2015 年6 月大学英语六级考试真题(第一套)

Part II Listening Comprehension (30 minutes) Section A

1.A) The woman seldom speaks highly of herself. B)The man is unhappy with the woman's remark.

C)The man behaves as if he were a thorough fool. D)The woman thinks she is cleverer than the man.

2.A) Three crew members were involved in the incident. B) None of the hijackers carried any deadly weapons.

C)The plane had been scheduled to fly to Japan. D)None of the passengers were injured or killed.

3.A) At a checkout counter. B) At a commercial bank. C) At a travel agency. D) At a hotel front desk.

4.A) The restaurant was not up to the speakers' expectations.

B) The restaurant places many ads in popular magazines.

C)The critic thought highly of the Chinese restaurant.

D)D)Chinatown has got the best restaurants in the city.

5.A) Prof. Laurence has stopped conducting seminars.

B)Prof. Laurence is going into an active retirement.

C)The professor's graduate seminar is well received.

D)The professor will lead a quiet life after retirement.

6.A) Finding a replacement for Leon. B) Assigning Leon to a new position.

C)Arranging for Rodney's visit tomorrow. D) Finding a solution to Rodney's problem.

7.A) Helen has been looking forward to the exhibition.

B) The photography exhibition will close tomorrow.

C)Helen asked the man to book a ticket for her.

D)Photography is one of Helen's many hobbies

8.A) The speakers share the same opinion. B) Steve knows how to motivate employees.

C)The woman is out of touch with the real world. D)The man has a better understanding of Steve.

Questions 9 to 12 are based on the conversation you have just heard.

9.A) It is well paid. B) It is demanding. C) It is stimulating. D) It is fairly secure.

10.A) A lighter workload. B) Free accommodation. C) Moving expenses. D) A quick promotion.

11.A) He has to sign a long-term contract.

B)He has trouble adapting to the local weather.

C)He has to spend a lot more traveling back and forth.

D)He has difficulty communicating with local people.

12.A) The woman sympathizes with the man.

B)The man is in the process of job hunting.

C)The man is going to attend a job interview.

D)The woman will help the man make a choice.

Questions 13 to 15 are based on the conversation you have just heard.

13.A) To see if he can get a loan from the woman's bank.

B)To see if he can find a job in the woman's company.

C)To inquire about the current financial market situation.

D)To inquire about the interest rates at the woman's bank.

14.A) Long-term investment. B) Any high-interest deposit.

C) A three-month deposit. D) Any high-yield investment.

15.A) She treated him to a meal. B) She raised interest rates for him.

C) She offered him dining coupons. D) She gave him loans at low rates.

Section B Passage One

Questions 16 to 18 are based on the passage you have just heard.

16.A) The ability to predict fashion trends. B) A refined taste for artistic works.

C) Years of practical experience. D) Strict professional training.

17.A) Promoting all kinds of American hand-made specialties.

B) Strengthening cooperation with foreign governments.

C)Conducting trade in art works with dealers overseas.

D)Purchasing handicrafts from all over the world.

18.A) She has access to fashionable things. B) She is doing what she enjoys doing.

C)She can enjoy life on a modest salary. D) She is free to do whatever she wants.

Passage Two

Questions 19 to 22 are based on the passage you have just heard.

19.A) Its role is to regulate international coffee prices.

B) It represents several countries that export coffee.

C)Its most important task is to conduct coffee studies.

D)It is a Portuguese company selling coffee in New York.

20.A) The increased coffee consumption. B) The fluctuation of coffee


C) The freezing weather in Brazil. D) The impact of global warming.

21.A) He is a heavy coffee drinker. B) He is tall, rich and intelligent.

C)He is doing a bachelor's degree. D) He is young, handsome and single.

22.A) A visit to several coffee-growing plantations.

B) A vacation on some beautiful tropical beach.

C)Coffee prices and his advertising campaign.

D)A quick promotion and a handsome income.

Passage Three

Questions 23 to 25 are based on the passage you have just heard.

23.A) They were delayed by the train for hours.

B) They were late for the first morning bus.

C)They boarded a wrong coach in a hurry.

D)They were held up in a traffic jam.

24.A) It was postponed due to terrible weather.

B) It was spoiled by poor accommodations.

C)It was the most exciting trip they ever had.

D)It was canceled because of an unexpected strike.

25.A) Go overseas. B) Stay at home.

C) Take escorted trips. D)Take romantic cruises.

Section C

Why would an animal kill itself? It seems a strange question, and yet it is one that has (26)____ some people for a long time. The lemming(旅鼠)is one such animal. Lemmings periodically commit mass (27) ____, and no one knows just why!

The small (28) ____, which inhabit the Scandinavian mountains, sustain themselves on a diet of roots and live in nests they make underground. When their food supply is (29) ____ large, the lemmings live a normal, undisturbed life.

However, when the lemmings' food supply becomes too low to support the population, a singular (30) ____ commences. The lemmings leave their nests all together at the same time, forming huge crowds. Great numbers of

the lemmings begin a long and hard journey across the Scandinavian plains, a journey that may last weeks. The lemmings eat everything in their path, continuing their (31) ____ march until they reach the sea.

The reason for what follows remains a mystery for zoologists and naturalists. Upon reaching the coast, the lemmings do not stop but swim by the thousands into the surf. Most (32)____ only a short time before they tire, sink and drown.

A common theory for this unusual phenomenon is that the lemmings do not realize that the ocean is such (33) ____ water. In their cross-country journey, the animals must traverse many smaller bodies of water, such as rivers and small lakes. They may (34) ____ that the sea is just another such swimmable (35) ____. But no final answer has been found to the mystery.

Part III Reading Comprehension (40 minutes) Section A

Questions 36 to 45 are based on the following passage.

"That which does not kill us makes us stronger." But parents can't handle it when teenagers put this 36____ into practice. Now technology has become the new field for the age-old battle between adults and their freedom-seeking kids.

