Uncharted Territory

自分が読んで興味深く感じた英文記事を中心に取り上げる予定です

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英検問題が公開

 
今回の英検問題が公開されたのですね。英検は合否からスコアに変わりましたが、資格試験では下記の違いを意識したいです。

問題が解けるレベル
内容全体を理解できるレベル
楽に理解できるレベル

呼吸を整えて集中力を高めて問題を解いて全問正解するレベルもすごいですが、やっぱり鼻歌混じりに解けるようになるのが本当にできるレベルなのでしょう。まあ、もちろん英検1級でそんなレベルを目指すのは負担が大きいので一般英語学習者には無理な注文ですが。。。

内容が興味深かったのでリスニングのパート4を取り上げます。3分40秒くらいですから160-170語/分のスピードでしょうか。そんなに早口ではないですね。

Words checked = [543]
Words in Oxford 3000™ = [89%]

オックスフォード基本語3000になかった単語もそんなに高度なものではないです。

applaud / assign / bureaucracy / interviewer / mundane / portray / recruit / savvy / selective / trade-off / undergo / volunteer

Yuta自身も外国人と一緒に仕事をしていますので彼の発言に非常に共感を覚えました。食事の仕方や仕事の進め方は日本人と大きく違ったりしますが、根本的なところは同じなんですよね。すぐに違いをセンセーショナルに取り上げてしまいがちですが共通する部分は大切にしたいです。日本語はYutaのざっくり訳です。

I: How did your experience relate to the way that the media often portrays Muslim nations these days?

(ご自身の経験から見て最近のムスリム諸国に対する報道の仕方はどうでしょうか)
MS: Well, I think we have to understand, when looking at any culture through the media or through a university classroom, we’re always getting a very, very narrow perspective. And even as a 21-year-old university student, I think I was savvy enough to know that. And so one of the reasons I wanted to go there was, basically, to see for myself. Even then, I understood that if you really want to know, you have to go. And so I did.
(理解しなくてはいけないと思うのは、メディアを通して、または大学の授業を通して文化を見ると、いつだってとてもとても狭い視点しか得られないということです。21歳の大学生だった時でさえ、私はそのことを分かっていたと思います。現地に行きたかった理由には、根本的には自分で見たいといことがあったのです。当時でさえ、本当に知りたければ行くしかないということを理解していたのです。だから私は行ったのです)
And what I discovered was that the average Moroccan, underneath this layer of a very different culture, is not unlike the average anybody. He’s worried about making a living, he’s worried about educating his children, providing for their future, providing for his old age, keeping employed. In other words, they worry very much about the same mundane things that everybody else does.

(私が見出したのは平均的なモロッコ人は、とても異なる文化というベールの下には、どこにでもいる平均的な人物となんら変わらないことでした。生計を立てるのに心配をしていたり、子供たちの教育や子供たちの将来のために与えてあげることに悩んだり、雇用が続くか気にしています。つまり、彼らの目下の関心事は同じような日常的なもので他の皆と変わりません)


今回のトピックはPeace Corps。やはりオックスフォードの方が説明が丁寧です。

(ロングマン)
Peace Corps, the
a US government organization that aims to help poorer countries, by sending them volunteers (=people who work without payment), especially young people, who teach skills in education, health, farming etc


(オックスフォード)
the Peace Corps
a US organization that sends young Americans to work in other countries without pay in order to create international friendship
Culture
President John F Kennedy began the Peace Corps in 1961 with the aim of helping other countries in the fields of health, education, farming, etc. and so developing international friendship.

大学卒業したての若者が行くことが多かったとインタビューでも述べていましたが、経験者はちょくちょく見かけますよね。随分昔の例ですが、今ではアメリカの朝の顔となっているGeorge Stephanopoulosの本を読んでいた時にも登場していました。日本に来るALTみたいなノリがPeace Corpsにあるかもしれません。




PROLOGUE
All Too Human
A Political Education

By GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS
Little Brown & Company

By 1982, my senior year, I still didn't know what I would do with my life. Law school seemed like the natural choice: finishing school for ambitious liberal arts majors who didn't know exactly what they wanted to do. It would also meet the Greek standard for achievement. The only problem with law school was that when it was over I would be in real danger of becoming a lawyer.

