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 Section Reading Comprehension

  Part A


  Read the following four texts. Answer the questions below each text by choosing A, B, C or D. Mark your answers on ANSWER SHEET 1. (40 points)


  We have known for a long time that the organization of any particular society is influenced by the definition of the sexes and the distinction drawn between them. But we have realized only recently that the identity of each sex is not so easy to pin down, and that definitions evolve in accordance with different types of culture known to us, that is, scientific discoveries and ideological revolutions. Our nature is not considered as immutable, either socially or biologically. As we approach the beginning of the 21st century, the substantial progress made in biology and genetics is radically challenging the roles, responsibilities and specific characteristics attributed to each sex, and yet, scarcely twenty years ago, these were thought to be “beyond dispute”.

  We can safely say, with a few minor exceptions, that the definition of the sexes and their respective functions remained unchanged in the West from the beginning of the 19th century to the 1960s. The role distinction, raised in some cases to the status of uncompromising dualism on a strongly hierarchical model, lasted throughout this period, appealing for its justification to nature, religion and customs alleged to have existed since the dawn of time. The woman bore children and took care of the home. The man set out to conquer the world and was responsible for the survival of his family, by satisfying their needs in peacetime and going to war when necessary.

  The entire world order rested on the divergence of the sexes. Any overlapping or confusion between the roles was seen as a threat to the time-honored order of things. It was felt to be against nature, a deviation from the norm.

  Sex roles were determined according to the “place”appropriate to each. Women's place was, first and foremost, in the home. The outside world, i.e. workshops, factories and business firms, belonged to men. This sex-based division of the world (private and public) gave rise to a strict dichotomy between the attitudes, which conferred on each its special identity. The woman, sequestered at home, “cared, nurtured and conserved”. To do this, she had no need to be daring, ambitious, tough or competitive. The man, on the other hand, competing with his fellow men, was caught up every day in the struggle for survival, and hence developed those characteristics which were thought natural in a man.

  Today, many women go out to work, and their reasons for doing so have changed considerably. Besides the traditional financial incentives, we find ambition and personal fulfillment motivating those in the most favorable circumstances, and the wish to have a social life and to get out of their domestic isolation influencing others. Above all, for all women, work is invariably connected with the desire for independence. (454 words)

  Notes: pin down 讲明确;确定。immutable不可改变的。dualism双重论。divergence分歧,偏离。overlapping部分巧合、一致。time-honored 由来已久的。dichotomy 一分为二,对立。sequester使隔离。be caught up in 被缠住于,如:He is caught up in the trivia (琐事) of everyday things. unduly过度地,不恰当地。

  21. It is only in recent years that we have recognized that

  [A]there is almost no clue to the identity of both sexes.

  [B]the role distinction between different sexes is conspicuous.

  [C]the different definitions of sexes bears on the development of culture.

  [D]the progress of civilization greatly influences the role definitions of sexes.

  22. From paragraph 1 we can infer that it is now possible for women to embark on a career because

  [A]the change in sex roles is out of the question.

  [B]women's lib has been going on for many years.

  [C]ideas about the roles of women have been changing.

  [D]the expansion of sciences scarcely remolds the women's roles.

  23. The author believes that sex discrimination in the West before the 1960s was





  24. According to the fourth paragraph, the author seems to think that

  [A]female passivity is natural.

  [B]men and women are physically identical.

  [C]men are born competitive and aggressive.

  [D]some different sex identity is acquired.

  25. According to the author, which of the following is the most important reason for women to go to work?

  [A]Wish to claim their rights and freedom.

  [B]Ambition and self-fulfillment.

  [C]Financial incentives.

  [D]Desire for a social life.





  The domestic economy in the United States expanded in a remarkably vigorous and steady fashion. The revival in consumer confidence was reflected in the higher proportion of incomes spent for goods and services and the marked increase in consumer willingness to take on installment debt. A parallel strengthening in business psychology was manifested in a stepped-up rate of plant and equipment spending and a gradual pickup in expenses for inventory. Confidence in the economy was also reflected in the strength of the stock market and in the stability of the bond market. For the year as a whole, consumer and business sentiment benefited from the ease in East-West tensions.

  The bases of the business expansion were to be found mainly in the stimulative monetary and fiscal policies that had been pursued. Moreover, the restoration of sounder liquidity positions and tighter management control of production efficiency had also helped lay the groundwork for a strong expansion. In addition, the economic policy moves made by the President had served to renew optimism on the business outlook while boosting hopes that inflation would be brought under more effective control. Finally, of course, the economy was able to grow as vigorously as it did because sufficient leeway existed in terms of idle men and machines.

