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《考研英语阅读理解100篇 高分版》 Unit 18 - TEXT FOUR

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2019年02月18日

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Infertility is normally seen as a private matter. If a couple are infertile and wish they were not, that is sad. But there is understandable resistance in many countries to the idea that treatments intended to deal with this sadness—known collectively as assisted reproductive technologies, or ARTs—should be paid for out of public funds. Such funds are scarce, and infertility is not a life-threatening condition.
However, two papers presented to the “State of the ART” conference held earlier this month in Lyon argue that in Europe, at least, there may be a public interest in promoting ARTs after all. The low fertility rate in many of that continent's more developed countries means their populations are aging and shrinking. If governments want to change this, ARTs—most significantly invitro fertilisation (IVF)—could offer at least part of a way to do so.
As the conference heard, IVF does seem to be keeping up the numbers in at least one country. Tina Jensen of the University of Southern Denmark has just finished a study of more than 700,000 Danish women. She found that young women in Denmark have a significantly lower natural conception rate than in past decades. That is partly, but not entirely, because they are having their children later in life. The rest of the cause is unknown, though reduced sperm quality in men may be a factor. Whatever the cause, she also found that the effect has been almost completely compensated for by an increasing use of ARTs. Denmark's native population is more or less stable, but some 3.9% of babies born there in 2003 were the result of IVF. The comparable figure for another northern European country, Britain, was 1.5%.
Without IVF, then, the number of Danes would be shrinking fast. That it is not may have something to do with the fact that in Denmark the taxpayer will cover up to six cycles of IVF treatment. In Britain, by contrast, couples are supposed to be entitled to three cycles. In practice, many of the local trusts that dish the money out do not pay for any cycles at all. Jonathan Grant, the head of the Cambridge branch of the Rand Corporation (an American think-tank), believes this is shortsighted. His paper showed that if Britain supported IVF at the Danish level then its birth rate would probably increase by about 10,000 a year.
The cost of offering six cycles to couples (and doing so in practice, rather than just in theory) would be an extra £250m-430m a year. That is not trivial, but Dr. Grant reckons it is cheaper than other ways of boosting the birth rate. Some countries, for example, have tried to bribe women into having more children by increasing child benefits. According to his calculations, raising such benefits costs between £50,000 and £100,000 a year for each additional birth procured. Ten thousand extra births each year would thus cost between £500m and £1 billion.
There are, of course, some disadvantages to promoting IVF. In particular, women who use it tend to be older than those who conceive naturally, and that can lead to congenital problems in their children. But if the countries of Europe do wish to keep their populations up, making IVF more widely available might be a good way of doing so.
1. According to the text, the public's opinion on the infertility treatments is that _____.
[A] the treatments should be paid for out of public funds
[B] the treatments are not so compulsory as they consume the limited public funds
[C] the treatments are not necessarily only paid for out of public funds
[D] the public is not obliged to pay for such treatments of no urgent nature
2. According to the study conducted by Tina Jensen, which one of the following statements is TRUE?
[A] ARTs have reversed the tendency of population decreasing in Denmark.
[B] Danes' problem of low natural conception has been completely counterbalanced by the widely use of ARTs.
[C] The population of Denmark is not decreasing after the adoption of ARTs.
[D] IVF has played an essential role in Denmark in terms of keeping up the number of population.
3. From the paper of Dr. Grant, it can be inferred that _____.
[A] the cost of offering six cycles of IVF to couples is not high at all
[B] IVF treatment is an economical way of solving population shrinking
[C] Britain does not promote adopting IVF to boost the birth rate
[D] encouraging women to bear more babies by bonus is not so efficient to solve the problem of population shrinking
4. The word “congenital” (Line 2, Paragraph 6) most probably means _____.
[A] innate
[B] instinctive
[C] cerebral
[D] acquired
5. According to the passage, the author's attitude towards promoting invitro fertilization can be said to be _____.
[A] supportive
[B] opposing
[C] ambiguous
[D] objective

