- Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
- 1 2 3
- 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
- 11 12 13 14 15 16 17
- 18 19 20 21 22 23 24
- 25 26 27 28 29 30 31
Passage 1 文学
The passage adapted from Edith Wharton Mrs Manstey’s view
词汇题主要考查idle，absorbing；细节题Mrs. Sampson 宣布了什么消息；询证题装修房子的态度等。
Mrs. Manstey, in the long hours which she spent at her window, was not idle. She read a little, and knitted numberless stockings; but the view surrounded and shaped her life as the sea does a lonely island. When her rare callers came it was difficult for her to detach herself from the contemplation of the opposite window-washing, or the scrutiny of certain green points in a neighboring flower-bed which might, or might not, turn into hyacinths, while she feigned an interest in her visitor's anecdotes about some unknown grandchild. Mrs. Manstey's real friends were the denizens of the yards, the hyacinths, the magnolia, the green parrot, the maid who fed the cats, the doctor who studied late behind his mustard-colored curtains; and the confidant of her tenderer musings was the church-spire floating in the sunset.
One April day, as she sat in her usual place, with knitting cast aside and eyes fixed on the blue sky mottled with round clouds, a knock at the door announced the entrance of her landlady. Mrs. Manstey did not care for her landlady, but she submitted to her visits with ladylike resignation. To-day, however, it seemed harder than usual to turn from the blue sky and the blossoming magnolia to Mrs. Sampson's unsuggestive face, and Mrs. Manstey was conscious of a distinct effort as she did so.
"The magnolia is out earlier than usual this year, Mrs. Sampson," she remarked, yielding to a rare impulse, for she seldom alluded to the absorbing interest of her life. In the first place it was a topic not likely to appeal to her visitors and, besides, she lacked the power of expression and could not have given utterance to her feelings had she wished to.
"The what, Mrs. Manstey?" inquired the landlady, glancing about the room as if to find there the explanation of Mrs. Manstey's statement.
"The magnolia in the next yard -- in Mrs. Black's yard," Mrs. Manstey repeated.
"Is it, indeed? I didn't know there was a magnolia there," said Mrs. Sampson, carelessly. Mrs. Manstey looked at her; she did not know that there was a magnolia in the next yard!
"By the way," Mrs. Sampson continued, "speaking of Mrs. Black reminds me that the work on the extension is to begin next week."
"The what?" it was Mrs. Manstey's turn to ask.
"The extension," said Mrs. Sampson, nodding her head in the direction of the ignored magnolia. "You knew, of course, that Mrs. Black was going to build an extension to her house? Yes, ma'am. I hear it is to run right back to the end of the yard. How she can afford to build an extension in these hard times I don't see; but she always was crazy about building. She used to keep a boarding-house in Seventeenth Street, and she nearly ruined herself then by sticking out bow-windows and what not; I should have thought that would have cured her of building, but I guess it's a disease, like drink. Anyhow, the work is to begin on Monday."
Mrs. Manstey had grown pale. She always spoke slowly, so the landlady did not heed the long pause which followed. At last Mrs. Manstey said: "Do you know how high the extension will be?"
"That's the most absurd part of it. The extension is to be built right up to the roof of the main building; now, did you ever?"
"Mrs. Manstey paused again. "Won't it be a great annoyance to you, Mrs. Sampson?" she asked.
"I should say it would. But there's no help for it; if people have got a mind to build extensions there's no law to prevent 'em, that I'm aware of." Mrs. Manstey, knowing this, was silent. "There is no help for it," Mrs. Sampson repeated, "but if I am a church member, I wouldn't be so sorry if it ruined Eliza Black. Well, good-day, Mrs. Manstey; I'm glad to find you so comfortable."
So comfortable -- so comfortable! Left to herself the old woman turned once more to the window. How lovely the view was that day! The blue sky with its round clouds shed a brightness over everything; the ailanthus had put on a tinge of yellow-green, the hyacinths were budding, the magnolia flowers looked more than ever like rosettes carved in alabaster. Soon the wistaria would bloom, then the horse-chestnut; but not for her. Between her eyes and them a barrier of brick and mortar would swiftly rise; presently even the spire would disappear, and all her radiant world be blotted out.
Passage 2 历史
节选自1906年Theodore Roosevelt的演讲 “The Man with the Muck Rake”
Over a century ago Washington laid the corner stone of the Capitol in what was then little more than a tract of wooded wilderness here beside the Potomac. We now find it necessary to provide by great additional buildings for the business of the government.
