Different types of clues in the same tossup?

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Beevor Feevor
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Different types of clues in the same tossup?

Post by Beevor Feevor » Thu May 18, 2017 8:29 pm

So I was looking through 2016 ACF Nationals and found this nice tossup on Mozart's piano concertos from the Penn and Oklahoma packet, which I have copied and pasted below.
2016 ACF Nationals - Penn + Oklahoma wrote:6. Composer and genre required. These pieces are said to employ the "principle of open ends," or the "principle of jig-saw," in the influential 1948 "companion to" them written by Arthur Hutchings. Two of them end not with the usual rondo but with a theme and variations—the latter of those two features the soloist interrupting the tutti in the last movement with a series of sixteenth notes and is in C minor. The only movement their composer ever wrote in F sharp minor appears in the 6/8 Adagio second movement in one of these pieces. The penultimate one of them, in D major, originally lacked tempo markings in its final two movements and featured many stretches where nothing at all was written for the soloist’s left hand. The F major Andante second movement of the 21st of these pieces featured prominently in the Swedish film Elvira Madigan. The "Coronation" and "Jeunehomme" are examples of, for 10 points, what works for keyboard soloist and orchestra by the composer of the Jupiter Symphony?
ANSWER: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's piano concertos [prompt on partial answer]
While I've got nothing to add as far as the score clues go, I know only the first line of the tossup and barely anything afterwards until some more names drop. Though understandably suboptimal as far as gameplay and real knowledge goes, it would seem that I would be able to first-line this by knowing something about Mozart piano concerto criticism and not Mozart piano concerto score clues, which this tossup seems to want to test.

Is this something that more question writers should be concerned about? Should we consider tossups "bad" if their first-clue type is different from what the rest of the question is asking about? I'm curious to hear what people in all disciplines (not just music), think about this, since I would love to know what standards are commonly acceptable when writing my questions for next year.
Eric Xu
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University of Virginia '19

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Periplus of the Erythraean Sea
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Re: Different types of clues in the same tossup?

Post by Periplus of the Erythraean Sea » Thu May 18, 2017 9:53 pm

...no, it's not? I mean insofar as there are not many criticism clues about the Mozart PCs that you can expect people to know, if you use this philosophy then you artificially limit the clues you pick for a tossup on Mozart PCs. Gosh, if we applied this constraint to the philosophy distribution and excluded commentary/argument/reference related clues from tossups on Spinoza that also clue Ethics, then we would miss out on much of the point of a category focused on intellectual discourse!

Themed tossups are good, but themes cant always be kept and that is okay
Will Alston
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vinteuil
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Re: Different types of clues in the same tossup?

Post by vinteuil » Thu May 18, 2017 10:42 pm

Periplus of the Erythraean Sea wrote:Themed tossups are good, but themes cant always be kept and that is okay
I agree with Will, but I'd point out that this question has nothing to do with "themes"—I've often written history questions with a "theme" (clue a city from an event) and named the most famous secondary source on that theme, which constitutes a different kind of clue than specific details of events. I don't think anybody's ever advocated for cluing questions with entirely "the same kind of clue" (if it's really even possible to separate clues into distinct "kinds"), and that's definitely not what I personally mean when I talk about a "theme."
Jacob Reed
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ValenciaQBowl
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Re: Different types of clues in the same tossup?

Post by ValenciaQBowl » Fri May 19, 2017 9:38 am

Literature questions certainly frequently use clues from criticism of a work along with clues from the work itself, theoretically a benefit to those who have academic experience with the work in question.
Chris Borglum
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Skepticism and Animal Feed
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Re: Different types of clues in the same tossup?

Post by Skepticism and Animal Feed » Fri May 19, 2017 11:40 am

This would be totally uncontroversial in most subjects outside of music. It's really common in literature, as Chris pointed out. In history, it would be nothing out of the ordinary if you, for example, put a clue like "Hannah Arendt called this battle the birth of the 19th century" at the beginning of a tossup that was otherwise military history.
Bruce
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vinteuil
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Re: Different types of clues in the same tossup?

Post by vinteuil » Fri May 19, 2017 11:53 am

Skepticism and Animal Feed wrote:This would be totally uncontroversial in most subjects outside of music.
I got a ton of (reasonably justified) flak for doing the opposite in music (in 2014) too, so I'm not sure this is a subject-specific idea.
Jacob Reed
Chicago ~'25
Yale '17, '19
East Chapel Hill '13
"...distant bayings from...the musicological mafia"―Denis Stevens

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