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新编大学英语教程第四册Unit 13


[1] Overlooked in the arguments about the morality of artificially reproducing life is the fact that, at present, cloning is a very inefficient procedure. The incidence of death among fetuses and offspring produced by cloning is much higher than it is through natural reproduction — roughly 10 times as high as normal before birth and three times as high after birth in our studies at Roslyn. Distressing enough for those working with animals, these failure rates surely render unthinkable the notion of applying such treatment to humans.

[2] Even if the technique were perfected, however, we must ask ourselves what practical value wholebeing cloning might have. What exactly would be the difference between a “cloned” baby and a child born naturally — and why would we want one?

[3] The cloned child would be a genetically identical twin of the original, and thus physically very similar —far more similar than a natural parent and child. Human personality, however, emerges from both the effects of the genes we inherit (nature) and environmental factors (nurture). The two clones would develop distinct personalities, just as twins develop unique identities. And because the copy would often be born in a different family, cloned twins would be less alike in personality than natural identical twins.

[4] Why “copy” people in the first place? Couples unable to have children might choose to have a copy of one of them rather than accept the intrusion of genes from a donor. My wife and I have two children of our own and an adopted child, but I find it helpful to consider what might have happened in my own marriage if a copy of me had been made to overcome infertility. My wife and I met in high school. How would she react to a physical copy of the young man she fell in love with? How would any of us find living with ourselves? Surely the older clone — I, in this case — would believe that he understood how the copy should behave and so be even more likely than the average father to impose expectations upon his child. Above all, how would a teenager cope with looking at me, a balding, aging man, and seeing the physical future ahead of him?

[5] Each of us can imagine hypothetical families created by the introduction of a cloned child — a copy of one partner in a homosexual relationship or of a single parent, for example. What is missing in all this is consideration of what’s in the interests of the cloned child. Because there is no form of infertility that could be overcome only by cloning, I do not find these proposals acceptable. My concerns are not on religious grounds or on the basis of a perceived intrinsic ethical principle. Rather, my judgment is that it would be difficult for families created in this way to provide an appropriate environment for the child.

[6] Cloning is also suggested as a means of bringing back a relative, usually a child, killed tragically. Any parent can understand that wish, but it must first be recognized that the copy would be a new baby and not the lost child. Herein lies the difficulty, for the grieving parents are seeking not a new baby but a return of the dead one. Since the original would be fondly remembered as having particular talents and interests, would not the parent expect the copy to be the same? It is possible, however, that the copy would develop quite differently. Is it fair to the new child to place it in a family with such unnatural expectations?

[7] What if the lost child was very young? The shorter the life, the fewer the expectations parents might place on the substitute, right? If a baby dies within a few days of birth and there is no reason to think that death was caused by an inherited defect, would it then be acceptable to make a copy? Is it practical to frame legislation that would prevent copying of adults or older children, but allow copying of infants? At what age would a child be too old to be copied in the event of death?

[8] Copying is also suggested as a means by which parents can have the child of their dreams. Couples might choose to have a copy of a film star, baseball player or scientist, depending on their interests. But because personality is only partly the result of genetic inheritance, conflict would be sure to arise if the cloned child failed to develop the same interests as the original. What if the copy of Einstein shows no interest in science? Or the football player turns to acting?

[9] Success also depends upon fortune. What if the child who does not live up to the hopes and dreams of the parent simply because of bad luck?

[10] Every child should be wanted for itself, as an individual. In making a copy of oneself or some famous person, a parent is deliberately specifying the way he or she wishes that child to develop. In recent years, particularly in the US, much importance has been placed on the right of individuals to reproduce in ways that they wish. I suggest that there is a greater need to consider the interests of the child and to reject these proposed uses of cloning. By contrast, human cloning could, in theory, be used to obtain tissues needed to treat disorders such as Parkinson’s disease and diabetes. These diseases are associated with cell types that do not repair or replace themselves, but suitable cells will one day be grown in culture. These uses cannot be justified now; nor are they likely to be in the near future.

[11] Moreover, there is a lot we do not know about the effects of cloning, especially in terms of aging. As we grow older, changes occur in our cells that reduce the number of times they can reproduce. This clock of age is reset by normal reproduction during the production of sperm and eggs; that is why children of each new generation have a full life span. It is not yet known whether aging is reversed during cloning or if the clone’s natural life is shortened by the years its parent has already lived. Then there is the problem of the genetic errors that accumulate in our cells. There are systems to seek out and correct such errors during normal reproduction; it is not known if that can occur during cloning. Research with animals is urgently required to measure the lifespan and determine the cause of death of animals produced by cloning.