This growth in the need for the housing of the government is but a proof and example of the way in which the nation has grown and the sphere of action of the national government has grown. We now administer the affairs of a nation in which the extraordinary growth of population has been outstripped by the growth of wealth in complex interests. The material problems that face us today are not such as they were in Washington's time, but the underlying facts of human nature are the same now as they were then. Under altered external form we war with the same tendencies toward evil that were evident in Washington's time, and are helped by the same tendencies for good. It is about some of these that I wish to say a word today.
In Bunyan's "Pilgrim's Progress" you may recall the description of the Man with the Muck Rake, the man who could look no way but downward, with the muck rake in his hand; who was offered a celestial crown for his muck rake, but who would neither look up nor regard the crown he was offered, but continued to rake to himself the filth of the floor.
In "Pilgrim's Progress" the Man with the Muck Rake is set forth as the example of him whose vision is fixed on carnal instead of spiritual things. Yet he also typifies the man who in this life consistently refuses to see aught that is lofty, and fixes his eyes with solemn intentness only on that which is vile and debasing.
Now, it is very necessary that we should not flinch from seeing what is vile and debasing. There is filth on the floor, and it must be scraped up with the muck rake; and there are times and places where this service is the most needed of all the services that can be performed. But the man who never does anything else, who never thinks or speaks or writes, save of his feats with the muck rake, speedily becomes, not a help but one of the most potent forces for evil.
There are in the body politic, economic and social, many and grave evils, and there is urgent necessity for the sternest war upon them. There should be relentless exposure of and attack upon every evil man, whether politician or business man, every evil practice, whether in politics, business, or social life. I hail as a benefactor every writer or speaker, every man who, on the platform or in a book, magazine, or newspaper, with merciless severity makes such attack, provided always that he in his turn remembers that the attack is of use only if it is absolutely truthful.
The liar is no whit better than the thief, and if his mendacity takes the form of slander he may be worse than most thieves. It puts a premium upon knavery untruthfully to attack an honest man, or even with hysterical exaggeration to assail a bad man with untruth.
An epidemic of indiscriminate assault upon character does no good, but very great harm. The soul of every scoundrel is gladdened whenever an honest man is assailed, or even when a scoundrel is untruthfully assailed.
Now, it is easy to twist out of shape what I have just said, easy to affect to misunderstand it, and if it is slurred over in repetition not difficult really to misunderstand it. Some persons are sincerely incapable of understanding that to denounce mud slinging does not mean the endorsement of whitewashing; and both the interested individuals who need whitewashing and those others who practice mud slinging like to encourage such confusion of ideas.
One of the chief counts against those who make indiscriminate assault upon men in business or men in public life is that they invite a reaction which is sure to tell powerfully in favor of the unscrupulous scoundrel who really ought to be attacked, who ought to be exposed, who ought, if possible, to be put in the penitentiary. If Aristides is praised overmuch as just, people get tired of hearing it; and over-censure of the unjust finally and from similar reasons results in their favor.
Any excess is almost sure to invite a reaction; and, unfortunately, the reactions instead of taking the form of punishment of those guilty of the excess, is apt to take the form either of punishment of the unoffending or of giving immunity, and even strength, to offenders. The effort to make financial or political profit out of the destruction of character can only result in public calamity. Gross and reckless assaults on character, whether on the stump or in newspaper, magazine, or book, create a morbid and vicious public sentiment, and at the same time act as a profound deterrent to able men of normal sensitiveness and tend to prevent them from entering the public service at any price.
As an instance in point, I may mention that one serious difficulty encountered in getting the right type of men to dig the Panama canal is the certainty that they will be exposed, both without, and, I am sorry to say, sometimes within, Congress, to utterly reckless assaults on their character and capacity.
At the risk of repetition let me say again that my plea is not for immunity to, but for the most unsparing exposure of, the politician who betrays his trust, of the big business man who makes or spends his fortune in illegitimate or corrupt ways. There should be a resolute effort to hunt every such man out of the position he has disgraced. Expose the crime, and hunt down the criminal; but remember that even in the case of crime, if it is attacked in sensational, lurid, and untruthful fashion, the attack may do more damage to the public mind than the crime itself.
It is because I feel that there should be no rest in the endless war against the forces of evil that I ask the war be conducted with sanity as well as with resolution. The men with the muck rakes are often indispensable to the well being of society; but only if they know when to stop raking the muck, and to look upward to the celestial crown above them, to the crown of worthy endeavor. There are beautiful things above and round about them; and if they gradually grow to feel that the whole world is nothing but muck, their power of usefulness is gone.
If the whole picture is painted black there remains no hue whereby to single out the rascals for distinction from their fellows. Such painting finally induces a kind of moral color blindness; and people affected by it come to the conclusion that no man is really black, and no man really white, but they are all gray.
