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convolve/[kən'vɔlv]/ vt. 卷, 盘旋, 缠绕 vi. 卷, 盘旋, 缠绕...

新概念英语第四册56-01

one of the items or another= on or another of the items

in all the less controversial fields… 在不太令人争论的一些领域

nebulae 星云

all that we know of…

that we know 做all的后置定语

of 做all的后置定语

social insects群居生活的昆虫

let us say = so to speak

major social sciences主要的社会学

substitute替换,替代

that of 作同位语

In all the less controversial fields like the study of cacti or termites or the nature of nebulae, the necessary method of study is to group the relevant material and to take note of all possible variant forms and conditions. In this way we have learned all that we know of the laws of astronomy, or of the habits of the social insects, let us say. It is only in the study of man himself that the major social sciences have substituted the study of one local variation, that of Western civilization. 新概念英语Lesson 57

Of Men and Galaxies人和星系

In man's early days, competition with other creatures must have been critical. But this phase of our development is now finished. Indeed, we lack practice and experience nowadays in dealing with primitive conditions. I am sure that, without modern weapons, I would make a very poor show of disputing the ownership of a cave with a bear, and in this I do not think that I stand alone. The last creature to compete with man was the mosquito. But even the mosquito has been subdued by attention to drainage and by chemical sprays.

Competition between ourselves, person against person, community against community, still

persists, however; and it is as fierce as it ever was.

But the competition of man against man is not the simple process envisioned in biology. It is not a

simple competition for a fixed amount of food determined by the physical environment, because

the environment that determines our evolution is no longer essentially physical. Our environment

is chiefly conditioned by the things we believe. Morocco and California are bits of the Earth in

very similar latitudes, both on the west coasts of continents with similar climates, and probably

with rather similar natural resources. Yet their present development is wholly different, not so

much because of different people even, but because of the different thoughts that exist in the minds of their inhabitants. This is the point I wish to emphasize. The most important factor in our

environment is the state of our own minds.

It is well known that where the white man has invaded a primitive culture the most destructive

effects have come not from physical weapons but from ideas. Ideas are dangerous. The Holy office knew this full well when it caused heretics to be burned in days gone by. Indeed, the concept of free speech only exists in our modem society because when you are inside a community you are conditioned by the conventions of the community to such a degree that it is very difficult to conceive of anything really destructive. It is only someone looking on from outside that can inject the dangerous thoughts. I do not doubt that it would be possible to inject ideas into the modern world that would utterly destroy us. I would like to give you an example, but fortunately I cannot do so. Perhaps it will suffice to mention the nuclear bomb. Imagine the effect on a reasonably advanced technological society, one that still does not possess the bomb, of making it aware of the possibility, of supplying sufficient details to enable the thing to be constructed. Twenty or thirty pages of information handed to any of the major world powers around the year 1925 would have been sufficient to change the course of world history. It is a strange thought, but I believe a correct one, that twenty or thirty pages of ideas and information would be capable of turning the present-day world upside down, or even destroying it. I have often tried to conceive of what those pages might contain, but of course I cannot do so because I am a prisoner of the present-day world, just as all of you are. We cannot think outside the particular patterns that our brains are conditioned to, or, to be more accurate, we can think only a very little way outside, and then only if we are very original.

参考译文

在人类早期,人类与其他生物的竞争一定是必不可少的。但这个发展阶段已经结束。确实,我们今天缺乏对付原始环境的实践和经验。我断定,如果没有现代化的武器,要我和一只熊去争洞穴,我会出洋相的;我也相信,出洋相者并非我一人。能与人竞争的生物最后只有蚊子了,然而即使蚊子,也由于我们注意清理污水和喷洒化学药品而被制服了。

然而人类之间的竞争,人与人,团体与团体,依然在进行着,而且和以前一样激烈。

但是,人与人的竞争并不象生物学中想象的那样是一个简单的过程。它以不是为了争得物质环境所决定的有限食物而进行的简单竞争了,因为决定我们进化环境的重要方面已不再是物质。我们的环境由我们信仰的东西所决定。摩洛哥和加利福尼亚是地球上纬度极其相似的两个地方,都在各自大陆的西海岸,气候相似,自然资源也可能相似。但是,这两个地方目前的发展程度完全不一样。这倒不是因为人民不同,而是由于居民头脑中的思想不同。这就是我要强调的论点。我们环境中最重要的因素就是我们的思想状况。

众所周知,凡是白人侵入原始文化的地方,破坏作用最大的不是杀人的武器,而是思想。思想是危险的。宗教法庭对此是非常清楚的,因此从前它总是把异教徒烧死。的确,言论自由的概念只存在于我们现代社会中,因为当你生活在一个社团当中时,社团的风俗习惯会严格地制约你,使你很难有破坏性的想法。只有外部的旁观者才能灌输危险的思想。现代世界灌输一种思想以便摧毁我们人类是可能的事,对此我并不怀疑。我愿为你举个例子,但幸亏我举不出。也许提一下核弹就足以说明了。对一个尚未拥有核弹,但科技相当发达的社会,如果告诉它制造核弹的可能性,而且向它提供制造核弹的细节,那么可以设想,这将对这个社会产生何等的影响。如果把二三十页的情报交给1925年前后的任何一个世界强国,就足以改变世界历史的进程。二三十页材料中的思想和情报会使当今的世界天翻地覆,甚至毁灭这个世界。这是个离奇的想法,不过我认为这个想法是正确的。我常常试图想象这些纸上所写的东西,不过我是做不到的,因为我和你们大家一样,是当今世界上的凡人。我们不能脱离我们大脑所限定的模式去思考问题,我们只能稍微离开一点儿,就这也需要我们有独创的思想。

New words and expressions 生词短语

dispute v. 争夺

latitude n. 纬度

mosquito n. 蚊子

heretic n. 异教徒,异端邪说

subdue v. 征服

conceive v. 想象

drainage n. 下水系统

suffice v. 足够

envision n. 预想

nuclear adj. 原子弹的

Morocco n. 摩洛哥

original adj. 有独到见解的

critical time critical moment critical juncture 关键时刻 紧要关头

crutial , vital 关键

decisive 决定性的

critical eye 挑剔的眼光

1.Dispute 争夺,很有新意。以前的意思如争论,争端,辩论,

dispute with sb 与... 辩论

dispute on sth dispute sth .with sb

I dispute the position with him 我与他争夺这个职位

talents 人材 Vie for sth .with sb 与...争夺...

Scramble for sth . with sb . scramble 爬 scramble eggs 煎鸡蛋

2.Subdue 征服 同义词conquer overpower tame (驯服)

subject adj

Quell 镇压

3.Bear 熊 polar bear 北极熊 penguin 企鹅 panda 熊猫

Man should be pressurized.人应该有压力。

bear hug 拥抱
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