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過去這個週末學生考了 2019 年 6 月的 SAT 考試。如果這是你最後一次考 SAT，恭喜你完成了一個艱難的任務！
這裡，我們整理了 2019 年 6 月 SAT 考試當中的 5 篇閱讀文章，幫助學生準備未來的考試。
首先，讀這些文章。你覺得他們讀起來很簡單還是很難？裡面有沒有很多生字，尤其是那些會影響你理解整篇文章的生字？如果有的話，雖然你可能是在美國讀書或讀國際學校、也知道 “如何讀跟寫英文”，但你還沒有足夠的生字基礎讓你 “達到下一個階段” （也就是大學的階段）。查一下這一些字，然後把它們背起來。這些生字不見得會在下一個 SAT 考試中出現，但是透過真正的 SAT 閱讀文章去認識及學習這些生字可以大大的減低考試中出現不會的生字的機率。
在我們的 Ivy-Way Reading Workbook（Ivy-Way 閱讀技巧書）的第一章節裡，我們教學生在閱讀文章之前要先讀文章最上面的開頭介紹。雖然你的 SAT 考試不會剛好考這幾篇文章，但你還是可以透過這些文章找到它們的來源，然後從來源閱讀更多相關的文章。舉例來說，如果你看第二篇文章 “The Problem with Fair Trade Coffee”，你會看到文章是來自 Stanford Social Innovation Review。閱讀更多來自 Stanford Social Innovation Review 的文章會幫助你習慣閱讀這種風格的文章。
- 文學 (literature)：1 篇經典或現代的文學文章（通常來自美國）
- 歷史 (History)：1 篇跟美國獨立/創立相關的文章，或者一篇受到美國獨立 / 創立影響的國際文章（像是美國憲法或者馬丁路德金恩 (Martin Luther King Jr.) 的演說）
- 人文 (Humanities)：1 篇經濟、心理學、社會學、或社會科學的文章
- 科學 (Sciences)：1-2 篇地理、生物、化學、或物理的文章
- 雙篇文 (Dual-Passages)：0-1 篇含有兩篇同主題的文章
所有 2019 年 6 月 (北美) SAT 考試閱讀文章
This passage is from Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Blithedale Romance, originally published in 1852.
Five-and-twenty years ago, at the epoch of this story, there dwelt in one of the Middle States a man whom we shall call Fauntleroy; a man of wealth, and magnificent tastes, and prodigal expenditure. His home might almost be styled a palace; his habits, in the ordinary sense, princely. His whole being seemed to have crystallized itself into an external splendor, wherewith he glittered in the eyes of the world, and had no other life than upon this gaudy surface. He had married a lovely woman, whose nature was deeper than his own. But his affection for her, though it showed largely, was superficial, like all his other manifestations and developments; he did not so truly keep this noble creature in his heart, as wear her beauty for the most brilliant ornament of his outward state. And there was born to him a child, a beautiful daughter, whom he took from the beneficent hand of God with no just sense of her immortal value, but as a man already rich in gems would receive another jewel. If he loved her, it was because she shone.
After Fauntleroy had thus spent a few empty years, coruscating continually an unnatural light, the source of it—which was merely his gold—began to grow more shallow, and finally became exhausted. He saw himself in imminent peril of losing all that had heretofore distinguished him; and, conscious of no innate worth to fall back upon, he recoiled from this calamity with the instinct of a soul shrinking from annihilation. To avoid it, —wretched man!—or rather to defer it, if but for a month, a day, or only to procure himself the life of a few breaths more amid the false glitter which was now less his owl, than ever,—he made himself guilty of a crime.
It was just the sort of crime, growing out of its artificial state, which society (unless it should change its entire constitution for this man’s unworthy sake) neither could nor ought to pardon. More safely might it pardon murder. Fauntleroy’s guilt was discovered. He fled; his wife perished, by the necessity of her innate nobleness, in its alliance with a being so ignoble; and betwixt her mother’s death and her father’s ignominy, his daughter was left worse than orphaned.
