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Friday, January 29, 2010

Romantic love

Romantic love
Romantic love is a matter of intense concern to millions of people in the Western world at some time in their lives and, yet, to most of them it is as inexplicable as a religious experience. Love happens to you, it comes like a bolt from the blue, unbidden and unintended, and it is an area of life which, like your health, you cannot completely control.

Sociology has done little to change this way of thinking about what is, after all, a social phenomenon. Custom and socialization dictate the way in which love, hate and even grief and laughter are expressed, but they also dictate the situations which provoke such emotions, and for how long and how intensely they are to be experienced.

For the individual, however, deeply felt emotions are experienced as uniquely personal events, originating from within, as if in the grip of feelings beyond the realm of ideas or of conscious control. The very idea that social forces, rather than one’s uniquely personal needs and desires, might have shaped the form of one’s love seems like an infringement of personal liberty, an intrusion into that mysterious, private world, the irrational splendor of one’s finer feelings.

With such a mystical aura about it, it is not surprising that in former centuries love was a focus of magical activities. In the Middle Ages, love charms, philtres and aphrodisiacs were the stock in trade of ‘cunning’ men and women whose magical services were much in demand. Love was considered sufficiently important and unpredictable to attract the labours of not only English village wizards but, in the 16th and 17th centuries, also astrologers and even witch-hunters, since practicing witchcraft was a felony punishable by death. Astrologers could expect an incessant stream of servant girls asking about their future husbands, or wanting to know how to handle their current boy-friends, not to mention help in deciding whether to accept a proposal or not.

In a non-magical era, love still retains this elusive, irrational quality, still occupies the women’s magazine astrologer, but more importantly, still absorbs people who would otherwise declare themselves practical and scientific in their out-look, with little time for metaphysics.


Love belongs to public and private worlds: it is big business. Love
is the bread and butter of film scripts, paperbacks and popular newspapers;women’s magazines thrive on it; pop songs improvise on the eternaltheme; television commercials wrap cosmetics and chocolates, hair sprayand deodorants in its all-pervading image. Industry and advertising stalk the customer with love’s honeyed breath. Battered wives persist in violent marriages in the name of it, and the crime of passion still attracts the full force of the media. Love is a force in society; it is not to be ignored.



Reading Comprehension n. 11

1. Answer the following comprehension questions.
a) What is the passage about?…………………………………………………………………………………..
………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..
b) What is the author’s attitude towards love?………………………………………………………………….
………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..
c) Do most people think of love as a social force?……………………………………………………………..
………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..
d) What is the connection between love and commerce?……………………………………………………….
…………….…………………………………………………………………………………………………..
e) How does love feature in the media?…………………………………………………………………………
…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………
f) Give at least three spheres of interest, activity or thoughts mentioned in the passage in which
love plays, or has played, an important role.
……………..……………………………………………………………………………………………………

g) Explain in your own words the meaning of the following words or phrases as used in the text:
· it comes like a bolt from the blue (4)………………………………………………………………….
· an incessant stream of servant girls (26)…………………………………………………………….
· in a non-magical era (30)……………………………………………………………………………..
· in their outlook (33)……………………………………………………………………………………
· the bread and butter (35)………………………………………………………………………………
· thrive on it (36)……………………………………………………………………………………….

2. What do the following words refer to?
their (2) ………………………………… it (3)……………………………………………….
which (5)…………………………………. this (6)……………………………………………..
which (8)………………………………….. they (9)…………………………………………….
which (9)……………………………………. such (9)…………………………………………….
they (10)……………………………………. it (18)……………………………………………
it (18)……………………………………… whose (21)…………………………………………
their (26)…………………………………. this (30)…………………………………………….
who (32)……………………………………. themselves (32)……………………………………
it (34)………………………………………. its (38)……………………………………………….