  The United States balance of payments deficit declined sharply. Nevertheless, by any other test, the deficit remained very large, and there was actually a substantial deterioration in our trade account to a sizable deficit, almost two-thirds of which was with Japan. While the overall trade performance proved disappointing, there are still good reasons for expecting the delayed impact of devaluation to produce in time a significant strengthening in our trade picture. Given the size of the Japanese component of our trade deficit, however, the outcome will depend importantly on the extent of the corrective measures undertaken by Japan. Also important will be our own efforts in the United States to fashion internal policies consistent with an improvement in our external balance.

  The underlying task of public policy for the year ahead—and indeed for the longer run—remained a familiar one: to strike the right balance between encouraging healthy economic growth and avoiding inflationary pressures. With the economy showing sustained and vigorous growth, and with the currency crisis highlighting the need to improve our competitive posture internationally, the emphasis seemed to be shifting to the problem of inflation. The Phase Three program of wage and price restraint can contribute to reducing inflation. Unless productivity growth is unexpectedly large, however, the expansion of real output must eventually begin to slow down to the economy's larger run growth potential if generalized demand pressures on prices are to be avoided. (449 words)

  Notes: inventory 存货。East-West tensions 东西方紧张局势。fiscal (与国库的钱有关的)财务的(常指税收)liquidity 周转率,清偿力。leeway 余地。given 鉴于,由于。the Phase Three program 第三阶段计划。

  26. The author mentions increased installment debt in the first paragraph in order to show

  [A]the continuing expansion of the economy.

  [B]the growth of consumer purchasing power.

  [C]the consumers'confidence in the economy.

  [D]the soaring consumer incomes for spending.

  27. Paragraph 2 mainly deals with

  [A]the revival of stronger liquidity positions.

  [B]the stimulative monetary and fiscal policies.

  [C]the causes of business development for the period.

  [D]economic policy measures suggested by the President.

  28. It can be inferred from the third paragraph that the author's attitude toward the reduction of the international payments deficit seems





  29. Part of the public policy task, as outlined in the text, is to

  [A]prevent payments deficit.

  [B]avoid inflationary pressures.

  [C]devalue the dollar.

  [D]increase the balance of trade.

  30. It can be learned from the last paragraph that the Phase Three program contained

  [A]reduced government spending.

  [B]devaluation of the dollar.

  [C]productivity measures.

  [D]wage and price controls.




 Part B


  In the following article, some sentences have been removed. For Questions 41—45, choose the most suitable one from the list A—G to fit into each of the numbered blanks. There are two extra choices, which do not fit in any of the gaps. Mark your answers on ANSWER SHEET 1. (10 points)

  The first two stages in the development of civilized man were probably the invention of primitive weapons and the discovery of fire, although nobody knows exactly when he acquired the use of the latter.

  41)______________________ Animals have a few cries that serve as signals, but even the highest apes have not been found able to pronounce words, even with the most intensive professional instruction. The superior brain of man is apparently a necessity for the mastering of speech. When man became sufficiently intelligent, we must suppose that he gradually increased the number of cries for different purposes. It was a great day when he discovered that speech could be used for narrative. There are those who think that in this respect picture language preceded oral language. A man could draw a picture on the wall of his cave to show in which direction he had gone, or what prey he hoped to catch. 42)_________________________

  Two important stages came not so long before the dawn of written history. The first was the domestication of animals; the second was agriculture. Agriculture made possible an immense increase in the number of the human species in the regions where it could be successfully practiced. 43)___________________________


  These inventions and discoveries—fire, speech, weapons domestic animals, agriculture, and writing—made the existence of civilized communities possible. From about 3000 B.C. until the beginning of the Industrial Revolution less than two hundred years ago there was no technical advance comparable to these. During this long period man had time to become accustomed to his technique, and to develop the beliefs and political organizations appropriate to it. There was, of course, an immense extension in the area of civilized life. At first it had been confined to the Nile, the Euphrates, the Tigris, and the Indus, but at the end of the period in question it covered much the greatest part of the inhabitable globe. I do not mean to suggest that there was no technical progress during the time. 45)______________________ (512 words)

  Notes: ape 猿。pastoral nomad 田园式的游牧部落的人。the Euphrates 幼发拉底河。the Tigris 底格里斯河。the Indus 印度河。in question所谈的(在名词后作后置定语)

  [A] Probably picture language and oral language developed side by side. I am inclined to think that language has been the most important single factor in the development of man.

  [B] Another fundamental technical advance was writing, which, like spoken language, developed out of pictures, but as soon as it had reached a certain stage, it was possible to keep records and transmit information to people who were not present when the information was given.

  [C] With the development of civilization, primitive people who lived in caves at that time badly needed a language, which would help them to communicate with one another.

  [D] The origin of language is also obscure. No doubt it began very gradually.

  [E] In fact, there was progress—there were even two inventions of very great importance, namely, gunpowder and the mariner's compass—but neither of these can be compared in their revolutionary power to such things as speech and writing and agriculture.




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