There was no pursuit after Fauntleroy. His family connections, who had great wealth, made such arrangements with those whom he had attempted to wrong as secured him from the retribution that would have overtaken an unfriended criminal. The wreck of his estate was divided among his creditors: His name, in a very brief space, was forgotten by the multitude who had passed it so diligently from mouth to mouth. Seldom, indeed, was it recalled, even by his closest former intimates. Nor could it have been otherwise. The man had laid no real touch on any mortal’s heart. Being a mere image, an optical delusion, created by the sunshine of prosperity, it was his law to vanish into the shadow of the first intervening cloud. He seemed to leave no vacancy; a phenomenon which, like many others that attended his brief career, went far to prove the illusiveness of his existence.
Not, however, that the physical substance of Fauntleroy had literally melted into vapor. He had fled northward to the New England metropolis, and had taken up his abode, under another name, in a squalid street or court of the older portion of the city. There he dwelt among poverty-stricken wretches, sinners, and forlorn good people, Irish, and whomsoever else were neediest. Many families were clustered in each house together, above stairs and below, in the little peaked garrets, and even in the dusky cellars. The house where Fauntleroy – paid weekly rent for a chamber and a closet had been a stately habitation in its day. An old colonial governor had built it, and lived there, long ago, and held his levees in a great room where now slept twenty Irish bedfellows; and died in Fauntleroy’s chamber, which his embroidered and white-wigged ghost still haunted. Tattered hangings, a marble hearth, traversed with many cracks and fissures, a richly carved oaken mantelpiece, partly hacked away for kindling-stuff, a stuccoed ceiling, defaced with great, unsightly patches of the naked laths, —such was the chamber’s aspect, as if, with its splinters and rags of dirty splendor, it were a kind of practical gibe at this poor, ruined man of show.
At first, and at irregular intervals, his relatives allowed Fauntleroy a little pittance to sustain life; not from any love, perhaps, but lest poverty should compel him, by new offences, to add more shame to that with which he had already stained them. But he showed no tendency to further guilt. His character appeared to have been radically changed (as, indeed, from its shallowness, it well might) by his miserable fate; or, it may be, the traits now seen in him were portions of the same character, presenting itself in another phase. Instead of any longer seeking to live in the sight of the world, his impulse was to shrink into the nearest obscurity, and to be unseen of men, were it possible, even while standing before their eyes. He had no pride; it was all trodden in the dust. No ostentation; for how could it survive, when there was nothing left of Fauntleroy, save penury and shame! His very gait demonstrated that he would gladly have faded out of view, and have crept about invisibly, for the sake of sheltering himself from the irksomeness of a human glance. Hardly, it was averred, within the memory of those who knew him now, had he the hardihood to show his full front to the world. He skulked in corners, and crept about in a sort of noonday twilight, making himself gray and misty, at all hours, with his morbid intolerance of sunshine.
This passage is adapted from Clay Shirky, Here Comes Everybody: The Power of Organizing without Organizations. ©2008 Clay Shirky. The author is discussing websites such as Wikipedia and Flickr to which users contribute content.
Given that everyone ‘how has the tools to contribute equally, you might expect a huge increase in equality of participation. You’d be wrong.
Wikipedia articles for asphalt had 129 contributors making 205 total edits, but the bulk of the work was contributed by a small fraction of participants, and just six accounted for about a quarter of the edits. A similar pattern appears on Flickr: 118 photographers contributed over three thousand Mermaid Parade photos to Flickr, but the top tenth contributed half of those, and the most active photographer, Czarina, contributed 238 photos (about one in twelve) working alone. This shape, called a power law distribution, is shown in the figure.
Five points are shown on this graph. The two leftmost data points are the most and second-most active photographers. The most active photographer is far more active than the second most active, and they are both far more active than most of the rest of the photographers. The average number of photos taken (all photos divided among all photographers) is twenty-six, while the median (the middle photographer) took eleven photos, and the mode (the number of photos that appeared most frequently) is a single photo. Note the sharp drop-off in the number of photos between the top few contributors and most of the participants. Notice too that because of the disproportionate contributions of these few photographers, three-quarters of the photographers contributed a below-average number of pictures. This pattern is general to social media: on mailing lists with more than a couple dozen participants, the most active writer is generally much more active than the person in the number-two slot, and far more active than average. The longest conversation goes on much longer than the second-longest one, and much longer than average, and so on. Bloggers, Wikipedia contributors, photographers, people conversing on mailing lists, and social participation in many other large-scale systems all exhibit a similar pattern.
