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21世纪大学英语读写教程第二册 Unit8

时间:2006-02-21 16:00来源:互联网 提供网友:yxdzgd5   字体: [ ]


Text A

Pre-reading Activities
First Listening
1. As you listen to the tape the first time, mark each word or phrase J or T, to indicate whether Jill (the woman) or Tim (the man) says them. (Some words might be spoken by both people!)
animal anywhere asleep car cold decent ignore law light no one police safety sleepy social contract who knows

Then briefly2 summarize each person's attitude toward the social contract.

Second Listening
2. Whose point of view is closer to your own? Are there situations when it's okay to break the rules? Are there rules it's never okay to break, even when you're alone?

Unwritten Rules

Bob Greene

The restaurant was almost full. A steady hum of conversation hung over the room; people spoke1 with each other and worked on their meals.
Suddenly, from a table near the center of the room, came a screaming voice: "Damn it, Sylvia...."
The man was shouting at the top of his voice. His face was red, and he yelled at the woman sitting opposite him for about fifteen seconds. In the crowded restaurant, it seemed like an hour. All other conversations in the room stopped, and everyone looked at the man. He must have realized this, because just as suddenly as he had started, he lowered his voice and finished whatever it was he had to say in a tone the rest of us could not hear.
It was startling precisely3 because it almost never happens; there are no laws against such explosions, and with the pressures of our modern world you would almost expect to run into such things on a regular basis. But you don't; as a matter of fact, when I thought it over I realized that it was the first time in my life I had witnessed such a demonstration4. During all the meals I've had in restaurants, I had never seen a person start screaming at the top of his lungs.
When you're eating among other people, you don't raise your voice; it's just one example of the unwritten rules we live by. When you consider it, you recognize that those rules probably govern our lives on a more absolute basis than the ones you could find if you looked in the law books. The customs that govern us are what make a civilization. There would be chaos5 without them, and yet it's not at all clear why — even in our disintegrating6 society — we obey them.
How many times have you stopped at a red light late at night? You can see in all directions; there's no one else around — no headlights, no police cruiser idling behind you. You're tired and in a hurry. But you wait for the light to change. Is it for safety's sake? No; you can see that there would be no accident if you drove on. Is it to avoid getting arrested? No; you are alone; there's no one to catch you. Still, you sit and wait.
At major athletic7 events, it is not uncommon8 to find 90,000 or 100,000 people sitting in the stands. On the playing field are two dozen athletes —maybe fewer. There aren't enough security guards on hand to keep all the spectators from getting out of their seats and walking onto the field. But it never happens. Regardless of the emotion of the contest, the spectators stay in their places, and the athletes are safe in their part of the arena9. The invisible barrier always holds.
In restaurants and coffee shops, people pay their bills. It's a simple enough concept. Yet it would be remarkably10 easy to wander away from a meal without paying at the end. Especially in these difficult economic times, wouldn't you expect this to become a common form of cheating? Why doesn't it happen more often? It's just another unwritten rule of human conduct that people automatically make good on their debts. They would no sooner walk out on a bill than start screaming.
I know a man who, when he parks his car at a parking meter, always puts change in the meter even if there's time left on it. He regards it as the right thing to do. He says he isn't doing it just to extend the time remaining—even if there's sufficient time on the meter to cover whatever task he has to perform at the location, he pays his own way. He believes that you're supposed to purchase your own time; the fellow before you purchased only his.
There are so many rules like these—rules that we all obey—that we think about them only when that rare person violates them. In the restaurant, after the man had yelled "Damn it, Sylvia" there was a tentative atmosphere among the other diners for half an hour after it happened. They weren't sure what disturbed them about what they had witnessed; they knew, though, that it had violated something very basic about the way we're supposed to behave. And it bothered them—which in itself is a hopeful sign that, more often than not, all is well.
(750 words)