1. According to the text, the public's opinion on the infertility treatments is that _____.
[A] the treatments should be paid for out of public funds
[B] the treatments are not so compulsory as they consume the limited public funds
[C] the treatments are not necessarily only paid for out of public funds
[D] the public is not obliged to pay for such treatments of no urgent nature
1. 根据这篇文章,公众对于治疗不育的看法是 _____。
[A] 治疗的费用应该由公众基金来支付
[B] 治疗并不是义务的,因为其消耗了有限的公众基金
[C] 治疗并不一定只由公众基金来付费
[D] 公众没有义务为这种不具有紧急性质的治疗支付费用
答案:B 难度系数:☆☆☆
分析:细节题。根据文章第一段:But there is understandable resistance in many countries to the idea that treatments intended to deal with this sadness—known collectively as assisted reproductive technologies, or ARTs—should be paid for out of public funds. Such funds are scarce, and infertility is not a life-threatening condition. 可见,许多国家反对用公众基金来支付治疗不育的费用。选项A的表述显然不符合题意。而选项C的表述不如选项B确切。选项D的表述过于绝对,不能反映公众总体意见。因此,选项B最为符合。
2. According to the study conducted by Tina Jensen, which one of the following statements is TRUE?
[A] ARTs have reversed the tendency of population decreasing in Denmark.
[B] Danes' problem of low natural conception has been completely counterbalanced by the widely use of ARTs.
[C] The population of Denmark is not decreasing after the adoption of ARTs.
[D] IVF has played an essential role in Denmark in terms of keeping up the number of population.
2. 根据Tina Jensen的研究,下列哪个陈述是正确的?
[A] 辅助生育技术扭转了丹麦人口减少的趋势。
[B] 丹麦人自然受孕率低的问题已经完全被体外受精的广泛使用抵消了。
[C] 丹麦人口在使用了辅助生育技术后就没有再减少了。
[D] 体外受精为帮助丹麦维持人口数量起到了重要的作用。
答案:D 难度系数:☆☆☆☆
分析:根据第四段,没有体外受精技术,丹麦人口就会减少得更快,那么可以看出,现在丹麦人口仍在减少,但是速度放缓。因此,选项A和C是错误的。选项D,第三段提到了丹麦人口是稳定的。因此,答案为D。选项B有一定的干扰性,文章第三段指出:Whatever the cause, she also found that the effect has been almost completely compensated for by an increasing use of ARTs. 与该选项的意思接近,但是文章中用了一个almost,与completely在意思上有出入。
3. From the paper of Dr. Grant, it can be inferred that _____.
[A] the cost of offering six cycles of IVF to couples is not high at all
[B] IVF treatment is an economical way of solving population shrinking
[C] Britain does not promote adopting IVF to boost the birth rate
[D] encouraging women to bear more babies by bonus is not so efficient to solve the problem of population shrinking
3. 从Grant博士的报告可以推断出 _____。
[A] 向夫妇提供六个疗程体外授精治疗的费用根本不高
[B] 体外授精是解决人口减少的廉价方法
[C] 英国没有采用体外授精来提高出生率
[D] 通过用奖金鼓励妇女多生孩子不是解决人口减少的有效方法
答案:B 难度系数:☆☆☆
分析:推理题。根据第五段的花费对比可以看出,体外授精的方法要比其他方法更经济,因此,选项B符合题意。
4. The word “congenital” (Line 2, Paragraph 6) most probably means _____.
[A] innate
[B] instinctive
[C] cerebral
[D] acquired
4. congenital这个词(第六段第二行)最有可能的意思是 _____。
[A] 天生的
[B] 本能的
[C] 大脑的
[D] 后天的
答案:A 难度系数:☆
分析:猜词题。根据上下文,体外授精的方法可能会让女性衰老得更快,也会让孩子出现一些先天性的问题。因此,选项A最为符合题意。
5. According to the passage, the author's attitude towards promoting invitro fertilization can be said to be _____.
[A] supportive
[B] opposing
[C] ambiguous
[D] objective
5. 根据这篇文章,作者对于促进体外授精的态度可以说是 _____。
[A] 支持的
[B] 反对的
[C] 模棱两可的
[D] 客观的
答案:A 难度系数:☆☆
分析:态度题。从文章中作者举的例子和分析可以看出,这个方法虽然有一定的缺点,但是对于解决目前欧洲人口减少的问题还是有积极的作用的,因此是支持的,答案为A。

不育一般被看作是个人隐私。如果一对夫妇不能生育却又想要孩子,这就很可悲了。但是许多国家反对使用公众基金来治疗不育(辅助生育技术),这是合情合理的。公众基金本来就很少,而不育也不是什么会威胁到生命的问题。
但是,本月初在里昂举行的“辅助生育技术现状”会议上发布了两个报告,认为至少是在欧洲,公众可能有兴趣促进辅助生育技术的发展。欧洲许多发达国家的低生育率意味着其人口正在步入老龄化和减少。如果政府想改变这种情况,辅助生育技术(最重要的是体外授精)至少可以在某种程度上提供一种方法。
正如在该会议上所提到的,体外授精起码可以在一个国家内提高人口数量。南丹麦大学的Tina Jensen刚刚结束了一项对70多万名丹麦妇女的研究。她发现,现在的丹麦年轻女性的自然受精率比过去几十年中降低了许多,这部分是因为她们生育孩子的年龄推迟了,但其余的原因还不清楚,尽管男性精子质量下降可能也是一个因素。不管是什么原因,她还发现,采用体外授精的情况增加后,这种情况几乎可以完全得到缓解。丹麦本土的人口基本上是稳定的,但是在2003年出生的婴儿中,约有3.9%是通过体外授精出生的。相应的,在另外一个位于欧洲北部的国家英国,靠体外授精出生的婴儿的比率为1.5%。
如果没有体外授精技术,丹麦人口就会迅速减少。在丹麦,纳税人要支付六个疗程的体外授精治疗费用,不过这二者之间似乎并没有什么关系。而在英国,夫妇本人需要支付三个疗程的费用。实际上,许多当地的信托公司都不为任何疗程付费,却从中赚钱。Rand公司(一家美国智囊公司)剑桥分部的老板Jonathan Grant认为,这是目光短浅的做法。他的研究报告表明,如果英国人像丹麦人那样支持体外授精,该国每年的新生婴儿数量可以增加约一万。
而免费给与夫妇六个疗程的(实际进行而非理论上的)治疗,会使政府一年多支出2.5亿到4.3亿英镑。这不是个小数目,但是Grant博士认为,这要比其他提高出生率的方法更廉价。比如,一些国家通过提高儿童福利来鼓励妇女多生育。根据他的估测,如此一来,每增加一个孩子,每年就要增加5万到10万英镑的支出。如果每年多出生1万个孩子,就需要多支出5亿到10亿英镑。
当然,促进体外授精也有一些弊端。接受体外授精的妇女要比那些自然受孕的女性衰老得更快,也会使孩子有一些先天性的问题。但是如果欧洲国家确实希望使本国人口增加的话,普及体外授精可能是个好方法。
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