There are two big surprises here. The first is that the imbalance is the same shape across a huge number of different kinds of behaviors. A graph of the distribution of photo labels (or “tags”) on Flickr is the same shape as the graph of readers-per-weblog and contributions-per-user to Wikipedia. The general form of a power law distribution appears in social settings when some set of items-users, pictures, tags-is ranked by frequency of occurrence. You can rank a group of Flickr users by the number of pictures they submit. You can rank a collection of pictures by the number of viewers. You can rank tags by the number of pictures they are applied to. All of these graphs will be in the rough shape of a power law distribution.
The second surprise is that the imbalance drives large social systems rather than damaging them. Fewer than two percent of Wikipedia users ever contribute, yet that is enough to create profound value for millions of users. And among those contributors, no effort is made to even out their contributions. The spontaneous division of labor driving Wikipedia wouldn’t be possible if there were concern for reducing inequality. On the contrary, most large social experiments are engines for harnessing inequality rather than limiting it. Though the word “ecosystem” is overused as a way to make simple situations seem more complex, it is merited here, because large social systems cannot be understood as a simple aggregation of the behavior of some nonexistent “average” user.
The most salient characteristic of a power law is that the imbalance becomes more extreme the higher the ranking. The operative math is simple—a power law describes data in which the nth position has 1/nth of the first position’s rank. In a pure power law distribution, the gap between the first and second position is larger than the gap between second and third, and so on. In Wikipedia article edits, for example, you would expect the second most active user to have committed only half as many edits as the most active user, and the tenth most active to have committed one-tenth as many. This is the shape behind the so-called 80/20 rule, where, for example, 20 percent of a store’s inventory accounts for 80 percent of its revenues, and it has been part of social science literature since Vilfredo Pareto, an Italian economist working in the early 1900s, found a power law distribution of wealth in every country he studied; the pattern was so common that he called it “a predictable imbalance.” This is also the shape behind Chris Andersoris discussion in The Long Tail; most items offered at online retailers like iTunes and Amazon don’t sell well, but in aggregate they generate considerable income. The pattern doesn’t apply just to goods, though, but to social interactions as well. Real-world distributions are only an approximation of this formula, but the imbalance it creates appears in an astonishing number of places in large social systems.
These two passages discuss water fluoridation, the practice of adding controlled amounts of fluoride to public water supplies for the purpose of reducing the incidence of tooth decay in children. Passage 1 is from a 2004 book; Passage 2 is from a 2010 book.
Fluoridation has been a contentious issue for many years because of concerns about the effects of the fluoride on public health. Opposition has come from many sources, sometimes distinguished researchers and policy makers as well as an array of fringe organizations and vocal individuals. The Internet has dozens of Web sites with headings such as “Act Now to Ban Fluoride in Drinking Water” and “You’re Putting What in Our Drinking Water?” Over the years the proponents have demonstrated to the satisfaction of professional dental and medical organizations world wide that fluoridation is effective in reducing caries* and is safe. The opposition has claimed that it does not work and that it causes almost every affliction known to humans. Science must always be challenged because that is the way that progress is made, but the challenge must use scientifically sound experiments and robust analysis. In some cases, scientific studies have been badly designed, but the antifluoridation lobby weakens its own credibility by making claims that are often completely spurious and by resorting to falsehoods, conspiracy theories, and scare tactics.
Concerns.about the safety of fluoridation have been made and investigated many times over the last 40 years. One of the most recent summary statements on the safety was by the U.S. National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research:
As with other nutrients, fluoride is safe and effective when used and consumed properly. After more than 50 years of research and practical experience—as well as data evaluation by the U.S. government, committees of experts, and national and international health organizations—the verdict remains the same: fluoridating community water supplies, at optimal levels, is an effective and safe method for preventing tooth decay.
