When I was growing up, the whole world was Jewish. The heroes were Jewish and the villains were Jewish. The landlord, the doctor, the grocer, your best friend, the village idiot, and the neighborhood bully: all Jewish. We were working class and immigrants as well, but that just came with territory. Essentially we were Jews on the streets of New York. We learned to be kind, cruel, smart and feeling in a mixture of language and gesture that was part street slang, part grade school English, part kitchen Yiddish.
One Sunday evening when I was eight years old my parents and I were riding in the back seat of my rich uncle’s car. We had been out for a ride and now we were back in the Bronx, headed for home. Suddenly, another car sideswiped us. My mother and aunt shrieked. My uncle swore softly. My father, in whose lap I was sitting, said out the window at the speeding car, “That’s all right. Nothing but a few Jews in here.” In an instant I knew everything. I knew there was a world beyond our streets, and in that world my father was humiliated man, without power or standing.
When I was sixteen,a girl in the next building had her nose straightened; we all went together to see Selma Shapiro lying in state, wrapped in bandages from which would emerge a person fit for life beyond the block. Three buildings away a boy went downtown for a job, and on his application he wrote “Arnold Brown” instead of “Arnold Braunowiitz”. The news swept through the neighborhood like a wild fire. A nose job? A name change? What was happening here? It was awful; it was wonderful. It was frightening; it was delicious. Whatever it was, it wasn’t standstill. Things felt lively and active. Selfconfidence was on the rise, passivity on the wane. We were going to experience challenges. That’s what it meant to be in the new world. For the first time we could imagine ourselves out there.
But who exactly do I mean when I say we? I mean Arnie, not Selma. I mean my brother, not me. I mean the boys, not the girls. My mother stood behind me, pushing me forward. “The girl goes to college, too,” she said. And I did. But my going to college would not mean the same thing as my mother’s going to college, and we all knew it. For my brother, college meant going from the Bronx to Manhattan. But for me? From the time I was fourteen I yearned to get out of the Bronx, but get out into what? I did not actually imagine myself a working person alone in Manhattan and nobody else did either. What I did imagine was that I would marry, and that the man I married would get me downtown. He would brave the perils of class and race, and somehow I’d be there alongside him.
24. In the passage, we can find the author was ______.
A. quite satisfied with her life
B. a poor Jewish girl
C. born in a middle class family
D. a resident in a rich area in New York
25. Selma Shapiro had her nose straightened because she wanted ______.
A. to look her best
B. to find a new job in the neighborhood
C. to live a new life in other places
D. to marry very soon
26. Arnold Brown changed his name because ______.
A. there was racial discrimination in employment
B. Brown was just the same as Braunowiitz
C. it was easy to write
D. Brown sounds better
27. From the passage we can infer that ______.
A. the Jews were satisfied with their life in the Bronx
B. the Jewish immigrants could not be rich
C. all the immigrants were very poor
D. the young Jews didn’t accept the stern reality