【新概念英语四】第5课 Youth 青年
First listen and then answer the following question.
How does the writer like to treat young people?
People are always talking about 'the problem of youth'. If there is one--which I take leave to doubt -- then it is older people who create it, not the young themselves. Let us get down to fundamentals and agree that the young are after all human beings--people just like their elders. There is only one difference between an old man and a young one: the young man has a glorious future before him and the old one has a splendid future behind him: and maybe that is where the rub is.
When I was a teenager, I felt that I was just young and uncertain--that I was a new boy in a huge school, and I would have been very pleased to be regarded as something so interesting as a problem. For one thing, being a problem gives you a certain identity, and that is one of the things the young are busily engaged in seeking.
I find young people exciting. They have an air of freedom, and they have not a dreary commitment to mean ambitions or love of comfort. They are not anxious social climbers, and they have no devotion to material things. All this seems to me to link them with life, and the origins of things. It's as if they were, in some sense, cosmic beings in violent and lovely contrast with us suburban creatures. All that is in my mind when I meet a young person. He may be conceited, ill-mannered, presumptuous or fatuous, but I do not turn for protection to dreary cliches about respect for elders -- as if mere age were a reason for respect. I accept that we are equals, and I will argue with him, as an equal, if I think he is wrong.
FIELDEN HUGHES from Out of the Air, The Listener
【New words and expressions 生词和短语】
leave n. 允许
fundamentals n. 基本原则
glorious adj. 光辉灿烂的
splendid adj. 灿烂的
rub n. 难题
identity n. 身份
dreary adj. 沉郁的
commitment n. 信奉
mean adj. 吝啬，小气
social climber 追求更高社会地位的，向上爬的人
devotion n. 热爱
cosmic adj. 宇宙的
suburban adj. 见识不广的，偏狭的
conceited adj. 自高自大的
presumptuous adj. 自以为是的，放肆的
fatuous adj. 愚蠢的
cliche n. 陈词滥调
1. which I take leave to doubt，这是一个插入成分，用两个破折号与句子的主要部分分开。
take leave to do sth.是“擅自做”、“冒昧去做”的意思。
2. get down to，认真处理，认真研究；开始做某事。
例句：He got down to his work after the holidays.
3....that is where the rub is. There's the rub.= That's the problem.这就是问题所在。
例句：He rubbed his chin thoughtfully.
②rub salt into the wound/sb's wounds在某人的伤口上撒盐，给某人雪上加霜。
例句：Don't rub salt into her wounds, she's already so miserable.
③rub shoulders with sb与某人作社交上或职业上的来往。
例句：In his job he's rubbing shoulders with film stars all the time.
4.for one thing，首先。
相同意思的词组还有： to begin/start with, first of all, first and foremost, in the first place
5. air of freedom，无拘无束。
6. in some sense，在某种意义上。
to some extent，从某种程度上来说。
7. turn to...for...，为……而求助于……。
例句：I tried to stand on my own two feet rather than turned to my parents for money.
人们总是在谈论“青年问题”。如果这个问题存在的话 -- 请允许我对此持怀疑态度 -- 那么，这个问题是由老年人而不是青年人造成的。让我们来认真研究一些基本事实：承认青年人和他们的长辈一样也是人。老年人和青年人只有一个区别：青年人有光辉灿烂的前景，而老年人的辉煌已成为过去。 问题的症结恐怕就在这里。
我十几岁时，总感到自己年轻，有些事拿不准 -- 我是一所大学里的一名新生，如果我当时真的被看成像一个问题那样有趣，我会感到很得意的。因为这至少使我得到了某种承认，这正是年轻人所热衷追求的。