New Words

n. a low steady continuous sound 连续低沉的声音

a. 尖声的,发出尖叫声的

v. say (sth.) loudly and usually on a high note, esp. because of anger, fear, pain, etc. (因恐惧、痛苦等而)尖声喊叫,惊呼

v. 1. declare to be very wrong or bad 指责,贬斥
2. (esp. of God) send (sb.) to punishment without end after death (尤指上帝)罚(某人)入地狱受罪
3. curse at 诅咒;咒骂
int. 该死,他妈的,讨厌(表示愤怒、厌烦、轻蔑、失望等)

vi. (at) speak or say sth. in a very loud voice 叫喊,叫嚷

ad. 1. exactly; just 恰好;正好
2. in an exact manner; carefully 精确地;细致地

n. exactness 精确,准确
a. made or done with exactness 精密的,确切的

n. 1. a sudden bursting out of strong emotion (感情等的)爆发,迸发
2. (a loud noise caused by) a sudden, violent burst of energy 爆炸(声),炸裂(声)
3. a large and rapid increase 大规模的扩大;激增

vi. 1. blow up or burst 爆炸;爆破
2. (in, with) show sudden violent emotion 爆发,迸发
vt. 1. cause (a bomb, etc.) to blow up or burst 使爆炸;使突发
2. (often pass.) destroy (a belief) [常被动] 破除,戳穿

a. that can explode 会爆炸的

n. 基础;根据;基本原则,准则

ad. with regard to what is most important and basic; in reality 基本上;实际上;主要地

vt. see (sth.) happen 目击
n. a person who sees an event take place and is therefore able to describe it to others 目击者,见证人

n. 1. the expression of a feeling (情绪的)显示,表露
2. a public show of strong feeling or opinion, often with marching, big signs 示威游行

a. 1. not depending on or measured by comparison with other things 绝对的
2. complete: total 完全的;十足的
3. certain; definite; leaving no doubt 确实的;不容置疑的

n. 1. (an) established socially accepted practice 习俗,风俗
2. the habitual11 practice of a person (个人)习惯

a. established by custom; usual or habitual 习俗的;习惯的

v. 1. fall apart 瓦解;解体
2. (cause to) break into small parts or pieces (使)碎裂;(使)粉碎

n. 车前灯

n. (AmE) a police car (美)警察巡逻车

n. 目的;理由;缘故;利益

vt. take and keep (sb.) prisoner with the authority of the law 依法逮捕,拘捕

a. of or concerning athletes or athletics12 运动员的;运动的

n. safety; sth. that provides or assures safety 安全;保卫措施,安全措施

n. a person who is watching an event or game (比赛等的)观看者,观众

n. 1. any of the strong feelings of the human spirit 情感;激情;感情
2. strength of feelings; excited state of the feelings 激动

n. an event in which people compete against each other; a competition 竞赛;比赛

n. a level area for sports, public entertainment, etc. (供竞技、表演等用的)场地

ad. unusually; noticeably 非凡地,异常地;值得注意地,引人注目地

parking meter
a device next to a parking space into which one has to put money for parking for a certain time 汽车停放计时器,汽车停放收费计

vt. make (sth.) longer or larger 使延长,使延期;扩展,扩大

n. 1. the act of extending or being extended 延伸;扩展
2. a part which is added to make sth. longer, wider, or larger 增加的部分

n. a place or position 地点;位置

vt. break or be contrary to (a rule, principle, treaty, etc.) 违反,违背;违犯

a. 犹豫的,迟疑不决的

n. a person eating dinner 就餐者

v. 1. act; bear oneself 行为;举止
2. (of things) act in a particular way (事物)作出反应;起作用
3. (of machines, etc.) work or function (机器等)运转

a. 1. (of things) causing hope; likely to be favourable13 or successful; promising14 (事物)有希望的,给人希望的;有前途的
2. having hope 抱有希望的;充满希望的

