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21世纪大学英语读写教程第二册 Unit6

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UNIT 6

Text A

Pre-reading Activities
First Listening
1.Before you listen to the tape have a quick look at the paragraph below. It's similar to what you'll hear on the tape, but there are some differences. As you listen the first time, underline the sections of the paragraph that are different from what you hear on the tape. Don't worry yet about what the exact differences are-just underline where they appear.
Steven Hawking1, the world-famous scientist and author, lost his ability to speak in 1985. Already confined to a wheelchair, unable to move more than a few muscles, he lost his voice and this meant he could communicate only by raising his eyebrows2. Then an American computer programmer came to Hawking's rescue by designing a vocalizing computer specially3 for him. With its help. Hawking can construct sentences at a speed of about 15 words per minute, by selecting words from his computer screen and then clicking on a device that vocalizes the sentences for him. Hawking jokes about the computer: "The only trouble is that it gives me an American accent."

Second Listening
2. What else do you know about Steven Hawking and his book A Brief History of Time? Why is he called "the smartest man in the world"?

A Brief History of Stephen Hawking

Michael White & John Gribbin

He has been proclaimed "the finest mind alive", "the greatest genius of the late 20th century", and "Einstein's heir". Known to millions, far and wide, for his book A Brief History of Time, Stephen Hawking is a star scientist in more ways than one. His gift for revealing the mysteries of the universe in a style that non-scientists can enjoy made Hawking an instant celebrity4 and his book a bestseller in both Britain and America. It has earned a place in the Guinness Book of Records for spending 184 weeks in The Sunday Times "top-ten" lists, and has sold more than five million copies worldwide — virtually unheard-of success for a science book.
How did all this happen? How has a man who is almost completely paralysed and unable to speak except through a computer overcome these incredible obstacles and achieved far more than most people ever dream of?
Stephen William Hawking was a healthy baby, born to intellectual, eccentric parents. His father Frank, a doctor specialising in tropical diseases, and his mother Isobel, a doctor's daughter, lived in a big old house full of books. Carpets and furniture stayed in use until they fell apart; the wallpaper hung peeling from old age. The family car was a London taxi, bought for £50.
Hawking has always been fascinated by his birth date: January 8,1942. It was the 300th anniversary of the death of Galileo, the Italian mathematician5 and astronomer6 who revolutionised astronomy by maintaining that the Sun is the centre of the Solar System — not the Earth, as ancient astronomers7 believed.
"Galileo", says Hawking, "was the first scientist to start using his eyes, both figuratively and literally8. In a sense, he was responsible for the age of science we now enjoy."
Hawking attended St. Albans School, a private school noted9 for its high academic standards. He was part of a small elite10 group, the brightest of the bright students. They hung around together, listened to classical music and read only such "smart" authors as Aldous Huxley and Hawking's hero, Bertrand Russell, at once an intellectual giant and liberal activist11.
Hawking spent very little time on maths homework, yet got full marks. A friend recalls: "While I would be struggling away with a complicated problem, he just knew the answer. He didn't have to think about it."
This instinctive12 insight also impressed his teachers. One of Hawking's science teachers, for example, recalls the time he posed the question: "Does a cup of hot tea reach a drinkable temperature more quickly if you put the milk in first, or add the milk after pouring?" While the rest of the class struggled over how to even begin approaching the problem, Hawking almost instantly announced the correct answer: "Add the milk after pouring, of course." (The hotter the tea initially13, the faster it will cool.) Another teacher relates how Hawking and his friends built a simple computer—and this was in 1958, a time when only large research centres had any computers at all.
Hawking the schoolboy was a typical grind, underweight and awkward and peering through eyeglasses. His grey uniform always looked a mess and he spoke14 rather unclearly, having inherited a slight lisp from his father. This had nothing to do with early signs of illness; he was just that sort of kid—a figure of classroom fun, respected by his friends, avoided by most.
Hawking went on to study at Oxford15, winning a scholarship to read Natural Science, a course which combines mathematics, physics and astronomy, at University College. He found much of the work easy and averaged only one hour's work a day. Once, when his tutor set some physics problems from a textbook, Hawking didn't even bother to do them. Asked why, he spent 20 minutes pointing out errors in the book. His main enthusiasm was the Boat Club. Many times he returned to shore with bits of the boat knocked off, having tried to guide his crew through an impossibly narrow gap. His rowing trainer suspects, "Half the time, he was sitting in the stern with his head in the stars, working out mathematical formulae."
Oxford has always had its share of eccentric students, so Hawking fit right in. But then, when he was 21, he was told that he had ALS—a progressive and incurable16 nerve disease. The doctors predicted that he had only a few years to live.
"Before my condition was diagnosed, I was very bored with life," Hawking says today, speaking from his wheelchair through a computerized voice synthesizer. The doctors' grim prognosis made him determined17 to get the most from a life he had previously18 taken for granted.
"But I didn't die," Hawking notes dryly. Instead, as his physical condition worsened, Hawking's reputation in scientific circles grew, as if to demonstrate the theory of mind over matter. Hawking himself acknowledges his disease as being a crucial factor in focusing his attention on what turned out to be his real strength: theoretical research. Hawking specializes in theoretical cosmology, a branch of science that seeks ultimate answers to big questions; Why has the universe happened, and what are the laws that govern it? His main work has been on black holes and the origin and expansion of the universe. He currently holds the Cambridge University professorship once held by Sir Isaac Newton.
The smartest man in the world is not immune to the depression that can accompany severe disabilities. But Hawking says: "I soon realized that the rest of the world won't want to know you if you're bitter or angry. You have to be positive if you're to get much sympathy or help." He goes on: "Nowadays, muscle power is obsolete19. What we need is mind power—and disabled people are as good at that as anyone else."
(966 words)