In other words, they neither believe in the truth of the attack, nor in the honesty of the man who is attacked; they grow as suspicious of the accusation as of the offense; it becomes well nigh hopeless to stir them either to wrath against wrongdoing or to enthusiasm for what is right; and such a mental attitude in the public gives hope to every knave, and is the despair of honest men. To assail the great and admitted evils of our political and industrial life with such crude and sweeping generalizations as to include decent men in the general condemnation means the searing of the public conscience. There results a general attitude either of cynical belief in and indifference to public corruption or else of a distrustful inability to discriminate between the good and the bad. Either attitude is fraught with untold damage to the country as a whole.
The fool who has not sense to discriminate between what is good and what is bad is well nigh as dangerous as the man who does discriminate and yet chooses the bad. There is nothing more distressing to every good patriot, to every good American, than the hard, scoffing spirit which treats the allegation of dishonesty in a public man as a cause for laughter. Such laughter is worse than the crackling of thorns under a pot, for it denotes not merely the vacant mind, but the heart in which high emotions have been choked before they could grow to fruition. There is any amount of good in the world, and there never was a time when loftier and more disinterested work for the betterment of mankind was being done than now. The forces that tend for evil are great and terrible, but the forces of truth and love and courage and honesty and generosity and sympathy are also stronger than ever before. It is a foolish and timid, no less than a wicked thing, to blink the fact that the forces of evil are strong, but it is even worse to fail to take into account the strength of the forces that tell for good.
Hysterical sensationalism is the poorest weapon wherewith to fight for lasting righteousness. The men who with stern sobriety and truth assail the many evils of our time, whether in the public press, or in magazines, or in books, are the leaders and allies of all engaged in the work for social and political betterment. But if they give good reason for distrust of what they say, if they chill the ardor of those who demand truth as a primary virtue, they thereby betray the good cause and play into the hands of the very men against whom they are nominally at war.
In his Ecclesiastical Polity that fine old Elizabethan divine, Bishop Hooker, wrote:
He that goeth about to persuade a multitude that they are not so well governed as they ought to be shall never want attentive and favorable hearers, because they know the manifold defects whereunto every kind of regimen is subject, but the secret lets and difficulties, which in public proceedings are innumerable and inevitable, they have not ordinarily the judgment to consider.
This truth should be kept constantly in mind by every free people desiring to preserve the sanity and poise indispensable to the permanent success of self-government. Yet, on the other hand, it is vital not to permit this spirit of sanity and self-command to degenerate into mere mental stagnation. Bad though a state of hysterical excitement is, and evil though the results are which come from the violent oscillations such excitement invariably produces, yet a sodden acquiescence in evil is even worse.
At this moment we are passing through a period of great unrest-social, political, and industrial unrest. It is of the utmost importance for our future that this should prove to be not the unrest of mere rebelliousness against life, of mere dissatisfaction with the inevitable inequality of conditions, but the unrest of a resolute and eager ambition to secure the betterment of the individual and the nation.
So far as this movement of agitation throughout the country takes the form of a fierce discontent with evil, of a determination to punish the authors of evil, whether in industry or politics, the feeling is to be heartily welcomed as a sign of healthy life.
If, on the other hand, it turns into a mere crusade of appetite against appetite, of a contest between the brutal greed of the "have nots" and the brutal greed of the "haves," then it has no significance for good, but only for evil. If it seeks to establish a line of cleavage, not along the line which divides good men from bad, but along that other line, running at right angles thereto, which divides those who are well off from those who are less well off, then it will be fraught with immeasurable harm to the body politic.
We can no more and no less afford to condone evil in the man of capital than evil in the man of no capital. The wealthy man who exults because there is a failure of justice in the effort to bring some trust magnate to account for his misdeeds is as bad as, and no worse than, the so-called labor leader who clamorously strives to excite a foul class feeling on behalf of some other labor leader who is implicated in murder. One attitude is as bad as the other, and no worse; in each case the accused is entitled to exact justice; and in neither case is there need of action by others which can be construed into an expression of sympathy for crime.
It is a prime necessity that if the present unrest is to result in permanent good the emotion shall be translated into action, and that the action shall be marked by honesty, sanity, and self-restraint. There is mighty little good in a mere spasm of reform. The reform that counts is that which comes through steady, continuous growth; violent emotionalism leads to exhaustion.
