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7-5819177
N
Boxing is a common, well known and well loved sport amongst most countries in the world however it is also punishing, dangerous and disliked to the extent that many people want it banned, possibly with good reason. Boxing is a dangerous sport, there are relatively common deaths, tragic injuries and even disease. All professional boxers are at risk from being killed in his next fight. If not killed then more likely paralysed. There have been a number of cases in the last ten years of the top few boxers having tragic losses throughout their ranks. This is just from the elite few, and theres more from those below them. More deaths would occur through boxing if it were banned. The sport would go underground, there would be no safety measures like gloves, a doctor, paramedics or early stopping of the fight if someone looked unable to continue. With this going on the people taking part will be dangerous, and on the streets. Dangerous dogs who were trained to kill and maim in similar underound dog fights have already proved deadly to innocent people, the new boxers could be even more at risk. Once boxing is banned and no-one grows up knowing it as acceptable there will be no interest in boxing and hopefully less all round interest in violence making towns and cities much safer places to live in, there will be less fighting outside pubs and clubs and less violent attacks with little or no reason. change the rules of boxing slightly would much improve the safety risks of the sport and not detract form the entertainment. There are all sorts of proposals, lighter and more cushioning gloves could be worn, ban punches to the head, headguards worn or make fights shorter, as most of the serious injuries occur in the latter rounds, these would all show off the boxers skill and tallent and still be entertaining to watch. Even if a boxer is a success and manages not to be seriously hurt he still faces serious consequences in later life diseases that attack the brains have been known to set in as a direct result of boxing, even Muhamed Ali, who was infamous(?) both for his boxing and his quick-witted intelligence now has Alzheimer disease and can no longer do many everyday acts. Many other sports are more dangerous than boxing, motor sports and even mountaineering has risks that are real. Boxers chose to box, just as racing drivers drive.
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7-5819215
N
In many of the minority works of modern literature, there can be some emphasis on rebellion against oppressive forces. Although such a show of strength by these works' characters is sometimes viewed as a violent and therefore negative contribution to the otherwise insightful thought of the author, it is this conflict upon which many stories of ethnic American literature are based. However, such a rebellion cannot be seen clearly in each minority work, and, therefore, the products of ethnic American literature cannot be catagorized as merely the result of years of oppression. Rather, this ever-changing and ever-challenging aspect of minority literature creates an especially important necessity that each work be considered individually as both a product of years of struggle and a work inherently distinct from any other. In the minority works, the conflict and rebellion presented accurately reflects society as a whole, and although the mother's in The Joy Luck Club rebel against such forces as arranged marriages, Tita in Like Water for Chocolate fights to overcome old family traditions, and the Indian tribes in Love Medicine struggle to secure their inherent rights from the US government, the characters' conflicts reflect similar conflicts of other cultures. Rebellion is seen not as a distinct force in minority cultures, but rather as a binding force between all cultures, for Celie, too, resists her arranged marriage in The Color Purple, and the murderous loves in Jazz reflect Tita and Pedro's destructive passion in Like Water for Chocolate. Rebellion and conflict are emphasized in ethnic American literature, but they are portrayed no more strongly in minority works than they are portrayed in other pieces of literature. Emphasis changes with each work, and although figures of authority are particullary oppressive in works such as Like Water for Chocolate and The Color Purple, other minority works including Love Medicine and Jazz do not reflect the clearly defined authoritarian figures nor the obvious rebellion of the characters' responsive action which the previously mentioned works show. This again implies that these etnic American pieces of literature cannot be catagorized as merely rebellious responses to oppression, but as individual reflections of personal and cultural experiences.
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7-5819167
N
How does Voltaire tackle the question of philosophical optimism in 'Candide'? Philosophical optimism -l'optimisme- is the philosophy that everything and occurence is for some good. Voltaire sets out in Candide to criticise this philosophy. In Candide the representative of this philosophy is Pangloss, the philosopher employed at Thunder-der-Troncks. The whole book is a criticism of l'optimisme. For example when Candide is forced to join the Bulgar army he is beaten almost to death but Candide does not concern himself because he know it is for his own good - in fact later in the book he uses his training to become a soldier. Although this would seem to be good it is not because of his training he kills two men, a Jew and an Archbishop with no hesitation and then proceeds to kill his sweethearts brother. Voltaire show his dislike of l'optimisme when Pangloss, Candide and James are caught in a bad storm at sea in which James is drowned and there are only three survivors, Candide, Pangloss and a sailor. The storm was caused by an earthquake which destroys the city to which Candide was sailing to. On arrival they see starvation and death. Candide is obviously horrified, especially when the sailor begins pillaging the city. Candide looks to Pangloss for an answer but Pangloss can only tell him that some good will come of it. Candide, although remaining true to the ideals of optimism, always appears to be sceptical of it. This is no more true than when he arrives in the new world, South America, and has to leave his darling Cunégonde with the Commissioner of the province. Candide cannot see what possible good can come of this especially as the reason that he was in America was due to him killing the Jew and Archbishop because they were Cunégonde's lovers. Throughout the book we begin to see how Candide is gradually lead away for l'optimisme or perhaps more importantly how l'optimisme is shown to be the philosophy of despair. The constant belief that good can come from bad is not actually inspiring but leads to a constant flow of disasters. Candide's life, in the book, appears to show this. He is thrown out of Thunder-den-Tronck because he embraces Cunégonde, he is duped into the army, he is caught in an earthquake, he is almost killed as part of an auto-da-fé, he kills three churchmen, he is almost eaten, he finds Eldorado but leaves- the list continues. Candide's life is governed by his belief the good will prevail. Eventually, of course, he does marry Cunégonde but she is not the beautiful young flower that he once loved. She has become ugly and grew worse by the day. This illustrates emphatically the folly of l'optimisme. Candide has travelled the world in search of Cunégonde, with the hope that he will marry her despite all the trouble which he has gone through, of course in the end he does get Cunégonde but at the price of her looks and personality. Voltaire, in Candide, shows how the philosophy of Optimism is one of despair not hope.
