Unit Six • TEXT I Preparing for College • Lincoln Steffens
Main Idea and outline • Please turn to page 78, and read the passage “Organization and development”. Then work out the main idea and the outline of the text.
Outline of the Text Part I: (Paragraphs 1 - 4) The narrator tells howhe failed in a number of examinations required for entering the University of California and the cause of it.
Outline of the Text Part II: (Paragraphs 5 -12) His private tutor, Mr. Nixon, exerted great influence on him; he encouraged his pupil to think and discover all by himself.
Outline of the Text Part III: (Paragraphs 13 - 15) He found the best preparations for college in the stimulating Saturday night conversations among all those Oxford and Cambridge men.
Paragraph 1 • to be put off for a year (l.3):to be delayed for a year • The verbal phrase “put off” has different meanings in various contexts: • 1. Neverput offtill tomorrow what you can do today. • 2. I really don't want to go out with Helen and Greg tonight - can't we put them off ? • 3.Once she's made up her mind to do something, nothing will put her off. • 4. He has put off his coat. • 5. His bad manners put me right off him. • a. to make excuses to sb. in order to avoid a duty:敷衍，搪塞 • b. take attention away:使……分心 • c. delay doing sth. • d. cause sb. to DISLIKE:e. take off
Paragraph 1 be made for someone/something (line 9) : to be exactly suitable for someone or something. Paul and Ann were made for each other. This wallpaper was made for my bedroom.
Paragraph 2 • The elect were, for the most part, boys who had been brought up to do their duty. (line 10) • The chosen excellent students, were usually boys who have been educated and taught to do their duty as routine work in school. • the elect — the people chosen (usually the best ones) for a special purpose (by God for salvation after death) • for the most part — (formal) usually or generally, in most cases. • for my part — as far as I am concerned
Paragraph 2 • so far as I could make out (l.13): • so far as I could understand • make out: understand, see, or hear; E.g.: • That problem is just beyond me; I can’tmakeitout. • He muttered a complaint that nobody couldmake out.
Paragraph 2 • they looked dazed or indifferent (l.15): they looked confused / bewildered or uninterested / unconcerned • dazed：(adjective) very confused and unable to think clearly, especially by a shock or blow: • You‘re looking rather dazed （神情恍惚）- is anything wrong? • His answer to the question left us alldazed（茫然）. • in a daze：unable to think clearly: • She was wandering around in a daze(昏头昏脑地) this morning. • indifferent:not interested in, not caring about • The friendship between gentleman appears indifferent but is pure like water. 君子之交淡如水。
Paragraph 2 • Question: • From Steffens’s description of “the elect” in Paragraph 2, what has been revealed about himself? • He must be very different from those boys: • To him study did not mean performing all the tasks assigned by the teacher without thinking and reasoning. • He was motivated by a strong quest for knowledge, not by the desire to beat the other fellows, stand high, represent the honor of the school.
Paragraph 3 • bear on (l.22): be relevant to; have some connection with; relate to • E.g.: Did what he saidbear onyour problem? • have a bearing on sth：have an influence on something or a relationship to something: • What you decide now could have a considerable bearing on your future. • for keeps (l.23):This phrase is used informally, meaning “forever, permanently, for good” • E.g.: “Can I have one of those cute mementos?（漂亮的纪念品）” • “Sure. This one is yours, for keeps.”
Paragraph 4 • appeal to (l.30): attract, interest • E.g.: His plan of spending our winter vacation in an orphanage to coach the children there in English appealed to all of us. • “Appealto” has different meanings in different contexts. • 1. Church leaders have appealed to（呼吁）the government to halt the war.2. The defendant defied the verdict (the official decision made by a jury in a court of law) and appealed to (上诉) the higher court. • 被告对法庭的裁决不服，向高一级法院提起上诉。 • 3. We will appeal to a great variety of sources for information . 我们将求助于多种资料来源。
Paragraph 4 • The result was that I did not really work at them and so got only what stuck by dent of repetition: the barest rudiments for a school education (l.31). : • The result was that I did not really try hard to study them and so I failed in those school subjects which required repetition: the most essential rule of a school education.
Paragraph 4 • by dent of (l.31): also “by dint of”, by means of • rudiments — the first simple facts or rules of anything. • the rudiments: the basics, the fundamentals (The word rudiments is always in the plural form when used in this sense.) 基础；基本原理；初级阶段，入门 • E.g.: the rudiments of grammar 语法入门 • the rudiments of physics 物理学基本原理 • the rudiments of a plan 计划的雏形 • the rudiments of civilization 文明的萌芽
Paragraph 4 • I was not in the least curious about Greek … （l.36） : I wasn’t eager to learn Greek …at all • not in the least: not at all • E.g.: Lots of people love to read science fiction, but I’m not in the least interested.
