Grant Wood’s American Gothic caused a stir（轰动）in 1930 when it was exhibited for the first time at the Art Institute of Chicago and awarded a prize of 300 dollars. Newspapers across the country carried the story, and the painting of a farmer and a younger woman posed before a white house brought the artist instant fame.
In 1930, Grant Wood, an American painter with European training, noticed a small white house built in the small southern Iowa town of Eldon. Wood was so fascinated by it that he decided to paint the house along with the kind of people he thought should live in that house. In the painting, the farmer is modeled on his dentist. Dr. Byron McKeeby. His younger sister Nan served as a model for the woman （imagined to be the farmer’s wife or daughter）. Wood wanted to give a description of the traditional roles of men and women as the man is holding a pitchfork (干草叉) symbolizing hard labor. Each element was painted separately; the models sat separately and never stood in front of the house. The Gothic style of the house inspired the painting’s title.
American Gothic remains one of the most famous paintings in the history of American art. The painting has become part of American popular culture. Some believe that Wood used it to satirize（讽刺） the narrow-mindedness that has been said to characterize Midwestern culture. The painting may also be read as a praise of the moral virtue or rural America or even as a mixture of praise and satire. American Gothic is one of the few images to reach the status of cultural symbol, along with Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa.
1．What can we learn about American Gothic?
2．From the passage we can infer Iowa is in __________.
3．Grant Wood chose the two models __________.
4．The title of the painting is based on __________.
When early colonial settlers went to America, they took many forms of dance to their new home. Square dancing, one of the oldest forms of American folk dancing, developed from several different Old World group dances, mainly English country dances, and the French quadrille(四对方舞).
In the American version of square dancing, four couples form a square and dance to music. An American addition to square dancing is the caller. What do you think a caller does?
The callers---someone who calls out the dance steps in time to the music--- was a completely American invention. At first dancers memorized all the steps for a particular dance, but eventually the dances became so complicated that it was necessary to have someone call out cues (提示) so that dancers didn’t have to remember so many steps. The caller didn’t just call out “do-se-do your partner”; a good caller also came up with colorful sayings or witty lines that he said in between the cues such as “Don’t be shy and don’t be afraid. Swing on the corner in a waltz promenade (步伐).” A caller might also come up with new dance steps and routines.
Although popular for years, square dancing seemed to be going out of style and fading away until the early 1930s, when Henry Ford helped revive（复苏）interest in it. Ford, the automobile manufacturer, used to vacation at the Wayside Inn in Massachusetts, where he enjoyed the dance programme run by a man named Benjamin Lovett. Ford asked Lovett to come to Detroit and teach dances, but Lovett said he couldn’t because he had a contract with the inn. Ford solved that problem by buying the inn and Lovett’s contract. He took Lovett back to Detroit, where together they established a programme for teaching squares and rounds. Square dancing was updated and groups began forming all over the country.
5. What is the best title for the passage?
6. What does the underlined part “their new home” refer to?
7. Why did the caller call out the steps for the dancers?
8. What can we learn about Henry Ford in the last paragraph?
Almost every day we come across situations in which we have to make decisions one way or another. Choice, we are given to believe, is a right. But for a good many people in the world. In rich and poor countries, choice is a luxury, something wonderful but hard to get, not a right. And for those who think they are exercising their right to make choices, the whole system is merely an illusion, a false idea created by companies and advertiser, hoping to sell their products.
The endless choice gives birth to anxiety in people’s lives. Buying something as basic as a coffee pot is not exactly simple. Easy access to a wide range of everyday goods leads to a sense of powerlessness in many people, ending in the shopper giving up and walking away, or just buying an unsuitable item that is not really wanted. Recent studies in England have shown that many electrical goods bought in almost every family are not really needed. More difficult decision-making is then either avoided or trusted into the hands of the professionals, lifestyle instructors, or advisors.
It is not just the availability of the goods that is the problem, but the speed with which new types of products come on the market. Advances in design and production help quicken the process. Products also need to have a short lifespan so that the public can be persuaded to replace them within a short time. The typical example is computers, which are almost out-of-date once they are bought. This indeed makes selection a problem. Gone are the days when one could just walk with case into a shop and buy one thing; no choice, no anxiety.
9. What does the author try to argue in Paragraph 1?
10. Why do more choices of goods give rise to anxiety?
11. By using computers as an example, the author wants to prove that .
12. What is this passage mainly about?
Mr William Shakespeare and the Internet
Explanation of Contents
This is the fourth edition of these pages. It is hard to believe, but once again they are new and improved. My motive in publishing these pages remains to help and stimulate others in Shakespeare studies, and especially those who might contribute their work to the Internet. The spirit of altruism (利他主义) that originally built the Internet is not quite gone, though, sadly, through the pressure of time and profit has lessened.
A major new addition to the pages is a Shakespeare Timeline, which is an online biography mounted at this site. The problems with searching for Shakespeare resources using the available Search Engines are:
---- It is difficult to focus most searches so that you get a manageable number of relevant hits;
---- It is impossible by simply reading an abstract(摘要) to make any distinction between the output of a Junior High School student and that of a professional researcher.
