Cultural information Cultural information Cultural information1 1. Quote Mark Twain: The man who does not read good books has no advantage over the man who cannot read them.
Cultural information 2. Books that changed my life — Reviews of books that help you build new skills Cultural information2 “Books that changed my life” is a blog. The blogger lives in Stockholm, Sweden. His hope with this site is not only to share non-fiction book recommendations but to share books of an exceptional quality. In the same way he hopes that the readers will help him and share their very best suggestions. Here is a list of books that teach the blogger practical skills. They might not be the best written books or the most exiting onesbut he thinks they are in a class of
Cultural information their own on their respective subjects. His focus of this list is to show the readers the extremely rare informative tomes that will help them to learn skills that are useful in life, in contrast to the much more common works of fiction that simply helps them avoid going insane from all the craziness and stress they must put up with their life or the non-fiction that expose you to new ideas or random facts. [Making money] Active Value Investing by Vitaly Katsenelson Essential Negotiation by Gavin Kennedy Cultural information3
Cultural information [Understand people] How to win friends and influence people by Dale Carnegie [Creating] Techniques of the selling writer by Dwight Swain On Directing Film by David Mamet Cultural information4
Structural analysis Main idea Main idea Global Reading-Main idea1 1. What does this narrative text tell us? This text first tells us about the most indelible experiences the writer went through when she lived an isolated life as a child in the remote Chinese countryside. Next, the text describes and relates how she discovered and read and digested Dickens’ novels. Then, it highlights the ways in which the writer benefited immensely from Dickens.
Structural analysis Main idea Global Reading-Main idea2 2. What is the main purpose of the writer? The writer’s main purpose is to emphasize that she is immensely grateful to Charles Dickens, for she has been enlightened a great deal by him, and that Dickens’ novels, which deal with real life and real people and explore significant and permanent topics, constitute a rewarding heritage of mankind, and therefore are well worth reading and studying.
Structural analysis Main idea Structural analysis Structural analysis 1 1. How is the first paragraph associated with the last one? In the first paragraph the writer makes it clear that she has owed Charles Dickens a heavy debt by reading his novels. And the only way to honor her obligation is to write down what Charles Dickens did for her. In the last paragraph, the writer says she was deeply influencedby him. Thus, the concluding part of the narrative text is naturally connected with the beginning part.
Structural analysis Main idea 2. Work out the structure of the text by completing the table. Structural analysis 2 It introduces the setting and the relationship between the writer and Charles Dickens. The writer recalls her isolated childhood life in a remote Chinese countryside, her unpleasant experiences and the painful feeling she had because she was a foreigner.
Structural analysis Main idea Structural analysis 3 The writer narrates and describes her experiences as a voracious reader. The writer highlights Dickens’ great influence upon her.
Detailed reading A Debt to Dickens Detailed reading1 I have long looked for an opportunity to pay a certain debt which I have owed since I was seven years old. Debts are usually burdens, but this is no ordinary debt, and it is no burden, except as the feeling of warm gratitude may ache in one until it is expressed. My debt is to an Englishman, who long ago in China rendered an inestimable service to a small American child. That child was myself and that Englishman was Charles Dickens. I know no better way to meet my obligation than to write down what Charles Dickens did in China for an American child. 1
Detailed reading First, you must picture to yourself that child, living quite solitary in a remote Chinese countryside, in a small mission bungalow perched upon a hill among the rice fields in the valleys below. In the near distance wound that deep, treacherous, golden river, the Yangtse, and some of the most terrifying and sinister, as well as the most delightful and exciting moments of that child’s life, were spent beside the river. She loved to crawl along its banks upon the rocks or upon the muddy flats and watch for the lifting of the huge four-square nets that hung into the moving yellow flood, and see out of that flood come perhaps again and again an empty net, but sometimes great flashing, twisting silver bodies of fish. 2 Detailed reading2.1
Detailed reading She lingered beside villages of boat folk, and saw them live, the babies tied to a rope and splashing in the shallower waters.But she saw babies dead thrown into the deep waters. She wandered small and alien among the farm folk in the earthen houses among the fields. She accepted a bowl of rice and cabbage often at meal time and sat among the peasants on the threshing floor about the door and ate, usually in silence, listening and listening, answering their kindly, careless questions, bearing with shy, painful smiles their kind teasing laughter at her yellow curls and unfortunate blue eyes, Detailed reading2.2
Detailed reading which they thought so ugly. She was, she knew, very alien. Upon the streets of the great city where sometimes she went she learned to accept the cry of foreign devil, and to realize she was a foreign devil. She grew from a very tiny child into a bigger child, still knowing she was alien. However kindly the people about her might be, and they were much more often kind than not, she knew that she was foreign to them.And she wondered very much about her own folk and where they were and how they looked and at what they played. Detailed reading3.1 3
Detailed reading Detailed reading3.2 But she did not know. In the bungalow were her parents, very busy, very, very busy, and when she learned her lessons in the morning quickly, they were too busy to pay much heed to her and so she wandered about a great deal, seeing and learning all sorts of things.She had fun. But very often she used to wonder, “Where are the other children like me? What is it like in the country where they live?” She longed very much, I can remember, to have some of them to play with. But she never had them.