[12] Important questions also remain on the most appropriate means of controlling the development and use of these techniques. It is taken for granted that the production and sale of drugs will be regulated by governments, but this was not always the case. A hundred years ago, the production and sale of drugs in the US. was unregulated. Unscrupulous companies took the opportunity to include in their products substances, like cocaine, that were likely to make the patients feel better even if they offered no treatment for the original condition. After public protest, championed by publications such as the Ladies’ Home Journal, a federal act was passed in 1906. An enforcement agency, known now as the FDA, was established in 1927. An independent body similar to the FDA is now required to assess all the research on cloning.

[13] There is much still to be learned about the biology associated with cloning. The time required for this research, however, will also provide an opportunity for each society to decide how it wishes the technique to be used. At some point in the future, cloning will have much to contribute to human medicine, but we must use it cautiously.





[1] 对人工复制生命的道德问题的辩论忽略了一个事实:当前,克隆本身是一个效率极低的过程。我们的研究表明克隆胎儿和后代的死亡率比自然生育的高的多 --出生前,大约为10倍,出生后为3倍。这令与动物打交道的人们很沮丧,克隆的高失败率让人难以想象将它应用于人类本身。

[2] 然而,即使技术已经非常成熟,我们也必须扪心自问:克隆人具有什么实际价值吗?克隆婴儿和自然生育的婴儿到底有什么差别 -- 我们为何想要克隆人?

[3] 克隆的孩子与被克隆的孩子将是一对基因完全相同的双胞胎,这样从生理上讲他们十分相似--比自然生产的双亲和孩子还要相像。然而个性形成受继承的基因和环境因素两方面的影响。这两个克隆产物将发展完全不同的个性,就像双胞胎具有不同的个性一样。因为克隆人经常在不同的家庭中成长,所以克隆人在个性上没有双胞胎那么相似。

[4] 首先,为什么"复制"人呢?不能生育的夫妇可能选择克隆他们自己而不接受基因捐赠。我和妻子生了两个孩子,领养了一个,但是,想想,如果克隆一个我自己来弥补缺憾,那对我的婚姻将意味着什么?我和妻子在高中相识。她将如何面对高中时爱上的年轻人的克隆?我们自己又如何面对和自己生活在一起的情况?当然,被克隆的那个人-在这种情况下,就是我- 会认为他理解克隆人的行为因而可能比普通父亲更容易给孩子强加一些愿望。最重要的是,十多岁的克隆孩子将如何应对这样的状况- 看着头发稀疏,逐渐年老的我,想着这就是他的将来吗?

[5] 我们每一个人都可以想象由于克隆孩子的加入而可能组成的家庭--比如,将同性恋伴侣中的一个或者单亲克隆。但是在这样的情况下我们并没有考虑这对克隆孩子有什么好处。因为没有哪一种无生育能力能够通过克隆得以解决,所以我并不觉得这样的建议可以接受。我的担忧并不是建立在宗教或者所感知到的内在伦理原则上,而是我认为以这种方式建立的家庭很难给孩子提供一个合适的成长环境。

[6] 克隆也被认为是替代死于非命的亲人(通常是一个孩子)的一种方式。任何父母都理解这种愿望,但是我们必须认识到克隆出来的是一个全新的孩子而不是失去的孩子,而问题就在于此,对于悲痛欲绝的父母来说他们寻求的不是一个新的孩子而是死去的孩子的重生。既然原来那个孩子给父母留下了具有特殊天赋和兴趣的美好记忆,那么父母怎么能够不期望一个一模一样的孩子呢?然而,克隆的孩子有可能与所期望的完全不同,让克隆的孩子生在这样的家庭,公平吗?

[7] 如果死去的孩子很小的话克隆是否可行呢?孩子活得时间越短,父母对克隆孩子的期望就越低,对吗?如果一个孩子出生后几天就死了并且没有什么原因证明死亡是由于先天性的缺陷导致的,这就可以接受去克隆一个孩子吗?制定法律禁止克隆成年人和年龄大的孩子,但却允许克隆婴儿,这符合实际吗?那么多大年龄算作不能克隆的年龄呢?

[8] 克隆还被认为是父母拥有一个梦想中的孩子的方式。根据兴趣,夫妻可能选择克隆一个明星、棒球运动员或者科学家。但是遗传对性格产生的影响仅是一部分,如果克隆的孩子并没有像父母期望的那样,肯定会出现矛盾。爱因斯坦的克隆对科学没有丝毫兴趣,该怎么办?或者如果足球运动员变成演员呢?

[9] 成功也要靠运气。如果因为运气不好,孩子没能达到父母的期望值呢?

