More surprising, perhaps, than the current difficulties of traditional marriage is the fact that marriage itself is alive and thriving. As Skolnick notes, Americans are a marrying people: relative to Europeans, more of us marry and we marry at a younger age. Moreover, after a decline in the early 1970s, the rate of marriage in the United States is now increasing. Even the divorce rate needs to be taken in this pro- marriage context: some 80 percent of divorced individuals remarry. Thus, marriage remains by far the preferred way of life for the vast majority of the people in our society.
What has changed more than marriage is the nuclear family. Twenty- five years ago, the typical American family consisted of the husband, the wife, and two or three children. Now, there are many marriages in whichcouples have decided not to have any children, and there are many marriages where at least some of the children are from the wife’s previous marriage, or the husband’s, or both. Sometimes these children spend all of their time with one parent from the former marriage; sometimes they are shared between the two former spouses .
Thus, one can find every type of tamely arrangement. There are marriages without children; marriages with children from only the present marriages; marriages with“full - time”children from both the present and former marriages; marriages with“full- time”children from the present marriage and“part- time”childrenfrom former marriages. There are stepfathers, stepmothers, half- brothers and half-sisters. It is not all that unusual for a child to have four parents and eight grandparents! These are enormous changes from the traditional nuclear family. But even so, even in the midst of all this, there remains one constant: most Americans spend most of their adult lives married.
Choose correct answers to the question:
1.By calling Americans a marrying people the writer means that ________.
A.Americans are more traditional than Europeans
B More Americans prefer marriage and at a younger age than European
C.most divorced individuals remarry
D.marriage is the most important part of American life
2.From the first paragraph we can know that ____
A.traditional marriage now runs into difficulty
B.marriage rate has been rising since the 1970
C.marriage rate in Europe is rather low
D.European marry when they are quite old
3.Which of the following can be presented as the picture of today’s American families?
A. There are no nuclear families any more.
B. A family usually consists of only a husband ,a wife and two or three children
C. a child usually has four grandparents
D. Many types of family rearrangements have become socially acceptable.
4. “Part-time ”children ____
A.do part-time job to earn their living
B.spend all of their time with one parent from the previous marriage
C.are shared between the two former spouses
D.are quite unusual even in the U.S.A
5.Even though great changes have taken place in the structure of American families, ________ .
A. the functions of marriage remain unchanged
B. most Americans prefer a second marriage
C. the vast majority of Americans still have faith in marriage
D. nuclear family is alive and thriving
1.[B] 事实细节题。本题考查特殊符号处。作者在第1段第2句很清楚地在Americans are a marrying people后面用冒号引出对这一说法的解释。对比选项A与选项B，就可发现选项A不够完整。
3.[D] 推理判断题。本题涉及第2段的理解，该段第1句是一个主语从句，也可视为该段的主题句，点出了本段的主题是nuclear family，该段其他句子描述了什么是nuclear family。本题其实考査哪个选项是对nuclearfamily的正确描述，明白了第2段的结构后，找出正确答案就不难了。
4.[C] 推理判断题。在最后一段第1句中，通过对比full-time和part-time的本义，以及联系上下文讲到的家庭现象，可以推断出part-time children应是指时不时和父亲或母亲生活的小孩，由此可见，选项C是正确答案。 选项A毫无原文依据，B明显错误，题干中问的是part-time children，故显然不可能spend all of theirtime，否则修饰语就应该是full-time，选项D与“It is not all that unusual…”相悖。