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7-5819168
N
It would be tempting to think of the various European Communities as an embryonic United States of Europe ; especially when we hear politicians talk of the importance of European Unity. However it is important to realise that Europe is a very long way from becoming anything like the United States. When the original 13 American states resolved to form what is now the United States of America, they were intent on forming a political as well as economic entity. They were prepared to yield as much of their own sovereignty as would be essential to allow the newly formed national government to operate as a single international political force. A balance was therefore struck in the constitution to allow the individual states as much self-government as possible while ensuring that, for example in military matters, the central government spoke for all. It is true that today one still hears the old dispute over state sovereignty and attempts to return some power to the individual states, but no-one would challenge the fact that, on matters external to the United States, the government in Washington represents the sole policy-making body. In Europe it is quite clear that many people would like to see a political union of the countries since this would produce a formidable international military force. However it is equally clear that while there might be some unified political action flowing from the European Communities (such as was seen over Europe's response to the British involvement in the Falkland Islands dispute), the Communities were intended as purely economic entities in the first place. Membership almost certainly involves some loss of national sovereignty, but the United Kingdom could probably leave the community by a simple majority vote in the Westminster Parliament, something which no state in the United States could lawfully do. We are still a very long way from a Single Parliament for Western Europe with power to make political decisions for all ; and even with 1992 approaching and a single market the gulf between the UK and Europe is very wide. The supremacy of Parliament will never be challanged. Its ability to make and break any law - made by it or Europe - means that it retains full sovereignty. Even if today it made laws to that would unite it fully with Europe and relinquish its sovereignty for ever, it could tomorrow repeal all those laws. The fact that Parliament does not bind itself or cannot be bound by any political body means that it can never lose its sovereignty unless a majority of the population wished it and Parliament consented. But with the average jingoistic Briton there is no chance of us curing ourselves of our xenophobia and ever wishing to be fully intergrated with Europe. Even now the channel tunnel has joined us to the continent we still consider ourselves to be separated from the world standing alone against a hostile world.
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7-5819169
N
Naturally, the problems of a single Europe would run as deeply as the benefits that we would presumably ultimately receive. It seems to me that for the past few centuries, Britain has always considered itself to be detached from the rest of Europe. Whenever necessary, she has allied herself to European powers, such as in times of war of extreme distrust. Britain has been eager to maintain a secure balance of power on the continent, but throughout history, she has been more concerned with her oversees empires than with anywhere else. In the latter half century though, her empire has diminished and she has had to face mounting responsibility in Europe. Because of her history of isolated sovereignty it is difficult to accept being a part of a single Europe. For instance, British law is based largely upon precedent, that is judge made law. We have established a system of law which dates back many centuries, and which is widely known and respected. There is very little European influence on our law, of course in many respects it will be the same, but the lack of influence will display many differences. With the creation of a single Europe, new law will have to be accepted throughout the continent, and it will cause both confusion and conflict. The British tend to be very proud and possessive of the law, and changes may well cause illfeeling and discontent. Of course, the same points will apply to the monetary system in Europe. Will there just be one system ? The country typically is against major change and something as fundamental as money would cause problems if it was to be altered. Our individual monetary system I suppose, could be seen as a symbol of sovereignty. It can be said that if a single Europe was created, problems may arise over its fundamental political concepts. Of course Britain would lose her sovereignty, as would the other nations of the union. It has been suggested that the Single Union could be based on a basic federal structure, whereby local autonomy could be saved, but the union as a whole could work together in a democratic manner. To a certain extent, even if sovereignty was lost, some national personality would be preserved. The fact is that, when united, European unity would still in essence be divided. There will always be aspects of one society that the others will never accept. Europe as a whole faces the same problems, and therefore, if a single Europe was created, uniting Britain, the problems could be dealt with quickly and efficiently. If the Federalists achieved their aims in a European unity, they would do their best to achieve democracy and promote it nationally, so that individuality is preserved, and that all of their positive features will be known. The problem facing the British, really results from their isolated past. The sovereignty of the nation has deep roots, and the fears of losing it are very great. Whether this would happen awaits to be seen, and would depend completely on the terms of the union, and the negotiations and feelings of the general public and the politicians leading the countries.