[10] 每一个孩子都应该是独立的个体。在克隆自己或者某个名人的时候,父母已经明确地详细规划了他或她希望孩子将来发展的方向。近些年来,特别是在美国,人们以自己希望的方式生育的权力已经得到了重视。我认为我们需要更多地考虑孩子的利益,摒弃这些克隆的建议。然而,从理论上讲人类克隆可以用来获得在治疗像帕金森和糖尿病时所需的组织。这些疾病是由不能自身修复或复制的细胞引起的,但是总有一天这些细胞会在培养基中培养出来。现在还没有正当的理由来用它们,近期也不可能。

[11] 而且,我们对于克隆的影响知之甚少,特别是年龄变化所带来的影响。随着我们逐渐变老,细胞发生变化,它们复制自身的次数减少。年龄生物钟通过正常的生育在精子和卵子的产生过程中被重新设定,这就是为什么每一代新生儿都有完整的生命周期的原因。我们并不知道在克隆的过程中年龄会被重新设定还是克隆人的生命会由于他们父母的年龄而缩短。还有一个问题就是在我们人体细胞中积累的基因错误。在正常的繁衍过程中人体系统会自动调出这些错误并加以修正;我们并不知道在克隆的过程中会不会发生这样的过程。现在迫切需要动物研究来测试克隆动物的生命期限,确定它们死亡的原因。

[12] 如何最佳控制这些技术的发展和应用也是悬而未决的问题。人们想当然地认为药物的生产与销售应该由政府调控,但是以前情况并不总是这样。一百年前,美国药物的生产与销售并不受管治,肆无忌惮的公司趁机在他们的产品中加入可卡因等物质,这些物质可能使病人在即使药物没有治疗病症的情况下也感到非常舒适。经过公众抗议,在《女性家庭期刊》等出版物的支持下,一项联合法令在1906年获得通过。一个强制执行机构,即食品及药品管理局,在1927年建立。目前正需要一个与食品及药品管理局类似的独立机构来评估所有关于克隆的研究。


the biotech century

1. ring farewell to the century of physics, the one in which we split the atom and turned silicon into computing power. it's time to ring in the century of biotechnology. just as the discovery of the electron in 1897 was seminal event for the 20th century, the seeds for the 21st century were spawned in 1953, when james watson blurted out to francis crick how four nuclei acids could pair to form the self-copying code of a dna molecule. now we're just a few years away from one of the most important breakthroughs of all time: deciphering the human genome, the 100,000 genes encoded by 3 billion chemical pairs in our dna.

2. before this century, medicine consisted mainly of amputation saws, morphine and crude remedies that were about as effective as bloodl'etting. the flu epidemic of 1918 killed as many people (more than 20 million) in just a few months as perished in four years of world war i. since then, antibiotics and vaccines have allowed us to vanquish entire classes of diseases. as a result, life expectancy in the u. s. jumped from about 47 years at the beginning of the century to 76 now.

3. but 20th century medicine did little to increase the natural life-span of healthy humans. the next medical revolution will change that, because genetic engineering has the potential to conquer cancer, grow new blood vessels in the heart, block the growth of blood vessels in tumors, create new organs from stem cells and perhaps even reset the primeval genetic coding that causes cells to age.

4. our children may be able (i hope, i fear) to choose their kids traits: to select their gender and eye color: perhaps to tinker with their iqs, personalities and athletic abilities. they could clone themselves, or one of their kids, or a celebrity they admire, or maybe even us after we've died.

5. in the 5 million years since we hominids separated from apes, our dna has evolved less than 2%. but in the next century we'll be able to alter our dna radically, encoding our visions and vanities while concocting new life-forms. when dr. frankenstein made his monster, he wrestled with the moral issue of whether he should allow it to reproduce: "had i the right, for my own benefit, to inflict the curse upon everlasting generation?" will such questions require us to develop new moral philosophies?

6. probably not. instead, we'll reach again for a time-tested moral notion, one sometimes called the golden rule and which immanuel kant, the millenium's most meticulous moralist, gussied up into a categorical imperative: do unto others as you would have them do unto you; treat each person as an individual rather than as a means to some end.

7. under this moral precept we should recoil at human cloning, because it inevitably entails using humans as means to other human's ends--valuing them as copies of others we loved or as collections of body parts, not as individuals in their own right. we should also draw a line, however fuzzy, that would permit using genetic engineering to care died and disabilities but not to change the personal attributes that make someone an individual (iq, physical appearance, gender and sexuality).

8. the biotech age will also give us more reason to guard our privacy. aldous huxley, in brave new world, got it wrong: rather than centralizing power in the hands of the state, dna technology has empowered individuals and families. but the state will have an important role, making sure that no one, including insurance companies, can look at our genetic data without our permission or use it to discriminate against us.

