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We already live in an over communicated world that will only become more so in the next tech- era. We've developed technology that gets us so much information that we've got cell phones that we need every second, we've got computers and laptops, we've got personal organizers and we are just being bombarded with communication and every advancing technology seems to create more and more communications at us. We are thought of overwhelmed by the information flow. Research suggests that all the multitasking may actually make our brains work better and faster, producing a worldwide increase in IQ up to 20 points and more in recent decades. Is there any real benefit in all these mental gymnastics we now have to go through? We are not becoming a race of global idiots but many do think certain skills are enhanced and certain are not.

You know the ability to make fast decisions to answer a dozen emails in five minutes or to fill out maybe big aptitude tests that's enhanced. Between someone is out there with his kids playing in his little league and or something like that, he's got his cell phone in his pocket. He's always wondering "Jeez! Did I got a voice mail?" This might have negative effects on own brain patterns. Creativity is something that happens slowly. It happens when your brain is just whirling around, just playing. When it puts together ideas which you haven't thought of . Or may be you have time to read a book. You are a business person that you have time to read a book about history or about philosophy and something that happened long ago.

Or something or some idea or some default of long ago. Actually it might occurred to you that you might think of your own business in that way so this mixture of unrelated ideas that feeds your productivity, feeds your creativity and if your mind is disciplined to answer every email then you don't have time for that playful whirling, you don't have time for those unexpected conjunctions. So I thinking maybe we are getting smarter in some senses but over communication is a threat to our creativity and to our reflection.  


M: You know, in deciding this new town, we’ve tried to look backward at small town America, and take the best of those planning elements, houses close together, sidewalks, front porches, tree-line streets, easy none automobile-dependent access to the town center and to your neighbors and to the school and the other institutions that are vital. And we’ve tried to take some of those ideas and update them in come up with a livable and workable place where people can go and rekindle the sense of community that seems to be missing from suburbs all across the country.

F: So give us a sense of how this new town is designed.

M: Houses are all very close together. We will just 10-feet apart from our neighbors on each side of us. And that’s pretty nice a standard for the town. So you have houses that are close together, houses that surround open areas. They have a lot of big parks, a lot of common areas. The theory is you are willing to sacrifice your private yard space. You don’t need a quarter of an acre or half an acre , if you have a public area where you can go and enjoy the facilities there. And most importantly, you can interact with your neighbors. They’ll help to create the sense of community, that so important to many of these new town developments.

F: Now I see all these whole sense of community. It’s going to be a new town. But we are going to do it with the sense of nostalgia for the past, like a lot of the houses had porches.

M: Yes. It would create a front porch culture. That people would be out on their porches talking to their neighbors next door and to people walking down the street or people riding their bikes and there would be this culture that existed 40, 50 or 60 years ago. But that really has been one of the failures that we observe joining up to two years in this new town. And the people don’t spend very much time at all on their front porches. There are a couple of things going on. One is in central Florida and it’s hotter than hell a good part of the year. And sitting in the front porch if you have a fan going can be a very uncomfortable thing. People prefer to be inside in the air conditioning.

F: What were some of the rules you have to live by in the new project and do any of those rules bother you?

M: Well, the develop of an area have different feelings about rules. His feeling is, now if I can summarize his feelings for him, that if you move, you are knowing the rules. And if you don’t like them, you shouldn’t move in. I have some problems with rules. I just sometimes like to break them. And they just bother me because they are an existence. But the rules sometimes were silly and sometimes weren’t. They dictated what color your curtains could be facing the street and actually answer woman with red curtains to remove them.

F: Really? Is that true?

M: And they dictated where you could park your car and for how long. They dictated any sort of thing you could attach to your house. You couldn’t attach a satellite dish to your house. They dictated forever the color of your house. And they dictated how often you have to repaid your house. They’ve tried to go a step further and remove plastic flowers and plastic furniture from that all important front porches. Some rules seem to go a little too far.

Q1、 What are the two speakers talking about?

Q2、There are several planning elements for recreating a sense of community, which of the following is not one of these elements?

Q 3、 According to the conversation, what can we learn about the so-called front porch culture?

Q 4、Which of the following is not one of the rules the residents have to live by?

Q 5、 What does the men think of these rules, according to the conversation?

Q6-10 news

 New York, the United States

The biggest Wall Street banks slashed their small business loan portfolios by 9% between 2008 and 2009, more than double the rate at which they cut their overall lending, according to a government report released Thursday.

The Congressional Oversight Panel report spotlights the role banks, especially the large ones, played in the credit crunch that has plagued small companies throughout the recession. "Big banks pulled back on everyone, but they pulled back harder on small businesses," said Elizabeth Warren, the panel's chairwoman.