Paragraph 3 & 4 • The text begins with his failure to get into university. What caused his failure? (Infer mainly from Paragraphs 3 and 4.) • He learned well whatever interested him. But He was not interested in those school subjects which seemed to him irrelevant to his life. And the teachers failed to interest him in those subjects. As a result, he did not do well in them. This partly accounted for his failure.
Paragraph 5 • Cram: make too full; put / push too much into挤入，塞入 • It‘s dangerous for too many people to be crammed into a bus.（公共汽车超载人员是危险的）。 • This encyclopedia is crammed with information about everything under the sun.（这部百科全书拥有世上一切知识）。
Paragraph 5 • to be crammed for Berkeley (l.39): • to be stuffed with as much book knowledge as possible for me to pass the entrance examination of the University of California at Berkeley • cram: fill the head with facts in a short time just before the examination • E.g.: Learning is a long-range process. Cramming for an examination in the last minute does one no good. • My son goes to cram school every evening . • 我的儿子每晚都去上补习班。 • He sat up all night cramming for the history exam. • 他通宵开夜车为应付历史考试死记硬背。 • cramming (or spoon-feeding; force-feeding) method of teaching 填鸭式教学法
Paragraph 5 • all the poets of all the ages (l.45): all the poets of all periods in history • Compare: of all the ages 不同的历史时代 • of all ages不同的年龄
Paragraph 6 • conscious culture (l.48- 49): the cultures (i.e., customs, arts, social institutions, and achievements of a particular people or social group or nation) that is directly perceptible or known to us
Paragraph 6 • romance and language sang songs to me (l.50): • Figure of speech: personification • Can you explain this personification in your own words? • I enjoyed romance and language so much that they were like melodious songs to me.
Paragraph 6 • “when he read or recited Greek verse … on which beautiful words might play.” (l.49-52) • Paraphrase: • When he read or recited Greek poetry, it seemed that what was described in the verse became alive; both the romantic ideas and the poetical lines sounded like beautiful music, and I, just like him, was motivated to be neither a hero in poetry nor a poet who created poetry, but only a student of Greek culture and poetry, in such a way that I would be able to interpret Greek poetry.
Paragraph 6 • It was too great and too various for me to personify with my boyish imitations and heroism. (l.53-54) • Life was so good and so different in kind that I was not able to express what it was like with my youthful mind and boldness • Personify (l.53): express or represent (a quality in human form); be a (perfect) example of 象征，体现，成 … 典型
Paragraph 12 • Q: How does the man Evelyn Nixon impress you？ Support your answer with information from the text. (For supporting information, refer to Paragraphs 6 to 12.) • 1. A well-informed Oxford scholar; (Para. 8) • 2. An appreciator of all good words and deeds. (Para. 7) • 3. A fanatic of poetry, especially of the classic poets. (Para. 6) • 4. A good teacher (Para. 10, 11, 12)
Paragraph 11 • “We can only underline your questions, make you mad yourself to answer them, and add ours to whip, to lash you on to find out yourself – one or two; tell us!” • Paraphrase: We can only call your attention to your own questions and encourage you to answer the questions yourself; we will give you one or two more questions of ours to make you think hard and answer. • What can we learn from Mr. Nixon’s words?
Paragraph 11 • Whip-phrases in contexts: • 1. Tom says his mother uses him as the whipping boy at home. She's an alcoholic and whenever his dad gets mad at her for getting drunk, she turns all her anger at him onto her son. (受气包) • 2. Will you make sure all the speakers are given a fair crack of the whip in the debate? • (均等的机会) • 3. Everybody says Tony is smart as a whip. He knows exactly what he can expect from the bureaucracy and how to get what he wants without the usual delay or trouble. (聪明灵活)
Paragraph 11 • 4. We had a whip-round for Annie's leaving present.(凑份子) • 5. If you haven't heard about the Internet, you belong to the buggy-whip age. • (大大落后于时代) • 6. Mr. Lee put his son and daughter to work in the factory he owned but he never let them have any responsibility because he wanted to hold the whip hand over them as long as he lived. (对……有控制权）
Paragraph 12 • Paraphrase of paragraph 12: • “Come on, boy. The world belongs to you -- you are expected to do creative thinking and to act creatively for the world. There is still a lot to be accomplished, and a lot to be found out. No poem written can be called the greatest and no railroad built can be the best. The perfect state has yet to be conceived. Everything has yet to be done.” • What can we learn from Mr. Nixon’s words?
Paragraph 13 • a maddening lot (line 83): • a wild, uncontrollable group • Lot: (plural noun; UK; INFORMAL) a group of people: • You're an ignorant lot! • My lot (= children and family generally) won't eat spinach.
Paragraph 13 • Tory (line 87): • Politics in the late eighteenth century England could be broadly divided into two opposed camps - Whigs and Tories. • Tories are members or supporters of the Conservative Party. The term Tory was first used to name a member of a political party from the late 17th century to about 1832 that favored the authority of the king over Parliament and the preservation of the existing social and political order. It was succeeded by the Conservative Party in 1832.
