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高二人教选修8 Unit1 课文和单词录音MP3免费下载(2)

双击单词可弹出解释框  时间:2012-05-30 07:53  作者:admin


Reading 1


CALIFORNIA
California is the third largest state in the USA but has the largest population. It also has the distinction of being the most multicultural state in the USA, having attracted people from all over the world. The customs and languages of the immigrants live on in their new home. This diversity of culture is not surprising when you know the history of California.
NATIVE AMERICANS
      Exactly when the first people arrived in what we now know as California, no one really knows. However, it is likely that Native Americans were living in California at least fifteen thousand years ago. Scientists believe that these settlers crossed the Bering Strait in the Arctic to America by means of a land bridge which existed in prehistoric times. In the 16th century, after the arrival of the Europeans, the native people suffered greatly. Thousands were killed or forced into slavery. In addition, many died from the diseases brought by the Europeans. However, some survived these terrible times, and today there are more Native Americans living in California than in any other state.
THE SPANISH
      In the 18th century, California was ruled by Spain. Spanish soldiers first arrived in South America in the early 16th century, when they fought against the native people and took their land. Two centuries later, the Spanish had settled in most parts of South America and along the northwest coast of what we now call the United States. Of the first Spanish to go to California, the majority were religious men, whose ministry was to teach the Catholic religion to the natives. In 1821, the people of Mexico gained their independence from Spain. California then became part of Mexico. However, in 1846 the United States declared war on Mexico, and after the war won by the USA, Mexico had to give California to the USA. However, there is still a strong Spanish influence in the state. That is why today over 40% of Californians speak Spanish as a first or second language.
RUSSIANS
      In the early 1800s, Russian hunters, who had originally gone to Alaska, began settling in California. Today there are about 25,000 Russian-Americans living in and around San Francisco.
GOLD MINERS
      In 1848, not long after the American-Mexican war, gold was discovered in California. The dream of becoming rich quickly attracted people from all over the world. The nearest, and therefore the first to arrive, were South Americans and people from the United States. Then adventurers from Europe and Asia soon followed. In fact, few achieved their dream of becoming rich. Some died or returned home, but most remained in California to make a life for themselves despite great hardship. They settled in the new towns or on farms. By the time California elected to become the thirty-first federal state of the USA in 1850, it was already a multicultural society.
LATER ARRIVALS
      Although Chinese immigrants began to arrive during the Gold Rush Period, it was the building of the rail network from the west to the east coast that brought even larger numbers to California in the 1860s. Today, Chinese-Americans live in all parts of California, although a large percentage have chosen to stay in the "Chinatowns" of Los Angeles and San Francisco.
      Other immigrants such as Italians, mainly fishermen but also wine makers, arrived in California in the late 19th century. In 1911 immigrants from Denmark established a town of their own, which today still keeps up their Danish culture. By the 1920s the film industry was well established in Hollywood, California. The industry boom attracted Europeans including many Jewish people. Today California has the second largest Jewish population in the United States.
      Japanese farmers began arriving in California at the beginning of the 20th century, and since the 1980s a lot more have settled there. People from Africa have been living in California since the 1800s, when they moved north from Mexico. However, even more arrived between 1942 and 1945 to work in the ship and aircraft industries.
MOST RECENT ARRIVALS
      In more recent decades, California has become home to people from Asia, including Koreans, Cambodians, Vietnamese and Laotians. Since its beginning in the 1970s, the computer industry has attracted Indians and Pakistanis to California.
THE FUTURE
      People from different parts of the world, attracted by the climate and lifestyle, still immigrate to California. It is believed that before long the mix of nationalities will be so great that there will be no distinct major racial or cultural groups, but simply a mixture of many races and cultures.

Reading 2


GEORGE'S DIARY 12TH-14TH JUNE
Monday 12th, June
Arrived early this morning by bus. Went straight to hotel to drop my luggage, shower and shave. Then went exploring. First thing was a ride on a cable car. From top of the hill got a spectacular view of San Francisco Bay and the city. Built in 1873, the cable car system was invented by Andrew Hallidie, who wanted to find a better form of transport than horse-drawn trams. Apparently he'd been shocked when he saw a terrible accident in which a tram's brakes failed, the conductor could not control the situation and the tram slipped down the hill dragging the horses with it.
      Had a late lunch at Fisherman's Wharf. This is the district where Italian fishermen first came to San Francisco in the late 19th century and began the fishing industry. Now it's a tourist area with lots of shops, sea food restaurants and bakeries. It's also the place to catch the ferry to Angel Island and other places in the Bay.
      Did so much exploring at Fisherman's Wharf. Am exhausted and don't feel like doing anything else. Early bed tonight!
Tuesday 13th, June
Teamed up with a couple from my hotel (Peter and Terri) and hired a car. Spent all day driving around the city. There's a fascinating drive marked out for tourists. It has blue and white signs with seagulls on them to show the way to go. It's a 79km round-trip that takes in all the famous tourist spots. Stopped many times to admire the view of the city from different angles and take photographs. Now have a really good idea of what the city's like.
      In evening, went to Chinatown with Peter and Terri. Chinese immigrants settled in this area in the 1850s. The fronts of the buildings are decorated to look like old buildings in southern China. Saw some interesting temples here, a number of markets and a grear many restaurants. Also art galleries and a museum containing documents, photographs and all sorts of objects about the history of Chinese immigration, but it is closed in the evening. Will go back during the day. Had a delicious meal and then walked down the hill to our hotel.
Wednesday 14th, June
In morning, took ferry to Angel Island from the port in San Francisco Bay. On the way had a good view of Golden Gate Bridge. From 1882 to 1940 Angel Island was a famous immigration station where many Chinese people applied for right to live in USA. The cells in the station were very small, cold and damp; some did not even have light but the immigrants had nowhere else to go. Their miserable stay seemed to be punishment rather than justice and freedom to them. They wrote poems on the walls about their loneliness and mourned their former life in China. In 1940 the civil authorities reformed the system so that many more Chinese people were able to grasp the opportunity of settling in the USA. Made me very thoughtful and thankful for my life today.
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