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2019年翻译资格考试英语笔译初级模拟题:不要责怪DNA

中华考试网   2019-01-05   【

2019年翻译资格考试英语笔译初级模拟题:不要责怪DNA

  英译汉

  Don't Blame DNA

  The really critical implication of the discovery still lies with the door that geneticists have opened on the environmental influences of our behavior, our personalities and our health, and with the critical blow it strikes on the idea of biological determinism.

  For the past decade, the public has witnessed a rising epidemic of tales of discoveries of genes that dispose humanity to homosexuality, to alcoholism, to political persuasion, to running ability, and to artistic taste.

  But even before yesterday's revelations by Venter , scientists had stopped believing in the gay gene. Yet belief in its existence still persists among the public. The assault on biological determinism that geneticists have now triggered will be timely, and will prove that human nature is a lot more complex and intriguing than determinists have given it credit for. Even more importantly, the discovery has critical implications for our understanding of idea of free will.

  It has become increasingly fashionable for individuals particularly in the United States to blame actions and crimes on the influence of their genes. Consider the following story. A young American woman, Glenda Sue Caldwell, was convicted of killing her child and was jailed for life. Only later did she begin to display the symptoms of Huntington's Disease, an inherited brain disorder that produces horrific delusions and uncontrolled movements. Claiming she was a victim of her genes, the woman was cleared on appeal.

  Since then, several other U. S. defendants accused of violent crimes have argued that they too were innocent victims of their genes. They were not responsible for their actions. Their genes were. None of these people have yet succeeded in persuading courts of their innocence and their genes' guilt. Most lawyers felt such an outcome was nevertheless inevitable. In other words, genetic predestination could soon have been used to excuse murder or robbery - if it had not been for this discovery that we lack the genes to thus dispose us!

  Kevin Davies is the author of The Sequence, a story of the human genome race. He said, "There has been a recent study on perfect pitch, the ability to know the absolute pitch of a musical note, that strongly suggests that is acquired through the inheritance of a single gene.

  "That may sound like a clear-cut piece of biological determinism. However, there is a crucial corollary: you have to be exposed to early musical training for the ability to materialize. In other words, even in seemingly simple inherited abilities, nurture has a role to play. "

  And then there is the case quoted by Venter. "Everyone talks about a gene for this and that. But it is not like that. Take the example of colon cancer. People say there is a gene that predisposes us to the disease. And certainly it runs in families. It is caused by an inherited weakness in one gene that controls DNA repair in other genes. But that gene is found in cells in every part of the body. However, it is only the colon where we find all sorts of toxins and bacteria that provide the harsh circumstances that cause that gene to finally break down and for cancer to spread."

  In short, it is not a colon cancer gene but a gene that affects our ability to respond to the environment. And that, is what human nature is all about.

  参考译文

  不要责怪DNA

  此项新发现的重要意义仍与遗传学家开启的那扇大门有关。遗传学家们认为环境对人类的行为、性格和健康有影响。这一论断对“生物决定论”不啻是致命的打击。

  近十年来,有关基因发现的各种谣言泛滥成灾,根据这些发现,同性恋也好、酗酒成性也好、政治信仰也好、奔跑能力也好、艺术品味也好,都是由人们的基因决定的。

  但是早在范特公开他的发现之前,科学家们就已经不再相信同性恋基因之说了,可公众仍然深信不疑,因此遗传学家们现在对“生物决定论”展开的批判正合其时,它将证明,人的天性远比基因决定论者所认为的更为复杂、更为迷人。更重要的是,此项发现对于我们理解“自由意志”有着决定性的意义。

  把自己的行为甚至于犯罪归咎于自己的基因,这种做法正变得日趋流行,在美国尤为突出。有例为证:一位名叫格伦达·苏·考德威尔的美国妇女,因被证明杀害了自己的亲生孩子而被判处终身监禁。在此之后,地才开始显示出亨延顿病的症状,这是一种会导致恐怖错觉和行动失控的遗传性脑疾。于是格伦达声称自己是基因的受害者,并获得无罪释放。

  从那以后,美国又有一些被控犯下暴力罪行的被告都辩称自己是无辜的基因受害者,应该为这些暴力行为负责的不是他们,而是他们的基因。虽然迄今还没有人能说服法庭相信他们的无辜,不过,大多数律师都觉得这种结果是不可避免的。换句话说,若不是范特发现人类身上并不存在会导致犯罪的基因,基因先决论也许很快就会被用来为谋杀或抢劫进行开脱。

  凯文·戴维斯是《基因序列》一书的作者,该书讲述了在人类基因组研究中的竞争。

  他写道:“最近有人在研究音调辨别力,即判断音符的绝对音高的能力,该项实验明显显示这种能力是通过继承某一个基因获得的。

  “乍一听,这似乎是‘生物决定论’的典型例子。然而,该研究还有一个关键的结论,即:要实现这种能力,你必须接受早期的音乐训练。也就是说,即使对那些看似简单、通过遗传获得的能力而言,后天的培养也是不可或缺的。”

  此外,范特也援引了一例:“人人都在谈论某个基因会决定这个,或者影响那个,但事实并非如此。就拿结肠癌来说,据说某种基因会让人容易患上这种病。当然,结肠癌的确会在家族内部蔓延,它是由某种基因的遗传性缺陷引起的,这种基因能够控制其他基因的DNA修补情况。但这种基因存在于人体所有部位的细胞中,而只有在结肠部位,才能找到构成病变环境的各种毒素和细菌,它们会导致该基因最终损坏,致使癌细胞扩散。”

  简言之,那并不是什么“结肠癌基因”,而是一种影响我们对环境的反应能力的基因。

  而这,就是人类天性的全部奥秘所在。

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