroom doors to a generation of African-American students, including Maya Angelou and Congressman John Lewis.

[PARA 6]

America’s philanthropic instinct is not limited to the rich. The nation’s history is rife with people like Oseola McCarty, a Mississippi washerwoman who gave away her life savings of $150,000 in 1995 to fund college scholarships for low-income students with promise.

[PARA 7]

What accounts for this culture of generosity? The answer is not solely altruistic. Incentives in the tax code, for one, encourage the well-off to give. And philanthropy has long helped improve the public image of everyone from robber barons to the new tech elite.

[PARA 8]

More troubling, however, are the foundational problems that make philanthropy so necessary. Just before his death, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. wrote, “Philanthropy is commendable, but it must not cause the philanthropist to overlook the circumstances of economic injustice which make philanthropy necessary.”

[PARA 9]

Indeed, King illuminates a central contradiction: philanthropy is an offspring of the market, conceived and sustained by returns on capital. Yet its most important responsibility is to help address the market’s imbalances and inadequacies.

[PARA 10]

Today institutional giving is undergoing a radical transformation. Priscilla Chan and Mark Zuckerberg made headlines for committing $45 billion in Facebook stock through a limited liability corporation. They’re among a host of emerging donors who are experimenting with approaches to giving away their fortunes outside the boundaries of traditional foundations.

[PARA 11]

Only 26 years ago, the last of Franklin’s gifts were finally made available, having multiplied to $6.5 million. More than the sum, they represent a broader principle. We are custodians of a public trust, even if our capital was derived from private enterprise. The most important obligation is ensuring that the system works more equally and more justly for more people. This belief is core to our national character. America’s greatest strength is not the fact of perfection, but rather the act of perfecting.

1. BenevolentWell-meaning and kindlyBenign, caring, compassionate, generous, humane, philanthropic
2. virtueMoral excellence; goodness; righteousnessAdvantage, character, ethic, excellence, faith, generosity, goodness, ideal, kindness, love, merit, morality, purity, quality, rectitude, righteousness, value
3. philanthropyAltruistic concern for human welfare and advancement, usually manifested by donations of money, property, or work to needy persons by endowment of institutions of learning and hospitals and by generosity to other socially useful purposes.Charity, generosity, alms, alms-giving, altruism, assistance, benefaction, beneficence, contribution, dole, donation, endowment, fund, relief
4. frugalityThe quality of being frugal, or prudent in saving; the lack of wastefulnessModeration, prudence, thrift, avarice, carefulness, conservation, economy, miserliness, niggardliness, parsimoniousness, parsimony, penuriousness, providence, saving, stinginess
5. waitstay where one is or delay action until a particular time or event:Interval, down, halt, downtime, hold, interim, rest, stay
6. unfathomableNot able to fathom or completely understand; incomprehensibleBoundless, immeasurable, infinite
7. unprecedentedWithout previous instance; never known or experiencedBizzare, extraordinary, fantastic, miraculous, new, remarkable, singular, uncommon, unheard- of, unique, unparalleled, unrivaled, unusual
8. endowedTo provide with a permanent fund or source of incomeBlessed. Enriched, equipped, graced, suppilied
9. segregatedRestricting to one group, especially exclusively on the basis of racial or ethnic membershipIsolated, restricted, excluded, separated, discriminative
10. rifeOf common or frequent occurrence; prevalent; in widespread existence, activity or useAbundant, alive, plentiful, popular, prevalent, rampant, replete, abounding, common, current, epidemic, extensive, frequent
11. generosityReadiness or liberality in givingGoodness, hospitality, kindness, largesse, unselfishness, alms-giving, altruism, beneficence
12. altruisticUnselfishly concerned or devoted to the welfare of othersCharitable, humanitarian, magnanimous, philanthropic, all heart, benevolent, big, bleeding heart, considerate, good scout
13. incentivesSomething that incites or tends to incite to action or greater effort as a reward offered for increased productivityEncouragement, enticement, impetus, motivation, reason, stimulus, allurement, bait, carrot, catalyst, come- on, provocation, stimulant, insistence, exhortation
14. robberA person who robs (steals)Bandit, burglar, con artist, crook, looter, marauder, mugger, pickpocket, pirate, raider, rustler, shoplifter, swindler, thief, thug, brigand, buccaneer, cardsharper, cheat, chiseler, desperado, despoiler, fence, forager, fraud, hijacker, housebreaker, prowler, punk, safecracker, pillager, plunderer, operator
15. baronsA member of the lowest grade of nobilityAristocrat, lord, peer
16. contradictionA statement or proposition that contradicts or denies another or itself and is logically incongruousConflict, difference, disagreement, discrepancy, dispute, inconsistency, confutation, contravention, defiance, denial, dissension, incongruity, negation, opposite, opposition
17. radicalOf or going to the root or origin; fundamentalProfound, basal, bottom, cardinal, constitutional, essential, native, natural, organic, original, primary, primitive, deep-seated, foundational, inherent, innate, intrinsic, meat-and-potatoes, primal
18. obligationSomething by which a person is bound or obliged to do certain things, and which arises out of a sense of duty or results from custom, law etc.Accountability, agreement bond, burden, commitment, constraint, contract, debt, duty, liability, necessity, need, promise, requirement, right, trust, understanding