I almost leaped in a completely different direction. As a volunteer Big Brother whose major was international politics, I was drawn to the Peace Corps and applied one day on an impulse. Around eight the next morning, I got a call from the on-campus recruiter: "George, you're in. We've got a spot, but you have to say yes right now." I did, and went back to sleep. An hour later, I made a pot of coffee and wondered what I had done. Teaching English in Tunisia seemed like good work, but it didn't speak to the part of me that wanted to play on a bigger stage, in a world where a single act could affect the lives of millions. It didn't satisfy my drive for secular success. After my second cup, I called back and said no.


まあ、彼の場合は参加を見送ったのですが(苦笑)ある程度のレベルになると英語以外の知識・経験が大切になってくるんで英検1級などの問題でもいいので幅広く学んでいくのは重要なことだと思います。
スポンサーサイト
 

英検チックな文章が読めるサイト

 
英検1級に出てくるような文章を探すのは結構大変ですよね。Timeのように時事的なものが英検で取り上げられるわけではないし、Scientific Americanのように科学的なものはそれほど出題されません。それにTimeもScientific Americanもカバーストーリーだと英検よりはるかに長い文章になってしまいます。そもそもカバーストーリーが普通に読めれば英検1級なんて簡単に思えますから英検なんて興味がなくなるでしょう。

文章がそんなに長くなく、学術寄りのトピックを扱っているサイトがありました。JSTORという学術論文を扱っているサイトです。トピックも多岐に渡っています。

BY JAMES MACDONALD MARCH 23, 2016
PEACE AND QUIET? NOT UNDERWATER


BY DWYER GUNN MARCH 1, 2016
DO NATIONAL PARKS AND MONUMENTS MAKE ECONOMIC SENSE?


BY HILLARY WATERMAN MARCH 23, 2016
ON MEN AND WOMEN’S PUBLIC SPEECH


BY TARA ISABELLA BURTON MARCH 9, 2016
SATANISM AND MAGIC IN THE AGE OF THE MOULIN ROUGE

 

(続)英検と現実社会をつなぐ

 
英検の長文の大問は米国憲法が取り上げられていました。アメリカ建国の父の一人で憲法制定にも深く関わったアレクサンダー・ハミルトンの舞台が昨年から大人気のようですね。ちょうど1月の60ミニッツにも登場していました。日本では埋め込みできなかったのでPBS Newshourの方を代わりに紹介します。リンク先では見ることができます。



ハミルトンは日本人には馴染みがない政治家ですがロングマンやオックスフォードは見出語として掲載しています。それぞれ載せているエピソードに多少の違いがありますが。。。

(Cultural Literacy Dictionary)
Hamilton, Alexander
A soldier and political leader of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries; one of the Founding Fathers of the United States. Hamilton advised George Washington in the Revolutionary War, wrote most of the essays in The Federalist Papers, and was a leader in the drafting of the Constitution. He later served under Washington as the first secretary of the treasury in the new government. A Federalist, he was opposed politically by Thomas Jefferson and both politically and personally by Aaron Burr (see Jeffersonianism versus Hamiltonianism ). Burr challenged Hamilton to a duel, in which Burr killed him ( see Burr-Hamilton duel ).

(オックスフォード)
Alexander Hamilton
(c. 1757-1804) one of America's Founding Fathers. He fought in the American Revolution, was one of the writers of The Federalist Papers, and established and led the Federalist Party. Hamilton was the first US Secretary of the Treasury (1789-95) and established the central Bank of the United States. He died after Vice-President Aaron Burr (1756-1836) wounded him in a duel (= a fight with guns to settle a quarrel).

(ロングマン)
Hamilton, Alexander
(?1755-1804) a US politician who helped to write the Constitution of the United States and was the first US Secretary of the Treasury from 1789 to 1795. Alexander Hamilton's picture is printed on the US ten-dollar bill.