Phrases and Expressions

hang over
remain, esp. as sth. unpleasant or threatening 笼罩;威胁

damn it

raise/lower one's voice
speak more loudly/quietly 提高/压低嗓门

at the top of one's voice/lungs
as loudly as possible 用尽量大的声音,放声(大叫)

on a regular /absolute basis
regularly /absolutely 定期地;绝对地

on a... basis
in a...way …地;在…基础上

as a matter of fact
actually, in fact 实际上

live by
live according to (sth. such as a principle) 遵循(…的原则)

for sth.'s / sb.'s sake / for the sake of sth. / sb.
for the purpose of sth. / for the benefit of sb. 为了,为了…的利益

on hand
available; present (not absent) 现有,在手头;在场

make good (on one's debt[s])
pay what one owes 偿付,支付(债务)

no sooner... than
1. 同…一样不
2. 一…就…

walk out on sth. / sb.
1. stop doing sth. one has agreed to do or that one is responsible for 不管,不顾;不履行;不支付
2. leave suddenly, esp. in a time of trouble; desert 抛弃,离开

in itself
considering only the thing specified; in its true nature 本身;实质上

more often than not
quite frequently 往往,多半

all is well
the situation is very satisfactory 一切顺利

Proper Names

Bob Greene



1 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
  • 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。
2 briefly 9Styo     
  • I want to touch briefly on another aspect of the problem.我想简单地谈一下这个问题的另一方面。
  • He was kidnapped and briefly detained by a terrorist group.他被一个恐怖组织绑架并短暂拘禁。
3 precisely zlWzUb     
  • It's precisely that sort of slick sales-talk that I mistrust.我不相信的正是那种油腔滑调的推销宣传。
  • The man adjusted very precisely.那个人调得很准。
4 demonstration 9waxo     
  • His new book is a demonstration of his patriotism.他写的新书是他的爱国精神的证明。
  • He gave a demonstration of the new technique then and there.他当场表演了这种新的操作方法。
5 chaos 7bZyz     
  • After the failure of electricity supply the city was in chaos.停电后,城市一片混乱。
  • The typhoon left chaos behind it.台风后一片混乱。
6 disintegrating 9d32d74678f9504e3a8713641951ccdf     
v.(使)破裂[分裂,粉碎],(使)崩溃( disintegrate的现在分词 )
  • As a poetic version of a disintegrating world, this one pleased him. 作为世界崩溃论在文学上的表现,他非常喜欢这个学说。 来自辞典例句
  • Soil animals increase the speed of litter breakdown by disintegrating tissue. 土壤动物通过分解组织,加速落叶层降解的速度。 来自辞典例句
7 athletic sOPy8     
  • This area has been marked off for athletic practice.这块地方被划出来供体育训练之用。
  • He is an athletic star.他是一个运动明星。
8 uncommon AlPwO     
  • Such attitudes were not at all uncommon thirty years ago.这些看法在30年前很常见。
  • Phil has uncommon intelligence.菲尔智力超群。
9 arena Yv4zd     
  • She entered the political arena at the age of 25. 她25岁进入政界。
  • He had not an adequate arena for the exercise of his talents.他没有充分发挥其才能的场所。
10 remarkably EkPzTW     
  • I thought she was remarkably restrained in the circumstances. 我认为她在那种情况下非常克制。
  • He made a remarkably swift recovery. 他康复得相当快。
11 habitual x5Pyp     
  • He is a habitual criminal.他是一个惯犯。
  • They are habitual visitors to our house.他们是我家的常客。
12 athletics rO8y7     
  • When I was at school I was always hopeless at athletics.我上学的时候体育十分糟糕。
  • Our team tied with theirs in athletics.在田径比赛中,我们队与他们队旗鼓相当。
13 favourable favourable     
  • The company will lend you money on very favourable terms.这家公司将以非常优惠的条件借钱给你。
  • We found that most people are favourable to the idea.我们发现大多数人同意这个意见。
14 promising BkQzsk     
  • The results of the experiments are very promising.实验的结果充满了希望。
  • We're trying to bring along one or two promising young swimmers.我们正设法培养出一两名有前途的年轻游泳选手。
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