New Words

*proclaim
vi. say publicly and officially 宣告,宣布

*heir
n. 继承人

best-seller
n. sth. (esp. a book) that sells in very large numbers 畅销书/货

top-ten
n. 排行前十名

virtually
ad. almost; very nearly 几乎;实际上

virtual
a. almost what is stated; in fact though not officially 实质上,实际上(但并非正式的)

*paralyse, -ze
vt. make sb. lose the ability to move part or all of his body, or to feel anything in it 使瘫痪

obstacle
n. sth. that blocks one's way or makes movement, progress, etc. difficult 障碍(物)

*eccentric
a. (of people or their behaviour) unusual; not conventional or normal; slightly odd (人、行为举止)异乎寻常的;古怪的,怪僻的

tropical
a. of or found in the tropics 热带的;发生于热带的

carpet
n. 地毯

wallpaper
n. thick coloured or patterned paper for decorating the walls of a room 墙纸;壁纸

*peel
vi. (of a covering) come off in strips or small pieces 剥落;脱落
vt. (off) remove the outer covering from (a fruit, vegetable, etc.) 削去…的皮;剥去…的壳
n. the outer covering of fruits and vegetables (水果、蔬菜等的)皮

anniversary
n. a day which is an exact year or number of years after sth. has happened; a ceremony, feast, etc., held on this day 周年;周年纪念

mathematician
n. a person who studies mathematics 数学家

astronomer
n. a person who studies astronomy 天文学家

revolutionise, -ize
vt. cause a complete change in 使发生革命性剧变

*astronomy
n. the scientific study of the sun, moon. stars, planets, etc. 天文学

solar
a. 1. of, from or concerning the sun 太阳的;太阳产生的
2. using the sun's light and heat 利用太阳光(或太阳能)的

ancient
a. belonging to times that are long past 古代的;属于古代的

figuratively
ad. 比喻地;借喻地

*literally
ad. 1. according to the most basic and simple meaning of a word 字面上地;照文字地
2. exactly, really 确实地,真心地,不加夸张地

*elite
a. (Fr) (of people or organizations) considered to be the best of their kind(法)杰出的,卓越的;精锐的
n. a group of the most powerful, rich or talented people 精英阶层;实力集团

classical
a. 1. (of music) composed with serious intentions and having lasting20 value (as opposed to jazz or pop) 古典的;古典乐派的
2. being in accordance with ancient Greek or Roman models in literature or art or with later systems based on them 古典(指古希腊或古罗马文学、艺术等)的;基于古典文学艺术的

*instinctive
a. (出于)本能的;(出于)天性的

insight
n. deep understanding; the ability to see into the true nature of sth. 洞悉,深入了解;洞察力

pose
vt. 1. ask (a question, riddle21, etc.) 提出(问题等)
2. create or present (a difficulty, etc.) 造成,引起(困难等)

initially
ad. at first; at the beginning 最初;开始

relate
v. 1. tell (a story) 讲述(故事)
2. see or show a connection between 使联系,显示出…与…的联系

underweight
a. weighing too little or less than is usual 重量不足

awkward
a. 笨拙的;使人尴尬的

peer
vi. (at, through) look very carefully or hard for not being able to see well 仔细看;费力地看
n. a person of the same age or status as you 同辈;同等地位的人

