考研英语 学英语,练听力,上听力课堂! 注册 登录
> 考研英语 > 考研英语阅读 >  内容

《考研英语阅读理解100篇 基础版》第8章 学科类 Unit 96






Some people,notably Richard Dawkins,an evolutionary biologist at Oxford University,regard religion as a disease.It spreads,they suggest,like a virus,except that the“viruses” are similar to those infecting computers—bits of cultural software that take over the hardware of the brain and make it do irrational things. 
Corey Fincher,of the University of New Mexico,has a different hypothesis for the origin of religious diversity.He thinks not that religions are like disease but that they are responses to disease—or,rather,to the threat of disease.If he is right,then people who believe that their religion protects them from harm may be correct,although the protection is of a different sort from the supernatural one they perceive. 
Mr.Fincher is not arguing that disease-protection is religion's main function.Biologists have different hypotheses for that.Not all follow Dr Dawkins in thinking it pathological.Some see it either as a way of promoting group solidarity in a hostile world,or as an accidental consequence of the predisposition to such solidarity.This solidarity-promotion is one of Mr.Fincher's starting points.The other is that bacteria,viruses and other parasites are powerful drivers of evolution.Many biologists think that sex,for example,is a response to parasitism.The continual mixing of genes that it promotes means that at least some offspring of any pair of parents are likely to be immune to a given disease. 
Mr.Fincher and his colleague Randy Thornhill wondered if disease might be driving important aspects of human social behaviour,too.Their hypothesis is that in places where disease is rampant,it behoves groups not to mix with one another more than is strictly necessary,in order to reduce the risk of contagion.They therefore predict that patterns of behaviour which promote group exclusivity will be stronger in disease-ridden areas.Since religious differences are certainly in that category,they specifically predict that the number of different religions in a place will vary with the disease load. 
Proving the point involved collating a lot of previous research.Even defining what constitutes a religion is fraught with difficulty.But using accepted definitions of uniqueness,exclusivity,autonomy and superiority to other religions they calculated that the average number of religions per country is 31.The range,though,is enormous—from 3 to 643.C觝te d’lvoire,for example,has 76 while Norway has 13,and Brazil has 159 while Canada has 15.They then did the same thing for the number of parasitic diseases found in each country.The average here was 200,with a range from 178 to 248. 
Obviously,some of the differences between countries are caused by differences in their areas and populations.But these can be accounted for statistically.When they have been,the correlation between the number of religions in a place and how disease-ridden it is looks impressive.There is less than one chance in 10,000 that it has come about accidentally. 
The two researchers also looked at anthropological data on how much people in“traditional”(i.e.,non-urban)societies move around in different parts of the world.They found that in more religiously diverse(and more disease-ridden)places people move shorter distances than in healthier,religiously monotonous societies.The implication is that religious diversity causes people to keep themselves to themselves,and thus makes it harder for them to catch germs from infidels. 
Of course,correlation is not causation.But religion is not the only cultural phenomenon that stops groups of people from mixing.Language has the same effect,and in another,as yet unpublished study Mr.Fincher and Dr Thornhill found a similar relationship there too.Moreover,their search of the literature turned up work which suggests that xenophobia is linked psychologically with fear of disease (the dirty foreigner...).Perhaps,then,the underlying reason why there is so much hostility between ethnic groups is nothing to do with the groups themselves,but instead with the diseases they may bring. 
注(2):本文习题命题模仿对象:第1、2题分别模仿1998年真题Text 5第1题和Text 4第2题;第3题模仿1993年真题Text 2第1题;第4题模仿1999年真题Text 1第3题;第5题模仿1997年真题Text 4第4题。 
1.What can we know about the views of Richard Dawkins and Corey Fincher from the first two paragraphs? 
A) They disagree on which kind of mental disease religion belongs to. 
B) Fincher hypothesizes that religion results from how people react to disease. 
C) Fincher thinks it is inappropriate to compare religion with computer virus. 
D) Dawkins opposes the viewpoint that religion is a response to disease. 
2.Which of the following best describes the two starting points of Mr.Fincher's hypothesis? 
A) Group survival and immunity.B) Group solidarity and genetic mutation. 
C) Group connection and parasitism drive.D) Group hostility and parenting. 
3.By saying the areas are“disease-ridden”(Line 5,Paragraph 4),the author means those areas are ______. 
A) driven by diseases 
B) with relatively fewer diseases 
C) rife with various diseases 
D) featured with incurable diseases 
4.The anthropological data that they studied demonstrates that ______. 
A) the sanitation of an area is closely relevant to the number of its religions 
B) it is strongly convincing that religious diversity restricts people from traveling 
C) people who live in healthier areas are aware that religious diversity brings disease 
D) religious and language work together to cause xenophobia 
5.The best title for this passage could be ______. 
A) Religion as a Response to Disease 
B) Religion as a Disease 
C) Religion Diversity and Disease 
D) Religion and Biological Research 


疯狂英语 英语语法 新概念英语 走遍美国 四级听力 英语音标 英语入门 发音 美语 四级 新东方 七年级 赖世雄 zero是什么意思

  • 频道推荐
  • |
  • 全站推荐
  • 广播听力
  • |
  • 推荐下载
  • 网站推荐