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7-5819170
N
With 1992 now only a year away, the question of what a Single Europe will mean for Britain becomes increasingly relevant. I firmly believe that the advent of 1992 will result in a loss of sovereignty for Britain. This loss need not however be negative. In fact, in political, economic and defence terms I feel this realocation of resources can and will be very positive. Whilst to a certain extent I may be guilty of having an island mentality, I wouldn't go as far as to say Britain is in danger of handing all control over to faceless beaurocrats in Brussels or Strasbourg. Throughout the world a wind of change is apparent, but especially so in Europe. This process will continue and Europe the rest of the world will evolue with or without the participation of Britain in this process. It is my belief that Britain must be involved in the decision making which will eventually decide the new world order. However to be fully involved, sacrifices have to be made. Such sacrifices will involve certain aspects of our sovereignty. In relenquishing and thus centralising certain powers, the aim is not to diminish the strength of individual nations but to increase the overall impact of Europe on the world stage. As amply demonstrated by recent events in the Gulf, European cooperation in the field of defence can be both impressive and effective. Whilst I would be reluctant to hand over all control to defence to any central body. I can see a future for some form of European rapid reaction force. Whilst to an extent crippling defence costs could be cut this would not necessarily lead to a reduction in the size of defence available. In political terms, regardless of legislation, Britain like the rest of Europe is becoming increasingly cosmopolitan in terms of the population composition. The North Sea will increasingly come to represent a mere puddle as people move between countries. I feel it is important for Britain to join fully with its European partners to adapt to these changes in demography. Politically we are moving closer together. Possible problems should be studied and solved if possible before they happen. E.R.M. is already upon us but in this area I feel Britain should be especially careful. Whilst not pretending to fully understand this system I do know that no system can lower interest rates, and inflation while raising growth, with the possible exception of the Magic Circle. In the area of the single currency, again I feel this is inevitable. What is important is to base this currency on the strong currencies within the EEC as opposed to an average based system. To conclude I would say a single Europe is already happening and that it will continue to do so is guaranteed. Britain must not concern itself with loss of sovereignty but gain of the European equivalent. If we miss the boat I think we will drawn before the next boat comes.
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7-5819171
N
When the treaty of Rome was signed in 1957, the foundation was laid for a new "continent" - a united Europe. It was said that Europe would not be created quickly, but over several years. When Britain entered the European Community in 1973 after a national referendum, the debate began concerning Britains relationship with Europe. When 1992 was set as the date for the single European Market, the debate flared up again, but over how far Britain should be integrated. The rest of Europe seems prepared for 1992 but Britain seems to be decidedly hesitant. The former Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher was not been to lead Britain into a United Europe because she felt it would lead to a loss of our sovereignty. There is no doubt an integrated market would have multiple benefits for the countries involved. Businesses and other trading organizations are preparing themselves for 1992, and the single market. Trade will be easier, with no frontier controls allowing free flowing transportation of merchandise. There will be business booms and free competition with the removal of protective practices, along with greater freedom to travel. Many Britons would consider Europe has affected Britain too much already, with decimalization, the new Euro-passports and now the pound sterling being tied to the ECU. They may feel Britain is being pulled into Europe. Further changes are forecast for Britain, effecting day to day matters, to create a "European Standard". This may make Britons resentful of Europe and tired of "1992 and all that". A single market requires one central institution to co-ordinate all movements of goods and policies. Will the people of Britain be prepared to give up their government and be directed from Strasbourg or Brussels?. Many people would not. Will the day come when the pound sterling is taken over by the ECU ? It may well - but will the Britons have a chance to voice their opinions and views ? Europe may argue that the benefits from a single integrated market would far outweigh any national drawbacks. As the date draws nearer, the awareness of Britons to Europe must increase. They must look into the future and consider possible effects. Will Britain be drawn into Europe against its will ? Perhaps as more of Britain becomes "Eurofied", Britons will wake up and see their sovereignty is being taken away. Britain has never geographically been a part of Europe. We are in the EEC and we should be able to benefit from free trade. We have been an island for too long - being independent and able to stand alone. We have a sound democratic process, which many people would not want to give this up . A fully integrated market with Britain as a full member would be to the detriment of our political system and consequently leading to a loss of sovereignty.
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7-5819172
N
There has been such a lot of talk about a Single Europe in recent years that it is hard to believe that it will be upon us very soon. Now that it is a reality, and not just a probability, the question in the minds of many Britons is indeed : Will this mean a loss of sovereignty for Britain or the birth of a nation? Firstly, a positive approach. Looking at things from an economic perspective, this is not a problem. The benefits in terms of cost-cutting owing to doing things once, instead of twelve times, will be enormous. Firms, because of being able to pool their resources, will be able to devote more time to research and development, and thus products will improve. Europe will therefore be a nation to be reckoned with as regards competition. To look at things on a more individual level, every member of the new Single Europe's standard of living should increase. A greater potential of ideas from a greater number of experts will, in theory, result in more knowledgeable and better-informed individuals. Simplicity is one of the Commission's key aims, with the idea that if things are simpler and more easy for everyone to understand people will be happier, get on better. If this is so, they should also work better. Ideally then, there should be more equality, less crime, greater productivity and greater economic growth. On the other hand, will this Single Europe mean a loss of sovereignty for Britain? It must be remembered that not only does Britain have a small population compared to the majority of the other member states, but it is an island - which none of the others are. Why should this matter? Well, Britain has quite a history and therefore a fair number of traditions. It is possible that it could become engulfed in the new Single Europe and lose its identity. Britons (especially those from older generations) may then feel "lost" and that they do not really "belong" any more. The new Single Europe may be too new and unknown for them to make their allegiance to it. Then there is the question as to whether all this idealism really will work. Will there be greater prosperity, better-informed, happier citizens, or will this never come off because of politicians being unable to agree on policies? Britain, although small, is more often than not in the fore of international matters, taking a definite stance on what it considers to be right. Has it then not got quite a lot at stake, its character at least, in integrating itself into this Single Europe? No one would dispute that this is a difficult question. The fact remains however that next year (in 1992) there is going to be a Single Europe. This, as everyone is well aware, is not going to be achieved with ease, but the more tolerant every member state is of each other, the more successful the Single Europe will be. It is up to Britain therefore to accept this fact and to show an example by leading the way as regards tolerancy. Then we will all be able to look at the future in a more positive way.
