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Text 2

William Shakespeare described old age as" second childishness"-no teeth, no eyes, no taste. In the case of taste he may, musically speaking, have been more perceptive than he realised. A paper in Neurology by Giovanni Frisoni and his colleagues at the National Centre for Research and Care of Alzheimers's Disease in Italy, shows that frontotemporal dementia can affect musical desires in ways that suggest a regression ,if not to infancy,then at least to a patient's teens.

Frontotemporal dementia, a disease usually found with old people, is caused, as its name suggests,by damage to the front and sides of the brain. These regions are concerned with speech, and with such"higher"functions as abstract thinking and judgment.

Two of such patients intrigued Dr Frisoni. One was a 68-year-old lawyer, the other a 73-year- old housewife. Both had undamaged memories, but displayed the sorts of defect associated with frontotemporal dementia-a diagnosis that was confrrmed by brain scanning.

About two years after he was first diagnosed, the lawyer, once a classical music lover who re-ferred to pop music as"mere noise" , started listening to the Italian pop band "883". As his command of language and his emotional attachments to friends and family deteriorated, he continued to listen to the band at full volume for many hours a day. The housewife had not even had the lawyer's love of classical music, having never enjoyed music of any sort in the past. But about a year after her diagnosis she became very interested in the songs that her ll-year-old granddaughter was listen ing to.

This kind of change in musical taste was not seen in any of the Alzheimer's patients, and thus appears to be specific to those with frontotemporal dementia. And other studies have remarked on how frontotemporal-dementia patients sometimes gain new talents. Five sufferers who developed artistic abilities are known. And in another case, one woman with the disease suddenly started composing and singing country and western songs.

Dr Frisoni speculates that the illness is causing people to develop a new attitude towards novel experiences, Previous studies of novelty-seeking behaviour suggest that it is managed by the brain'sright frontal lobe. A predominance of the right over the left frontal lobe, caused by damage to the

latter,might thus lead to a quest for new experience. Alternatively, the damage may have affected

some specific nervous system that is needed to appreciate certain kinds of music. Whether that is a

gain or a loss is a different matter. As Dr Frisoni puts it in his article, there is no accounting for

taste.

46. The writer quotes Shakespeare mainly to

[A] praise the keen perception of the great English writer.

[B] support Dr. Frisoni 's theory about a disease.

[C] start the discussion on a brain disease.

[D] show the long history of the disease.

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  • Text 4

    Jill Ker Conway ,president of Smith ,echoes the prevailing view of contemporary technology when she says that " anyone in today's world who doesn't understand data processing is not educated. " But she insists that the mcreasing emphasis on these matters leave certain gaps. Says she: "The very strongly utilitarian emphasis in education ,which is an effect of man-made satellites and the cold war, has really removed from this culture something that was very profound in its 18th and 19th century roots ,which was a sense that literacy and learning were ends in themselves for a demo- cratic republic. "

    In contrast to Plato's claim for the social value of education,a quite different idea of intellectu-al purposes was advocated by the Renaissance humanists. Ovejoyed with their rediscovery of the classical leaming that was thought to have disappeared during the Dark Ages,they argued that the imparting of knowledge needs no justification-religious ,social ,economic ,or political. Its purpose,to the extent that it has one ,is to pass on from generation to generation the corpus of knowledge that constitutes civilization. "What could man acquire ,by virtuous striving ,that is more valuable than knowledge?" asked Erasmus ,perhaps the greatest scholar of the early 16th century. That idea has acquired a tradition of its own. "The educational process has no end beyond itself," said John Dewey. "It is its own end. "

    But what exactly is the corpus of knowledge to be passed on? In simpler times ,it was all included in the medieval universities' Quadrivium ( arithmetic, geometry, astronomy, music ) and Trivium( grammar, thetoric ,logic). As recently as the last century ,when less than 5% of Americans went to college at all, students in New England establishments were compelled mainly to memorize and recite various Latin texts,and crusty professors angrily opposed the introduction of any new scientific discoveries or modern European languages. "They felt," said regretfully Charles Francis Adams, Jr. ,the Union Pacific Railroad president who devoted his later years to writing history ,"that a classical education was the important distinction between a man who had been to college and a man who had not been to college ,and that anything that diminished the importance of this distinction was essentially revolutionary and tended to anarchy. "

    56. The first paragraph shows that Jill Ker Conway accepts utilitarian emphasis in education

    [A] wholeheartedly.

    [B] with reservation.

    [C] against her own will.

    [D] with contempt.

  • Education for education's sake was probably opposed by

    [A] scholars in the Renaissance period.

    [B] Jill Ker Conway.

    [C] scholars in the Dark Ages.

    [D] Plato.

  • The idea that education transmits knowledge is dated back to

    [A] the Renaissance humanists.

    [B ] the medieval universities.

    [C] the 18th century's American scholars.

    [D] the cold war period.

  • It can be inferred that Charles Francis Adams ,Jr.

    [A] devoted his later years to classical education.

    [B] was an advocate of education in history.

    [C] was an opponent to classical education.

    [D] regretted diminishing the importance of the distinction.

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