開演当初はOff Broadway舞台だったのが人気でたためBroadwayの上演になったようです。あまりに人気がでているため偽物のチケットが出回るようになってしまっているとか。。。

Theatergoers, Desperate to See ‘Hamilton,’ Fall Prey to Ticket Forgers
By MICHAEL WILSON JAN. 17, 2016


Jason arranged to meet the seller on a Manhattan street corner on Dec. 31. He bought two tickets for $600 as an anniversary gift for his wife. You’re going to love the show, the seller told him. It’s as good as everyone says.

Jason and his wife arrived at the Richard Rodgers Theater lobby on Jan. 2. There they remained after all the other ticket holders were seated and the show began. A woman and her date stood nearby, also locked out. The woman was crying.

They all thought they had gotten their hands on the hottest tickets in town — to “Hamilton” — but their tickets weren’t hot. They were fake.

Counterfeit tickets to events of all kinds abound. Fake tickets promising entry to everything from the Super Bowl to a humble Times Square comedy club have been described in this column. Representatives of other theaters and the Broadway League suggested that while counterfeit tickets were rare on Broadway, they had turned up at popular shows such as “The Book of Mormon” and “The Producers.”


公演劇場のサイトに行ってみたのですが、劇場の観客はpatronが使われていました。TOEIC学習者にはなじみがある後ですね。

PATRON POLICIES

Dress Code:
There is no dress code at the theatre. For all performances, attire should be comfortable and appropriate for the occasion. The theatre is air conditioned during the summer months.

Policy for Children:
All persons entering the theatre, regardless of age, must have a ticket.

Late Seating Policy:
The seating procedure for latecomers varies by seat section. Generally speaking, late patrons who are seated in the front orchestra are held in the auditorium until approximately fifteen minutes after the performance begins after which time patrons are escorted directly to their seats by an usher. Video monitors displaying the performance are provided in the lobby.

Policy on Smoking:
Smoking (including e-cigarettes) is prohibited in the Richard Rodgers Theatre.


このラップミュージカルはRon Chernowが書いたハミルトンの伝記に着想を得たということで早速買って読み始めたのですが、なにぶん大著のためちっとも進みません(汗)
 

英検と現実社会をつなぐ

 
英検の問題が公開されたようで早速確認したところ、アメリカの刑務所改革について出題されていました。

Incarceration in the United States
Although the United States accounts for just 5 percent of the world’s population, it holds nearly a quarter of the world’s prisoners. With around 2.2 million inmates, it incarcerates more of its citizens than any other nation. This statistic becomes even more astonishing in light of the fact that during the 1970s, there were only about 300,000 prisoners in the U.S. penal system. The rise has left correctional facilities bursting at the seams, drained the nation financially, and drawn intense criticism internationally.


ちょっと大げさなタイトルをつけましたが、たまたま今週初めにオバマ大統領が独房改革についてワシントンポストに寄稿していたので紹介させていただきます。昨年の夏に刑務所視察もしているそうですね。

オバマ氏、現職米大統領として初の連邦刑務所視察
2015年07月17日 10:07 発信地:エルレノ/米国
【7月17日 AFP】バラク・オバマ(Barack Obama)米大統領は16日、米オクラホマ(Oklahoma)州エルレノ(El Reno)にある連邦刑務所を視察した。現職の米大統領が連邦刑務所を訪れたのは初めて。オバマ大統領は、受刑者であふれ巨額の費用がかかっているとされる刑務所制度の改革を推進している。

 オバマ大統領が訪れたのは、エルレノ連邦矯正施設(El Reno Federal Correctional Institution)の「B」ブロック。薬物関連の罪で服役中の受刑者6人と面会した。

 米国の人口は世界の人口の5%にも満たないにもかかわらず、世界全体の受刑者のうちほぼ4分の1が米国内の刑務所に収容されている


英検の問題は受刑者増加の背景についての考察なので今回の大統領の寄稿内容とは直結しないのですが、以下のように改革の提言を述べたパラグラフの後に具体例として成果をあげている州を紹介しているあたりの論の進め方は参考になりますね。

Barack Obama: Why we must rethink solitary confinement
By Barack Obama January 25
Barack Obama is president of the United States.

