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2016-05-16 19:35:16






Almost every day we see something in the papers about the latest exciting developments in the space race. Photographs are regularly flashed to the earth from thousands and even millions of miles away. They are printed in our newspapers and shown on our television screens as a visible proof of man’s newest achievements. The photographs neatly sum up the results of these massive efforts to ‘conquer space’ and at the same time they expose the absurdity of the undertaking. All we can see is an indistinguishable blob which is supposed to represent a planet seen from several thousand miles away. We are going to end up with a little moon-dust and a few stones which will be put behind glass in some museum. This is hardly value for money when you think that our own earth can provide countless sights which are infinitely more exciting and spectacular.

The space race is not simply the objective search for knowledge it is often made out to be. It is just an extension of the race for power on earth. Only the wealthiest nations can compete and they do so in the name of pure scientific research. But in reality, all they are interested in is power and prestige. They want to impress us, their spectators, with a magnificent show of strength. Man has played the power game ever since he appeared on earth. Now he is playing it as it has never been played before. The space race is just another aspect of the age-old argument that ‘might is right’.

We are often told that technological know-how, acquired in attempting to get us into orbit, will be utilized to make life better on earth. But what has the space race done to relieve the suffering of the earth’s starving millions? In what way has it raised the standard of living of any one of us? As far as the layman is concerned, the practical results of all this expenditure of money and effort are negligible. Thanks to space research, we can now see television pictures transmitted live half-way across the globe and the housewife can use non-stick frying-pans in the kitchen. The whole thing becomes utterly absurd when you think that no matter what problems man overcomes, it is unlikely that he will ever be able to travel even to the nearest star.







Absurdity n. 荒谬, 悖理, 荒谬的言行

例句:The fallacy has been exposed in its naked absurdity这谬论的荒诞性已被充分揭露。.


Compete vi. 竞争, 对抗

例句:You cannot compete你无法和那些研究生竞争。 with those postgraduates.


Effort n. 努力, 成就

例句:His efforts他的努力得到了补偿。 were remunerated.

同义词:attempt endeavor fling try undertaking

Expenditure n. 开支, 费用, 用光, 消费额

例句:The monthly expenditure of our family is four hundred dollars altogether. 我们一家的开销每月共计四百元。


Flash n. 闪光, 闪现, 一瞬间vi. 闪光, 闪现, 反射vt. 使闪光, 反射

例句:His eyes flashed他的双眼怒火中烧。 fire.

词组:a flash in the pan 昙花一现的人[事物] as quick as a flash 快如闪电般地flash across 一闪而过, 掠过flash out 勃然发怒

辨析:flash; gleam; glitter; sparkle

flash 指“突然、短暂一闪而又消失的亮光”;gleam 指“瞬息的弱光”或“微弱的闪光”;glitter 指“闪光”、“灿烂的光辉”;sparkle指“发出短暂间歇的闪光”即“火花”。

同义词:blaze cable flame flare radio telegraph wire

Indistinguishable a. 不能辨别的, 不能区别的

例句:The material is indistinguishable这衣料与真丝难以区别,但便宜得多。 from real silk, but much cheaper.

Layman n. 俗人, 门外汉, 凡人

例句:My uncle posed as a connoisseur in paintings while actually he was only a layman我叔叔冒充为绘画鉴赏家,实际上他只是个门外汉。.

反义词:clergyman priest

Massive a. 大而重的, 宽大的, 宏伟的

例句:The massive blasts shook windows throughout the city, jolting sleeping residents awake. 大量的冲击波震动了整个城市的窗户,惊醒了睡梦中的居民。

词组:massive mountains块状丛山

同义词:big clumsy coarse heavy large ponderous solid strong sturdy thick

Negligible a. 可以忽略的, 不足取的, 无用的

例句:In buying a suit, a difference of ten cents in prices is negligible. 买一套衣服价钱只差一角钱是无所谓的。

词组:a negligible quantity

Objective n. 目的, 目标, 宗旨, 宾格, 实物a. 客观的, 如实的, 无偏见的, 宾格的

例句:A college education is my objective. 我的目标是接受大学教育。


Photograph n. 相片, 照片, 逼真的描绘vt. 照相, 摄影vi. 照相, 摄影

例句:I have taken many photographs我拍了许多照片。.

词组:cabinet photograph 六英寸的照片candid photograph 快拍摄影, 快相

同义词:film snap

Practical a. 实际的, 现实的, 实用性的

例句:He set forward several practical proposals. 他提出了几项切实可行的建议。

词组:for (all) practical purposes 实际上


Relieve vt. 减轻, 救济, 解除, 使免除, 换……的班, 使得到调剂, 使不单调, 衬托, 使显著vi. 救济, 当替补投手, 呈鲜明突出

例句:The route was designed to relieve traffic congestion. 这条路是为缓解交通拥挤而开辟的。

词组:relieve sb. of 解除某人的(负担等); 减轻某人的(痛苦等); 偷去(某物) 解除某人(职务) relieve sb. from anxiety消除某人的忧虑


Spectacular a. 公开展示的, 惊人的, 壮观的n. 奇观, 惊人之举, 展览物adj. 特殊的,与众不同的

例句:Kennedy questioned the program as "too spectacular".肯尼迪担心这个计划太引人注目。

词组:in a spectacular fashion惊人地, 壮观地

同义词:dramatic sensational

Technological a. 技术的

例句:With increasing technological sophistication, this factor continues to grow. 随着技术水平的不断发展,这个因素还将继续增长。

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