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新浪首页 > 新浪教育 > 《掌握英语口语》 > 13:HUMILITY

http://www.sina.com.cn 2003/11/16 18:40  中图读者俱乐部





  Chinese Proverb

  The more noble, the more humble.


  Pride goes before destruction.


  American Proverb

  Too much humility is pride.


  Honesty is the best policy.




  Dialogue 1Well Done(干得好)

  Bob: You did a fabulous job on that report.

  Chang: We did our best. I wish we’d had more time.

  Bob: For what? It really couldn’t have been better.

  Chang: I wouldn’t like to think so.

  Bob: You mean you left something out?

  Chang: What do you mean by saying that?







  Dialogue 2

  In his book“The Importance of Being KeQi,”Yao Wei offers an example of Chinese humility. A Chinese carpenter who has emigrated to the United States goes to a furniture company looking for a job. He is a highly skilled maker of tables with twenty-five years of experience. Yao portrays the interview dialogue as follows.

  Employer: Have you done carpentry work before?

  Carpenter: I don’t dare say that I have. I have just been in a very modest way involved in the carpenter trade.

  Employer: What are you skilled in then?

  Carpenter: I won’t say“skilled.”I have only a little experience in making tables.

  Employer: Can you make something now and show us how good you are?

  Carpenter: How dare I be so indiscreet as to demonstrate my crude skills in front of a master of the trade like you.

  An American employer at this point might very well show the humble Chinese applicant to the door. But, were he to persist in requesting a sample, the Chinese carpenter would finally (and with continuing expressions of humility as he worked) fashion a veritable work of art, which no doubt, he would describe as the work of a beginner even as the employer admired his speed and skill.











  In comparison with the Americans, the humble comunication style is favorable for the Chinese.




  Humility applies not only to conversational practices but also to other types of social situations. An amusing example occurs when a large number of Chinese prepare themselves for asgroupsphotograph. All understand that the front row, especially the center-front location, is the place of honor and recognize that proper humility requires that they not willingly place themselves in the front. Even the senior people usually try to remain away from the front row, with the result that everyone begins to crowd /into/ the back rows. After some good-natured scuffling and earnest appeals from the junior members and the photographer to the senior ones, the situation resolves itself properly.




  How Humble Are You?

  1. You help another person save a child from a burning building and then leave the scene. The next day, the press is calling YOU the“hero”. Would you set the record straight?

  2. If you made it big, would you go to your high school reunion just to show off?

  3. You suspect that your significant other has cheated on you and in retaliation you have a short fling. Months later you find out your suspisions about your partner are wrong. Do you apologize and admit your own indiscretion?

  4. Do you think your obituary should be a full article with a picture?

  5. You overhear your significant other say you are the best lover they’ve ever had. Do you think: They’re rightI am.

  6. When you daydream about your tombstone, it reads: Loved by all.

  7. Are you a dynamo in the sack?

  8. Do you have framed pictures of yourself alone, with no one else in the photodisplayed in your house? Don’t lie!

  9. Would you hire someone smarter than you?

  10. Do you ask what your country can do for you rather than what you can do for your country?

  For the above items, the more you answer yes, the less humble you are.

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