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21世纪工程硕士研究生英语-综合教程(下册)UNIT2课文翻译

1

Are We Getting Smarter? 我们正变得更聪明吗?

IQ scores rose steadily in the 20th century. As scientists search for the reasons, they are shedding new light on the dance between genes and life experience that determines intelligence.

在20世纪IQ 值稳步上升。当科学家们寻找原因时,他们试图揭示基因和决定智力的生活经历之间的相互关系。 1 While generations of schoolchildren, military recruits, job applicants and Mensa wannabes have wrestled with IQ questions like these, some smart scientists who study intelligence have been stumped by an even more exasperating puzzle: why have IQ scores been rising? And not rising a little, by a point here and there, but soaring--27 points in Britain since 1942, 24 points in the United States since 1918, 22 points in Argentina since 1964, with comparable gains throughout Western Europe, Canada, Japan, China, Israel, Australia and New Zealand. The rise is so sharp that the average child today is as bright as the near genius of yesteryear. "This shatters our belief about the rigidity of IQ," says psychologist Ulrich Neisser of Cornell University. "It's powerful evidence that you can indeed change it."

当在校的孩子、军队的新兵、求职者和向往Mensa 协会的人努力解答像这样的IQ 问题时,一些聪明的研究智力的科学家一直被另一个更让人困惑的问题困扰:为什么IQ 值一直在上升?并且不是上升一点点不是这里升一点那里升一点,而是大幅度上升:英国自从1942年以来增长27个百分点,美国自1918年以来增长24个百分点,阿根廷自1964年以来增长22个百分点,这种增长遍及西欧、加拿大、日本、中国、以色列、澳大利亚和新西兰。这种增长是如此之快以至今天一般孩子和过去的天才一样聪明。“这打破了我们认为IQ 固定不变的信念” 科内尔大学的一位心理学家说。“这强有力地证明了IQ 确实是能改变的。

2 There's just one little problem. Leaving aside for now the very real question of whether IQ is truly a proxy for intelligence, scientists can't explain what has made IQ scores take off. Neither nature nor nurture--genes nor environment--answers the question, for different reasons. A slew of data, from twin studies to adoption research, suggests that genes account for some 75 percent of the difference between individuals' IQs by late adolescence. That leaves precious little room for environment to play a role. But explaining the IQ rise by "smarter" genes makes no sense, because the genes in a population do not change quickly enough to explain the IQ chasm between the Greatest Generation and Gen Y. That would seem to make environment the leading suspect, but then you're back to that 800-pound gorilla in the corner: psychologists who study intelligence mostly agree that hereditary factors explain the lion's share of IQ differences.

这里有一个小问题。现在暂不考虑IQ 是否真正代表了智力这一问题,科学家们不能解释什么使得IQ 值飞速增长。天生因素或后天因素一基因或环境,由于不