Locked indoors, unable to get on their bicycles and hang out with their friends, teens have turned to social media and their mobile phones to socialize with their peers. What they do online often 37____ what they might otherwise do if their mobility weren't so heavily 38____ in the age of helicopter parenting. Social media and smart-phone apps have become so popular in recent years because teens need a place to call their own. They want the freedom to 39____ their identity and the world around them. Instead of 40____ out, they jump online.

As teens have moved online, parents have projected their fears onto the Internet, imagining all the 41____ dangers that youth might face 一from 42____ strangers to cruel peers to pictures or words that could haunt them on Google for the rest of their lives.

Rather than helping teens develop strategies for negotiating public life and the risks of 43 ____with others, fear-full parents have focused on tracking, monitoring and blocking. These tactics(策略)don't help teens develop the skills they need to manage complex social situations, 44____ risks and get help when they're in trouble. "Protecting" kids may feel like the right thing to do, but it 45____ the learning that teens need to do as


Section B Inequality Is Not Inevitable

[A] A dangerous trend has developed over this past third of a century. A country that experienced shared growth after World War II began to tear apart, so much so that when the Great Recession hit in late 2007, one could no longer ignore the division that had come to define the American economic landscape. How did this "shining city on a hill" become the advanced country with the greatest level of inequality?

[B]Over the past year and a half, The Great divide, a series in The New York Times, has presented a wide range of examples that undermine the notion that there are any truly fundamental laws of capitalism. The dynamics of the imperial capitalism of the 19th century needn't apply in the democracies of the 21st. we don't need to have this much inequality in America.

[C]Our current brand of capitalism is a fake capitalism. For proof of this go back to our response to the Great Recession, where we socialized losses, even as we privatized gains. Perfect competition should drive profits to zero, at least theoretically, but we have monopolies making persistently high profits. C.E.O.s enjoy incomes that are on average 295 times that of the typical worker, a much higher ratio than in the past, without any evidence of a proportionate increase in productivity.

[D]If it is not the cruel laws of economics that have led to America's great divide, what is it? The straightforward answer: our policies and our politics. People get tired of hearing about Scandinavian success stories, but the fact of

the matter is that Sweden, Finland and Norway have all succeeded in having about as much or faster growth in per capita(人均的)incomes than the United States and with far greater equality.

[E]So why has America chosen these inequality-enhancing policies? Part of the answer is that as World War II faded into memory, so too did the solidarity it had created. As America triumphed in the Cold War, there didn't seem to be a real competitor to our economic model. Without this international competition, we no longer had to show that our system could deliver for most of our citizens.

[F]Ideology and interests combine viciously. Some drew the wrong lesson from the collapse of the Soviet system in 1991. The pendulum swung from much too much government there to much too little here. Corporate interests argued for getting rid of regulations, even when those regulations had done so much to protect and improve our environment, our safety, our health and the economy itself.

[G]But this ideology was hypocritical(虚伪的). The bankers, among the strongest advocates of laissez-faire (自由放任的)economics, were only too willing to accept hundreds of billions of dollars from the government in the aid programs that have been a recurring feature of the global economy since the beginning of the Thatcher-Reagan era of "free" markets and deregulation. [H] The American political system is overrun by money. Economic inequality translates into political in-equality, and political inequality yields increasing economic inequality. So corporate welfare increases as we reduce welfare for the poor. Congress maintains subsidies for rich farmers as we cut back on nutritional support for the needy. Drug companies have been given hundreds of billions of dollars as we limit Medicaid benefits. The banks that brought on the global financial crisis got billions while a tiny bit went to the homeowners and victims of the same banks' predatory(掠夺性的)lending practices. This last decision was particularly foolish. There were alternatives to throwing money at the banks and hoping it would circulate through increased lending.

[I]Our divisions are deep. Economic and geographic segregation has immunized those at the top from the problems of those down below. Like the kings of ancient times' they have come to perceive their privileged positions essentially as a natural right.

[J]Our economy, our democracy and our society have paid for these gross inequalities. The true test of an economy is not how much wealth its princes can accumulate in tax havens(庇护所), but how well off the typical citizen is. But average incomes are lower than they were a quarter-century ago. Growth has gone to the very, very top, whose share has almost increased four times since 1980. Money that was meant to have trickled (流淌)down has instead evaporated in the agreeable climate of the Cayman Islands.

[K]With almost a quarter of American children younger than 5 living in poverty, and with America doing so little for its poor, the deprivations of one generation are being visited upon the next. Of course, no country has ever come close to providing complete equality of opportunity. But why is America one of the advanced countries where the life prospects of the young are most sharply determined by the income and education of their parents? [L]Among the most bitter stories in The Great Divide were those that portrayed the frustrations of the young, who long to enter our shrinking middle class. Soaring tuitions and declining incomes have resulted in larger debt burdens. Those with only a high school diploma have seen their incomes decline by 13 percent over the past 35 years.

[M]Where justice is concerned, there is also a huge divide. In the eyes of the rest of the world and a significant part of its own population, mass imprisonment has come to define America—a country, it bears repeating, with about 5 percent of the world's population but around a fourth of the world 's prisoners.

[N]Justice has become a commodity, affordable to only a few. While Wall Street executives used their expensive lawyers to ensure that their ranks were not held accountable for the misdeeds that the crisis in 2008 so graphically revealed, the banks abused our legal system to foreclose(取消赎回权)on mortgages and eject tenants, some of whom did not even owe money.

[O]More than a half-century ago, America led the way in advocating for the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, adopted by the United Nations in 1948. Today, access to health care is among the most universally accepted rights, at least in the advanced countries. America, despite the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, is the exception. In the relief that many felt when the Supreme Court did not overturn the Affordable Care Act, the implications of the decision for Medicaid were not fully appreciated. Obamacare's objective 一to ensure that all Americans have access to health care —has been blocked: 24 states have not implemented the expanded Medicaid program, which was the means by which Obamacare was supposed to deliver on its promise to some of the poorest.

[P]We need not just a new war on poverty but a war to protect the middle class. Solutions to these problems do not have to be novel. Far from it. Making markets act like markets would be a good place to start. We must end the rent-seeking society we have gravitated toward, in which the wealthy obtain profits by manipulating the system.