The Justice Department has completed its review, and I am adopting its recommendations to reform the federal prison system. These include banning solitary confinement for juveniles and as a response to low-level infractions, expanding treatment for the mentally ill and increasing the amount of time inmates in solitary can spend outside of their cells. These steps will affect some 10,000 federal prisoners held in solitary confinement — and hopefully serve as a model for state and local corrections systems. And I will direct all relevant federal agencies to review these principles and report back to me with a plan to address their use of solitary confinement.

States that have led the way are already seeing positive results. Colorado cut the number of people in solitary confinement, and assaults against staff are the lowest they’ve been since 2006. New Mexico implemented reforms and has seen a drop in solitary confinement, with more prisoners engaging in promising rehabilitation programs. And since 2012, federal prisons have cut the use of solitary confinement by 25 percent and significantly reduced assaults on staff.


全体的な内容について触れている部分は以下になるでしょうか。But too many others, especially nonviolent drug offenders, are serving unnecessarily long sentences.は英検で触れていましたね。

Reforming solitary confinement is just one part of a broader bipartisan push for criminal justice reform. Every year, we spend $80 billion to keep 2.2 million people incarcerated. Many criminals belong behind bars. But too many others, especially nonviolent drug offenders, are serving unnecessarily long sentences. That’s why members of Congress in both parties are pushing for change, from reforming sentencing laws to expanding reentry programs to give those who have paid their debt to society the tools they need to become productive members of their communities. And I hope they will send me legislation as soon as possible that makes our criminal justice system smarter, fairer, less expensive and more effective.

「英検に受かるためには過去問をやれば十分」というのは確かにその通りですが、現状を考慮しながら作成されていることは確かなようです。
 

固有名詞は発音も気をつけて

 
こないだの英検の過去問が公開されたのですね。英検の選ぶトピックはなかなか興味深いものが多いですね。今回の記事で取り上げるのは最後の長文問題。

The Tammany Legacy
In spite of the notorious corruption of Tammany Hall and the opportunism shown by politicians like Murphy, historian Terry Golway feels the organization’s tarnished legacy should be reassessed. Tammany politicians were undeniably self-serving, he acknowledges, but they also aided the lowest members of society, who, in that era before welfare and social security, would have starved, frozen to death, or died in prison without support.

問題で登場していたTerry Golwayさんが出ている番組がYoutubeにありました。昨年Machine Madeという本を出したのですね。ということは、今話題になっているものが来年の問題に反映されるのかもしれません。2分あたりの部分が英検でも取り上げられたところにあたるでしょうか。この番組ではPolitical Machineをプーチン政権に見出しています。



2分あたりから
When you say “Tammany Hall” now, I think the word association is corruption and maybe there's not any other word that's associated with it in the modern mind. Tammany Hall was corruption. it was thuggery. it was all sorts of stuff. what else was it that people should know about it that they forget?
Tammany Hall was about social reform. Tammany Hall was about minimum wage, Tammany Hall was making live easier for immigrants. tammany hall was a voice for the voiceless. Tammany Hall was a friend for the friendless. And that part of Tammany's History which was so important in understanding how immigrants became Americans, how the working poor took a step up the ladder, that's Tammany's story.


今回のタイトルは以前Tammany Hallの聞き取りに苦労したことがあったからです。Tammany Hallの知識がないと「タムニホー」って渾然一体となって聞こえてしまいがちです。以前のブログを抜粋させていただきます。

冒頭の動画でWhen you say “Tammany Hall” now, I think the word association is corruptionとありますが、『アメリカ英語背景辞典』で紹介してくれている例文もまさにそのような典型的な意味で使われています。

(以前のブログの抜粋)
下記の動画は雑誌TIMEの著者に聞く10の質問と言うコーナーです。権力と言うと"Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely."という言葉が有名ですが、Power can cleanse as well as corruptやPower corrupts, but you say power also reveals.という側面についても語っていたのが興味深かったです。



(2分あたりから)
One of my favorite lines in your book is that you say “Power corrupts, but power also reveals.” I wonder if you could explain what you mean by that.
Sure. Power as you see in my books in the cases someone like Sam Rayburn or in Power Broker Alfred E. Smith. Power can cleanse as well as corrupt. Al Smith is a henchman, a ruthless henchman for Tammany Hall. Till he becomes a governor, then he goes to Tammany Hall and he says “You must free me. What you must do now is to pay a social welfare legislation for our people”. That’s an example of cleansing.