eyeglasses
n. =glasses 眼镜

inherit
vt. 1. have features or qualities similar to those of an ancestor 经遗传而得(性格、特征)
2. receive (money, property, etc.) as a result of the death of the previous owner 继承(金钱、遗产等)

lisp
n. 咬舌;口齿不清

crew
n. 1. a rowing team 全体划船队员
2. all the people working on a ship, an aircraft, etc.(船、飞机等的)全体人员

gap
n. 1. an opening or break between two things 豁口;缺口
2. 峡谷;山口
3. 差距;分歧;隔阂

mathematical
a. of or concerning mathematics 数学(上)的

progressive
a. 1. (of diseases, etc.) becoming increasingly worse in its later stages (疾病等)愈来愈严重的
2. moving forward continuously or by stages 向前进的;循序渐进的
3. favoring or eager for new ideas or changes 进步的;改革的

incurable
a. that cannot be cured 不可救药的;不能治愈的

nerve
n. 1. any of the threadlike parts of the body which form a system to carry feelings and messages to and from the brain 神经
2. strength or control of mind; courage 意志力;勇气

predict
v. see or describe (a future happening) in advance as a result of knowledge, experience, reason, etc. 预言,预测

*diagnose
vt. discover the nature of (a disease) 诊断(疾病)

wheelchair
n. 轮椅

synthesizer
n. [电子]合成器;音响合成器

*grim
a. 1. (of a situation, etc.) unpleasant, difficult to accept and worrying 严酷的;无情的
2. (of a place) unattractive and depressing in appearance 阴森的,令人生畏的

prognosis
n. 1. (med.) a doctor's opinion of what course a disease will probably take [医]预后(指根据症状对疾病结果的预测)
2. a prediction about the future 预测

dryly, drily
ad. 1. according to the rules and without personal warmness or feeling 干巴巴地;冷冰冰地
2. 干燥地

worsen
v. (cause to) become worse (使)变得更坏;(使)恶化

demonstrate
vt. 1. prove or make clear by reasoning or examples 论证,证明
2. show the way to do sth. or how sth. works 示范;操作;演示
3. show (one's particular skill, quality or feeling) 显示,表露
vi. take part in a march or meeting to show one's opposition22 to sth. or support for it 示威游行

acknowledge
vt. 1. (as, to be) recognize, accept or admit (as) 承认;接受
2. state that one has received sth. 告知(信件、礼物等的)收到
3. show one's appreciation23 for, as by giving or saying sth. 对…表示谢忱,答谢

theoretical
a. based on or concerning the ideas and abstract principles of a subject, rather than the practical aspects of it 理论(上)的;纯理论的

cosmology
n. the scientific study of the universe and its origin and development 宇宙学

*govern
vt. 1. (often pass.) determine the nature of [常被动]决定;支配
2. rule (a country, a city, etc. and its people) 统治;治理
3. have control or influence over (sth.) 支配;影响

governor
n. a person who controls any of certain types of organization or place 统治者;管辖者;地方长官

expansion
n. 1. the process of becoming greater in size or amount 扩大,扩充;扩张
2. 扩充物;扩展部分

*immune
a. 1. (to) not affected24 by 不受影响的;可防止的
2. unable to be harmed (by a disease) because of special powers in oneself 免疫的;有免疫力的

depression
n. 1. a feeling of sadness and hopelessness 忧伤,消沉,沮丧
2. a period of reduced business activity and high unemployment 不景气;萧条(期)

disability
n. a physical injury or mental illness that severely25 affects one's life 伤残,残疾

sympathy
n. 1. the ability to share the feelings of another 同情心,恻隐心
2. a pity 同情

sympathize, -ise
v. show or feel sympathy (表示)同情

black hole
an area in outer space into which everything near it, including light itself, is pulled [天]黑洞

nowadays
ad. at the present time, in contrast with the past 如今,现在

obsolete
a. no longer used; out of date 已废弃的;过时的

Phrases and Expressions

far and wide
everywhere; from or over a large area 到处;广泛地

dream of
wish, fantasize, imagine 梦想;向往

specialise in
concentrate one's studies, interests, etc. on (a particular field, etc.) 专门从事;专门研究

in use
being used 在使用着的

fall apart
break into pieces; break up 破碎;崩溃

in a sense
to a certain extent but not entirely26 从某种意义上说

be responsible for
be the cause of 是…的原因;对…负责

hang around (with)
spend time in a place or with sb., often without any particular purpose (在某处)闲荡;(和某人)厮混

at once
at the same time 同时,一起

struggle away with
try very hard to do (sth., though it is very hard) 努力做(某事),艰难地做(某事)

have nothing to do with
have no relation to or connection with 与…无关

bother to do sth.
trouble oneself to do sth. 费心去做某事

knock off
cause sth. to fall from a place 敲掉;击倒

work out
find an answer to (sth.); solve (sth.) 想出;得出

have one's share of sth.
have part of sth.; have the amount that is fair for sb. 享有其中一份;享有自己应得的一份

fit (right) in
be (precisely) suitable (to) (正)相合

mind over matter
(sometimes humor) control of events or material objects by the power of the mind 精神战胜物质

turn out to be
happen to be in the end 最后是;结果是

Proper Names

Stephen William Hawking
斯蒂芬·威廉·霍金(1942—,英国物理学家)