[Q]The problem of inequality is not so much a matter of technical economics. It's really a problem of practical politics. Inequality is not just about the top marginal tax rate but also about our children's access to food and the right to justice for all. If we spent more on education, health and infrastructure(基础设施), we would strengthen our economy, now and in the future.

46.In theory, free competition is supposed to reduce the margin of profits to the minimum.

47.The United States is now characterized by a great division between the rich and the poor.

48.America lacked the incentive to care for the majority of its citizens as it found no rival for its economic model.

49.The wealthy top have come to take privileges for granted.

50.Many examples show the basic laws of imperial capitalism no longer apply in present-day America.

51.The author suggests a return to the true spirit of the market.

52.A quarter of the world's prisoner population is in America.

http://m.wendangku.net/doc/b0ade7e6b4daa58da1114a52.htmlernment regulation in America went from one extreme to the other in the past two decades.

54.Justice has become so expensive that only a small number of people like corporate executives can afford it.

55.No country in the world so far has been able to provide completely equal opportunities for all.

Section C Passage One

Questions 56 to 60 are based on the following passage.

I'll admit I've never quite understood the obsession(难以破除的成见)surrounding genetically modified (GM) crops. To environmentalist opponents, GM foods are simply evil, an understudied, possibly harmful tool used by big agricultural businesses to control global seed markets and crush local farmers. They argue that GM foods have never delivered on their supposed promise, that money spent on GM crops would be better channeled to organic farming and that consumers should be protected with warning labels on any products that contain genetically modified ingredients. To supporters, GM crops are a key part of the effort to sustainably provide food to meet a growing global population. But more than that, supporters see the GM opposition of many environmentalists as fundamentally anti-science, no different than those who question the basics of man-made climate change.

For both sides, GM foods seem to act as a symbol: you're pro-agricultural business or anti-science. But science is exactly what we need more of when it comes to GM foods, which is why I was happy to see Nature devote a special series of articles to the GM food controversy. The conclusion: while GM crops haven't yet realized their initial promise and have been dominated by agricultural businesses, there is reason to continue to use and develop them to help meet the enormous challenge of sustainably feeding a growing planet.

That doesn't mean GM crops are perfect, or a one-size-fits-all solution to global agriculture problems. But anything that can increase farming efficiency 一the amount of crops we can produce per acre of land 一will be extremely useful. GM crops can and almost certainly will be part of that suite of tools' but so will traditional plant breeding, improved soil and crop management 一and perhaps most important of all, better storage and transport infrastructure(基础设施), especially in the developing world. (It doesn't do much good for farmers in places like sub-Saharan Africa to produce more food if they can't get it to hungry consumers.) I'd like to see more non-industry research done on GM crops—not just because we'd worry less about bias, but also because seed companies like Monsanto and Pioneer shouldn't be the only entities working to harness genetic modification. I'd like to see GM research on less commercial crops, like com. I don't think it's vital to label GM ingredients in food, but I also wouldn't be against it 一and industry would be smart to go along with labeling, just as a way of removing fears about the technology.

Most of all, though, I wish a tenth of the energy that's spent endlessly debating GM crops was focused on those more pressing challenges for global agriculture. There are much bigger battles to fight.

56.How do environmentalist opponents view GM foods according to the passage?

A) They will eventually ruin agriculture and the environment.

B)They are used by big businesses to monopolize agriculture.

C)They have proved potentially harmful to consumers' health.

D)They pose a tremendous threat to current farming practice.

57.What does the author say is vital to solving the controversy between the two sides of the debate?

A) Breaking the GM food monopoly. B) More friendly exchange of ideas.

C) Regulating GM food production. D) More scientific research on GM crops.

58.What is the main point of the Nature articles?

A)Feeding the growing population makes it imperative to develop GM crops.

B)Popularizing GM technology will help it to live up to its initial promises.

C)Measures should be taken to ensure the safety of GM foods.

D)Both supporters and opponents should make compromises.

59.What is the author's view on the solution to agricultural problems?

A) It has to depend more and more on GM technology.

B)It is vital to the sustainable development of human society.

C)GM crops should be allowed until better alternatives are found.

D)Whatever is useful to boost farming efficiency should be encouraged.

60.What does the author think of the ongoing debate around GM crops?

A) It arises out of ignorance of and prejudice against new science.

B)It distracts the public attention from other key issues of the world.

C)Efforts spent on it should be turned to more urgent issues of agriculture.

D)Neither side is likely to give in until more convincing evidence is found.

Passage Two

Questions 61 to 65 are based on the following passage.

Early decision — you apply to one school, and admission is binding — seems like a great choice for nervous applicants. Schools let in a higher percentage of early-decision applicants, which arguably means that you have a better chance of getting in. And if you do, you're done with the whole agonizing process by December. But what most students and parents don't realize is that schools have hidden motives for offering early decision.

Early decision, since it's binding, allows schools to fill their classes with qualified students; it allows ad-missions committees to select the students that are in particular demand for their college and know those students will come. It also gives schools a higher yield rate, which is often used as one of the ways to measure college selectivity and popularity.

The problem is that this process effectively shortens the window of time students have to make one of the most important decisions of their lives up to that point. Under regular admissions, seniors have until May 1 to choose which school to attend; early decision effectively steals six months from them, months that could be used to visit more schools, do more research, speak to current students and alumni(校友)and arguably make a more informed decision.

There are, frankly, an astonishing number of exceptional colleges in America, and for any given student, there are a number of schools that are a great fit. When students become too fixated (专注)on a particular school early in the admissions process, that fixation can lead to severe disappointment if they don't get in or, if they do, the possibility that they are now bound to go to a school that, given time for further reflection, may not actually be right for them.

Insofar as early decision offers a genuine admissions edge, that advantage goes largely to students who already have numerous advantage. The students who use early decision tend to be those who have received higher-quality college guidance, usually a result of coming from a more privileged background. In this regard, there's an argument against early decision, as students from lower-income families are far less likely to have the admissions know-how to navigate the often confusing early deadlines.

