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【每日晨读】经济学人GRE双语阅读 动物行为分析之猩球探秘

2018年01月05日13:28 来源:互联网
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想看上一篇双语阅读?点这里>>应对侵略性物种棘手问题

想看下一篇双语阅读?点这里>>桌面上的天体物理学研究

【每日晨读】经济学人GRE双语阅读 动物行为分析之猩球探秘图1

Animal behaviour——Planet of the apes

动物行为:猩球探秘

Chimpanzees' personas seem more complex than people's

猩猩的行为特征,似乎比人类还要复杂

这篇阅读材料还有MP3音频哦!下载>>传送门

HUMAN personalities, it is widely aGREed by psychologists, can be measured along five dimensions: extroversion, agreeableness, conscientiousness, neuroticism and openness to experience.

大多数心理学家都承认人类性格特征一共可分为五个维度:外向、易相处、善于动手、神经反应和继承性。

One person may be more extrovert than another, less agreeable, more conscientious and so on, and to an extent how well two people will get on can be predicted from how their personalities mesh.

甲可能比乙更开朗,或者更勤劳,也可能更固执,等等;就这一点说来,两个人相处是否融洽,取决于二人性格相斥还是相吸。

People who don't get on, though, have the option of avoiding each other.

甲不愿意和乙共处一室,还有选择的余地。

That is not true of animals in zoos.

而动物园里的动物却只能逆来顺受,

But they too have personalities.

但是重点在于动物们也有自己的个性。

So, to prevent trouble between members of one species—the chimpanzee—Hani Freeman of Lincoln Park Zoo, in Chicago, has developed a way of assessing those personalities.

就拿猩猩来说,为防止其同类间发生摩擦,来自芝加哥林肯公园动物园的哈尼·弗里曼提出一套得以划定动物性格的方法。

In doing so, she sheds an intriguing light not only on chimpanzee psychology, but also on the mental evolution of Homo sapiens.

此法一经问世,就像点亮了好奇之灯,不仅照亮了黑猩猩心理学研究之路,对于现代智人心理进化探索的影响也不容小觑。

As they report in the American Journal of Primatology, Dr Freeman and her colleagues started by surveying the existing literature on chimpanzee behaviour.

弗里曼和她的同事将研究成果刊登在《美国灵长类动物学学术期刊》上面,其中提到他们正是基于现有有关猩猩行为表现的文献而展开探索的。

This search threw up 55 terms, ranging from bold and jealous to stingy and sexual, that previous investigators had applied to aspects of chimpanzee character.

之前调查人员将黑猩猩性格划分之后,得出了55个术语,包括勇敢、嫉妒、吝啬以及性别差异思维,弗里曼的研究将这55个术语高亮显示。

The team then asked five experts—a mixture of scientists and zookeepers, all of whom had had years of day-to-day experiences with captive chimpanzees—to provide their own lists of terms.

之后研究小组找来5位专家,其中不乏有科学家,有动物园饲养员,他们都曾与笼子中的动物朝夕相处数年之久。这五位要做的是写下他们自己认为的黑猩猩性格术语。

These inquiries collected 71 suggestions, 45 of which overlapped with the 55 from the literature search.

他们一共给出71个描述性词汇,其中有45个与文献总结的55个术语重叠。

Finally, they compared their results with a review of chimpanzee behaviour carried out in 2008 by a different team. That comparison yielded two further terms.

最后,研究小组又与2008年另一支针对黑猩猩行为研究小组的结论作对比,结论不过增添了两个新术语。

Once Dr Freeman had gone through the accumulated list and merged into one term any set that seemed to mean the same thing, she was left with 41 that seemed robust descriptions of chimpanzee attitudes.

弗里曼曾认真研读过这一系列术语表单,然后将可以划为一类的术语总结出来。

This done, she gave the list to 17 people who work with chimpanzees on a regular basis at a medical-research facility in Texas, and asked them to rate the 99 chimps there for each of the 41 characteristics.

最终她留下了41个能够很犀利的描述猩猩行为的术语。归纳工作完成之后,弗里曼将41个术语的列表交给德克萨斯针对猩猩的定期健康检查研究机构,17名工作人员将用41个术语描述99个黑猩猩。

She found that different people rated the same animals in the same way. That suggests their assessments were reliable.

弗里曼发现即使是不同的人,对于同一批动物得出的结论仍然是相同的。

She also found that scores for particular terms tended to cluster together.

也就是说,他们的结论是可靠的。弗里曼还察觉到,一类特殊的词汇总是集中性的出现。

A chimp that scored highly for irritability, for example, was also likely to score highly for aggression and for jealousy, and to have low scores for calmness and relaxation.

比如,一只黑猩猩在易怒一栏得分较高,那么在富有攻击性和嫉妒分栏中得分也较高,相反在稳定和缓和分栏得分较低。

That let her apply a statistical technique called principal-component analysis to the data, to work out the dimensions of chimpanzee personality.

从而弗里曼在数据整理中获得一项称之为优先分析部分的统计技术,提高界定黑猩猩性格维度的工作效率。

It is analysis of this sort which showed that human personas have five dimensions.

此类分析得出的人类性格有五个维度,

Chimps' personas, by contrast, seem to have six.

但是黑猩猩性格维度似乎却达到六个。

These are extroversion, agreeableness and openness, which match human dimensions, and reactivity, dominance and methodicalness, which do not.

外向、易相处和继承性这三点能够对应人类性格特征,而条件反射、统治思维和使用工具却和人类相异。

Reactivity is similar to the human dimension called neuroticism, though not similar enough, in Dr Freeman's view, to justify the same label.

条件反射与人类的神经反应类似,但在弗里曼看来,明确性格标签情况下,相似程度是有限的。

And methodicalness, which measures the way animals approach things like using tools and making the nests they sleep in, resembles conscientiousness—though Dr Freeman's raters found this difficult to assess because such activities are not much available to the chimps in Texas.

动物利用外物的倾向性和建造窝巢统称为使用工具,这一点和人类善于动手是类似的,尽管17位性格划分人员发现很难去评价,因为这类行为在德克萨斯的黑猩猩身上是不常发生的。

But there is, intriguingly, no human dimension that resembles chimpanzee dominance.

有趣的地方是最后一点,统治思维,这在人类性格维度里毫无对应点。

At the moment, it is possible to do little more than speculate about what all this means.

此时此刻,也应该分析分析这一切的内在意义了。

From a practical point of view it shows that it is probably not a good idea to put two animals with high dominance scores in the same enclosure—a discovery that addresses the question which started the research.

从现实角度看,将两只在统治思维一栏中得分较高的黑猩猩放在一个屋檐下,不甚明智,这一问题在研究初始阶段就已经提出。

From a theoretical point of view it provides a way to study the mental similarities and differences between chimpanzees and humans:

从理论层面看,这给对于人类和黑猩猩之间的心理相似性和差异性研究提供了机会:

what, in other words, is core anthropoid behaviour, and what is species-specific.

换句话说,类人猿的核心行为是什么,还有不同种类的独有特征是什么?

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