It is important to this people to grapple with the problems connected with the amassing of enormous fortunes, and the use of those fortunes, both corporate and individual, in business. We should discriminate in the sharpest way between fortunes well won and fortunes ill won; between those gained as an incident to performing great services to the community as a whole and those gained in evil fashion by keeping just within the limits of mere law honesty. Of course, no amount of charity in spending such fortunes in any way compensates for misconduct in making them.
As a matter of personal conviction, and without pretending to discuss the details or formulate the system, I feel that we shall ultimately have to consider the adoption of some such scheme as that of a progressive tax on all fortunes, beyond a certain amount, either given in life or devised or bequeathed upon death to any individual-a tax so framed as to put it out of the power of the owner of one of these enormous fortunes to hand on more than a certain amount to any one individual; the tax of course, to be imposed by the national and not the state government. Such taxation should, of course, be aimed merely at the inheritance or transmission in their entirety of those fortunes swollen beyond all healthy limits. Again, the national government must in some form exercise supervision over corporations engaged in interstate business-and all large corporations engaged in interstate business-whether by license or otherwise, so as to permit us to deal with the far reaching evils of overcapitalization.
This year we are making a beginning in the direction of serious effort to settle some of these economic problems by the railway rate legislation. Such legislation, if so framed, as I am sure it will be, as to secure definite and tangible results, will amount to something of itself; and it will amount to a great deal more in so far as it is taken as a first step in the direction of a policy of superintendence and control over corporate wealth engaged in interstate commerce; this superintendence and control not to be exercised in a spirit of malevolence toward the men who have created the wealth, but with the firm purpose both to do justice to them and to see that they in their turn do justice to the public at large.
The first requisite in the public servants who are to deal in this shape with corporations, whether as legislators or as executives, is honesty. This honesty can be no respecter of persons. There can be no such thing as unilateral honesty. The danger is not really from corrupt corporations; it springs from the corruption itself, whether exercised for or against corporations.
The eighth commandment reads, "Thou shalt not steal." It does not read, "Thou shalt not steal from the rich man." It does not read, "Thou shalt not steal from the poor man." It reads simply and plainly, "Thou shalt not steal."
No good whatever will come from that warped and mock morality which denounces the misdeeds of men of wealth and forgets the misdeeds practiced at their expense; which denounces bribery, but blinds itself to blackmail; which foams with rage if a corporation secures favors by improper methods, and merely leers with hideous mirth if the corporation is itself wronged.
The only public servant who can be trusted honestly to protect the rights of the public against the misdeeds of a corporation is that public man who will just as surely protect the corporation itself from wrongful aggression.
If a public man is willing to yield to popular clamor and do wrong to the men of wealth or to rich corporations, it may be set down as certain that if the opportunity comes he will secretly and furtively do wrong to the public in the interest of a corporation.
But in addition to honesty, we need sanity. No honesty will make a public man useful if that man is timid or foolish, if he is a hot-headed zealot or an impracticable visionary. As we strive for reform we find that it is not at all merely the case of a long uphill pull. On the contrary, there is almost as much of breeching work as of collar work. To depend only on traces means that there will soon be a runaway and an upset.
The men of wealth who today are trying to prevent the regulation and control of their business in the interest of the public by the proper government authorities will not succeed, in my judgment, in checking the progress of the movement. But if they did succeed they would find that they had sown the wind and would surely reap the whirlwind, for they would ultimately provoke the violent excesses which accompany a reform coming by convulsion instead of by steady and natural growth.
On the other hand, the wild preachers of unrest and discontent, the wild agitators against the entire existing order, the men who act crookedly, whether because of sinister design or from mere puzzle headedness, the men who preach destruction without proposing any substitute for what they intend to destroy, or who propose a substitute which would be far worse than the existing evils-all these men are the most dangerous opponents of real reform. If they get their way they will lead the people into a deeper pit than any into which they could fall under the present system. If they fail to get their way they will still do incalculable harm by provoking the kind of reaction which in its revolt against the senseless evil of their teaching would enthrone more securely than ever the evils which their misguided followers believe they are attacking.
More important than aught else is the development of the broadest sympathy of man for man. The welfare of the wage worker, the welfare of the tiller of the soil, upon these depend the welfare of the entire country; their good is not to be sought in pulling down others; but their good must be the prime object of all our statesmanship.
Materially we must strive to secure a broader economic opportunity for all men, so that each shall have a better chance to show the stuff of which he is made. Spiritually and ethically we must strive to bring about clean living and right thinking. We appreciate that the things of the body are important; but we appreciate also that the things of the soul are immeasurably more important.
The foundation stone of national life is, and ever must be, the high individual character of the average citizen.
Passage 3 科学双篇
Passage 1：Tracey Peake, "Pigment or Bacteria? Researchers Reexamine the Idea of "color" in Fossil Feathers".