Students who have done their research and are confident that there's one school they would be thrilled to get into should, under the current system, probably apply under early decision. But for students who haven't yet done

enough research, or who are still constantly changing their minds on favorite schools, the early-decision system needlessly and prematurely narrows the field of possibility just at a time when students should be opening themselves to a whole range of thrilling options.

61.What are students obliged to do under early decision?

A)Look into a lot of schools before they apply. B) Attend the school once they are admitted.

C) Think twice before they accept the offer. D) Consult the current students and alumni.

62.Why do schools offer early decision?

A)To make sure they get qualified students.

B)To avoid competition with other colleges.

C)To provide more opportunities for applicants.

D)To save students the agony of choosing a school.

63.What is said to be the problem with early decision for students?

A) It makes their application process more complicated.

B)It places too high a demand on their research ability.

C)It allows them little time to make informed decisions.

D)It exerts much more psychological pressure on them.

64.Why are some people opposed to early decision?

A)It interferes with students' learning in high school.

B)It is biased against students at ordinary high schools.

C)It causes unnecessary confusion among college applicants.

D)It places students from lower-income families at a disadvantage.

65.What does the author advise college applicants to do?

A)Refrain from competing with students from privileged families.

B)Avoid choosing early decision unless they are fully prepared.

C)Find sufficient information about their favorite schools.

D)Look beyond the few supposedly thrilling options.

Part IV Translation (30 minutes)

2011 年是中国城市化(urbanization)进程中的历史性时刻,其城市人口首次超过农村人口。在未来20 年里,预计有3.5 亿农村人口将移居城市。如此规模的城市发展对城市交通来说既是挑战,也是机遇。中国政府一直提倡“以人为本”的发展理念,强调人们以公交而不是私家车出行。它还号召建设“资源节约和环境友好型”社会。有了这个明确的目标,中国城市就可以更好地规划其发展,并把大量投资转向安全、清洁和经济型交通系统的发展上。

2015 年6 月大学英语六级考试真题(第二套)

Part II Listening Comprehension (30 minutes) Section A

1.A) Prepare for his exams. B) Catch up on his work.

C) Attend the concert. D) Go on a vacation.

2.A) Three crew members were involved in the incident.

B) None of the hijackers carried any deadly weapons.

C)The plane had been scheduled to fly to Japan.

D)None of the passengers were injured or killed.

3.A) An article about the election. B) A tedious job to be done.

C) An election campaign. D) A fascinating topic.

4.A) The restaurant was not up to the speakers' expectations.

B) The restaurant places many ads in popular magazines.

C)The critic thought highly of the Chinese restaurant.

D)Chinatown has got the best restaurant in the city.

5.A) He is going to visit his mother in the hospital.

B) He is going to take on a new job next week.

C)He has many things to deal with right now.

D)He behaves in a way nobody understands.

6.A) A large number of students refused to vote last night.

B)At least twenty students are needed to vote on an issue.

C)Major campus issues had to be discussed at the meeting.

D)More students have to appear to make their voice heard.

7.A) The woman can hardly tell what she likes.

B)The speakers like watching TV very much.

C)The speakers have nothing to do but watch TV.

D)The man seldom watched TV before retirement.

8.A) The woman should have retired earlier. 4

B)He will help the woman solve the problem.

C)He finds it hard to agree with what the woman says.

D)The woman will be able to attend the classes she wants.

Questions 9 to 12 are based on the conversation you have just heard.

9.A) Persuade the man to join her company. B) Employ the most up-to-date technology.

C) Export bikes to foreign markets. D) Expand their domestic business.

10.A) The state subsidizes small and medium enterprises.

B) The government has control over bicycle imports.

C)They can compete with the best domestic manufactures.

D)They have a cost advantage and can charge higher prices.

11.A) Extra costs might eat up their profits abroad.

B)More workers will be needed to do packaging.

C)They might lose to foreign bike manufacturers.

D)It is very difficult to find suitable local agents.

12.A) Report to the management. B) Attract foreign investments.

C) Conduct a feasibility study. D) Consult financial experts.

Questions 13 to 15 are based on the conversation you have just heard.

13.A) Coal burnt daily for the comfort of our homes.

B) Anything that can be used to produce power.

C)Fuel refined from oil extracted from underground.

D)Electricity that keeps all kinds of machines running.

14.A) Oil will soon be replaced by alternative energy sources.

B) Oil reserves in the world will be exhausted in a decade.

C)Oil consumption has given rise to many global problems.

D)Oil production will begin to decline worldwide by 2015.

15.A) Minimize the use of fossil fuels. B) Start developing alternative fuels.

C)Find the real cause for global warming. D) Take steps to reduce the greenhouse effect.

Section B Passage One

Questions 16 to 18 are based on the passage you have just heard.

16.A) The ability to predict fashion trends. B) A refined taste for artistic works.

C) Years of practical experience. D) Strict professional training.

17.A) Promoting all kinds of American hand-made specialities.

B) Strengthening cooperation with foreign governments.

C)Conducting trade in art works with dealers overseas.

D)Purchasing handicrafts from all over the world.

18.A) She has access to fashionable things. B) She is doing what she enjoys doing.

C)She can enjoy life on a modest salary. D) She is free to do whatever she wants.

Passage Two

Questions 19 to 22 are based on the passage you have just heard.

19.A) Join in neighborhood patrols. B) Get involved in his community.

C)V oice his complaints to the city council. D) Make suggestions to the local authorities.

20.A) Deterioration in the quality of life. B) Increase of police patrols at night.

C)Renovation of the vacant buildings. D) Violation of community regulations.

21.A) They may take a long time to solve. B) They need assistance form the city.

C)They have to be dealt with one by one. D) They are too big for individual efforts.

22.A) He had got some groceries at a big discount. B) He had read a funny poster near his seat.

C)He had done a small deed of kindness. D)He had caught the bus just in time.

Passage Three

Questions 23 to 25 are based on the passage you have just heard.

23.A) Childhood and family growth. B) Pressure and disease.

C)Family life and health. D) Stress and depression.

24.A) It experienced a series of misfortunes. B) It was in the process of reorganization.