At a public meeting hold on October 17, 2009, in Yellow springs, Ohio, a community that was considering halting its fluoridation program, Paul Connett gave a twenty-minute presentation on the scientific arguments against the practice. After a county health commissioner and local dentist responded, a woman in the audience said, “Whether this practice is safe or not, or beneficial or not, I want freedom of choice. It is my right to choose what substances I put into my body, not some governmental agency’s”.
This woman echoed what many opponents of fluoridation have believed and articulated for over 60 years; government has no right to force anyone to take a medicine. Thus, while in the effort to end this practice worldwide it is helpful to provide scientific evidence that the program is neither effective nor safe, this commonsense position remains at the crux of the argument against fluoridation.
Proponents respond to this ethical argument by turning it upside down. They argue that it is unethical to deprive children of a benefits that might reduce pain and help them lead healthier lives, especially children from low-income families. However, by not putting fluoride in the water, you are not depriving anyone of access to fluoride: it is available in tablet form and in fluoridated toothpaste. From an economic perspective, avoiding fluoride is an expensive business, whether it involves purchasing bottled water for cooking and drinking or the use of distillation equipment or reverse osmosis systems. Thus, low-income families are disproportionately burdened by fluoridation since by and large they cannot afford avoidance measures.
The passage is excerpted from Franklin, Benjamin, From Benjamin Franklin to William Shirley, 4 December 1754
I mention’d it Yesterday to your Excellency as my Opinion, that Excluding the People of the Colonies from all Share in the Choice of the Grand Council would probably give extreme Dissatisfaction, as well as the Taxing them by Act of Parliament where they have no Representative. In Matters of General Concern to the People, and especially where Burthens are to be laid upon them, it is of Use to consider as well what they will be apt to think and say, as what they ought to think: I shall, therefore, as your Excellency requires it of me, briefly mention what of either Kind occurs at present, on this Occasion.
First, they will say, and perhaps with Justice, that the Body of the People in the Colonies are as loyal, and as firmly attach’d to the present Constitution and reigning Family, as any Subjects in the King’s Dominions; that there is no Reason to doubt the Readiness and Willingness of their Representatives to grant, from Time to Time, such Supplies, for the Defence of the Country, as shall be judg’d necessary, so far as their Abilities will allow: That the People in the Colonies, who are to feel the immediate Mischiefs of Invasion and Conquest by an Enemy, in the Loss of their Estates, Lives and Liberties, are likely to be better Judges of the Quantity of Forces necessary to be raised and maintain’d, Forts to be built and supported, and of their own Abilities to bear the Expence, than the Parliament of England at so great a Distance. That Governors often come to the Colonies meerly to make Fortunes, with which they intend to return to Britain, are not always Men of the best Abilities and Integrity, have no Estates here, nor any natural Connections with us, that should make them heartily concern’d for our Welfare; and might possibly be sometimes fond of raising and keeping up more Forces than necessary, from the Profits accruing to themselves, and to make Provision for their Friends and Dependents. That the Councellors in most of the Colonies, being appointed by the Crown, on the Recommendation of Governors, are often of small Estates, frequently dependant on the Governors for Offices, and therefore too much under Influence. That there is therefore great Reason to be jealous of a Power in such Governors and Councils, to raise such Sums as they shall judge necessary, by Draft on the Lords of the Treasury, to be afterwards laid on the Colonies by Act of Parliament, and paid by the People here; since they might abuse it, by projecting useless Expeditions, harrassing the People, and taking them from their Labour to execute such Projects, and meerly to create Offices and Employments, gratify their Dependants and divide 1 Profits. That the Parliament of England is at a great Distance, subject to be misinform’d by such Governors and Councils, whose united Interests might probably secure them against the Effect of any Complaints from hence. That it is suppos’d an undoubted Right of Englishmen not to be taxed but by their own Consent given thro’ their Representatives. That the Colonies have no Representatives in Parliament. That to propose taxing them by Parliament, and refusing them the Liberty of chusing a Representative Council, to meet in the ‘ Colonies, and consider and judge of the Necessity of any General Tax and the Quantum, shews a Suspicion