Detailed reading To this small, isolated creature there came one day an extraordinary accident. She was an impossibly voracious reader. She would like to have had children’s books, but there were none, and so she read everything, — Plutarch’s Lives and Foxe’s Martyrs, the Bible, church history, and the hot spots in Jonathan Edwards’s sermons, and conversations out of Shakespeare, and bits of Tennyson and Browning which she could not understand at all. Then one day she looked doubtfully at a long row of somber blue books on a very high shelf.They were quite beyond her reach. 4 Detailed reading4.1
Detailed reading Later she discovered this was because they were novels. But being desperate she put a three-cornered bamboo stool on top of a small table and climbed up and stared at the binding sand in faded black titles she read Oliver Twist, by Charles Dickens. She was then a little past seven years old. It was a very hot August day, in the afternoon about three o’clock, when the household was asleep, all except the indefatigable parents, and they were very, very busy. She took Oliver Twist out of its place — it was fat and thick, for Hard Times was bound with it — and in great peril descended, and stopping in the pantry for a pocket full of peanuts, Detailed reading4.2
Detailed reading she made off to a secret corner of the veranda into which only a small, agile child could squeeze, and opened the closely printed pages of an old edition, and discovered her playmates. How can I make you know what that discovery was to that small, lonely child? There in that corner above the country road in China, with vendors passing beneath me, I entered into my own heritage. I cannot tell you about those hours. I know I was roused at six o’clock by the call to my supper, and I looked about dazed, to discover the long rays of the late afternoon sun streaming across the valleys. Detailed reading5.1 5
Detailed reading I remember twice I closed the book and burst into tears, unable to bear the tragedy of Oliver Twist, and then opened it quickly again, burning to know more. I remember, most significant of all, that I forgot to touch a peanut, and my pocket was still quite full when I was called. I went to my supper in a dream, and read as late as I dared in my bed afterward, and slept with the book under my pillow, and woke again in the early morning. When Oliver Twist was finished, and after it Hard Times, I was wretched with indecision. I felt I must read it all straight over again, and yet I was voracious for that long row of blue books. What was in them? I climbed up again, Detailed reading5.2
Detailed reading finally, and put Oliver Twist at the beginning, and began on the next one, which was David Copperfield. I resolved to read straight through the row and then begin at the beginning once more and read straight through again. This program I carried on persistently, over and over, for about ten years, and after that I still kept a Dickens book on hand, so to speak, to dip into and feel myself at home again. Today I have for him a feeling which I have for no other human soul. He opened my eyes to people, he taught me to love all sorts of people, high and low, rich and poor, the old and little children. Detailed reading6.1 6
Detailed reading He taught me to hate hypocrisy and pious mouthing of unctuous words.He taught me that beneath gruffness there may be kindness, and that kindness is the sweetest thing in the world, and goodness is the best thing in the world. He taught me to despise money grubbing. People today say he is obvious and sentimental and childish in his analysis of character. It may be so, and yet I have found people surprisingly like those he wrote about — the good a little less undiluted, perhaps, and the evil a little more mixed. And I do not regret that simplicity of his, for it had its own virtue. The virtue was a great zest for life. Detailed reading6.2
Detailed reading If he saw everything black and white, it was because life rushed out of him strong and clear, full of love and hate. He gave me that zest, that immense joy in life and in people, and in their variety. This is what Charles Dickens did for me. His influence I cannot lose. He had made himself a part of me forever. Detailed reading7 7
Detailed reading Paragraph 1 Questions 1) How do you interpret the debt which the writer has owed since she was seven years old? Detailed reading1--Quesion 1.1 According to the context, the debt the writer has owed is not a sum of unpaid money, instead, it is her feeling of warm gratitude to Charles Dickens, who long ago in China rendered an inestimable service to her.