C)His mother died of a sudden heart attack. D) His wife left him because of his bad temper.

25.A) They would give him a triple bypass surgery. B) They could remove the block in his artery.

C)They could do nothing to help him. D)They would try hard to save his life.

Section C

When most people think of the word “education”, they think of a pupil as a sort of animate sausage casing. Into this empty casting, the teachers (26) stuff “education.”

But genuine education, as Socrates knew more than two thousand years ago, is not (27) the stuffing of information into a person, but rather eliciting knowledge from him; it is the (28) of what is in the mind.

“The most important part of education,” once wrote William Ernest Hocking, the (29) Harvard philosopher, “is this instruction of a man in what he has inside of him.”

And, as Edith Hamilton has reminded us, Socrates never said, “I know, learn from me。” He said, rather, “Look into your own selves and find the (30) of the truth that God has put into every heart and that only you can kindle (点燃)to a (31) .”

In a dialogue, Socrates takes an ignorant slave boy, without a day of (32) , and proves to the amazed observers that the boy really “knows” geometry 一because the principles of geometry are already in his mind, waiting to be called out.

So many of the discussions and (33) about the content of education are useless and inconclusive because they (34) what should “go into” the student rather than with what should be taken out, and how this can best be done. The college stude nt who once said to me, after a lecture, “I spend so much time studying that I don't have a chance to learn anything,” was clearly expressing his (35) with the sausage casing view of education.

Part III Reading Comprehension (40 minutes) Reading comprehension Section A

Innovation, the elixir (灵丹妙药) of progress, has always cost people their jobs. In the Industrial Revolution hand weavers were ___36___ aside by the mechanical loom. Over the past 30 years the digital revolution has ___37___ many of the mid-skill jobs that underpinned 20th-century middle-class life. Typists, ticket agents, bank tellers and many production-line jobs have been dispensed with, just as the weavers were.

For those who believe that technological progress has made the world a better place, such disruption is a natural part of rising ___38___. Although innovation kills some jobs, it creates new and better ones, as a more ___39___ society becomes richer and its wealthier inhabitants demand more goods and services. A hundred years ago one in three American workers was ___40___ on a farm. Today less than 2% of them produce far more food. The millions freed from the land were not rendered ___41___, but found better-paid work as the economy grew more sophisticated. Today the pool of secretaries has___42___, but there are ever more computer programmers and web designers.

Optimism remains the right starting-point, but for workers the dislocating effects of technology may make themselves evident faster than its ___43___. Even if new jobs and wonderful products emerge, in the short term income gaps will widen, causing huge social dislocation and perhaps even changing politics. Technology's ___44___ will feel like a tornado (旋风), hitting the rich world first, but ___45___ sweeping through poorer countries too. No government is prepared for it.


Section B Why the Mona Lisa Stands Out

[A]Have you ever fallen for a novel and been amazed not to find it on lists of great books? Or walked around a sculpture renowned as a classic, struggling to see what the fuss is about? If so, you?ve probably pondered the question Cutting asked himself that day: how does a work of art come to be considered great?

[B]The intuitive answer is that some works of art are just great: of intrinsically superior quality. The paintings that win prime spots in galleries, get taught in classes and reproduced in books are the ones that have proved their artistic value over time. If you can?t see they?re superior, that?s your problem. It?s an intimidatingly neat explanation. But some social scientists have been asking awkward questions of it, raising the possibility that artistic canons are little more than fossilised historical accidents.

[C]Cutting, a professor at Cornell University, wondered if a psychological mechanism known a s the “mere-exposure effect” played a role in deciding which paintings rise to the top of the cultural league. Cutting designed an experiment to test his hunch. Over a lecture course he regularly showed undergraduates works of impressionism for two seconds at a time. Some of the paintings were canonical, included in art-history books. Others were lesser known but of comparable quality. These were exposed four times as often. Afterwards, the students preferred them to the canonical works, while a control group of students liked the canonical ones best. Cutting?s students had grown to like those paintings more simply because they had seen them more.

[D]Cutting believes his experiment offers a clue as to how canons are formed. He points out that the most reproduced works of impressionism today tend to have been bought by five or six wealthy and influential collectors in the late 19th century. The preferences of these men bestowed prestige on certain works, which made the works more likely to be hung in galleries and printed in anthologies. The fame passed down the years, gaining momentum from mere exposure as it did so. The more people were exposed to, the more they liked it, and the more they liked it, the more it appeared in books, on posters and in big exhibitions. Meanwhile, academics and critics created sophisticated justifications for its pre-eminence. After all, it?s not just the masses who tend to rate what they see more often more highly. As contemporary artists like Warhol and Damien Hirst have grasped, cr itical acclaim is deeply entwined with publicity. “Scholars”, Cutting argues, “are no different from the public in the effects of mere exposure.”

[E]The process described by Cutting evokes a principle that the sociologist Duncan Watts calls “cumulative advan tage”: once a thing becomes popular, it will tend to become more popular still. A few years ago, Watts, who is employed by Microsoft to study the dynamics of social networks, had a similar experience to Cutting in another Paris museum. After queuing to see the “Mona Lisa” in its climate-controlled bulletproof box at the Louvre, he came away puzzled: why was it considered so superior to the three other Leonardos in the previous chamber, to which nobody seemed to be paying the slightest attention?

[F]When Watts looked into the history of “the greatest painting of all time”, he discovered that, for most of its life, the “Mona Lisa” remained in relative obscurity. In the 1850s, Leonardo da Vinci was considered no match for giants of Renaissance art like Titian and Raphael, whose works were worth almost ten times as much as the “Mona Lisa”. It was only in the 20th century that Leonardo?s portrait of his patron?s wife rocketed to the number-one spot. What propelled it there wasn?t a scholarly re-evaluation, but a theft.

[G]In 1911 a maintenance worker at the Louvre walked out of the museum with the “Mona Lisa” hidden under his smock. Parisians were aghast at the theft of a painting to which, until then, they had paid little attention. When the museum reopened, people qu eued to see the gap where the “Mona Lisa” had once hung in a way they had never done for the painting itself. From then on, the “Mona Lisa” came to represent Western culture itself.