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7-5819173
N
The European Community is a unique grouping of twelve sovereign European Member States who are committed to the development of closer economic and political co-operation. The community has an aim to break down the economic and political barriers that have traditionally divided Europe. In particular, the community seeks to facilitate greater movement within its frontiers; movement not only of goods but of services, capital and people. However, the issue of sovereignty is certainly a much debated one; to what extent should a member hand over its sovereignty to the Community, if at all ? Let us look at the founding of the European Community, before we discuss the issue of sovereignty in more detail. There were several attempts at peaceful unification after the First World War, but only after Europe had again been devastated by war was the futility of national rivalry truly apparent. The political and economic exhaustion of the European states called for a fresh start and a far more radical approach to the re-ordering of Europe. This fresh start came about because of three main factors. Firstly, was Europe's realization of her own weakness, after having lost her age-old position at the centre of the world stage to the United States of America and to the Soviet Union. These superpowers were economically, militarally and politically stronger than the divided individual European states. Secondly was the conviction that military conflict should in the future be avoided; after all, the two great wars had both begun as European "civil wars". Thirdly was the common desire for a better, freer world in which international relations would be conducted in a more orderly way. One of the first major moves towards European integration was the creation of the European Economic Community, in 1958. Its membership has grown from the ten original founder countries to twenty-three. One of the most innovative features of the European Community compared with other international bodies is that the member states have ceded to it a part of their national sovereignty and endowed it with its own sovereign powers, which it can use to adopt acts, having the force of national law. This novel approach to pooling national sovereignty is called "integration". The 1970's saw progress in integration, with the introduction of community policy instruments, which enabled greater scope for national policies. All of the member states agree in principle to the idea of a single market by 1992, however each wish their own interests to be safeguarded. This is to say that none want to sacrifice their national sovereignty, many want unanimous voting, not majority voting. Many see this issue as a threat to their own regulations and laws, and could foresee a drop in standards if they do not stand firm. The situation is seen as a threat to the countries in question who do not wish to boldly give up their sovereignty for the sake of European unity. Whether or not the continuation of the progress in the field of European unity is sucessful depends very much on the people of Europe. If a feeling of European unity develops and can be sustained, the threat will subside as a feeling of identity takes over.
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7-5819174
N
On Britains roads there is an ever increasing volume of traffic. The road network is no longer able to carry this traffic without hold-ups and traffic jams.. To remedy this the government has started adding a fourth lane on some streches of our motorways and constructing ring roads and bypasses, with mixed reception. While the road system is being improoved there seems to be an endless series of roadworks which restrict the highways and cause further delay while the roadworks are in place. The inability to cope with the ammount of traffic by the road system obviously increases the risk of drives having an accident and the drivers have to be constantly alert as they are nearly always in capacity traffic. It might seem an easy soloution to this mayhem would be to use public transport; i.e. the Railways. People are not taking to the Rail system because of its lack of integration due to the recent privitisation of different areas. It has been shown that different companies charge different fares for exactly the same route! The main disadvantage with the railways is as the rail service and the bus service are normally owned by different companies it is probable that it is not possible to walk onto a bus off the train. If the services were integrated there would be a bus time table which coincided with the train arrival times. Then people would be more likely to catch the train as they would not have to look forwards to a long walk, wait for a bos or an expensive taxi ride. My soloution to the problem would be to improve the rail system and its related bus services, this would get people of the roads and onto the trains. To improove the rail service trains have got to be timed to arrive and depart at key times i.e. arrive at eight o'clock and leave at half past six. The train and bus companies have to liase with each other and the train fares have to remain relatively cheap i.e. the same price or less as it would cost to go by car.
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7-5819176
N
The basic dilema facing the UK's rail and road transport system is the general rise in population. This leads to an increase in the number of commuters and transport users every year, consequently putting pressure on the UKs transports network. The biggest worry to the system is the rapid rise of car users outside the major cities. Most large cities have managed to incourage commuters to use public transport thus decreasing major conjestion in Rush hour periods. Public transport is the obvious solution to to the increase in population if it is made cheep to commuters, clean, easy and efficient then it could take the strain of the overloaded British roads. For commuters who regularly travel long distances rail transport should be made more appealing, more comfortable and cheaper. Motorways and other transport links are constantly being extended, widened and slowly turning the country into a concrete jungle yet it is only trying to cope with the increase in traffic, we are our own enemy! Another major problem created by the mass of vehicle transport is the pollution emitted into the atmosphere damaging the ozone layer, creating smog and forming acid rain. Tourturing the Earth we are living on. In concluding I wish to propose clean, efficient comfortable and cheap public transport for the near future.
