大學英語六級題庫/閱讀理解 Section B

A. cynic, Ambrose Bierce remarked in his "Devil's Dictionary", is "a blackguard ( 無賴,惡棍) whose faulty vision sees things as they are, not as they ought to be." Inthe century that has elapsed since Bierce's death, science has caught up with him.Cynicism, in all its guises, really may make us see the world more realistically--though at a high personal cost.

B. The phenomenon, which psychologists call "depressive realism", was first identifiedby Lauren Alloy and Lyn Abramson, psychologists at Northwestern and the StateUniversity of New York at Stony Brook, respectively, who were studying the illusionthat people often have of being in control when, in reality, they are not. In 1979, theytook two groups of college students--one depressed, one not--and had them estimatehow much control they had over a green light that would either turn on or not whenthey pressed a button. In reality, there was never a perfect correlation between theaction and the event. The light would sometimes turn on when the student pressed thebutton, and sometimes when he didn't. What varied from student to student was thefrequency with which the action corresponded with a result. The researchers found.that the depressed individuals were much better at identifying those instances whenthey had little control over the outcomes, while the non-depressed students tended tooverestimate their degree of influence over the light.
C. The difference became even more interesting when Alloy and Abramson added money
into the experiment. In some cases, the light was linked to losing money. Participantsstarted out with five dollars and gradually lost it, quarter by quarter, as the lightdidn't respond to their actions. In the other cases, the light signaled financial gain;participants started with nothing but received a quarter each time the light went on. Atthe end, each person in the first situation emerged having lost five dollars, and each inthe second having won five dollars.
D. When the researchers asked the participants how much control they thought they'dhad throughout the experiment, those who weren't depressed reported havingsignificantly more control than they actually had--but only when they won. Whenthey lost, they estimated that they had much less control than was the case. Thedepressed participants, on the other hand, were far more accurate in their judgments.Depression, Alloy and Abramson concluded, had prevented an unwarranted ( 毫無根據的 ) illusion of control when someone won--and had provided a sense ofresponsibility when someone lost. In the years since Alloy and Abramson's initialstudies, depressive realism has also been shown to arise from general pessimism and,yes, from cynicism.
E. By 1992, Alloy and Abramson had replicated their findings in numerous contexts. Notonly were depressed individuals more realistic in their judgments, they argued, butthe very illusion of being in control held by those who weren't depressed was likelyprotecting them from depression. In other words, the rose-colored glow, no matterhow unwarranted, helped people to maintain a healthier mental state. Depression bredobjectivity. A lack of objectivity led to a healthier, more adaptive, and more resilient (能復原的 ) mind-set.
F. Why would that be the case? As it turns out, the way we explain the world canhave very real effects on our physical and emotional well-being--both positive andnegative. It's a phenomenon that the Harvard University psychologist Daniel Gilberthas called the "psychological immune system", a feedback loop between how wethink and how we feel. If we think more optimistically, we tend to feel better, whichin tum makes us think more optimistically.
 G. The notion that our outlook on life is connected to our well-being is not a new one.In the nineteen-sixties, the University of Connecticut psychologist Julian Rotterproposed that we could view extemal events in one of two lights: either we controlledthem or they were the result of something in the environment. He found thatsuccessful people tended to follow the same patterns. They took credit for successes,and they reasoned away negative events.
 H. A decade later, the University of Massachusetts Bobbi Fibel and W psychologistsDaniel Hale realized that the effect went even further: when you thought you'd dowell--a mind-set that they termed a "generalized expectancy of success"--you weremore likely to be shielded from negative life events. It didn't matter whether youwere in control; what mattered was your belief that you had good things coming toyou. Positive expectations generally lead to positive results.
 I. Most recently, the psychologists Michael Scheier and Charles Carver have takenthe insight further still: the positive buffer comes from neither simply control norexpectation alone. Instead, it's your general outlook on life, or, as they call it, your "lifeorientation". Their Life Orientation Test, or LOT, measures how a person respondsto a set of statements that range from "I hardly expect things to go my way" to "Inuncertain times, I usually expect the best." Positive responses are associated withgeneralized success and negative responses are related to depression and helplessness.
J .In a review of the field, Carver and Scheier have further expanded their initialfindings to show that increased optimism, after controlling for other factors, alsoleads to improved career success, strengthens friendships and marriages, protectsagainst loneliness later in life, lowers the risk of heart disease and mortality ( 死亡率 ) in wome.n, protects against strokes, helps to reduce the need for rehospitalization ( 重復住院) following surgery, and improves sleep quality in children. In all cases, optimism serves as a shield, allowing us to see the world in a light that is more helpful to our own mental and physical well-being.
K. It all comes back, Daniel Gilbert says, to expectations. When we expect to do well, we push on. When we set our sights lower, we balk at signs of resistance. Depressive realists and cynics set themselves lower goals to begin with and then give up when they find that they are falling short. As everyone's favorite pessimist, A. A. Milne's Eeyore, tells Pooh, "We can't all, and some of us don't. That's all there is to it." His expectations are so low that the effort doesn't seem worth it. The negative view is self-fulfilling: you set lower expectations, do less, achieve less, and experience a worse outcome, which in turn conforms to your initial negative views.
 L. Of course, unwarranted optimism, too, comes with a price. It's Tigger, the unrelenting( 不屈不饒的 ) optimist, who finds himself eating thistles, stuck in trees, and otherwise caught in all manner of inopportune situations. When we're overconfident and think we're in control of situations when we're not, we may find ourselves overreaching and persisting in hopeless tasks. It's a fine balance. Set your goals too high, and the effects on health can be just as perilous ( 危險的,不利的) . Aspire to an Olympic medal in figure skating when you can barely clear a double Axel, and you're doomed to disappointment.
M. Still, it seems that, at least as far as the research goes, it's far healthier to think like Tigger than like Eeyore.

1.[選詞填空]According to the researches that have been done so far, it's much healthier to be over- optimistic than to have low expectation and make little effort.
    2.[選詞填空]Carver and Scheier found that increased optimism can benefit our mental and physicalhealth.
      3.[選詞填空]Cynicism may actually enable us to have a clearer understanding of the world in a realistic way. 
        4.[選詞填空]Overconfident people will have to pay for their baseless optimism. 
          5.[選詞填空]Setting unrealistically high goals will put our health in danger.
            6.[選詞填空]In the 1970s, psychologists found that when you thought you'd do well, you were lesslikely to experience bad things in life.
              7.[選詞填空]The way we think of the world can influence our physical and emotional well-being both positively and negatively.
                8.[選詞填空]Optimism, no matter how unrealistic it is, can improve people's mental health.
                  9.[選詞填空]Depressive realists and cynics tend to set lower goals and easily give up.
                    10.[選詞填空]It has already been proposed by Julian Rotter in the 1960s that we would view external events either as a result of environment or something under our control.
                      參考答案: M,J,A,L,L,H,F,E,K,G