Paragraph 13 • Whig: (a member) of a British political party which supported the power of Parliament and wanted to limit royal power, and later became the Liberal Party, who favors progress or reform.
Paragraph 13 • Red (l.87):noun [C], mainly disapproving; (POLITICAL) a person who has socialist or communist political opinions • William Owen is said to be a “red”, or a socialist, because he is a descendant of Robert Owen.
Paragraph 13 • A Roman Catholic (line 89): • A Roman Catholic is a member of the Roman Catholic Church, the part of the Christian Church which acknowledges the Pope as its head. Catholicism differs from Protestantism in the importance it grants to tradition, ritual, and the authority of the Pope.
Paragraph 13 • the Protestant (line 90): • is the member of the Protestant Church, which is any of the Christian churches that are separate from the Roman Catholic Church. The Protestants reject the authority of the Pope or papacy (教皇统治). They find authority in the text of the Bible.
Paragraph 13 • Old Testament(line 90): refer to Note 19 • New Testament: the second part of the Christian Bible, recording the life and teachings of Jesus Christ and his earliest followers, containing the Gospels, the Acts of the Apostles, the Epistles, and the Book of Revelations. • The books of the New Testament were written in Koine Greek. Some scholars believe that some books of the Greek New Testament (in particular, the Gospel of Matthew) are actually translations of a Hebrew or Aramaic original.
Paragraph 13 • righteous sects (l.91): morally justifiable groups of people whose religious beliefs are considered different from those of a larger group
Paragraph 13 • with a sureness which withstood reference to the books (l.93): • with such a certainty that they did not have to refer to the source of the quotation (他们在引用权威人士所述时是)如此地肯定，他们不必提及引文的出处。
Paragraph 13 • withstand: hold out against, stand up to, not be changed by • E.g.: • The packing must be strong enough to withstand rough handling.包装必须十分坚固，以承受野蛮的搬运。 • Eternal love between us two,Shall withstand the time apart.两情若是久长时，又岂在朝朝暮暮 • Great works of art / literary works can always withstand the test of time.伟大的 艺术品/文学作品总能经得起时间的考验。
Paragraph 13 • papal bull (l.95): an official document issued by the Pope, the head of the Roman Catholic Church. • papal: of the Pope or of the papacy 罗马教皇的 • bull: a solemn official letter from the Pope 教皇训令
Paragraph 13 • Verbatim (l.95): word for word; in exactly the same words • E.g.:copy it verbatim一字不差地抄录 • report a speech verbatim 逐字地报道一篇演说 • a verbatim reprint 毫无改动的再版 • a verbatim translation 逐字的翻译
Paragraph 13 • Q: Despite their similar background, the Englishmen who met at the Saturday night gatherings had “no common opinion on anything apparently” (Line 86, Paragraph 13). By which sentence in the same paragraph is this fact restated? Why does the author seem to emphasize this point?
Paragraph 13 • “They could not among them agree on anything but a fact.” (Line 97, Paragraph 13) • To emphasize the originality of these searching minds and the infinite nature of the pursuit of knowledge.
Paragraph 13 • Q: Mr. Nixon has turned out to have formed a change over me. How has he achieved this? (For supporting information, refer to Paragraphs 6 to 13)
Paragraph 13 He knew how to interest his student in what he has to learn; He encouraged me to explore into the unknown world and find answers by myself; He inspired me to do the creative things; He encouraged me to listen to the stimulating Saturday night conversations among all those Oxford and Cambridge men.
Paragraph 14 • studied minds as polished as fine tools (l.100): • great intellectual faculties, great mental capacities as flawless as first-class tools
Paragraph 14 • aside （l.101）: noun [C]1. a remark in a low voice not intended to be heard by everyone present; digression 窃窃私语 • 2. a piece of dialogue intended for the audience and supposedly not heard by the other actors on stage旁白 • Those asides, which the characters deliver to the audience, do not really suit the screen. • 角色对观众的那些旁白实际上不适合于拍成电影。
Paragraph 14 • relish (l.105): noun [S;U] SLIGHTLY FORMALgreat enjoyment, especially of food, pleasure and satisfaction 乐趣，享乐 • The way to your wife’s heart is to eat her food with relish（津津有味地）. • 能让妻子快乐的方法，就是有滋味地吃掉她做的食物 • She took relish in showing her friends her jewelry. 她以向朋友炫示自己的珠宝首饰为乐。 • Butter to butter is no relish. (proverb) • 千篇一律的东西令人生厌. • relish (=get please out of) the challenge of competition • 从竞争的挑战中获得乐趣
Paragraph 14 • Q: Why does Steffens say that “those wonderful Saturday nights in San Francisco were his preparations for college”? (Refer to Paragraphs 15) • The conversations he heard were brilliant, scholarly, and stimulating, thus greatly broadening his scope of knowledge. • And the way in which the conversations were carried on was inspiring, too. They were much more beneficial to him than the kind of school education he had received.