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7-5819175
N
The modern traffic jam is now a familiar situation to nearly all of the western worlds population. If every time we use our cars to travel any distance we find ourselfs in a 10 mile tail-back why do we still insist that that we travel in such ameander. To illistrate my point, if every time you took a train, it stops for 2 hours on the track, everyone would stop taking it. So why do we still insist on travelling on the road. The answer most likly lies in 2 areas, firsty the attitude of many westerners is that "it is their right to travel in such a mannor'. This is in my opinion, shows considerable ignorance. I am by far and away no 'greeny' who wants to make everyone live in tipee's and eat soya bean soup, however I do agree that somthing should be done about the volume of traffic that is on our roads today. The governments answer to the considerably growing amount of traffic on our roads it just to back move, they are not even attempting to treat the cause, thent more and more people are now driving. We all feel that we have a divine right to be on the road. Why? Do we, the westeren world (5% of the population of the world), have the right to use the resources of the rest of the world at the environmental cost? Just beause we can not be bothered to get out of bed a bit earilene to catch public transport. Even if we did, then shorly so does the rest of the world. That could have disasterous implications. The 2nd reason, is the promblem that the public transport service, for example rail, is declining so much, there is no train to catch in the morning. People stopped using trains because of the fall in standards, these people were forced onto the road, routes became unprofitable and so were closed and services cut back, forcing more people onto the roads. The whole system has now formed a spiraling circle of road use. This has now been intensifyed with the sale of the railways, to privite rail companys, profit motivated. The vital, small rail links may now be closed, priviously they where subsudised to make up the loss, now the privite companies can not afford to do this so many will close, cutting off small towns and villages. The only way to stop the circle will be to break it, the only people to do this is the government or ourselves, If we make the effort to use public transport it will expand into a good service; Unfortunatly the public seam to be appethetic to this idea.
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7-5819178
N
Today, boxing has become a very popular sport, with T.V. channels competeing for coverage of certain events and fighters earning a lot of money, this is a big business. Apart from athletics, boxing seems to be the only popular international sport from which Britain can still hold to head high. We have superb fighters with excellent character such as Lennox Lewis, Nigel Benn, Nasheem Hamed and our beloved Frank Bruno. Despite being enjoyable to watch, boxing is very dangerous. Blows to the head can cause the brain to rattle about the skull which may cause a brain clot or tumor. Last year, the fight between Chris Eubank and Micheal Watson led to calls for boxing to be banned when Micheal Watson slipped into a coma and was in a critical condition for some months. Many youths in low income areas see boxing as 'a way out', a chance to make it to the top and earn a lot of money on the way. There are, however, people who regard boxing as barbaric, brutal and primitive. These people argue that there is no need for boxing and that it only promotes violence. During the fight, yes, of course it is violent, but this is controlled violence and fighters have a mutual respect for each other. All precautions are taken to ensure a safe fight. During fights doctors a kept close to the ring and have the authority to call it off prematurely if required. Ambulances are also kept on stand by at big events. Although it may sound cruel, I do not beleive that any fighter has entered a proffessional boxing career without knowing the risks. Because there are so many budding young boxers, to ban boxing would be insane, since it would almost certainly go underground. Underground fights are far more dangerous since less protective gear is used and there usually isn't a doctor present. Taking this into account and considering that boxing is about hurting the opponent, it can be said that boxing is a relatively safe sport. Although far less popular, there are other sports which are far more brutal and dangerous, such as 'Thai Boxing', where competitors are encourage to use their knees and elbows. The argument continues, but for the sake of safety in the long term I do not think boxing will be banned. Which is good news for the majority of the British public.
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7-5819180
N
Two men, one ring, only one can leave. Dramatic it may be but basically that is the main principal of boxing. Although throughout the years rules have been made to dilute the sports sadistic side, should boxing be banned? Every time a boxer gets punched in the head his brain moves vigorously inside his skull. This causes the boxer to lose many brain cells per boxing fight and if this occurs frequently then the boxer can end his career with brain damage. In my eyes and probably the eyes of others this is reason enough for the banning of boxing. The sport to say the least is actually a blood sport, the simple reason being that the idea of the sport is to 'knock your opposition out', although this is argued by Chris Eubank he believes he is a sportsman and the idea of boxing is an art form, he says that he does not specifically go into a boxing ring to knock his opponent out but to win on points differences and to give Chris Eubank his just respect most of his fights have been won on points. But there is one exception - the original example, the first reference why boxing should be banned, the tragic accident where Michael Watson was put into a coma by Chris Eubank (the man who doesn't specifically go into fights to knock his opposition out). This example only proves too well what a dangerous so called 'sport' boxing is. The boxing federation is trying to do as much as it can to make the 'spot' safer having rungside doctors, banning bare hand fights but the top and bottom of the argument is that any blow to the head causes considerable damage.
