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2007年NPR美国国家公共电台五月-Being Content with Myself

时间:2007-07-21 03:16来源:互联网 提供网友:joly   字体: [ ]
Welcome to This I Believe, an NPR series presenting the personal philosophies of remarkable1 men and women from all walks of life.

For our series This I Believe, we receive thousands of essays from young people. Today we hear from one of them. Kamaal Majeed is a junior at Waltham high school in Massachusetts and wrote his essay in his English class last year. Here is our series curator independent producer Jay Allison.

Kamaal Majeed loves studying language. Intends to use his knowledge to help people understand one another better and as with most of his personal decisions, he is not likely to be knocked off course by the judgements or expectations of others. As you'll hear in his essay for This I Believe.

Why don't your act black? Since my middle school years, I've been asked this question more than any other. It seems to me that too many people have what society program into their brains, what should be expected of me, a black person, before ever interacting with me. But I believe in being who I am, not who others want me to be.

On my first day of high school, going into math class, two of my classmates pointed2 and laughed at me. I initially3 thought my fly was open, or that something was stuck in my teeth. But as I took my seat, I heard one of the students whisper, why is a black person taking honors? So my fly wasn't open. An honors-level class had simply been joined by a student whose skin was an unsettling shade of brown.

Many people think that my clothes should be big enough for me to live in, or expect me to listen exclusively to black music. In seventh grade, a group of my peers fixed4 their cold stares on my outfit5. Cargo6 shorts and a plain, fitting T-shirt. They called out to me, go get some gangsta clothes, white boy.

In one of my Spanish classes, as part of a review exercise, the teacher asked me, Te gusta mas, la musica de rap o rock? Do you like rap music or rock music more? I replied, La musica de rock. The looks of shock on my classmates' faces made me feel profoundly alienated7.

I am now in my junior year of high school. I still take all honors courses. My wardrobe still consists solely8 of clothes that are appropriate to my proportions. My music library spans from rock to pop to techno, and almost everything in between. When it comes to choosing my friends, I am still colorblind. I continue to do my best work in school in order to reach my goals. And yet, when I look in the mirror, I still see skin of that same shade of brown.

My skin color has done nothing to change my personality, and my personality has done nothing to change my skin color.

I believe in being myself. I believe that I — not any stereotype9 — should define who I am and what actions I take in life. In high school, popularity often depends on your willingness to follow trends. And I've been told that it doesn't get much easier going into adulthood10. But the only other option is to sacrifice my individuality for the satisfaction and approval of others. Sure, this can be appealing, since choosing to keep my self-respect intact has made me unpopular and disliked at times, with no end to that in sight. But others' being content with me is not nearly as important as my being content with myself.

Kamaal Majeed with his essay for This I Believe. Kamaal's high school English class voted for which essay should be submitted to our series. They voted unanimously for his. If you would like to send us your essay, votes or novotes, you may do so at npr.org. For This I Believe, I'm Jay Allison.

This I Believe is produced for NPR by This I Believe Incorporated and Atlantic Public Media. For more essays in the series, please visit npr.org/thisibelieve.
To make uneasy; disturb.
Honors course
To introduce a student to new material or new ways of thinking about material, as well as making the student more skilled in analysis and communication. In short, the Honors program seeks, through its courses, to make a student more educated through an interactive11 classroom environment
Dimensions; size. Often used in the plural12.
Any of various styles of dance music characterized by electronic sounds and a high-energy, rhythmic13 beat.


1 remarkable 8Vbx6     
  • She has made remarkable headway in her writing skills.她在写作技巧方面有了长足进步。
  • These cars are remarkable for the quietness of their engines.这些汽车因发动机没有噪音而不同凡响。
2 pointed Il8zB4     
  • He gave me a very sharp pointed pencil.他给我一支削得非常尖的铅笔。
  • She wished to show Mrs.John Dashwood by this pointed invitation to her brother.她想通过对达茨伍德夫人提出直截了当的邀请向她的哥哥表示出来。
3 initially 273xZ     
  • 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。
4 fixed JsKzzj     
  • Have you two fixed on a date for the wedding yet?你们俩选定婚期了吗?
  • Once the aim is fixed,we should not change it arbitrarily.目标一旦确定,我们就不应该随意改变。
5 outfit YJTxC     
  • Jenney bought a new outfit for her daughter's wedding.珍妮为参加女儿的婚礼买了一套新装。
  • His father bought a ski outfit for him on his birthday.他父亲在他生日那天给他买了一套滑雪用具。
6 cargo 6TcyG     
  • The ship has a cargo of about 200 ton.这条船大约有200吨的货物。
  • A lot of people discharged the cargo from a ship.许多人从船上卸下货物。
7 alienated Ozyz55     
adj.感到孤独的,不合群的v.使疏远( alienate的过去式和过去分词 );使不友好;转让;让渡(财产等)
  • His comments have alienated a lot of young voters. 他的言论使许多年轻选民离他而去。
  • The Prime Minister's policy alienated many of her followers. 首相的政策使很多拥护她的人疏远了她。 来自《简明英汉词典》
8 solely FwGwe     
  • Success should not be measured solely by educational achievement.成功与否不应只用学业成绩来衡量。
  • The town depends almost solely on the tourist trade.这座城市几乎完全靠旅游业维持。
9 stereotype rupwE     
  • He's my stereotype of a schoolteacher.他是我心目中的典型教师。
  • There's always been a stereotype about successful businessmen.人们对于成功商人一直都有一种固定印象。
10 adulthood vKsyr     
  • Some infantile actions survive into adulthood.某些婴儿期的行为一直保持到成年期。
  • Few people nowadays are able to maintain friendships into adulthood.如今很少有人能将友谊维持到成年。
11 interactive KqZzFY     
  • The psychotherapy is carried out in small interactive groups.这种心理治疗是在互动的小组之间进行的。
  • This will make videogames more interactive than ever.这将使电子游戏的互动性更胜以往。
12 plural c2WzP     
  • Most plural nouns in English end in's '.英语的复数名词多以s结尾。
  • Here you should use plural pronoun.这里你应该用复数代词。
13 rhythmic rXexv     
  • Her breathing became more rhythmic.她的呼吸变得更有规律了。
  • Good breathing is slow,rhythmic and deep.健康的呼吸方式缓慢深沉而有节奏。
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