[H]Although many have tried, it does seem improbable that the painting?s un ique status can be attributed entirely to the quality of its brushstrokes. It has been said that the subject?s eyes follow the viewer around the room. But as the painting?s biographer, Donald Sassoon, dryly notes, “In reality the effect can be obtained from any portrait.” Duncan Watts proposes that the “Mona Lisa” is merely an extreme example of a general rule. Paintings, poems and pop songs are buoyed or sunk by random events or preferences that turn into waves of influence, rippling down the generations.

[I]“Saying that cultural objects have value,” Brian Eno once wrote, “is like saying that telephones have conversations.” Nearly all the cultural objects we consume arrive wrapped in inherited opinion; our preferences are always, to some extent, someone else?s. Visitors to the “Mona Lisa” know they are about to visit the greatest work of art ever and come away appropriately impressed—or let down. An audience at a performance of “Hamlet” know it is regarded as a work of genius, so that is what they mostly see. Watts even calls the pre-eminence of Shakespeare a “historical accident”.

[J]Although the rigid high-low distinction fell apart in the 1960s, we still use culture as a badge of identity. Today?s fashion for eclecticism—“I love Bach, Abba and Jay Z”—is, Shamus Khan , a Columbia University psychologist, argues, a new way for the middle class to distinguish themselves from what they perceive to be the narrow tastes of those beneath them in the social hierarchy.

[K]The intrinsic quality of a work of art is starting to seem like its least important attribute. But perhaps it?s more significant than our social scientists allow. First of all, a work needs a certain quality to be eligible to be swept to the top of the pile. The “Mona Lisa” may not be a worthy world champ ion, but it was in the Louvre in the first place, and not by accident. Secondly, some stuff is simply better than other stuff. Read “Hamlet” after reading even the greatest of Shakespeare?s contemporaries, and the difference may strike you as unarguable.

[L] A study in the British Journal of Aesthetics suggests that the exposure effect doesn?t work the same way on everything, and points to a different conclusion about how canons are formed. The social scientists are right to say that we should be a little skeptical of greatness, and that we should always look in the next room. Great art and mediocrity can get confused, even by experts. But that?s why we need to see, and read, as much as we can. The more we?re exposed to the good and the bad, the better we are a t telling the difference. The eclecticists have it. 46.According to Duncan Watts, the superiority of the "Mona Lisa" to Leonardo's other works resulted from the

cumulative advantage.

47.Some social scientists have raised doubts about the intrinsic value of certain works of art.

48.It is often random events or preferences that determine the fate of a piece of art.

49.In his experiment, Cutting found that his subjects liked lesser known works better than canonical works

because of more exposure.

50.The author thinks the greatness of an art work still lies in its intrinsic value.

51.It is true of critics as well as ordinary people that the popularity of artistic works is closely associated with


52.We need to expose ourselves to more art and literature in order to tell the superior from the inferior.

53.A study of the history of the greatest paintings suggests even a great work of art could experience years of


54.Culture is still used as a mark to distinguish one social class from another.

55.Opinions about and preferences for cultural objects are often inheritable.

Section C Passage One

Questions 56 to 60 are based on the following passage.

When the right person is holding the right job at the right moment, that person's influence is greatly expanded. That is the position in which Janet Yellen, who is expected to be confirmed as the next chair of the Federal Reserve Bank (Fed) in January, now finds herself. If you believe, as many do, that unemployment is the major economic and social concern of our day, then it is no stretch to think Yellen is the most powerful person in the world right now.

Throughout the 2008 financial crisis and the recession and recovery that followed, central banks have taken on the role of stimulators of last resort, holding up the global economy with vast amounts of money in the form of asset buying. Yellen, previously a Fed vice chair, was one of the principal architects of the Fed's $3.8 trillion money dump. A star economist known for her groundbreaking work on labor markets, Yeilen was a kind of prophetess early on in the crisis for her warnings about the subprime(次级债)meltdown. Now it will be her job to get the Fed and the markets out of the biggest and most unconventional monetary program in history without derailing the fragile recovery.

The good news is that Yellen, 67, is particularly well suited to meet these challenges. She has a keen understanding of financial markets, an appreciation for their imperfections and a strong belief that human suffering was more related to unemployment than anything else.

Some experts worry that Yellen will be inclined to chase unemployment to the neglect of inflation. But with wages still relatively flat and the economy increasingly divided between the well-off and the long-term unemployed' more people worry about the opposite, deflation(通货紧缩)that would aggravate the economy's problems.

Either way, the incoming Fed chief will have to walk a fine line in slowly ending the stimulus. It must be steady enough to deflate bubbles(去泡沫)and bring markets back down to earth but not so quick that it creates another credit crisis.

Unlike many past Fed leaders, Yellen is not one to buy into the finance industry's argument that it should be left alone to regulate itself. She knows all along the Fed has been too slack on regulation of finance.

Yellen is likely to address right after she pushes unemployment below 6%, stabilizes markets and makes sure that the recovery is more inclusive and robust. As Princeton Professor Alan Blinder says' "She's smart as a whip, deeply logical, willing to argue but also a good listener. She can persuade without creating hostility." AH those traits will be useful as the global economy's new power player takes on its most annoying problems.

56.What do many people think is the biggest problem facing Janet Yellen?

A)Lack of money. B) Subprime crisis. C) Unemployment. D) Social instability.

57.What did Yellen help the Fed do to tackle the 2008 financial crisis?

A) Take effective measures to curb inflation.

B)Deflate the bubbles in the American economy.

C)Formulate policies to help financial institutions.

D)Pour money into the market through asset buying.

58.What is a greater concern of the general public?

A)Recession. B) Deflation. C) Inequality. D) Income.

59.What is Yellen likely to do in her position as the Fed chief?

A)Develop a new monetary program. B) Restore public confidence.

C) Tighten financial regulation. D) Reform the credit system.

60.How does Alan Blinder portray Yellen?

A)She possesses strong persuasive power.

B)She has confidence in what she is doing.