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7-5819181
N
There is always much speculation over the dangers of such a brutal sport as boxing. This is emphasised and exaggerated when a competitor in the sport tragically dies. A recent death in the ring has inevitably led to a public uproar on the safety of the sport, and the controvesy over whether the sport should be banned or not is yet again the forefront of discussion. Let us consider how a professional boxer would feel. He is clearly aware of the dangers and brutalism of the sport, which is possibly why he enjoys it so much. I have yet to hear any boxer regret his choice of career. The excitement of being in the ring, the joy at knocking an opponent onto the canvass, and all the money that is there to be made are overwhelming factors which keep boxers fighting. The money that is there for the taking for the very best of the best is ridiculous, and with some top boxers earning sums of money such as £20 million (or in Mike Tysons comeback case, $60 million!) it is hardly surprising how important the sport can be to some. Let us consider 'Sky' viewes, recently beginning a subscription to view Tysons "next Live Lights". This member of the public does not want the sport to be banned either. Now let us consider the friends or family of a boxer, who has been permanently injured (or been killed due to a fight). These individuals and others learning about the tragic incident in the media protest against the sport. The family, who were originally against the idea of their son finishing college early to take up the sport would be leading the protests againt boxing. How pleased, proud and patriotic the British public felt when Frank Bruno achieved his ultimate goal and became the Heavyweight champion of the world, yet how sorry many were to see him return to boxing after his head injuries earlier in his career. This hypocritical view is shoved by so many that whether boxing should be banned or not will remain a controversial issue for the forseeable future.
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7-5819182
N
There were 2 main objections raised against the introduction of the national lottery. The first was the objection that the lottery would be little more another form of taxation, in fact, none than that, a tax on the poor. The second and main objection came from charities who predicted that charitable donations would go down with the introduction of the lottery, as people would be less likely to give money to charity, instead buying a lottery ticket, with the excuse that some of the money spent buying the ticket would go to charity. There was also some controversy over the awarding of the lottery organisation franchise, which eventually went to Camelot, which was not seen as the strongest contender for the bid: other companies or consortiums promised to give more money to charity with lower running costs. Richard Bronson promised to give all of his profits to charity, but was rejected. My personal objections to Camelot as the lottery organiser is that a large proportion of the consortium are american or foreign firms, for example IBM has a sizeable stake in Camelot. The British national lottery run by non British firms. since its introduction there has been more controversy over the national lottery. When it promised to give 45 pence in every pound to charitable causes, it neglected to promise that most or all of this money would go to charity. There has also been some controversy over the allocation of money. For example 3 million pounds were given to Eton college one of the richest public schools for a gymnasium money was also given to the royal opera house. The lottery seamed to be a reverse Robin Hood: stealing from the poor to give to the rich. The lottery has also suffered alegations that it is addictive, especially with the introduction of scratch cards. It has been claimed that it is so addictive that people will spend all their availiable cash on lottery tickets, only to be disappointed. It has been calculated that only 4 pence out of every pound recieved by the lottery goes to charitable causes, the rest is tax the prize fund, profits, and the so called charities. It has also been calculated that the chance of winning anything substantial is one in millions, ie highly unlikely. It has also been alleged that the jackpots are too high most of the lucky winners have said themselves that the jackpot had runed their life, alenating them from friends and family. In conclusion, I think that the lottery should be retained, but not in its present form. I think that jackpots should be capped at 2 million pounds, and the prize fund shared between more people: it is better to give forteen people a fortune than to give fourteen fortunes to one person. I would also remove any american buisness interests and give the charity money to more diserving 'charity'. Now the lottery is in place, it would be very difficult to remove it from society.
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7-5819183
N
The computer has been one of the most influential inventions of all time. Computers now dominate the majority of government business, science and communication, as well as many other areas of human life. In many ways, it has taken the place of the human brain in performing calculations and thought processes. The most obvious example of this is the calculator, an instrument used by mathmeticians and scientists for making numerical calculations. This has made it no longer necessary for the human to perform calculations and run through equations, and so need not understand the principles behind them any longer. This, unfortunately, means that the genius scientist is being replaced by the powerful computer and its operator, who needs only to know which buttons to press. This may seem an extreme view, as there is still much in the world of maths and science which a computer cannot calculate, but this may not be the case centuries into the future. Computers have been used as a means of keeping records, they have all but superseded handwritten text, (in a few decades people may well be faced with a computer screen and keyboard in their General Studies exam), they are used to transfer money across the globe, even to create artwork and to entertain. Computer generated pictures, including `fractal' pictures, drawn from equations, seem to be more popular than hand printed images from an artist's imagination, and computer games seem to provide more entertainment than any game or activity that takes place in the real, physical world. Virtual reality allows people to have `3-D' entertainment created for them by a computer. Whether or not the computer is taking over from the human brain, it has certainly made the human body all but redundant. People, businesses or corporations can be contacted at any point around the globe by fax machines, e-mail and the internet, and some people prefer these forms of communication to actually meeting face to face. Money can be transferred instantly without even needing to move the actual money - the physical coinage doesn't matter, it is the computer records that state how much each bank has ownership of. However, the idea that the human brain is no longer useful is not entirely true(!) Computers cannot deal with human beings, have no capacity for coping with anything outside their expected situations, and cannot adapt to new situations using judgement. Human beings often act without logic or reason, and only other human beings can cope and deal with that. Also, computers can break down, and then a human is needed to take control - such as an airline pilot, and there are still certain tasks only a human being can perform, and they are often among the simplest.