Detailed reading Paragraph 1 Questions 2) In the eyes of the writer, what is the best way to pay her debt to Charles Dickens? Detailed reading1--Quesion 1.2 As far as the writer can see, the best way to express her heartfelt thanks to Dickens is to write down what Charles Dickens did for her in China a long time ago.
Detailed reading Paragraph 2 Question What is the message that is stressed in the second paragraph? Detailed reading1--Quesion 2 While living in that remote rural area, the narrator as a small child was very alien to the people and was laughed playfully at and thought of as ugly and even unfortunate by them.
Detailed reading Paragraph 3 Questions 1) What is the message this is repeatedly emphasized? Detailed reading1--Quesion 3.1 The repeated message is that as she grew into a bigger child, she still felt that she was alien and foreign to the people around.
Detailed reading Paragraph 3 Questions 2) What is the main idea of Paragraph 3? Detailed reading1--Quesion 3.2 The main idea of Paragraph 3 is that as she still felt alien, and as her parents were too busy to pay any heed to her, she longed very much to have companions, but she had none.
Detailed reading Paragraph 4 Question Why did the narrator say, “She was an impossible voracious reader”? Detailed reading1--Quesion 4 There were no books suitable for her to read in that remote village. Since she had the desire to read, she searched and read all the books she could find instead of being frustrated.
Detailed reading Paragraph 5 Question How does the narrator describe the way she read the novel Oliver Twist? Detailed reading1--Quesion 5 One day, the author discovered the book named Olive Twist by Charles Dickens. She buried herself reading the book all day.
Detailed reading Paragraph 6 Questions 1) In what ways was the narrator greatly benefited or enlightened by Dickens? Detailed reading1--Quesion 6.1 He opened her eyes to people, and taught her to love all sorts of people, to hate hypocrisy and pious mouthing of unctuous words. He gave her an immense zest for life, that immense joy in life and in people, and in their variety. In short, the narrator learned many invaluable things from Charles Dickens. 2) What comments does the narrator make on Dickens? Dickens was a man of simplicity and has a great zest for life, and also a man full of hate and love.
Detailed reading Paragraph 6 Questions 3) Point out the sentences in Paragraph 6 that are parallel to each other. What rhetorical effect can parallelism product? Detailed reading1--Quesion 6.2 “He opened my eyes to people, he taught me to love all sorts of people, high and low, rich and poor, the old and little children. He taught me to hate hypocrisy and pious mouthing of unctuous words. He taught me that beneath gruffness there may be kindness, and that kindness is the sweetest thing in the world, and goodness is the best thing in the world. He taught me to despise money grubbing.” These sentences are characterized by parallelism, by virtue of which they are fluid and smooth, expressive and impressive.
Detailed reading Paragraph 7 Questions 1) What is the textual function of the first sentence of this paragraph? Detailed reading1--Quesion 7.1 The first sentence of Paragraph 7 plays the function of connecting the concluding part naturally with the beginning part of the text. 2) What is the main idea of this paragraph? The last paragraph emphasizes that Dickens has exerted a lasting influence upon the narrator, and that Dickens has become part of her forever.
Detailed reading render: v. cause sb. or sth. to be in a particular condition; give sth. to sb. or do sth., because it is your duty or because sb. expects you to Detailed reading1– render 1 e.g. He was rendered almost speechless by the news. It is an obligation of ours to render assistance to those in need. Derivation: rendering: n.
Detailed reading Translation: Detailed reading1– render 2 His fatness renders him unable to touch his toes. 他很胖，连自己的脚趾也够不着。 You will be expected to render an account of money that is owed. 请你发出借欠清单。
Detailed reading inestimable:adj. too great, precious, etc. to be estimated Detailed reading1– inestimable e.g. Your advice has been of inestimable value to us. The value of your assistance is inestimable. Synonym: invaluable
Detailed reading obligation: sth. that must be done because of a duty or promise Detailed reading1– obligation 1 e.g. You can look around the shop with no obligation to buy. We attended the party more out of a sense of obligation than anything else. 我们参加那个聚会是迫于人情，而并无别的原因。 Derivations: oblige: v. obliged: adj.