C)She is one of the world's greatest economists.

D)She is the most powerful Fed chief in history.

Passage Two

Questions 61 to 65 are based on the following passage.

Air pollution is deteriorating in many places around the world. The fact that public parks in cities become crowded as soon as the sun shines proves that people long to breathe in green, open spaces. They do not all know what they are seeking but they flock there, nevertheless. And, in these surroundings, they are generally both peaceful and peaceable. It is rare to see people fighting in a garden. Perhaps struggle unfolds first, not at an economic or social level, but over the appropriation of air, essential to life itself. If human beings can breathe and share air, they don't need to struggle with one another.

Unfortunately, in our western tradition, neither materialist nor idealist theoreticians give enough consideration to this basic condition for life. As for politicians, despite proposing curbs on environmental pollution, they have not yet called for it to be made a crime. Wealthy countries are even allowed to pollute if they pay for it.

But is our life worth anything other than money? The plant world shows us in silence what faithfulness to life consists of. It also helps us to a new beginning, urging us to care for our breath, not only at a vital but also at a spiritual level. The interdependence to which we must pay the closest attention is that which exists between ourselves and the plant world. Often described as "the lungs of the planet", the woods that cover the earth offer us the gift of breathable air by releasing oxygen. But their capacity to renew the air polluted by industry has long reached its limit. If we lack the air necessary for a healthy life, it is because we have filled it with chemicals and undercut the ability of plants to regenerate it. As we know, rapid deforestation combined with the massive burning of fossil fuels is an explosive recipe for an irreversible disaster.

The fight over the appropriation of resources will lead the entire planet to hell unless humans learn to share life, both with each other and with plants. This task is simultaneously ethical and political because it can be discharged only when each takes it upon herself or himself and only when it is accomplished together with others. The lesson taught by plants is that sharing life expands and enhances the sphere of the living, while dividing life into so-called natural or human resources diminishes it. We must come to view the air, the plants and ourselves as the contributors to the preservation of life and growth, rather than a web of quantifiable objects or productive potentialities at our disposal. Perhaps then we would finally begin to live, rather than being concerned with bare survival.

61.What does the author assume might be the primary reason that people would struggle with each other?

A)To get their share of clean air. B) To pursue a comfortable life.

C) To gain a higher social status. D) To seek economic benefits.

62.What does the author accuse western politicians of?

A)Depriving common people of the right to clean air.

B)Giving priority to theory rather than practical action.

C)Offering preferential treatment to wealthy countries.

D)Failing to pass laws to curb environmental pollution.

63.What does the author try to draw our closest attention to?

A) The massive burning of fossil fuels.

B)Our relationship to the plant world.

C)The capacity of plants to renew polluted air.

D)Large-scale deforestation across the world.

64.How can human beings accomplish the goal of protecting the planet according to the author?

A) By showing respect for plants. B) By preserving all forms of life.

C) By tapping all natural resources. D) By pooling their efforts together.

65.What does the author suggest we do in order not just to survive?

A)Expand the sphere of living. B) Develop nature's potentials.

C) Share life with nature. D) Allocate the resources.

Part IV Translation (30 minutes)



2015 年6 月大学英语六级考试真题(第三套)


Part III

Section A

Questions 36 to 45 are based on the following passage.

Travel websites have been around since the 1990s, when Expedia, Travelocity, and other holiday booking sites were launched, allowing travelers to compare flight and hotel prices with the click of a mouse. With information no longer 36____ by travel agents or hidden in business networks, the travel industry was revolutionized, as greater transparency helped 37____ prices.

Today, the industry is going through a new revolution—this time transforming service quality. Online rating platforms—38____ in hotels, restaurants, apartments, and taxis—allow travelers to exchange reviews and experiences for all to see.

Hospitality businesses are now ranked, analyzed, and compared not by industry 39____, but by the very people for whom the service is intended—the customer. This has 40____ a new relationship between buyer and seller. Customers have always voted with their feet; they can now explain their decision to anyone who is interested. As a result, businesses are much more 41____, often in very specific ways, which creates powerful 42____ to improve service.

Although some readers might not care for gossipy reports of unfriendly bellboys(行李员)in Berlin or malfunctioning hotel hairdryers in Houston, the true power of online reviews lies not just in the individual stories, but in the websites' 43____ to aggregate a large volume of ratings.

The impact cannot be 44____. Businesses that attract top ratings can enjoy rapid growth, as new customers are attracted by good reviews and 45____ provide yet more positive feedback. So great is the influence of online


Section B Plastic Surgery

A better credit card is the solution to ever larger hack attacks

[A] A thin magnetic stripe (magstripe) is all that stands between your credit-card information and the bad guys. And they've been working hard to break in. That's why 2014 is shaping up as a major showdown: banks, law enforcement and technology companies are all trying to stop a network of hackers who are succeeding in stealing account numbers, names, email addresses and other crucial data used in identity theft. More than 100 million accounts at Target, Neiman Marcus and Michaels stores were affected in some way during the most recent attacks, starting last November.

[B]Swipe(刷卡)is the operative word: cards are increasingly vulnerable to attacks when you make purchases

in a store. In several recent incidents, hackers have been able to obtain massive information of credit-, debit-(借记)or prepaid-card numbers using malware, i.e. malicious software, inserted secretly into the retailers' point-of-sale system—the checkout registers. Hackers then sold the data to a second group of criminals operating in shadowy comers of the web. Not long after, the stolen data was showing up on fake cards and being used for online purchases.

[C]The solution could cost as little as $2 extra for every piece of plastic issued. The fix is a security technology used heavily outside the U.S. While American credit cards use the 40-year-old magstripe technology to process

transactions, much of the rest of the world uses smarter cards with a technology called EMV (short for Europay, MasterCard, Visa) that employs a chip embedded in the card plus a customer PIN (personal identification number) to authenticate(验证)every transaction on the spot. If a purchaser fails to punch in the correct PIN at the checkout, the transaction gets rejected. (Online purchases can be made by setting up a separate transaction code.)