Warren's oversight committee was established to keep tabs on the federal government's financial stabilization effort. The committee's May report focuses on the role her comittee played in improving credit access for small companies.

来自CNNmoney. com 2010.5.13

Madrid, Spain

The European Union eases trade with Latin America at the Madrid Summit. The EU plans to boost trade with Latin America despite warnings from some European ministers and farmers, who fear unfair competition. EU negotiations with the Mercosur trade bloc, frozen since 2004, will reopen. The Mercosur group embraces Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay. Trade deals were also reached with Central America, Peru and Colombia, following marathon talks in Madrid.

EU Commission president Jose Manuel Barroso said : “We have opened a ground-breaking chapter in the EU relationship with our LAC [Latin America and Caribbean] partners.” The EU is pursuing regional trade agreements while global trade talks - the so-called Doha Round - have failed to make progress.

来自BBC 2010..5.19

Tripoli, Lybia

Members of a Dutch family are on their way to Lybia after being told that the sole survivor of the plane crash that killed 103 people might be their relative. A member of the Dutch family told the media that the officials had told her family the child being treated at hospital in Tripoli might be her grandson, nine-year-old Ruben van Assouw. The Dutch foreign ministry confirmed that two presumed family members of the injured child were on their way to Tripoli. Ruben had been on safari in South Africa with his brother, mother, and father, all of whom ?? in the crash, said the newspaper. Sixty-one Dutch citizens were believed to have been killed when Afriqiyah Airways Flight 770 from Johannesburg to Tripoli crashed on landing in clear weather at 6am. The Times understands that seven passengers had been due to fly on to London. Two of the dead were Britons and one was Irish.

来自 Times 2010. 5.13

London, the United Kingdom

Target Corp posted a higher quarterly profit as consumers loosened their wallets to spend on items including clothing and electronics. The discount retailer said profit was £671 million in the fiscal first quarter that ended May 1, compared with £522 million a year earlier. Target had benefited from consumers being a bit more willing to spend on discretionary items such as clothing and home furnishings. The company previously said that sales at stores open at least a year rose 2.8 percent in the first quarter.

来自Reuters 2010. 5.19

Fears of greater financial regulation across Europe hammered stocks Wednesday after German measures aimed at limiting speculation were taken to smack of desperation. Stock markets were unnerved by Germany's unilateral ban on certain naked shorts announced late on Tuesday. And the euro suffered a knee-jerk reaction, falling more than 1 percent against the yen, as investors saw foreign exchange as the only way to bet against the euro zone. World stocks were down 1.43 percent whilst the more volatile emerging markets index fell 2.64 percent. There were also fears that the debt crisis was about to worsen as some believed Germany's move smacked of desperation.

来自 the Province 2010.5.19

Question 6: What did the biggest Wall Street banks do between 2008 and 2009 as reported in the news?

Question 7: What did the European Union plan to do at the Madrid Summit?

Question 8: How many people were killed when a plane from Johannesburg to Tripoli crashed on landing?

Question 9: How much profit did Target Corp make in the first quarter of the year?

Question 10: What did Germanys recent financial measures aim at?

Question 11-15 are based on the following interview.

When most couples marry, they may discuss some things in advance, like how many children they want, or where they want to live. But most of the day-to-day details and problems in married life are worked out after marriage. Not so with Steven Karen  Parsons who have a 15 page pre-not-to agreement that state the rule they must follow in almost every aspect of their married life.

Today Karen is here with us.

A: Karen, first I’d like to ask you why you decided to write this agreement. You have both been married before, am I right?

K: Yes, I’ve been married twice and Steven was married once before. So we have some experiences about what goes wrong in a marriage.  

A: And that’s why you wrote this agreement?

K: Yes. We found that many problems happen when a person has different expectations from his or her spouse. They want to talk about everything openly and honestly before we start living together. Also we both know how important it is to respect each other’s quotes.

When you are bothered by things that seems small to someone else, like it used to really bother me that my ex-husband left his dirty cloth on the floor. So we put that in the agreement: dirty clothing must be put in the laundry bag. Now Steven knows what my expectations are.

A: I’m sure that some people hearing this report were thinking this contract isn’t very romantic.

S: Well, we disagree. We think it’s very romantic. Disagreement shows that be set down, and talked and really try to understand the other person. A lot of problems occur in the marriage because they don’t talk about what they want. That’s right. When they disagree about something, we work out solution. That’s good for both of us. I’d much rather do that than get some romantic gifts like flowers or candy.

A:Some of these rules sound like, well a business agreement . Many of your rules can save money in some way. Even the rules about having children.