Detailed reading Collocation: Detailed reading1– obligation 2 under an obligation (to): having a duty (to) e.g. We are invited, but we are under no obligation to go. Translation: Everyone has a legal obligation to provide the tax office with details of their earnings. 每个人都有法律义务向税务局提供自己的收入详情。
Detailed reading My debt is to an Englishman, who long ago in China rendered an inestimable service to a small American child. Detailed reading1-- My debt is to an … Paraphrase: I cherish the feeling of warm gratitude towards an Englishman, who did an invaluable service to a small American child a long time ago in China. Explanation: 我亏欠了一个英国人的恩情，很久以前在中国，他为一个美国小女孩提供了无价的帮助。
Detailed reading I know no better way to meet my obligation than to write down what Charles Dickens did in China for an American child. Detailed reading1-- I know no better … Paraphrase: As far as I can see, the best way to express my warm gratitude to Charles Dickens is to put in black and white the inestimable service he rendered in China to an American child. Explanation: obligation something that must be done because of a duty or promise e.g. Teachers have an obligation to treat all students equally. Parents are under a legal obligation to educate their children.
Detailed reading solitary:adj. spending a lot of time alone; doing sth. without any companion Detailed reading1-- solitary e.g. One solitary tree grew on the mountainside. Pandas are solitary creatures. Synonym: alone Antonyms: sociable; accompanied
Detailed reading treacherous:adj. behaving with treachery, (showing signs of) betraying a person or cause secretly; dangerous, esp. when seeming to be safe Detailed reading1-- treacherous e.g. We cannot trust treacherous people. The ice on the lake is treacherous, not as strong or thick as it looks. Derivation: treachery: n. Synonym: unreliable
Detailed reading linger:v. stay for a long time and be reluctant to leave; be slow; dawdle Detailed reading1– linger 1 e.g. She lingered after the concert, hoping to meet the star. They lingered over coffee and missed the train. Derivations: lingerer: n. lingering: adj. Synonyms: stay; remain
Detailed reading Collocations: Detailed reading1– linger 2 linger about/around/on Translation: The pain lingered on for weeks. 病痛持续了好几个星期。 事情是过去了，但人们对此记忆犹新。 The event is over, but the memory lingers on.
Detailed reading alien:adj. foreign; strange; unfamiliar; contrary Detailed reading1– alien 1 e.g. As she stayed in an alien land, she lived in an alien environment. Such principles are alien to our religion. Derivation: alienate: v
Detailed reading Collocation: Detailed reading1– alien 2 alien to: very different in nature or character, esp. so different as to cause dislike or opposition e.g. Their ideas are quite alien to our way of thinking. Antonym: native
Detailed reading heed:v. give attention to; consider seriously Detailed reading1– heed e.g. She didn’t heed my warning/advice. Their offspring do not heed to what they say. Derivations: heed: n. heedful: adj. heedless: adj. Collocations: pay heed to take heed (of sth.)
Detailed reading First, you must picture to yourself that child, living quite solitary in a remote Chinese countryside, in a small mission bungalow perched upon a hill among the rice fields in the valleys below. Detailed reading1– First, you must picture 1 … Paraphrase: First, you need to form a mental image of that child, who was living a very lonely life in a distant Chinese rural area, and whose family lived in a small one-story house in a settlement where missionaries had their homes, the small one-story house located on a hill among the rice fields in the valleys below.
Detailed reading Explanation: Detailed reading1– First, you must picture 2 … It is to be noted that the modal verb must in this sentence indicates the narrator’s advice or recommendation to readers, and that the adjective “solitary” functions as subject complement, telling readers that the child was lonely when living in a remote Chinese countryside.
Detailed reading She lingered beside villages of boat folk, and saw them live, the babies tied to a rope and splashing in the shallower waters. Detailed reading1– She lingered beside 1 … Paraphrase: She stayed near villages of fishermen and their families, reluctant to leave. She witnessed how they lived. She saw their babies fastened with a rope and sitting or standing in the shallower waters and playing with water.
Detailed reading Explanation: Detailed reading1– She lingered beside 2 … Waters means a mass of water in a river, lake, etc.; a sea or a large area of water near or belonging to a particular country. e.g. The waters of the lake flow out over a large waterfall. The ship is moving through the stormy waters of the Atlantic. The ship drifted into Turkish territorial waters. The species are found in inland waters. Translation: 她流连于渔民聚集的村落，观看他们的生活，许多婴儿都用绳子系着在浅滩里戏水。