Paleontologists studying fossilized feathers have proposed that the shapes of certain microscopic structures inside the feathers can tell us the color of ancient birds. But new research from North Carolina State University demonstrates that it is not yet possible to tell if these structures – thought to be melanosomes – are what they seem, or if they are merely the remnants of ancient bacteria.
Melanosomes are small, pigment-filled sacs located inside the cells of feathers and other pigmented tissues of vertebrates. They contain melanin, which can give feathers colors ranging from brownish-red to gray to solid black. Melanosomes are either oblong or round in shape, and the identification of these small bodies in preserved feathers has led to speculation about the physiology, habitats, coloration and lifestyles of the extinct animals, including dinosaurs, that once possessed them.
But melanosomes are not the only round and oblong microscopic structures that might show up in fossilized feathers. In fact, the microbes that drove the decomposition of the animal prior to fossilization share the same size and shape as melanosomes, and they would also be present in feathers during decay.
Alison Moyer, a Ph.D. candidate in paleontology at NC State, wanted to find out whether these structures could be definitively identified as either melanosome or microbe. Using black and brown chicken feathers – chickens are one of the closest living relatives to both dinosaurs and ancient birds – Moyer grew bacteria over them to replicate what we see in the fossil record. She used three different types of microscopy to examine the patterns of biofilm growth, and then compared those structures to melanosomes inside of chicken feathers that she had sliced open. Finally, she compared both microbes and actual melanosomes to structures in a fossilized feather from Gansus yumenensis, an avian dinosaur that lived about 120 million years ago, and to published images of fossil “melanosomes” by others. Her findings led to more questions.
“These structures could be original to the bird, or they could be a biofilm which has grown over and degraded the feather – if the latter, they would also produce round or elongated structures that are not melanosomes,” Moyer says. “Melanosomes are embedded in keratin, which is a very tough protein, so they’re hard to see unless there’s been some degradation. But the bacteria are doing the degrading, and so that may be what we’re seeing, rather than the melanosome itself. It’s impossible to say with certainty what these structures are without more data, including fine scale chemical data.”
Passage 2 Sarah Fecht, "The True colors of Ancient Reptiles Revealed".
Lots of fossils, such as the ichthyosaur shown here, are outlined or shellacked with a mysterious dark deposit. For a long time, scientists couldn't be sure what the material was or where it came from. Under the microscope, the material housed tiny egg-shaped structures that looked like melanosomes—the cell organelles that secrete pigments into an animal's skin. Other scientists thought the structures might be bacteria.
By studying the molecular composition of the pigments, the scientists in this study not only concluded that the deposits are pigment remains, but also determined what those pigments were. They say that three fossilized marine reptiles they studied—a 190-million-year-old ichthyosaur, an 86-million-year-old mosasaur, and a 55-million-year-old leatherback turtle—probably had blackish skin like the modern-day leatherback turtle.
"This is the first time that we're reporting pigments, the animal's own biomolecules from reptile skin," says Johan Lindgren, a geologist at Lund University and the lead author on the new study.
Previous studies relied on a visual identification of those egg-shaped melanosomes. Lindgren's team went a step further by analyzing the chemistry of the structures and pigments in the samples. The molecule that causes black coloring, called eumelanin, had degraded over time but remained largely intact. It was enough to provide the first unequivocal evidence of pigmentation in the skin of a fossilized animal, says Maria McNamara, a paleontologist with the University of Bristol who was not involved in the study.
To identify the dark deposits, Lindgren's team fired a beam of ions at samples of the material. The ions broke up the material and sent fragments flying into a detector, which analyzed their chemical composition and confirmed that the dark deposits were eumelanin. Under the microscope, Lindgren's team showed that concentrations of eumelanin peaked in areas with the highest density of the tiny egg-shaped structures—suggesting the structures were indeed melanosomes, not bacterial cells.
Most studies up to now have tried to learn the coloration of ancient organisms by studying fossilized feathers, because feathers are tougher and more resistant to decay and their melanosomes are more densely packed than in skin. Lindgren's study opens the door to reconstruct coloration in a wider range of species, including nonfeathered dinosaurs.
That's important because an animal's color can say a lot about its behavior. Color can be used as camouflage, to signal to mates, or to flash a warning to potential aggressors. Lindgren's team hypothesizes that the black coloration helped ichthyosaurs, mosasaurs, and ancient leatherback turtles to absorb extra heat. That would be helpful if, like modern-day leatherbacks, the large reptiles ranged into the icy waters of the Arctic Circle.