of their Loyalty to the Crown, or Regard for their Country, or of their Common Sense and Understanding, which they have not deserv’d. That compelling the Colonies to pay Money without their Consent would be rather like raising Contributions in an Enemy’s Country, than taxing of Englishmen for their own publick Benefit. That it would be treating them as a conquer’d People, and not as true British Subjects. That a Tax laid by the Representatives of the Colonies might easily be lessened as the Occasions should lessen, but being once laid by Parliament, under the Influence of the Representations made by Governors, would probably be kept up and continued, for the Benefit of Governors, to the grievous Burthen and Discouragement of the Colonies, and preventing their Growth and Increase…
This passage is from Robert Kunzig, The Big Idea: Perennial Solution. 0 Robert Kunzig
Humans made an unwitting but fateful choice 10,000 years ago as we started cultivating wild plants: We chose annuals. All the grains that feed billiOns of people today—wheat, rice, corn, and so on—come from annual plants, which sprout from seeds, produce new seeds, and die every year. “The whole world is mostly perennials,” says USDA geneticist Edward Buckler, who studies corn at Cornell University. “So why did we domesticate annuals?” Not because annuals were better, he says, but because Neolithic farmers rapidly made them better—enlarging their seeds, for instance, by replanting the ones from thriving plants, year after year. Perennials didn’t benefit from that kind of selective breeding, because they don’t need to be replanted. Their natural advantage became a handicap. They became the road not taken.
Today an enthusiastic band of scientists has gone back to that fork in the road: They’re trying to breed perennial wheat, rice, and other grains. Wes Jackson, co-founder and president of the Land Institute in Salina, Kansas, has promoted the idea for decades. It has never had much money behind it. But plant breeders in Salina and elsewhere are now crossing modern grains with wild perennial relatives; they’re also trying to domesticate the wild plants directly. Either way the goal is crops that would tap the main advantage of perennials—the deep, dense root systems that fuel the plants’ rebirth each spring and that make them so resilient and resource efficient—without sacrificing too much of the grain yield that millennia of selection have bred into annuals.
We pay a steep price for our reliance on high yields and shallow roots, says soil scientist—and National Geographic emerging explorer—Jerry Glover of the Land Institute. Because annual root crops mostly tap into only the top foot or so of soil, that layer gets depleted, forcing farmers to rely on large amounts of fertilizers to maintain high yields. Often less than half the fertilizer in the Midwest gets taken up by crops; much of it washes into the Gulf of Mexico, where it fertilizes algae blooms that cause a vast dead zone around the mouth of the Mississippi. Annuals also promote heavy use of pesticides or tillage because they leave the ground bare much of the year. That allows weeds to invade.
Above all, leaving the ground bare after harvest and plowing it in planting season erodes the soil. No-till farming and other conservation practices have reduced the rate of soil loss in the U.S. by more than 40 percent since the 1980s, but it’s still around 1.7 billion tons a year. Worldwide, one estimate put the rate of soil erosion from plowed fields at ten to a hundred times the rate of soil production. “Unless this disease is checked, the human race will wilt like any other crop,” Jackson wrote 30 years ago. As growing populations force farmers in poor countries onto steeper, erodible slopes, the “disease” threatens to get worse.
Perennial grains would help with all these problems. They would keep the ground covered, reducing erosion and the need for pesticides, and their deep roots would stabilize the soil and make the grains more suitable for marginal lands. “Perennials capture water and nutrients 10 or 12 feet down in the soil, 11 months of the year,” Glover says. The deep roots and ground cover would also hold on to fertilizer—reducing the cost to the farmer as well as to the environment.
The perennial wheat-wheatgrass hybrid now growing at the Land Institute can already be made into flour. Yields are too low to compete with annual wheat in Kansas—but maybe not in Nepal, which has steeper slopes and a harsher climate, and where a researcher is now testing perennial hybrids in small plots. Amber waves of perennial grain may be decades away, but the emergence of cheap DNA sequencing is allowing plant breeders to work much faster than they used to. Buckler thinks that for a tiny fraction of the billions spent annually on corn research, one could create field-testable perennial corn in as little as ten years. “I think we should take a shot at revolutionizing agriculture,” he says.
2016年 6月 (北美) SAT 考試閱讀題目
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