9. then we can get ready for the breakthrough that could come at the end of the next century and is comparable to mapping our genes: plotting the 10 billion or more neurons of our brain. with that information we might someday be able to create artificial intelligences that think and experience consciousness in ways that are indistinguishable from a human brain. eventually we might be able to replicate our own minds in a machine, so that we could live on without the "wetware" of biological brain and body. the 20th century's revolution in infotechnology will thereby merge with the 21st century's revolution in biotechnology.

10. but this is science fiction. let's turn the page now and get back to real science.


1.让我们告别物理学的世纪吧!在这个世纪里,我们分裂了原子,为硅 赋子了计算的功能。我们到了迎接生物技术世纪的时候。1897年电子的发现 为20世纪(物理学的世纪)奠定了基础,1953年已经为21世纪(生物技术 的世纪)播下了种子,当年詹姆斯·华生向弗朗西斯·克里克脱口说出了四 个核酸如何能够配对而形成一个脱氧核糖核酸(dna)分子的自行复制编码。 再过几年我们会实现历史上一个最重要的突破:解译人类的基因组——我们 的dna中用30亿个化学配对进行编码的10万个基因。

2.在本世纪以前,医疗技术主要是由截肢用锯、吗啡以及类似放血这样 有效的原始疗法所组成的。1918年,在短短几个月时间里,因患流行性感冒 而致死的人和在第一次世界大战四年中丧生的人一样多(超过二千万人)。自 那以后,抗生素和疫苗帮助我们征服了各类疾病。结果,美国人的预期寿命 从本世纪初的约47岁一下猛升到现在的76岁。

3.但是,20世纪的医学在延长健康人的自然寿命方面没有什么进展;下 一次医学革命将会改变这种状况,因为遗传工程有可能征服癌症,在心脏里 培植新的血管,阻断肿瘤中血管的生长,从干细胞中选出新的器官,甚至可 能重组可以延长细胞寿命的原始遗传编码。

4.我们的子女也许能够(我希望这样,但我也害怕这样),选择他们子女 的特征:选择他们的性别和眼睛的颜色:也许还能够调整他们的智商、个性 和运动能力。他们能克隆自己,克隆一个自己的孩子,或者克隆一个自己仰 慕的名人,甚至可能在我们去世后克隆出我们。

5.在人类从猿进化为人之后的五百万年中,我们的dna只进化了不到2 %。但在下个世纪,我们将能从根本上改变我们的dna,即在制造新的生命 形式时对自己的理智和情感进行编码。弗兰肯斯坦博士造出他的怪物时,他 曾就是否应该允许它繁殖生育而深思这样一个道德问题:“我有权利为我自 己的利益而降祸于子孙后代吗?”这样的问题是否要求我们发展新的道德哲 学?

6.可能还不是。相反,我们将重温一个历经考验的道德观念问题,它有 时被称作“黄金法则”,而且,一千年来最严谨的道德主义者——伊曼努尔·康 德将其美化成一个“绝对命令”:己所不欲,勿施于人:要把每个人作为个体 对待,而不是作为达到某种目的的手段。

7.在这一道德准则下,我们应该摒弃人类的克隆技术,因为它不可避免 地会使一些人成为达到另外一些人目标的手段——这些人的价值只体现在他 们是我们喜爱的人的复制品或是许多身体部件的组合上,而不在于他们是有 自身权利的个体、不管多么模糊,我们还应划一个界限,在这个范围内遗传 工程可被用来治疗疾病和弥补缺陷,而不是用来改变决定一个人成为个体的 个人特性(智商、身体特征、性别和性征)。

8,生物技术的时代将给我们更充分的理由来保护个人隐私。奥尔德斯.赫 胥黎在《美妙的新世界》一书中犯了一个错误:他把dna技术授权给了个体 和家庭,而没有把权力集中于国家手中。但是(事实上)国家将起到很重要 的作用,那就是保证包括保险公司在内的任何人,没有我们的允许不能看到 我们的遗传数据或利用它来歧视我们。

9.那么我们可以迎接可能于下世纪末出现的生物技术的突破,这一技术 突破可与描绘基因相媲美:标记出我们大脑中的100亿甚至更多的神经源。 应用这些信息,我们有朝一日可能创造出人工智能,它们的思维和经验意识 方式与人脑没有什么区别。最终我们可能在一台机器里复制出我们自己的头 脑,这样的话,我们就能够不依赖生物大脑和人体这样的“湿件”而活着。 20世纪信息技术的革命将由此同21世纪的生物技术革命融为一体。

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