John Gribbin
约翰·格里宾

Guinness Book of Records
《吉尼斯世界纪录大全》

The Sunday Times
《星期日泰晤士报》

Frank
弗兰克(男子名)

Isobel
伊泽贝尔(Elizabeth的异体)(女子名)

Galileo
伽利略(1564—1642,意大利数学家、天文学家和物理学家,现代力学和实验物理学的创始人)

St Albans School
圣奥尔本斯公学

Aldous Huxley
奥尔德斯·赫胥黎(1894—1963,美籍英国作家)

Bertrand Russell
伯特兰·罗素(1872—1970,英国哲学家、数学家、逻辑学家)

ALS
amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease [医]肌萎缩性(脊髓)侧索硬化

Newton
牛顿(1642—1727,英国物理学家)


点击收听单词发音收听单词发音  

1 hawking ca928c4e13439b9aa979b863819d00de     
利用鹰行猎
参考例句:
  • He is hawking his goods everywhere. 他在到处兜售他的货物。
  • We obtain the event horizon and the Hawking spectrumformula. 得到了黑洞的局部事件视界位置和Hawking温度以及Klein—Gordon粒子的Hawking辐射谱。
2 eyebrows a0e6fb1330e9cfecfd1c7a4d00030ed5     
眉毛( eyebrow的名词复数 )
参考例句:
  • Eyebrows stop sweat from coming down into the eyes. 眉毛挡住汗水使其不能流进眼睛。
  • His eyebrows project noticeably. 他的眉毛特别突出。
3 specially Hviwq     
adv.特定地;特殊地;明确地
参考例句:
  • They are specially packaged so that they stack easily.它们经过特别包装以便于堆放。
  • The machine was designed specially for demolishing old buildings.这种机器是专为拆毁旧楼房而设计的。
4 celebrity xcRyQ     
n.名人,名流;著名,名声,名望
参考例句:
  • Tom found himself something of a celebrity. 汤姆意识到自己已小有名气了。
  • He haunted famous men, hoping to get celebrity for himself. 他常和名人在一起, 希望借此使自己获得名气。
5 mathematician aoPz2p     
n.数学家
参考例句:
  • The man with his back to the camera is a mathematician.背对着照相机的人是位数学家。
  • The mathematician analyzed his figures again.这位数学家再次分析研究了他的这些数字。
6 astronomer DOEyh     
n.天文学家
参考例句:
  • A new star attracted the notice of the astronomer.新发现的一颗星引起了那位天文学家的注意。
  • He is reputed to have been a good astronomer.他以一个优秀的天文学者闻名于世。
7 astronomers 569155f16962e086bd7de77deceefcbd     
n.天文学者,天文学家( astronomer的名词复数 )
参考例句:
  • Astronomers can accurately foretell the date,time,and length of future eclipses. 天文学家能精确地预告未来日食月食的日期、时刻和时长。 来自《简明英汉词典》
  • Astronomers used to ask why only Saturn has rings. 天文学家们过去一直感到奇怪,为什么只有土星有光环。 来自《简明英汉词典》
8 literally 28Wzv     
adv.照字面意义,逐字地;确实
参考例句:
  • He translated the passage literally.他逐字逐句地翻译这段文字。
  • Sometimes she would not sit down till she was literally faint.有时候,她不走到真正要昏厥了,决不肯坐下来。
9 noted 5n4zXc     
adj.著名的,知名的
参考例句:
  • The local hotel is noted for its good table.当地的那家酒店以餐食精美而著称。
  • Jim is noted for arriving late for work.吉姆上班迟到出了名。
10 elite CqzxN     
n.精英阶层;实力集团;adj.杰出的,卓越的
参考例句:
  • The power elite inside the government is controlling foreign policy.政府内部的一群握有实权的精英控制着对外政策。
  • We have a political elite in this country.我们国家有一群政治精英。
11 activist gyAzO     
n.活动分子,积极分子
参考例句:
  • He's been a trade union activist for many years.多年来他一直是工会的积极分子。
  • He is a social activist in our factory.他是我厂的社会活动积极分子。
12 instinctive c6jxT     
adj.(出于)本能的;直觉的;(出于)天性的
参考例句:
  • He tried to conceal his instinctive revulsion at the idea.他试图饰盖自己对这一想法本能的厌恶。
  • Animals have an instinctive fear of fire.动物本能地怕火。
13 initially 273xZ     
adv.最初,开始
参考例句:
  • The ban was initially opposed by the US.这一禁令首先遭到美国的反对。
  • Feathers initially developed from insect scales.羽毛最初由昆虫的翅瓣演化而来。
14 spoke XryyC     
n.(车轮的)辐条;轮辐;破坏某人的计划;阻挠某人的行动 v.讲,谈(speak的过去式);说;演说;从某种观点来说
参考例句:
  • They sourced the spoke nuts from our company.他们的轮辐螺帽是从我们公司获得的。
  • The spokes of a wheel are the bars that connect the outer ring to the centre.辐条是轮子上连接外圈与中心的条棒。
15 Oxford Wmmz0a     
n.牛津(英国城市)
参考例句:
  • At present he has become a Professor of Chemistry at Oxford.他现在已是牛津大学的化学教授了。
  • This is where the road to Oxford joins the road to London.这是去牛津的路与去伦敦的路的汇合处。
16 incurable incurable     
adj.不能医治的,不能矫正的,无救的;n.不治的病人,无救的人
参考例句:
  • All three babies were born with an incurable heart condition.三个婴儿都有不可治瘉的先天性心脏病。
  • He has an incurable and widespread nepotism.他们有不可救药的,到处蔓延的裙带主义。
17 determined duszmP     
adj.坚定的;有决心的
参考例句:
  • I have determined on going to Tibet after graduation.我已决定毕业后去西藏。
  • He determined to view the rooms behind the office.他决定查看一下办公室后面的房间。
18 previously bkzzzC     
adv.以前,先前(地)
参考例句:
  • The bicycle tyre blew out at a previously damaged point.自行车胎在以前损坏过的地方又爆开了。
  • Let me digress for a moment and explain what had happened previously.让我岔开一会儿,解释原先发生了什么。
19 obsolete T5YzH     
adj.已废弃的,过时的
参考例句:
  • These goods are obsolete and will not fetch much on the market.这些货品过时了,在市场上卖不了高价。
  • They tried to hammer obsolete ideas into the young people's heads.他们竭力把陈旧思想灌输给青年。
20 lasting IpCz02     
adj.永久的,永恒的;vbl.持续,维持
参考例句:
  • The lasting war debased the value of the dollar.持久的战争使美元贬值。
  • We hope for a lasting settlement of all these troubles.我们希望这些纠纷能获得永久的解决。
21 riddle WCfzw     
n.谜,谜语,粗筛;vt.解谜,给…出谜,筛,检查,鉴定,非难,充满于;vi.出谜
参考例句:
  • The riddle couldn't be solved by the child.这个谜语孩子猜不出来。
  • Her disappearance is a complete riddle.她的失踪完全是一个谜。
22 opposition eIUxU     
n.反对,敌对
参考例句:
  • The party leader is facing opposition in his own backyard.该党领袖在自己的党內遇到了反对。
  • The police tried to break down the prisoner's opposition.警察设法制住了那个囚犯的反抗。
23 appreciation Pv9zs     
n.评价;欣赏;感谢;领会,理解;价格上涨
参考例句:
  • I would like to express my appreciation and thanks to you all.我想对你们所有人表达我的感激和谢意。
  • I'll be sending them a donation in appreciation of their help.我将送给他们一笔捐款以感谢他们的帮助。
24 affected TzUzg0     
adj.不自然的,假装的
参考例句:
  • She showed an affected interest in our subject.她假装对我们的课题感到兴趣。
  • His manners are affected.他的态度不自然。
25 severely SiCzmk     
adv.严格地;严厉地;非常恶劣地
参考例句:
  • He was severely criticized and removed from his post.他受到了严厉的批评并且被撤了职。
  • He is severely put down for his careless work.他因工作上的粗心大意而受到了严厉的批评。
26 entirely entirely     
ad.全部地,完整地;完全地,彻底地
参考例句:
  • The fire was entirely caused by their neglect of duty. 那场火灾完全是由于他们失职而引起的。
  • His life was entirely given up to the educational work. 他的一生统统献给了教育工作。
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TAG标签:   大学英语  读写教程  第二册  unit
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