新编英语教程第三册Unit15

ffhappy 2006-03-15 7544 阅读
分享

Unit 15

TEXT I

A Fable for Tomorrow

Text

There was once a town in the heart of America where all life seemed to live in harmony with its surroundings. The town lay in the midst of a checkerboard of prosperous farms, with fields of grain and hillsides of orchards where, in spring, white clouds of bloom drifted above the green fields. In autumn, oak and maple and birch set up a blaze of colour that flamed and flickered across a backdrop of pines. Then foxes barked in the hills and deer silently crossed the fields, half hidden in the mists of the autumn mornings.
Along the roads, laurel, viburnum and alder, great ferns and wild flowers, delighted the traveller's eye through much of the year. Even in winter the roadsides were places of beauty, where countless birds came to feed on the berries and on the seed heads of the dried weeds rising above the snow. The countryside was, in fact, famous for the abundance and variety of its bird life, and when the flood of migrants was pouring through in spring and autumn people travelled from great distances to observe them. Others came to fish the streams, which flowed clear and cold out of the hills and contained shady pools where trout lay. So it had been from the days many years ago when the first settlers raised their houses, sank their wells and built their barns.
Then a strange blight crept over the area and everything began to change. Some evil spell had settled on the community: mysterious maladies swept the flocks of chickens; the cattle and sheep sickened and died. Everywhere was a shadow of death. The farmers spoke of much illness among their families. In the town the doctors had become more and more puzzled by new kinds of sickness appearing among their patients. There had been several sudden and unexplained deaths not only among adults but even among children, who would be stricken suddenly while at play and die within a few hours.
There was a strange stillness. The birds, for example — where had they gone? Many people spoke of them, puzzled and disturbed. The feeding stations in the backyards were deserted. The few birds seen anywhere were moribund; they trembled violently and could not fly. It was a spring without voices. On the mornings that had once throbbed with the dawn chorus of robins, catbirds, doves, jays, wrens, and scores of other bird voices there was now no sound; only silence lay over the fields and woods and marsh.
On the farms the hens brooded, but no chicks were hatched. The farmers complained that they were unable to raise any pigs — the litters were small and the young survived only a few days. The apple trees were coming into bloom but no bees droned among the blossoms, so there was no pollination and there would be no fruit.
The roadsides, once so attractive, were now lined with browned and withered vegetation as though swept by fire. These too, were silent, deserted by all living things. Even the streams were now lifeless. Anglers no longer visited them, for all the fish had died.
In the gutters under the eaves and between the shingles of the roofs, white granular powder still showed a few patches; some weeks before it had fallen like snow upon the roofs and the lawns, the fields and streams.
No witchcraft, no enemy action had silenced the rebirth of new life in this stricken world. The people had done it themselves.
This town does not actually exist, but it might easily have a thousand counterparts in America or elsewhere in the world. I know of no community that has experienced all the misfortunes I describe. Yet every one of these disasters has actually happened somewhere, and many real communities have already suffered a substantial number of them. A grim spectre has crept upon us almost unnoticed, and this imagined tragedy may easily become a stark reality we all shall know.
Form Silent Spring by Rachel Carson

TEXT II

We have already crossed the threshold of the 21st century. Wouldn't you want to know how people looked forward to the coming of the Year 2000 and what they though would happen in 2000 about a quarter of a century ago? Here is text written in the late 1970s about the year 2000. Read the text and find out if the predictions made over twenty years ago have come true.