What power always does is reveal. Because when a man or a woman has enough power to do exactly what they want. Then we know what it is that they really wanted all along.



And then Johnson who had voted against Civil Rights legislation so many times that he was the guy who put that through. So you are suggesting that’s what he had always wanted.

That’s a perfect example: Power always reveals. When he was in college, he took time offf to earn money teaching Mexican kids. In Congress he voted against civil rights legislation many times. But when he became President, he told an aide, "I'll tell you a secret. I swore to myself that if I ever had the power to help these kids, I would do it. Now I have the power, and I tell you something. I intend to use it."


インターネット時代にじっくりと書いていくことについて答えている部分もなかなか深い答えだったのでご紹介します。I always have to write stories on what I still had questions that I wanted to ask.やTo me, time equals truth.、the more facts you manage to obtain, the closer you will come to whatever truth there is.という言葉は、30年以上もかけてジョンソンの伝記を書いている彼がいうからこそ重みがあります。

(4分45秒あたりから)
I wonder what you think of the speed and brevity of the information age in which we now live?

Well, it’s very foreign to me. You know, to me, when you said why did you leave journalism, it’s because I always have to write stories on what I still had questions that I wanted to ask. To me, time is truth. To me, time equals truth. I mean, there is no one truth, but there are an awful lot of objective facts, and the more facts you manage to obtain, the closer you will come to whatever truth there is. That’s something you can do in writing books. It’s not really something you can do in daily jouranlism.



今回のディクテーションで一番苦労したのがTammany Hallという単語でした。最初はゴニョゴニョしか聞き取れなかったのですが、十何回目かに「ホー」という発音からAlfred E. Smithのウィキペディアから何とか突きとめることができました。オックスフォード学習辞典にも載っている単語ですが、文化的・歴史的な単語は難しいですね。

タマニー・ホール(Tammany Hall)とは1790年代から1960年代にかけてに存在したアメリカ民主党の派閥、関連機関。

(オックスフォード)
Tammany Hall

a dishonest political organization that had a lot of influence in New York City in the 19th and early 20th centuries (sometimes used to refer to any dishonest political organization)
She turned the club's financial committee into Tammany Hall.

こういうときに頼りになる『アメリカ英語背景辞典』には以下のように載っていました。

Tammany Hall
「タマニーホール」
ニューヨーク市の昔の建物の名前である。1860年代に、民主党の政治家がタマニーホールを根城にしてニューヨークの市政を牛耳ったことで有名である。新来の移民に職を世話して、移民票を意のままに操作したといわれる。Tammany Hallは「ボス政治の本拠」の意味で用いられる。



Since he was elected, Clinton has shown some fancy footwork that definitely didn’t come out of Hope, or even Little Rock. It seems “a little bit Wall Street and quite a bit Tammany Hall.” (The American Banker, March 1, 1994)


クリントンは、大統領に当選して以来、ときおり軽快なフットワークを見せるが、それは、生まれ故郷の町ホープや、知事の座にあったリトルロックの町に由来するものでないことは確かである。それは、「金儲けのウォールストリートがちょっぴり、ボス政治のタマニーホールがたっぷり」のように見える。

これはpolitical machineと捉えてよさそうですね。昔の自民党政治みたいな感じのようです。

(ロングマン)
political machine 
American English
the system used by people with the same political interests to make sure that political decisions give advantages to themselves or to their group:
the Chicago mayor's political machine



When you say “Tammany Hall” now, I think the word association is corruptionとあるように、その固有名詞で連想されるイメージというのがあります。英検1級の教養的側面は英語の運用力をあげる上では無用かもしれませんが、そのような言葉のイメージをつかむ上ではとても重要です。日本の事象については意識しなくてもこのような知識は身につくのですが、外国語の場合は意識的に学ぶ必要があります。英検1級はその点、バランス良くいろいろなことを学べるのでいいですね。
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Yuta

Author:Yuta
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