Another change in these pages over previous editions is the “What’s News” page. If you come away from these pages with the feeling that they are very useful but slightly pedantic (学究的), I will have realized my goal.
I am continually apologizing to the many who have written me requesting revisions of the pages. We are all too busy. I simply have not had the time to dedicate to these pages that I wish. But I love the material and so have, at long last, made some time to update them.
A Reminder to Young Students
These pages contain the best links I can find to Shakespeare on the Internet. As a reminder, I would say I very much enjoy hearing from people who view and use these pages. If you want to do Shakespeare research using the web, this page is a great starting point, and I keep it as current as I can. The web is in its infancy（初期in bringing good, scholarly content to students. Don’t forget the best, if not quickest, resources are still in your library.
13. The passage is written to ________.
14. When searching for Shakespeare resources using Search Engines, you ________.
15. Which of the following can best conclude the last paragraph?
Making Peace with Your Parents
As a teen, you’re going through big changes physicallyand mentally. Your interests are increasing 1 Here is the challenge:Kids need to explore the world in new ways, and parents need to protect themfrom the dangers that are all out in that world. These conflicts can easily setoff fireworks in otherwise calm houses. Sometimes conflicts can’t be avoided.But by paying attention to the building blocks of successful relationships, youcan work towards making home a happy and healthy place for you and yourparents.
For instance, try to find a time to talk when yourparents are not angry, tired, distracted or hungry. A good time to talk is whenyou’re all relaxed. Timing is everything. If the conversation begins to turninto an argument, you’d better calmly and coolly ask to stop the conversationfor now 2 Listen to what yourparents are saying, and repeat it back to them. This shows them that you’relistening 3 Respect is the building block of goodcommunication. People who respect each other and care about each others’feelings can disagree without getting things ugly 4 How do you build trust? Trust comes by actually doing what you say you’re goingto do. Some teens find that doing fun activities with their parents can improvetheir relationships. Sometimes we forget that parents are more thanrule-maker—they’re interestingpeople who like to watch movies and go shopping—just like theirteenagers!
What do you do if you are trying your best, but yourrelationship with your parents continues to be rocky? 5 Youcan find supportive adults, such as a teacher or a coach, who can lend an ear.Remember you can only change your own behavior. Your parentsare the only ones who can change theirs.
A. It also gives them a chance toclear things up if you’re not on the same page.
B. You can pick it up again when everyone’s more relaxed.
C. And thenyou’ll be able to accept what your parents say.
D. Faced with the challenge,children don’t know what to do.
E. You are more likely to get along with yourparents and have more independence if your parents believe in you.
F. And yourdesire to take control of your own life is growing.
G. You may consider seekingoutside help.
It is important to believe in yourself. Believe that you can do it underany circumstances, because 1 you believe you can, then you really will. 2 beliefkeeps you searching for answers, which means soon youwill get them.
Confidence is more than an attitude. It comes fromknowing 3 (exact) where you are going and how you aregoing to get there. It comes from a strong sense of purpose. It comes from astrong commitment to take 4 ( responsible), rather than just letting lifehappen. One way to develop self-confidence is to do the things that you fearand to get a record of 5 (succeed) experiences behind you.
Confidence is not just 6 (believe) you can do it. Confidence is knowingyou can do it. Know that you are capable 7 completing anything you want, and live yourlife with confidence.
Anything can be achieved through 8 (determine) effort and self-confidence. Ifyour life is not what you want it to be, you have the power to change 9 ,and you must make the changes step by step. Live with your goals and takeaction. Act with your own purpose, and you 10 ( have) the life you want.
Last Sunday, I sat at my favorite table in a restaurant and wait for the food I had ordered to arrive. Suddenly I found that Lin Ling, one of my classmate, worked like a waitress there. Honest speaking, it was great surprise for me to find her working there. As far as I know, she’s from a richer family. What was it that made her to work there? I walked up to her and asked her the reason. When asking, she said, I just want to earn some pocket money so that we can help some children in poor areas go back to school. “How a good girl!” I should learn from her.
It was the first morning of the New Year and the weather was very cold．I have always been an early bird and my morning walks have been the for the last 7 years, so I put on my shoes to for my first walk of the New Year．
There was complete outside．Litter could be seen everywhere．It seemed that everyone had an all-night ．It was too cold to anyone to be awake to clear all the walkways at 5 in the morning．I was to walk on the dirty walkways and decided to go back home.
I was about to leave I saw Sam cleaning the garden．He is an employee of our society association and is to take care of the walkways and the garden．I walked up to Sam as it was a(an) to see him there cleaning at this time．He saw me and politely me, "Happy New Year!"
“How come you are here and doing all this on the very first day of a new year?” I asked. Sam answered ,“It is the first day of the year so they should feel good and special. For me, today is like any other day and my job starts with the .”
It was good to see someone so at heart. Like other staff members, Sam could have taken a day , but he woke up early and came for all of us. I suddenly realized life does not when the clock strikes twelve at midnight and a New Year begins. We all night, the surround is dirty．Life goes on and others need to up early and clear the garbage．Isn't the very next morning a new day of a New Year for all those who clear our garbage? Why can't we also keep our clean so that everyone can have a New Year the very next day? It is true that small things can make a big in our lives．