Interactive English: Reception

Reading and Listening

Critical Reading

on October 8, 2013

In order to comprehend and retain information, it is important to be active while reading or listening. In the next class we will practice one way of actively reading: critically reading. To practice a bit of critical thinking, please choose one of the quotes from below and in the comments please tell us what it means to you and your own opinion of it.

1. The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt ~ Bertrand Russell

2. The propagandist’s purpose is to make one set of people forget that certain other sets of people are human. ~ Aldous Huxley

3. Men become civilized, not in proportion to their willingness to believe, but in their readiness to doubt. ~ H. L. Mencken

4. It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. ~ Aristotle

5. The important thing is not to stop questioning. ~ Albert Einstein

ALSO: REMEMBER YOUR READINGS/QUESTIONS ARE DUE ON OCT 15th. E-mail me if you have any questions, problems, or concerns.


14 responses to “Critical Reading

  1. T4 Kaori Kubo says:

    I choose quote number 5. I believe in the importance of never settling on one answer or information just because of its authority. For example, students should never be passive during class – lecture style classes in particular – swallowing every word the professor says to be right. Besides the classroom environment, we should remember to question even things that are considered to be “facts” and true. Questioning opens doors to new ideas, possiblities, and answers.

  2. Fumina Watanabe (T4) says:

    I choose number 1. I think this quote means that people who don’t have much knowledge tend to make decisions quickly and end up making mistakes. This is because they can’t think from different perspectives. However, intelligent people tend to think a lot before making decisions because they see things from various angles. I think this quote tells us that knowledge is very important in our lives. I agree, so I want to keep on learning.

  3. Ai Inoue(T4) says:

    I found quote 1 interesting. It says about how the world is full of wrong information because of the way people act. This is because stupid people are sure that their ideas are right though they tend to be mistaken and intelligent people tend to doubt everything including the truth.
    I think the intelligent people are OK since questioning things is important. The problem is that there are people who decide that something is correct without thinking much about it. So, to avoid becoming a “stupid” person, I guess we have to attend next class seriously.

  4. Ryuji Furukido(T4) says:

    I like number 4. I think it is necessary for mature people to admit the fact that there are many different kinds of people who have different kinds of view. If you are so stubborn that you never change your mind and reject what other people say, sometimes you will be involved serious problem. Considering other’s opinion ,even if that is far away from your’s and is not acceptable for you, will help you deepen your own point of view.

  5. Eri Fukui (T4) says:

    I found Albert Einstein’s quote, ‘The important thing is not to stop questioning’ very agreeable. Human beings are the only creatures with rationality, and so to stop being curious and cease to think like a human does, you are no more a human. By questioning many things in life (what, why, how etc.), you get to understand things you’ve never even gave a thought to. And of course, it is always importatnt to ‘question’, as in ‘doubt’, especially in a society we live today, where it is full of falsehood, and thinking all the information around you is true could lead you to trouble.

  6. Ayane Kawahara(T4) says:

    I deeply understand the quote number 1. I’m not saying that I am a stupid or an intelligent, but there are subjects I’m good at or not so much. As for the ones I study hard, I feel that the things I don’t know increase as more I know about it. And for the weak subjects, since I only know the surface of it, it makes me feel like I comprehend roughly all about it though that’s not true (the test results shows it). Things in the world aren’t simple although they may sometimes be told like they are. For people who know about things, even a small pinch of information they have will be enough to make them unsure about the facts they hear.

  7. Kyoko Nomura(T4) says:

    I choose number 3. When I was a small child, I could easily believe what people say, for example, Santa Claus comes to our houses by riding on a sled with reindeers, but as I grew up, I started doubting if anyone could fly by a sled. For me, this is the most persuasive example to explain my idea. So, as people become intelligent and have a lot of knowledge, people start using their mind and that leads us to doubt things.

  8. Natsumi Maruyama (T4) says:

    I like quote 5. I think quotes should be short and catchy. If we stop questioning, that means we also stop thinking. I think life is all about thinking and learning. And every time we question, we always look for answers, i think that is what makes our lives interesting.

  9. Maiko Imai (T4) says:

    I choose quote 3. I think the more knowledge we gain the more we find things unconvincing.Which makes us rethink and doubt whats being said.By just beliving whats being said your thoughts stop there. But by rethinking and doubting you come up with your own thoughts.I think the word civilized in this quote doesn`t mean to be sophisticated , educated or stuffs like that.I think it means to have your own thoughts.

  10. Moeko Ota(T4) says:

    I chose number 5. I have heard of this quote many times. This is really meanigfull because many great inventions must have came from someone’s question, moreover this world is made up of people’s question. This is why I chose this quote.

  11. Arisa Kurihara(T4) says:

    I like quote number 5 because I absolutely agree with it. The reason why people today know a lot more and live a better life than those who lived thousands of year ago, is because we did not stop questioning ourselves. The act of trying to answer the questions we came up with, is what has lead us into studying maths, science, history and many other field of study and what has made us smarter than our ancestors.

  12. Miki Hosoda(T4) says:

    I think Elbert Einstein’s quote tells us the basics and fundamentals of the human society. If humans had stopped thinking, the world wouldn’t have become so organized, developed, or sophisticated as it is today. To keep on thinking and to use our brain has become the nature of our everyday life.

  13. Hiroko Takabatake (T4) says:

    I want to comment on the quotefrom Einstein. Asking question is the most important thing to do when you wish to achieve something. However. I believe that we should keep on questioning not to get deceived by the media.

  14. Hong soon hyuk says:

    I chose number five. human is the only one thinking deeply and having feelings. It is that we have those characteristics, we need to use it. Albert may think what I am thinking of, so he wants us to stop questioning

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