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7-5819203
N
They cried, they cheered. Their faces expressed joy, triumph, pride and perplexity. The world watched in anticipation -- We were mesmirized by the images of the TV, expecting something new at every moment and not wanting to miss it -- I remember that day it was the only topic of conversation at school: "Have you heard?", "I can't believe it!", "After all this time!", "I never thought it would happen." We all felt that we were living one of those historic moment that you read about in a history book and were proud to be a part of it -- It was November 9, 1989, the day that the Wall fell in Berlin- Within a few weeks, the excitement had died down and people had turned their attention to more recent news. But for me, this had been the start. It was the start of what our now as-President Bush likes to refer to as "our" winning of the Cold War -- It was the event that gave the people of the Eastern Bloc countries the hope that their efforts were not in vain -- For 40 years, the people had suffered under a communist regime that had not allowed them to express themselves freely or to leave their homelands in search of a new life -- Many people had tried to escape. Some had been executed -- I had a classmate whose father had escaped from Hungary -- He had left his family and friends, his whole life and had set out for Western Europe with little money. I had asked him once if he hadn't been scared, scared of what he would find once he left -- He told me that nothing could compare to the way he had been forced to live his life there -- Even though I had lost touch with this classmate, her father's words were with me as I watched the events unfold in Germany -- Bolstered by the Germans' success, the people of Hungary, Tchekoslovaquia, Poland and Roumania rose against communist regimes as well -- Now, three years later, communism as we once knew it no longer exists. Whether the people are happier or not, I cannot say -- However, they will have at least seen the "other side". Their struggles and hopes of forty years will not have been in vain -- Without the "events of Berlin Wall" history probably would not have taken a very different course -- Eventually, I think that things would have turned out as they did -- However, history cannot be rewritten and as things stand the Fall of the Berlin Wall actively contributed to the resurgence of hope and struggle in the rest of the Eastern Bloc -- As such, it was the catalyst force that led to the end of the Cold War and therefore, though we may not always remember the other significant events, we will always remember the day the wall fell --
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7-5819214
N
The development and implementation of technology has affected societies in every corner of the world. I do not speak of a certain object in particular, but of technology as a whole. This thing, technology has been and will always be both the closest friend and yet the greatest Nemesis of our world. Science and technology have allowed me to travel to this part of the world, they have provided a living for my family, they have cured my grandmother of cancer, and they provide horizons of hope and knowledge in the fields of medicine, science, engineering, and even the less overt corners of our lives. The use of the means humans have developed is wherein the greatest problems lie. Alone, they do not threaten us, but when they become welded with certain aspects of and certain people in our societies, they become potentially the most dangerous things that we hold in our hands. Speaking from my experience living in the United States, I have come to feel that technology has become a large detriment to our youth in particular. People say that technological development has made our world much smaller, and I would concur that a great majority of Americans live in their own personal closets. In schools, Geography classes rarely, if ever, exist. Before I came to Spain, a group of children asked me if Spain was in Michigan. Explaining that Spain was located across the ocean did not seem to improve their understanding of the layout of our world. Science and technology have had effects on the U.S. that cannot be described, and I feel that its people have adopted the same "I am a self-sufficient- I don't need any help" type of mentality that will slowly destroy us. Our awareness of other people, other cultures, and other languages is very low on the priority list of our educators. Until I was 15, I was unable to study any foreign language at all, and even at that time I had only one choice of languages- German. Since I was twelve, I had an intense desire to learn Spanish, and because of these circumstances, that I mentioned before, I had no choice but to wait until I was twenty years old to even begin to learn this language. Mine is not the only experience like this. The effort of the United States has caused our minds to be heard, and a world that is growing while my country lags behind in its selfish self-satisfaction.
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7-5819184
N
Many people argue nowadays that, with the advent of computer technology, our mental arithmetic is poor and we are becoming a nation of couch potatos. It is true in a way, the development of portable calculating machines (calculators) has meant that we no longer need to be able to work out sums in our heads, but at what cost? In many shops, the cashiers appear to be dumbfounded by the simplest of sums without the aid of their tills. In many areas, the skill of human judgement has been replaced by faster, more accurate, computers. Many people have had their job positions taken over by computers. Filing cabinets are becoming a thing of the past with computer databases. But even such menial tasks as filing are good for us. They encourage organisational skills and tidiness. When people talk about artificial intelligence (AI), you hear many funny tales from people who are convinced that the computers are coming alive and will eventually rule us. These are just the rantings of people who have nothing to do with computers and who do not realise that behind every computer is a programmer. Even `artificial intelligence' needs to be programmed. Human brains still work out how to build the computers, how to program them and, more importantly, how to control them. As for making the human brain redundant computers can help to improve learning skills, they can teach, test and improve our linguistic skills. Reflexes are improved (and this has been scientifically proven) by playing computer games, the very same things that parents say turn their children into `zombies'. We can expand our imagination and convert our ideas into computer simulated models, enabling us to design buildings and road networks. The computer revolution has not made our brains redundant, it has opened up areas of them we never knew existed!
