At some time in your life you may have a strong desire to do something strange or terrible. However,chances are that you don’t act on your impulse, butlet it pass instead. You know that to commit theaction is wrong in some way and that other people will not accept your behavior.
Perhaps the most interesting thing about the phenomenon of taboo behavior is how it can change over the years within the same society, how certain behavior and attitudes once considered taboo can become perfectly acceptable and natural at another point in time. Topicssuch as death, for example, were once considered so upsetting and unpleasant that it was at aboo to even talk about them. Now with the publication of important books such as On Deathand Dying and Learning to Say Goodbye, people have become more aware of the importance of expressing feelings about death and, as a result, are more willing to talk about this taboo subject.
One of the newest taboos in American society is the topic of fat. Unlike many other taboos,fat is topic that Americans talk about constantly. It’s not taboo to talk about fat; it’s taboo tobe fat. The “in” look is thin, not fat. In the work world, most companies prefer youthful-looking,trim executives to sell their image as well as their products to the public. The thin look isassociated with youth, vigor, and success. The fat person, on the other hand, is thought of aslazy and lacking in energy, self-discipline, and self-respect. In an image-conscious society likethe U. S., thin is “in”, fat is “out”.
It’s not surprising, then, that millions of Americans have become obsessed with stayingslim and “in shape”. The pursuit of a youthful physical appearance is not, however, the solereason for America’s fascination with diet and exercise. Recent research has shown the criticalimportance of diet and exercise for personal health. As in most technologically developed nations, the life-style of North Americans has changed dramatically during the course of the last century. Modern machines do all the physical labor that people were once forced to do by hand.Cars and buses transport us quickly from point to point. As a result of inactivity and disuse,people’s bodies can easily become weak and vulnerable to disease. In an effort to avoid sucha fate, millions of Americans are spending more of their time exercising.
1. From the passage we can infer taboo is__.
A. a strong desire to do something strange or terrible.
B. a crime committed on impulse.
C. behavior considered unacceptable in society’s eyes.
D. an unfavorable impression left on other people.
2. Based on the ideas presented in the passage we can conclude “being fat” __ in Americansociety.
A. will always remain a taboo.
B. is not considered a taboo by most people.
C. has long been a taboo.
D. may no longer be a taboo some day.
3. The topic of fat is __ many other taboo subjects.
A. the same as
B. different from
C. more popular than
D. less often talked about than.
4. In the U. S., thin is “in”, fat is “out”, this means__.
A. thin is “inside”, fat is “outside”.
B. thin is “diligent”, fat is “lazy”.
C. thin is “youthful”, fat is “spiritless”.
D. thin is “fashionable”, fat is “unfashionable”.
5. Apart from this new understanding of the correlation between health and exercise, themain reason the passage gives for why so many Americans are exercising regularly is__.
A. their changed life-style.
B. their eagerness to stay thin and youthful.
C. their appreciation of the importance of exercise.
D. the encouragement they have received from their companies.