The Year 2000

It remains to be seen whether the reserves of raw materials would be sufficient to supply a world economy which would have grown by 500 per cent. South-East Asia alone would have an energy consumption five times greater than that of Western Europe in 1970. Incidentally, if the underdeveloped countries started using up petrol at the same rate as the industrialized areas, then world reserves would already be exhausted by 1985.
All this only goes to show just how important it is to set up a plan to conserve and divide up fairly natural resources on a worldwide scale.
This is a matter of life and death because world population is exploding at an incredible rate. By the middle of the next century population will expand every year by as much as it did in the first 1500 years after Christ. In the southern, poor parts of the globe, the figures are enough to make your hair stand on end. Even supposing that steps are taken to stabilize world population in the next fifty years, the number of inhabitants per square kilometre will increase by from 4 in the United States to 140 in South-East Asia. What can we do about it?
In the first hypothesis we do nothing. By the year 2000, the southern parts of the world would then have a population greater than the total world population today. Calcutta would have 60 million inhabitants. It's unthinkable.
Alternatively, we could start acting right now to bring births under control within fifteen years so that population levels off. Even then the population in the southern areas would not stop growing for seventy-five years. And the population would level off at something like twice today's figure.
Finally, we could wait ten to twenty years before taking action. If we waited ten years the population of the southern areas would stabilize at 3000 million. Even today the number of potential workers increases by 350,000 people per week. By the end of the century this figure will reach 750,000. In other words it will be necessary to find work for 40 million more people per year — not to speak of food!
What this means in practical terms we can scarcely imagine. But clearly if we do nothing, nature will solve the problem for us. But at what cost!
Unit 15 TEXT I A Fable for Tomorrow Text There was once a town in the heart of America where all life seemed to live in harmony with its surroundings. The town lay in the midst of a checkerboard of prosperous farms, with fields of grain and hillsides of orchards where, in spring, white clouds of bloom drifted above the green fields. In autumn, oak and maple and birch set up a blaze of colour that flamed and flickered across a backdrop of pines. Then foxes barked in the hills and deer silently crossed the fields, half hidden in the mists of the autumn mornings. Along the roads, laurel, viburnum and alder, great ferns and wild flowers, delighted the traveller's eye through much of the year. Even in winter the roadsides were places of beauty, where countless birds came to feed on the berries and on the seed heads of the dried weeds rising above the snow. The countryside was, in fact, famous for the abundance and variety of its bird life, and when the flood of migrants was pouring through in spring and autumn people travelled from great distances to observe them. Others came to fish the streams, which flowed clear and cold out of the hills and contained shady pools where trout lay. So it had been from the days many years ago when the first settlers raised their houses, sank their wells and built their barns. Then a strange blight crept over the area and everything began to change. Some evil spell had settled on the community: mysterious maladies swept the flocks of chickens; the cattle and sheep sickened and died. Everywhere was a shadow of death. The farmers spoke of much illness among their families. In the town the doctors had become more and more puzzled by new kinds of sickness appearing among their patients. There had been several sudden and unexplained deaths not only among adults but even among children, who would be stricken suddenly while at play and die within a few hours. There was a strange stillness. The birds, for example — where had they gone? Many people spoke of them, puzzled and disturbed. The feeding stations in the backyards were deserted. The few birds seen anywhere were moribund; they trembled violently and could not fly. It was a spring without voices. On the mornings that had once throbbed with the dawn chorus of robins, catbirds, doves, jays, wrens, and scores of other bird voices there was now no sound; only silence lay over the fields and woods and marsh. On the farms the hens brooded, but no chicks were hatched. The farmers complained that they were unable to raise any pigs — the litters were small and the young survived only a few days. The apple trees were coming into bloom but no bees droned among the blossoms, so there was no pollination and there would be no fruit. The roadsides, once so attractive, were now lined with browned and withered vegetation as though swept by fire. These too, were silent, deserted by all living things. Even the streams were now lifeless. Anglers no longer visited them, for all the fish had died. In the gutters under the eaves and between the shingles of the roofs, white granular powder still showed a few patches; some weeks before it had fallen like snow upon the roofs and the lawns, the fields and streams. No witchcraft, no enemy action had silenced the rebirth of new life in this stricken world. The people had done it themselves. This town does not actually exist, but it might easily have a thousand counterparts in America or elsewhere in the world. I know of no community that has experienced all the misfortunes I describe. Yet every one of these disasters has actually happened somewhere, and many real communities have already suffered a substantial number of them. A grim spectre has crept upon us almost unnoticed, and this imagined tragedy may easily become a stark reality we all shall know. Form Silent Spring by Rachel Carson TEXT II We have already crossed the threshold of the 21st century. Wouldn't you want to know how people looked forward to the coming of the Year 2000 and what they though would happen in 2000 about a quarter of a century ago? Here is text written in the late 1970s about the year 2000. Read the text and find out if the predictions made over twenty years ago have come true. The Year 2000 It remains to be seen whether the reserves of raw materials would be sufficient to supply a world economy which would have grown by 500 per cent. South-East Asia alone would have an energy consumption five times greater than that of Western Europe in 1970. Incidentally, if the underdeveloped countries started using up petrol at the same rate as the industrialized areas, then world reserves would already be exhausted by 1985. All this only goes to show just how important it is to set up a plan to conserve and divide up fairly natural resources on a worldwide scale. This is a matter of life and death because world population is exploding at an incredible rate. By the middle of the next century population will expand every year by as much as it did in the first 1500 years after Christ. In the southern, poor parts of the globe, the figures are enough to make your hair stand on end. Even supposing that steps are taken to stabilize world population in the next fifty years, the number of inhabitants per square kilometre will increase by from 4 in the United States to 140 in South-East Asia. What can we do about it? In the first hypothesis we do nothing. By the year 2000, the southern parts of the world would then have a population greater than the total world population today. Calcutta would have 60 million inhabitants. It's unthinkable. Alternatively, we could start acting right now to bring births under control within fifteen years so that population levels off. Even then the population in the southern areas would not stop growing for seventy-five years. And the population would level off at something like twice today's figure. Finally, we could wait ten to twenty years before taking action. If we waited ten years the population of the southern areas would stabilize at 3000 million. Even today the number of potential workers increases by 350,000 people per week. By the end of the century this figure will reach 750,000. In other words it will be necessary to find work for 40 million more people per year — not to speak of food! What this means in practical terms we can scarcely imagine. But clearly if we do nothing, nature will solve the problem for us. But at what cost!
3g.bigear.cn 用手机随时随地学英语
分享