The distribution of dark pigment around the fossil ichthyosaur suggested the animal was uniformly dark-colored. "That's pretty neat, because most marine animals have a dark back and a white belly," Lindgren says. "If you look at sperm whales today, they have a uniform coloration. Ichthyosaurs are also inferred deep divers, so it's an interesting similarity."
There appears to be a limit to how well scientists can reconstruct ancient coloration. Some non-melanic pigments (which can be responsible for red, yellow, and blue coloration) don't preserve as well as melanin-based pigments. Still, "the glass is half-full as opposed to half-empty," says Patrick Orr, who studies fossil preservation at University College Dublin. "We're now getting data that, a decade ago, would have been impossible."
Orr predicts that this work is just the tip of the iceberg for fossil pigmentation studies, which can now begin to link coloration patterns with different ecologies and chart how reptile color evolved over time.
Anne Schulp, who studies mosasaurs at the Naturalis Biodiversity Center in the Netherlands, called the new research exciting. "As a paleontologist at a museum, I'm always trying to take our visitors back on a trip through time, and the more details we have the better the story gets. We can now do a little paint job on the marine reptiles—a paint job that's actually based on real research."
Passage 4 社科
The passage adapted from The Surprising Benefits of Sarcasmwen
Sarcasm involves constructing or exposing contradictions between intended meanings. It is the most common form of verbal irony—that is, allowing people to say exactly what they do not mean. Often we use it to humorously convey disapproval or scorn. “Pat, don't work so hard!” a boss might say, for example, on catching his assistant surfing the Web.
And yet behavioral scientists Li Huang of INSEAD business school, Adam D. Galinsky of Columbia University and I have found that sarcasm may also offer an unexpected psychological payoff: greater creativity. The use of sarcasm, in fact, appears to promote creativity for those on both the giving and receiving end of the exchange. Instead of avoiding snarky remarks completely, our research suggests that, used with care and in moderation, clever quips can trigger creative sparks.
Early research into how people interpret sarcastic statements revealed, as one might expect, that most perceive such comments as critical compared with more direct utterances. In one study, published in 1997, 32 participants read scenarios in which, for instance, one person did something that could be viewed negatively, such as smoking, and a second person commented on the behavior to the first person, either literally (“I see you don't have a healthy concern for your lungs”) or sarcastically (“I see you have a healthy concern for your lungs”). Consistently, participants rated sarcasm to be more condemning than literal statements.
In 2000 University of Western Ontario researchers encouraged 66 students to read a scenario while imagining the perspective of a certain person in the story, such as the viewpoint of someone making a critical comment or the person receiving that comment. Although there was some disagreement on how these comments might affect the relationship between a speaker and listener, perspective taking did not alter anyone's understanding of the speaker's intentions, such as mockery or a desire to provoke anger.
And sarcasm can be easily misinterpreted, particularly when it is communicated electronically, according to a 2005 study by Jason Parker and Zhi-Wen Ng, both then psychologists at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and their colleagues. They gave 30 pairs of university students a list of statements, half of which were sarcastic and half serious. Some students relayed messages via e-mail and others via voice recordings. Participants who received the voice messages accurately gleaned the sarcasm (or lack thereof) 73 percent of the time, but those who received the statements via e-mail did so only 56 percent of the time, hardly better than chance.
The e-mailers had anticipated that 78 percent of the participants would pick up on the sarcasm inherent in their messages. That is, they badly overestimated their ability to communicate the tenor of these statements via e-mail. And the recipients of the sarcastic e-mails were even more overconfident. They guessed they would correctly interpret the tone of the e-mail messages about 90 percent of the time. They were much better at gauging their ability to interpret voice messages.
In 2015 my colleagues and I discovered an upside to this otherwise negative picture of sarcasm. In one study, we asked 56 participants to choose a script that was sarcastic, sincere or neutral and then engage in simulated conversation with another subject, who was unaware of the script.
Immediately after our participants enacted the dialogue, we presented them with tasks testing their creativity. For instance, they had to think of a word that was logically linked to a set of three provided words (for example, “manners,” “round” and “tennis” linked to “table”). We also presented them with a short questionnaire about their perceived sense of conflict during the conversation.
Not surprisingly, the participants exposed to sarcasm reported more interpersonal conflict than those in other groups. More interestingly, those pairs who had engaged in a sarcastic conversation fared better on the creativity tasks. This effect emerged for both the deliverer and recipient in the simulated conversation but only when the recipient had picked up on the sarcasm in the script.
Why might verbal irony enhance creativity? Sarcasm's challenge is that the message sounds serious but should not be taken literally. One way to overcome this is through tone—as when exaggerated speech indicates the facetiousness of a message. We need to think outside the box to generate and decipher ironic comments. That means sarcasm may lead to clearer, more creative thinking.
