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《考研英语阅读理解100篇 基础版》第2章 社会文化类 Unit 27






In both rich and poor countries,poverty most often has a feminine face.It is bad enough in America: according to the Census Bureau 14.1% of women live in poverty,compared with 11.1% of men.In the developing world,the situation is much worse.By some estimates 70% of the world's poor are women and the depth of their deprivation,which often involves subsisting on less than $2 a day,makes American poverty look positively benign. 
The World Bank would like this to change.Late in February,together with the OECD and several European governments,it convened a conference in Berlin on increasing the economic power of women.The bank reckons that restricting women's participation in the economy is not merely unfair,but bad economics.To put matters right it has released a“Gender Action Plan”,which calls for better data and a harder push for World Bank schemes that seek to move women into the economic mainstream. 
Currently,the World Bank says that women earn an average of 22% less than men,and have much less access to credit; in Africa,for example,they receive just 1% of the credit going to the agricultural sector.Changing this could have an enormous impact on deprivation around the world.This is why Grameen Bank,among other poverty-fighting institutions,has chosen to focus its efforts on women.Almost all of its borrowers are women,and the micro-lender tries to ensure that its loans raise the economic status of women within their families by ensuring,for example,that ownership of houses built with Grameen loans staying with the women. 
There is also evidence that giving women more financial power fosters economic development.Where men control most of the finances,it is more likely that households will distribute what they have unequally between male and female children,leaving the female family members with insufficient resources to meet basic needs.This,in turn,can hinder development of both mind and body.Giving women economic power can significantly alter decision-making in ways that improve general welfare.Households where women contribute a significant portion of the revenue spend more money on food and childcare and less on alcohol and tobacco. 
But the World Bank may have cause and effect reversed.Does liberating women promote economic growth or does economic growth spur women's liberation? In an economy where adding economic value involves muscle power,women are bound to be paid less,and valued less,than men even before the effects of childbirth and childcare are taken into account.And in most societies,lower economic value translates into reduced social and political status. 
The experience of developed countries certainly seems to indicate that economic growth is profoundly liberating for women.As the value of brute force falls opportunities in the labour market for women grow.Modern contraceptives,and labour-saving appliances,make it easier for them to take paid work.And with that comes economic and political power.There is a strong argument that women's liberation movement owes less to the“feminine mystique” than to the dishwashers and washing machines that reduced household drudgery.If so the bank would do better to concentrate on spurring economic growth rather than fretting about gender. 
注(2):本文习题命题模仿对象为2004年真题Text 1。 
1.Why does the author claim that poverty has a feminine face? 
A) Because it is a global phenomenon that women are in general poorer than men. 
B) Because most of the world's poorest people are women who are unable to sustain themselves. 
C) Because there is a higher concentration of women in poverty than men. 
D) Because it is a common practice around the world that women are paid less than men. 
2.Which of the following is NOT the opinion of the World Bank? 
A) Changing American poverty situation does not fall into the World Bank's consideration. 
B) Raising women's economic status is not only a political issue,but is desirable in terms of sheer economic concern. 
C) Women should be entitled to access more credit and that is going to change the world. 
D) Giving women more economic power is good for families in the micro perspective. 
3.The expression“translates into” (Line 5,Paragraph 5)most probably means _______. 
A) turning one language into another 
B) transforming into 
C) transfering to 
D) leading to 
4.What is the author's attitude towards the World Bank's interpretation of female poverty? 
A) Reserved consent. 
B) Strong disapproval. 
C) Slight contempt. 
D) Enthusiastic support. 
5.Which of the following is TRUE according to the text? 
A) Poverty in America is of the similar condition as that of the rest of the world. 
B) Female children and male children usually receive equal attention in households. 
C) To raise women's economic status,it is important to liberate them from housework. 
D) Grameen Bank only deals with small-loan businesses. 


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