3. Translate the following linking words and state their function in the text.
· yet (2)………………………………………………………………………………………….
· as…..as (3)……………………………………………………………………………………..
· after all (7)………………………………………………………………………………………
· however (11)………………………………………………………………………………………
· as if (12)………………………………………………………………………………………..
· rather than (14)……………………………………………………………………………………
· not only…..but also (23)…………………………………………………………………………..
· since (24)………………………………………………………………………………………
· not to mention (28)……………………………………………………………………………….
· whether…..or not (28)………………………………………………………………………………..
· but more importantly (31)…………………………………………………………………………..
· otherwise (32)……………………………………………………………………………………………


4. MODALS…..translate the following modal constructions and state what each modal expresses, e.g. ability,
probability, advice, obligation etc.
a) you cannot completely control (5)……………………………………………………………………..
b) social forces might have shaped (15)………………………………………………………………….
c) astrologers could expect (25)………………………………………………………………………….



5. IRREGULAR VERBS…write the infinitive, past simple, past participle and translation of the following verbs.
Infinitive Past Simple Past Participle Translation
comes (4)………………………………………………………………………………………………………
……………………………………………………………(un)bidden(4)……………………………………….
……………………………………………………………..done (6)……………………………………………
think (6)………………………………………………………………………………………………………….
………………………………………………………………felt(11)……………………………………………
know(27)………………………………………………………………………………………………………….
thrive(36)…………………………………………………………………………………………………………...



6. PASSIVES…….translate the following passive constructions.
a) (which is) unbidden and unintended (4)………………………………………………………….(note the
ellipsis)
b) love, hate, grief and laughter are expressed (8)…………………………………………………………………
c) they are to be experienced (10)………………………………………………………………………………..
d) deeply felt emotions are experienced (11)…………………………………………………………………….
e) love was considered (22)……………………………………………………………………………………..
f) it is not to be ignored(41)………………………………………………………………………………………

7. “-ING-forms” …note the following ‘ing-forms’ and decide if they function as Adjectives, or Nouns or as 58
Present Participles with the verb ‘to be’. Translate these phrases.

a) this way of thinking (6)………………………………………………………………………………………
b) originating from within (12)………………………………………………………………………………….
c) in the grip of feelings (12)…………………………………………………………………………………….
d) it is not surprising (18)………………………………………………………………………………………..
e) cunning men and women (21)………………………………………………………………………………..
f) since practising witchcraft (24)………………………………………………………………………………..
g) servant girls asking about (26)……………………………………………………………………………….
h) or wanting to know (27)………………………………………………………………………………………
i) help in deciding (28)………………………………………………………………………………………….
j) its all-pervading image (38)…………………………………………………………………………………..
k) industry and advertising (38)……………………………………………………………………………………

8. ELLIPSIS…..write in the implied pronoun and a form of the verb ‘to be’
a) a bolt from the blue (………………) unbidden and unintended (4)
b) (……………….) originating from within (12)
c) as if (……………………..) in the grip of feelings (12)
d) feelings (……………………..) beyond the realm (13)
e) a felony (………………………..) punishable by death (25)
f) girls (………………….) asking about their husbands or ( ………………..) wanting to know
9. CLOZE……..fill in the numbered spaces with an appropriate word taken from the box.

since Portugal anyone the
disease
officials and that may new



E.U. officials appealed to consumers not to panic as new evidence revealed that the bovine
spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), or ‘mad cow’ disease, _________________(1) be more widespread
than previously thought. _______________(2) cases of BSE emerged in Spain, Germany ___________(3)
Belgium, as well as in an Italian slaughterhouse ______________(4) supplies McDonald’s restaurants.
Meanwhile, U.S. _____________(5) moved to prevent new variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob _______________(6),
the human form of BSE, from entering _____________(7) blood supply. A government panel urged that
________________(8) who has lived or travelled in France, ________________(9) or Ireland
for an extended time ___________(10) 1980 be banned from donating blood.


59
10. VOCABULARY……fill in the spaces with a NOUN, VERB, ADJECTIVE or ADVERB
NOUN VERB ADJECTIVE ADVERB