Passage 5 科学
The passage adapted from City Rabbits, Like Humans, Live in Smaller Homes
Imagine you’re on a particularly boring leg of a road trip and you start counting houses. You pass through long stretches of country without counting anything. When you do see houses, they’re clustered into towns, and may have spacious yards with tire swings. As you approach a city (finally!), rows of houses appear at regular intervals instead of clumping. And in the heart of the city they shrink into little apartments that go by too fast for you to count. European rabbits, it turns out, build their homes in a similar way—and since these animals are disappearing in the countryside, understanding their urban planning strategy matters to humans trying to conserve them.
Hunting, habitat loss, and disease have driven down populations of European rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus) in the countrysides of western Europe. Yet rabbit populations in some German cities are, well, hopping. Madlen Ziege, a graduate student at the University of Frankfurt, and her coauthors wanted to know how rabbits are taking advantage of urban areas. They chose the city of Frankfurt, where European rabbits have lived alongside humans since at least 1930.
The researchers scoured nine city parks in Frankfurt for rabbit burrows, along with four more suburban parks and three nearby rural sites. In all, they found 191 burrows. Then they rated each site for its “urbanity,” a measure that included three variables: How many people live within half a kilometer of the burrow site? How many pedestrians, bikers, or dogs pass by at dawn and dusk, when rabbits are most active? And how much of the ground is covered by something artificial, such as pavement or playground turf?
Like census-takers, albeit with a serious language barrier, the researchers tried to count how many rabbits lived in each burrow. For a few dozen burrows, they did this by tagging along with a regular hunting group that flushed the rabbits from their holes with trained ferrets. At other sites, the researchers staked out burrows at dawn and dusk and tallied how many rabbits came and went. They also counted burrow entrances to estimate how big each home was.
As “urbanity” increased—as sites became less rural and more city-like—rabbit burrows became more common. Urban burrows were smaller and simpler, like studio apartments compared to country estates. And while rural burrows were spread out and clumped, like the rural houses on our imaginary road trip, urban burrows were spaced out more evenly.
Ziege writes that the results could easily have been the opposite. Since cities cover up more ground up with pavement and buildings, breaking potential habitat into fragments, city rabbits might end up clustered into big burrows like they do in the countryside. Instead, they’re spread out into small homes.
One reason might be heat. Big groups of rabbits keep their burrows toastier in the winter—but cities are a little warmer to begin with, so living with a lot of warm bodies might not be as important. In the countryside, large burrows with many entrances and escape routes also help protect rabbits from predators. But in the city, there are fewer predators.
Finally, rabbits tend to live in large groups when their resources are limited. In German cities, they may be spreading out because there’s no shortage of food or burrowing space. Country life may mean hunger and hunting ferrets, but for urban rabbits, life is (so far) good.
语法部分难度中等，基础语法部分涉及到的重难点及易错考点主要有run-on sentence, logical comparison, verb usage之时态和主谓一致, 句中标点之逗号、分号、冒号、破折号、撇号的考查。主要还是考查学生是否细心。
Movable books: Precursor for Pop-ups
Monopolizing: the Landlord Board Game
1935年monopoly（地产大亨或大富翁）游戏发明以后，就深受大家喜爱，这种游戏中，人们进行买卖挣钱，并付房租等交易活动，赢家获得一切，这种反映了资本主义经济中的残酷的竞争。伊丽莎白麦基对这种游戏不太认同，因为她认为这游戏体现了公共财产（比如土地）私有化的罪恶，少数人获取大量利益，大部分人只能分得少量。她改进设计了landlord board game，比如允许分享财产，并允许玩家根据自己兴趣形成自己的游戏版本。这时一位叫Charles的年轻人抓住机会，在此基础上建立一套标准的游戏模式，被原发明收购版权，两者获得百万利润，而这件事正好体现了麦基所反对的资本主义的少数者拥有大量财富。
The insulation work is heating up
这是一篇职业类型的文章。隔热层能够节省一部分能量，insulation成为大家比较热衷的新兴产业，并且大家喜欢的是环境友好，并且摒弃了不可持续的一种foam材料，用了环保的物质，可持续的隔层材料，而这样的材料的应用是labor-consuming的，于是两种insulating workers(一种是家用的隔热材料安装的工人，一种是商业的隔热材料安装工人)的职业前景无比光明，在2020 年前的需求都有大量增长。
Neither wind nor ice nor gloom of the night
这篇是关于在mountain Washington 一次自然天气事件记录的文章。由于大西洋的高压系统和五大湖的低压系统在华盛顿山这里聚集，造成了打风暴雪天气。在附近的观测台的检测设备开始被暴风雪损坏，后来安装好新的之后，监测到风速136m/h，一名叫Stephenson的工作人员，看到数据后，根据窗外的风速看，风速应比监测数据要大，于是他自己到户外用传统仪器测到了164m/h的分速。最后最高风速有213m/h。这是人工检测的最高时速。
3、指数函数题目和三角函数比较简单，三角函数出了一道题：在直角三角形中已知sin A的值，求sin B
1、第四部分相比三月份难度简单一些， 不过对许多同学来说难点可能在两道box plot 选择题上，其中一道是看图选中位数。
3、散点图考察lines of best fit 依旧是老考点，好在这次非常简单，出了一个选择题，看图把数据带入y=kx+b 就可以。
Adapted from Joanne Lipman “Let’s Expose the Gender Pay Gap” ? 2015 The New York Times Company. Originally published Aug. 13, 2015
1、HOW serious are we, really, about tackling income equality? . . .