Similar Words

Given below are sentences with a word that has been highlighted. Out of the four possible synonyms i.e. similar words, given you need to find out the word that is closest in meaning with the word highlighted.

  1. I know people who read interminable, book after book, page after page, and yet should not call them ‘well-read people’.
    1. continuous
    2. badmouth
    3. frisky
    4. eastern
  2. It was done to make the situation more fraught with disaster for Germany.
    1. ferment
    2. replete
    3. mistaken
    4. justice
  3. This was a flagrant breach of international law and was protested against by every section of society.
    1. animation
    2. ferment
    3. rift
    4. hacksaw
  4. At that our struggle became stalemate.
    1. cunning
    2. creative
    3. delay
    4. carnival
  5. During the same time, a vigorous movement was carried out.
    1. tough
    2. coercion
    3. helpless
    4. flamethrower
  6. Money was poured out lavishly to bribe agitators to carry out the work.
    1. happy
    2. freezing
    3. flush
    4. anarchist
  7. Hitler was arrested with several of his comrades
    1. cheerful
    2. barren
    3. co-workers
    4. dense
  8. They believe that running a business has many advantages over working for someone else.
    1. brimmy
    2. benefits
    3. detox
    4. backyard
  9. Having said that, it is undeniable that running a business is risky.
    1. demented
    2. fanatical
    3. furious
    4. indisputable
  10. These days, more and more of us are living in big cities, and urban conurbations are expanding.
    1. inheritance
    2. progeny
    3. siblings
    4. capital

1. A
2. B
3. C
4. C
5. A

6. D

7. C

8. B

9. D

10. D


Exercise 204 #Synonym

Given below are five sentences, with each sentence having a word highlighted. Your task is to find the meaning of that word amongst the four options given.

Exercise 204

  1. The dramatic decade straddles many worlds.
    1. An object that fits into the top of a bottle to close it.
    2. A small decorative object in house
    3. To exist within, or include, different periods of time, activities or group of people.
    4. The place where something important comes from
  2. The books covers three epochal events that shaped the political landscape and discourse of the country.
    1. A very large see monster.
    2. A period of time in history, especially one during which important events or changes happen.
    3. To criticize somebody or something very strongly
    4. Not socially acceptable, but often still attractive despite this.
  3. Winter gripped the capital, wrapping it in a sheet of mist.
    1. Hold somebody or something tightly
    2. To interest or excite somebody
    3. Never end or improve
    4. A person’s intelligence
  4. The daily routine of my work life carries on unabated.
    1. Used as a friendly way of addressing sb.
    2. Connected with the earliest origins of life
    3. Without becoming less strong
    4. To give a long cry
  5. I still remember the sting of my school master’s cane.
    1. The darkest part of a shadow
    2. No longer having an effect or influence.
    3. Born dead
    4. Any sharp pain in your body or mind



The Nearest Word #Vocabulary

Vocabulary plays a very important role in IELTS. Considering this questions to find

The Nearest Word

are given.
For each of the following sentences, choose the option that is closest in meaning to the word bold

  1. There were people during 1930s who were staunch nationalists.

    1. Strong and loyal in your opinions or attitude
    2. A force of attraction that causes people to move towards each other.
    3. Relating to or connected with money
    4. The study and measurement of time
  2. The national flag is unfurled by the president on 15 august every year.

    1. To take things out of something.
    2. Not seen or noticed
    3. To open something that is tightly curled or rolled.
    4. A person or thing that puts seeds in the ground
  3. He seems to compensate for the forefathers who disdained the poor.

    1. To form a wrong opinion about someone or a situation
    2. The feeling that somebody or something is not good enough for your respect
    3. Intended to help people remember and respect important person or event in the past
    4. Impressive to look at
  4. The police came to confiscate all our possessions.

    1. To officially take from something from somebody, especially as a punishment.
    2. A thing that causes disease
    3. Not very polite or educated or fashionable
    4. Making you unable to think carefully
  5. The inspector was astounded.

    1. To surprise or shock somebody.
    2. A number by which other number is divided
    3. A short horse with strong legs
    4. To be a perfect example of something.


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