S: No experiences disagreement about money can cause a lot of problems. So we talked about how we want to spend our money and put that in this agreement as well.

A: So do you spend a lot of time checking on each other to see if the rules are being followed?

S: No, not at all. And we don’t argue about that, either. As matter of a fact, I think we spend less time arguing than most couples because we both know what the other person expects. We can spend all our times doing things we enjoy and just being with each other.

A: What happens if one of you break your rule?

S: We don’t see that will be a problem. No, because we do agree on these rules.

A: But what if, say, you don’t want to co-dinner one night. What happens? Well, we’ve talked about it, we need to compromise. Maybe there is a good reason.

A: But if you break a lot of rules all the time…

S: Then, we have to ask. Is this marriage really working? Because if we can’t follow all our own agreement, there is no point making it.

A: So it sounds that you two are happy with your agreement. Do you think other couple should follow your example and write pre-not-to agreements of their own?

S: There is a lot of work to write an agreement, but I think it could be useful to a lot of people. May be there would be fewer divorces if they have rounded this

Question 11: About which of the following topics is the woman being interviewed?

Question 12: What can be learned about the man and the woman from the interview?

Question 13:According to the woman, why there is many problem happen in the marriage?

Question 14: What does the woman think of this contract?

Question 15: What happened if one of the couple sometimes break the contract?  


Today we’re going to talk about cross-cultural perceptions of time. Different cultures often have entirely different perceptions of time. The cultural anthropologist Edward T.Haw popularized the idea that cultures use time and view time in very different ways. The idea of the past, present, and future and the whole concept of scheduling or managing time can be so different that it leads to cross-cultural miscommunications. In his 1990’s book The Dance of Life, Haw writes “time is one of the fundamental bases on which all cultures rest and around which all activities revolve”. Understanding the difference between monochromic time and polychromic time is essential to success. Both notion of monochromism and polychromism can be understood as follows: monochromic time is linear. Events are scheduled one at a time one event following another. To a monochromic culture, this type of schedule is valued over interpersonal relationships. On the other hand, polychromic time is characterized by many things happening spontaneously. In addition, interpersonal relationships are highly valued in polychromic cultures. Haw’s theory is that monochromic time can be found primarily in North American and northern European cultures. These cultures emphasize schedules punctuality and preciseness. They also emphasize doing things. There’re cultures that value productivity, that value getting things done on time. Review time, that something can be lost, killed or wasted or conversely. Review time that some things can be or should be managed, planned and used efficiently. Polychromic time, on the other hand, can be found primarily in Latin American, African and Native American cultures. Their perception of time is more connected to natural rhythms. It is connected to the earth, to the seasons. This makes sense when they consider that natural events can occur spontaneously, sporadically, or concurrently, polychromic cultures view time as being somewhat flexible, since life isn’t so predictable. Scheduling and been precisely simply is not that important. In addition, relationships with people are valued more than making schedules. There’s more value placed on being than on doing. Different cultural perceptions of time can lead to conflict, especially in the business world. The idea of being late versus on time for a meeting, for example, might differ widely between an American business person and a Brazilian. The American business person might be far less tolerant of a Brazilian’s late arrival. However, a Brazilian business person might be offended by an American’s insistence on punctuality, or on getting right down to business. The Brazilian would generally prefer to finish talking with colleagues first, and would not want to cut conversation short in order to make an appointment. Some traditional time management programs used in the business world might not translate well in another culture. Traditional time management programs in the business world emphasize to do to-do lists and careful scheduling. They’re monochromic. However, a business in a polychromic culture might not adjust well to that system. Companies will impose those monochromic systems on places of business in polychromic cultures might be  guilty of ethniccentralism, which means making their own ethnical or cultural values central and not valuing other values. Edward Haw’s theory of monochromic and polychromic cultures has been challenged by some critics. Some people think it is overly general. They argue that within any cultural group, we might find people who think of time differently. In other words, a primarily polychromic culture might have both monochromic and polychromic types of people. A same diversity among individuals might be found in a primarily monochromic culture. Critics of anthropologists like Edward Haw feel that it’s more useful to think of time differences among individuals, not just between cultural groups.

Question 16. Which of the following topics is the person talking about?

Question 17. What can be learned about monochromism from the cultural anthropologist Edward T. Haw?

Question 18. Which of following statements apply to polychromism according to Edward T. Haw?

Question 19. In the business world, who would prefer to finish talking with colleagues before keeping an appointment?

Question 20. Edward’s theory has been challenged by some critics, what do these critics think of his theory?

2011-01-19 15:42 编辑:juliatt