2、More than a half-century after President John F. Kennedy signed the Equal Pay Act of 1963, the gap between what men and women earn has defied every effort to close it. And it can’t be explained away as a statistical glitch, a function of women preferring lower-paying industries or choosing to take time off for kids.
3、Claudia Goldin, a labor economist at Harvard, has crunched the numbers and found that the gap persists for identical jobs, even after controlling for hours, education, race and age. Female doctors and surgeons, for example, earn 71 percent of what their male colleagues make, while female financial specialists are paid just 66 percent as much as comparable men. Other researchers have calculated that women one year out of college earn 6.6 percent less than men after controlling for occupation and hours, and that female M.B.A. graduates earn on average $4,600 less than their male classmates for their first jobs.
4、It’s not that men are intentionally discriminating against women—far from it. I’ve spent the past year interviewing male executives for a book about men and women in the workplace. A vast majority of them are fair-minded guys who want women to succeed. They’re absolutely certain that they don’t have a gender problem themselves; it must be some other guys who do. Yet they’re leaders of companies that pay men more than women for the same jobs.
5、Women are trying mightily to close that chasm on their own. Linda Babcock, an economist at Carnegie Mellon and co-author of the book “Women Don’t Ask,” has found that one reason for the disparity is that men are four times more likely to ask for a raise than women are, and that when women do ask, we ask for 30 percent less. And so women are told we need to lean in, to demand to be paid what we’re worth. It’s excellent advice—except it isn’t enough.
6、There is an antidote to the problem. Britain recently introduced a plan requiring companies with 250 employees or more to publicly report their own gender pay gap. It joins a handful of other countries, including Austria and Belgium, that have introduced similar rules. (In the United States, President Obama last year signed a presidential memorandum instructing federal contractors to report wage information by gender and race to the Department of Labor.) The disclosures “will cast sunlight on the discrepancies and create the pressure we need for change, driving women’s wages up,” Prime Minister David Cameron said last month.
7、Critics of the British plan protest that it’s too expensive and complex. Some contend that it doesn’t address the root of the problem: systemic issues that block women from higher-paying industries, and social issues like unconscious bias.
8、But real-world results suggest otherwise. Last year, the consulting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers voluntarily released its gender pay gap in Britain, one of five firms in the country, including AstraZeneca, to do so. Simply saying the number out loud “created much more momentum internally” to close it, Sarah Churchman, who runs the firm’s British diversity and inclusion efforts, told me.
9、PricewaterhouseCoopers’s analysis showed that most of its 15.1 percent pay disparity (compared with a Britain-wide gap of more than 19 percent) reflected a lack of women in senior jobs. So the firm focused on whether it was promoting fairly. In 2013, the grade just below partner was 30 percent female, yet only 16 percent of those promoted to partner were women. A year later, the percentage of women promoted to partner had more than doubled. . .
10、The potential cost savings of publishing the gender wage gap are enormous. About 20 percent of large companies now train employees to recognize unconscious bias, spending billions of dollars to try to stamp out unintentional discrimination. Paying for a salary analysis is cheaper and potentially more effective. Evidence also suggests that less secrecy about pay results in greater employee loyalty and lower turnover. . . .
11、Political realities being what they are, the chances of achieving [full] transparency are slim; even the tepid C.E.O. pay gap rule took the S.E.C. five years to push through, in the face of fierce industry opposition.
12、But why would we not want a measure that will settle the controversy over the pay gap with quantifiable facts? Shining some much-needed sunlight on the gender wage gap will make a difference for every one of us, men and women, right now.