[D]Why haven't big banks adopted the more secure technology? When it comes to mailing out new credit cards, it's all about relative costs, says David Robertson, who runs the Nihon Report, an industry newsletter: "The cost of the card, putting the sticker on it, coding the account number and expiration date, embossing(凸印)it, the small envelop—all put together, you are in the dollar range." A chip-and-PIN card currently costs closer to $3, says Robertson, because of the price of chips. (Once large issuers convert together, the chip costs should drop.)

[E]Multiply $3 by the more than 5 billion magstripe credit and prepaid cards in circulation in the U.S. Then consider that there's an estimated $12.4 billion in card fraud on a global basis' says Robertson. With 44% of that in the U.S., American credit-card fraud amounts to about $5.5 billion annually. Card issuers have so far calculated that absorbing the liability for even big hacks like the Target one is still cheaper than replacing all that plastic. [F]That leaves American retailers pretty much alone the world over in relying on magstripe technology to charge purchases—and leaves consumers vulnerable. Each magstripe has three tracks of information, explains payments security expert Jeremy Gumbley, the chief technology officer of CreditCall, an electronic-payments company. The first and third are used by the bank or card issuer. Your vital account information lives on the second track, which hackers try to capture. "Malware is scanning through the memory in real time and looking for data," he says. "It creates a text file that gets stolen."

[G]Chip-and-PIN cards, by contrast, make fake cards or skimming impossible because the information that gets scanned is encrypted(加密). The historical reason the U.S. has stuck with magstripe, ironically enough, is once superior technology. Our cheap, ultra-reliable wired networks made credit-card authentication over the phone frictionless. In France, card companies created EMV in part because the telephone monopoly was so maddeningly inefficient and expensive. The EMV solution allowed transactions to be verified locally and securely.

[H]Some big banks, like Wells Fargo, are now offering to convert your magstripe card to a chip-and-PIN model. (It's actually a hybrid(混合体)that will still have a magstripe, since most U.S. merchants don't have EMV terminals.) Should you take them up on it? If you travel internationally, the answer is yes.

[I]Keep in mind, too, that credit cards typically have better liability protection than debit cards. If someone uses your credit card fraudulently(欺诈性地)it's the issuer or merchant, not you, that takes the hit. Debit cards have different liability limits depending on the bank and the events surrounding any fraud. "If it's available, the logical thing is to get a chip-and-PIN card from your bank," says Eric Adamowsky, a co-founder of http://m.wendangku.net/doc/b0ade7e6b4daa58da1114a52.html. "I would use credit cards over debit cards because of liability issues." Cash still works pretty well too.

[J]Retailers and banks stand to benefit from the lower fraud levels of chip-and-PIN cards but have been reluctant for years to invest in the new infrastructure(基础设施)needed for the technology, especially if consumers don't have access to it. It's a chicken-and-egg problem; no one wants to spend the money on upgraded point- of-sale systems that can read the chip cards if shoppers aren't carrying them 一yet there's little point in consumers' carrying the fancy plastic if stores aren't equipped to use them. (An earlier effort by Target to move to chip and PIN never gained progress.) According to Gumbley, there's a "you-first mentality. The logjam(僵局)has to be broken." [K] JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon recently expressed his willingness to do so, noting that banks and merchants have spent the past decade suing each other over interchange fees—the percentage of the transaction price they keep-rather than deal with the growing hacking problem. Chase offers a chip-enabled card under its own brand and several others for travel-related companies such as British Airways and Ritz-Carlton. [L]The Target and Neiman hacks have also changed the cost calculation: although retailers have been reluctant to spend the $6.75 billion that Capgemini consultants estimate it will take to convert all their registers to be chip-and-PIN-compatible, the potential liability they now face is dramatically greater. Target has been hit with class actions from hacked consumers. "It's the ultimate nightmare," a retail executive from a well-known chain admitted to TIME.

[M]The card-payment companies MasterCard and Visa are pushing hard for change. The two firms have warned all parties in the transaction chain 一merchant, network, bank 一that if they don't become EMV-compliant by October 2015, the party that is least compliant will bear the fraud risk.

[N]In the meantime, app-equipped smartphones and digital wallets—all of which can use EMV technology—are beginning to make inroads(侵袭)on cards and cash. PayPal, for instance, is testing an app that lets you use

your mobile phone to pay on the fly at local merchants—without surrendering any card information to them. And further down the road is biometric authentication, which could be encrypted with, say, a fingerprint.

[O]Credit and debit cards, though, are going to be with us for the foreseeable future, and so are hackers, if we stick with magstripe technology. "It seems crazy to me," says Gumbley, who is English, "that a cutting-edge- technology country is depending on a 40-year-old technology." That's why it may be up to consumers to move the needle on chip and PIN. Says Robertson: ……When y ou get the consumer into a position of worry and inconvenience, that's where the rubber hits the road."

46.It's best to use an EMV card for international travel.

47.Personal information on credit and debit cards is increasingly vulnerable to hacking.

48.The French card companies adopted EMV technology partly because of inefficient telephone service.

49.While many countries use the smarter EMV cards, the U.S. still clings to its old magstripe technology.

50.Attempts are being made to prevent hackers from carrying out identity theft.

51.Credit cards are much safer to use than debit cards.

52.Big banks have been reluctant to switch to more secure technology because of the higher costs involved.

53.The potential liability for retailers using magstripe is far more costly than upgrading their registers.

54.The use of magstripe cards by American retailers leaves consumers exposed to the risks of losing account


55.Consumers will be a driving force behind the conversion from magstripe to EMV technology.


Part IV Translation

汉朝是中国历史上最重要的朝代之一。汉朝统治期间有很多显著的成就。它最先向其他文化敞开大门,对外贸易兴旺。汉朝开拓的丝網之路通向了中西亚乃至罗马。各类艺术一派繁荣,涌现了很多文学、历史、哲学巨著。公元100 年中国第一部字典编撰完成,收入9000 个字,提供释义并列举不同的写法。其间,科技方面也取得了很大进步,发明了纸张、水钟、日暴(sundials)以及测量地震的仪器。汉朝历经400 年,但