|http://www.sina.com.cn 2003/11/14 09:43 中图读者俱乐部|
However much we guard against it, we tend to shape ourselves in the eyes of others.
Those who don't know is not to blame; those who don't wish to know is a shame.
What is not fully understood is not possessed.
Dialogue 1: "Not Guilty"(无罪)
The police had arrested Woods for drunken driving, but he insisted he was sober.
Police said his eyes were glassy, his speech thick and his walk unsure.
Woods was taken to court. He pleaded not guilty and for an attorney.
Before a jury, the 47year old veteran heard himself accused.
His attorney, Carter, asked Woods to stand.
"It has been testified that your eyes were glassy，" the lawyer said gently.
The accused pointed to his glass eye, placed there after he had lost an eye in battle.
"It has been testified that your speech was thick,"the lawyer continued.
The defendant, speaking with difficulty, said, "I have partial paralysis of the throat. It resulted from one of the 27 injuries received in the line of duty in the Asia Pacific."
"It is also testified,"Carter went on, "that you failed to pick up a coin from off the floor."
"I had been injured in both legs and had undergone an operation in which part of a bone in one leg was used to replace the shattered bone in the other. So I was unable to stoop,"he said.
The jury returned its verdict quickly: "Not guilty."
Story 1: Mercury and His Statue
Mercury was one of the gods of Ancient Rome. Although only a lesser god, Mercury aspired to be more. So, one day, disguised as an ordinary man, he entered a sculptor's studioswhereshe saw statues of the gods and goddesses for sale. Eyeing a statue of Jupiter, one of the major gods, Mercury asked the price. "A crown,"the sculptor said. Mercury laughed for he thought that such a low price; maybe Jupiter was not that important after all. Then he asked the price of a statue of Juno, another major god. "Half a crown,"said the sculptor. This seemed to please Mercury who thought that surely his likeness would command a much higher price. So, pointing to a statue of himself, he proudly asked its price. "Oh, I'll give that one free if you buy the other two."
Story 2: Who Did It?
In a small compartment on a train,there were four people: an American grandmother with her attractive young granddaughter, a Mr. Wonderful, and Mr. Evil. As the train passed through a dark tunnel, the lights went out and all that was heard was a loud kiss and an even louder slap. No one spoke, but as the train emerged from the tunnel and the lights went back on, the grandmother thought: Well, I'm glad that my granddaughter didn't allow anyone to kiss her without slapping his face. And the granddaughter thought: Isn't it peculiar that one of these men would kiss grandmother. It's even stranger that she would slap him so hard without saying anything. And Mr. Evil thought: This Mr. Wonderful sure is clever. He kisses the girl and I get slapped. And Mr. Wonderful thought: What a clever fellow I am. I make a kissing noise and get a chance to slap Mr. Evil.
Story 3: Jack and Jill
Jack feels Jill is greedy. Jill feels jack is mean. That is, Jack feels Jill wants too much from him whereas Jill feels jack does not give her enough. Moreover, Jack feels that Jill is mean as well as greedy. And Jill feels that jack is greedy as well as mean. Each feels that the other has and is withholding what he or she needs. Moreover, Jack does not feel he is either greedy or mean himself, nor does Jill. Jack, however, realizes that Jill thinks he is mean, and Jill realizes that Jack thinks she is greedy. In view of the fact that Jack feels he is already overgenerous, he resents being regarded as mean. In view of the fact that Jill feels she puts up with so little, she resents being regarded as greedy. Since Jack feels generous but realizes that Jill thinks he is mean, and since Jill feels deprived and realizes that Jack thinks she is greedy, each resents the other and retaliates. If, after all I've put up with, you feel that I'm greedy, then I'm not going to be so forbearing in the future. If, after all I've given you, you feel I'm mean, then you're not getting anything from me anymore. The circle is whirling and becomes increasingly vicious. Jack becomes increasingly exhausted by Jill's greed and Jill becomes increasingly starved by Jack's meanness. Their relationship eventually breaks up.
It is important to distinguish facts from inferences to achieve effective perceiving. A fact is something that you know to be true, on the basis of observation. You see a woman walking down the street carrying a briefcase. The statement "That woman is carrying a briefcase" is a fact. If the woman with the briefcase has a frown on her face, you may state, "That woman is unhappy." This second statement is an inference, since it cannot be verified.
Anybody ever hear of the story of the blind men and the elephant? The story is about five blind friends who decide to learn about the elephant-a creature that they had heard of but that they had never experienced firsthand. The five split up to find out what they could about the elephant and then came back to meet and compare notes.
"The elephant," said the first blind man, "is very much like a snake."
"No," said the second. "The elephant is very much like a rope."
The other friends had different replies. One said an elephant is like a large leaf, another said it was like the trunk of a tree, and the last one said that the elephant is like an immense wall.
The blind men get /into/ a terrible fight.
How could they have avoided this?
Each blind man in the story had become a specialist on one part of the elephant and refused to acknowledge that there may be something that he did not know.
All of the blind men were right on their own perception. Together, if they figured out how to learn from one another, they would have also been right and would have benefited from their differing viewpoints to know more about elephants than any single one of them could by acting alone.
Taking the perspective of the other person and looking at the world through this perspective, this point of view, rather than through your own is crucial in achieving mutual understanding. For each of the specific behaviors listed below, identify specific circumstances that would lead to a positive perception and specific circumstances that might lead to a negative perception. The first one is done for you.
1. Giving a beggar in the street a twentydollar bill. Positive perception: Lucy once had to beg to get money for food. She now shares all she has with those who are like she once was.Negative perception: Lucy is a first class snob. She just wanted to impress her friends, to show them that she has so much money she can afford to give 20 to a total stranger.
2. Ignoring a homeless person who asks for money.
3. A middleaged man walking down the street with his arms around a teenage girl.
4. A mother refusing to admit her teenage son back /into/ her house.You may evaluate the very same specific behavior positively or negatively depending on your own experience and steyetypes. Clearly, if you're to understand the perspective of another person, you need to understand the reasons for their behaviors and need to resist defining circumstances from your own perspective.
How Accurate Are You at Perception?(你的理解能力有多强？)
Respond to each of the following statements with TRUE if the statement is usually accurate in describing your behavior. Respond with FALSE if the statement is usually inaccurate in describing your behavior. (Of course, when you take a test like this, you can often figure out the "right" answers and give these rather than really think about your own behaviors. Try to resist this very natural tendency to give the socially acceptable responses in this test as well as in similar tests throughout this text.
--1. I base most of my impressions of people on the first few minutes of our meeting.
--2. When I know some things about another person I fill in what I don't know.
--3. I make predictions about people's behaviors that generally prove to be true.
--4. I have clear ideas of what people of different national, racial, and religious groups are really like.
--5. I reserve making judgments about people until I learn a great deal about them and see then in a variety of situations.
--6. On the basis of my observations of people, I formulate guesses about them (which I am willing to revise) rather than firm conclusions.
--7. I pay special attention to people's behaviors that might contradict my initial impressions.
--8. I delay formulating conclusions about people until I have lots of evidence.
--9. I avoid making assumptions about what is going on in some one else's head on the basis of their behaviors.
--10. I recognize that people are different, and I don't assume that everyone else is like me.
This brief perception test was designed to raise questions we will consider in this unit and not to provide a specific "perception score." The first four questions represent distortions of some common processes influencing perception. Ideally you would have responded FALSE to these four questions. Questions 5-10 represent guidelines for increasing accuracy in perceptions. Ideally you would have responded with TRUE to these six questions.
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