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7-5819185
N
It is now the age of the computer. Almost everyone owns a computer or has access to one. Computers nowadays are a far cry from the one's in the past which filled whole rooms. They are able to generate amazingly accurate graphical representations and perform extremely difficult mathematical equations in just seconds. Computers have become a huge part of our lives in both the areas of work and education. But are they such a good thing? When calculators came along a drop in ability of students for mental arithmetic was obvious and now they are used for the simplest calculations. The computer could do the same thing. Computers encourage laziness in the general public, why work out something yourself when the computer can do it for you. This is very time saving and efficient but it is causing people to forget basic ideas. For instance, spelling is no longer as important as it was you can simply use a "spellcheck" to correct your English, which is absurd. For the youth of today computers offer links around the world and millions of facts and figures. This could be argued to be educational. However, this is killing the imagination of children and they spend hours sat at a keyboard tapping away in the doom and gloom of the house. They should be out enjoying themselves and gaining experiences for themselves instead of reading about them on a flat screen. It is said that you can meet people through computers and have `relationships'. I find this preposterous and people are losing the ability to communicate and form relationships. Computers can offer escape from the hum-drum routine of daily life by means of games but they are mind-numbing and un-inventive. There is however a more dangerous threat from computers, it is that they can do the work for man. This could lead to high unemployment. Those people who work with computers for long periods of time every day face problems. The repetion of tapping keys all day and staring at the screen can be harmful and not only that it is highly boring to do the same thing over and over again. Computers may be the future but what part will man have in this future. There will be no need for people to go to school as they could be taught at home, people would hardly ever talk and the only career available would be for computer programmers. I agree that computers are helpful but people should not live through their computers and be so reliant on them. They should read books and live more in order to regain their lost imagination and sense of adventure. Also, in schools I feel that work should be done mainly by hand and calculators and computers should only be used minimally in mathematics in order to stop the production of computer addicts and again have normal people.
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7-5819186
N
There are many beneficial aspects of genetic manipulation. These include: the erasion of identification of harmful hereditary genetic disorders and the development of hybrid high-yield crops. There can be no doubt that genetic manipulation and genetic engineering have had highly beneficial effects on many areas of society. However, many people dislike or are prejudiced against, genetic manipulation. Partly this is a 'Fear of the unknown'; something which tampers with the intrinsic components of plant and animal life is beyond comprehension for most people, and therefore provokes fear. What people have also become aware of, is the immense power which genetic manipulation can give to certain individuals. This has been very good to feed popular culture (the film 'Jurassic Park' being an obvious reference point). There is also however, the very real possibility that the power of genetic manipulation could become the possession of uncontrolled unregulated individuals who could use it for `evil' purposes. This then, is an argument against scientists bearing moral responsibility for their work. Anything in life can be misused. Whether it be a kitchen-knife used to stab someone, a car used to run someone over, or something as harmeless as a pillow used to suffocate. Everything in life, if misused, can have harmful effects and genetic engineering and genetic manipulation are no exception. Though the possible effects of genetic manipulation may be far larger than a kitchen-knife or car, this is purely a subjective view by present-day standards. Certainly we would not hold the makers of a car or kitchen-knife responsible for their misuse, and there is no reason why scientists should bear the major burden or responsibility if genetic manipulation is put to misuse. The fundamental flaw in saying scientists must bear the major burden or moral responsibility for their work, is that if this had been applied universally for centuries, scientific research would never have taken place, and mankind would be without electricity, radios, quite simply, anything above the mud hut' existence. Scientific research is not a corrupt, but an essential and natural part of the human condition for bettering itself. The other fundamental flaw is assuming that individual scientists have responsibility, Science is a process of discovery rather than creation, ie. no-one created genetic manipulation, the power of it was there to be discovered. If one scientist does not make a discovery then another one will. It is unfair to hold responsible the scientist on the fore front of human knowledge, who discovers something when another scientist in another part of the world may make the discovery independently afterwards. The only argument for making scientists responsible for their work, is that quite often, and particularly in the case of genetic manipulation, it would need a scientist to misuse knowledge, and therefore they should be responsible. While genetic manipulation is relatively new, it takes a scientist to carry it out, and therefore an individual scientist could be held responsible. But, once genetic manipulation becomes common-place in the future, and it is not only the domain of scientists, the originals scientist who discovered genetic manipulation cannot be held responsible for other's misuse of it.
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7-5819187
N
There are many problems facing the Monarchy. Some of them are listed below: The divisions in their family and the fight between prince and the princes of Wales and the possibility of the divorce. The other problem is that people say (or think) that they do not do anything but they are rich and also they do not pay any taxes. Another problem is that people think that Monarchy is abolishing in many countries and many countries are republic so Monarchy should be abolished in this country too. There are also arguments against abolishing the Monarchy too. For example many people like the royal family or they are honest people not like the politisions that always lay. I think the royal family and Monarchy is a a tradition in UK and anywhere in the world, UK is known by its royal family, so I do not think it should be abolished. In the end I think if many people want the Monarchy to be ablished a general election should be called and then see if Monarchy should be abolished.
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7-5819188
N
"In Vitro fertilisation" is the fertilisation of an egg in the laboratory ie. in a testube. The egg is taken from the mother and placed in an environment which will optimise the chances of fertilisation by the sperm from the father. Once fertilisation has occured the fertilised egg is implanted back into the mothers womb and from there on the pregnancy will be normal. Normally more than 1 egg is taken from the mother so that the eggs can be stored and used later if the pregnancy is unsuccesful or so that more than one can be fertilised at the same time to increase the chance of a succesful pregnancy. This usually leads to multiple births ie. twins, triplets etc. There are people who are agains this, saying it is not natural and is it fair to the child having started life in a test tube, as they believe life starts from the moment of conception. There are ethics involved whereby who is given the treatment and who isn't?, at what age should the treatment not be given and is it justifiable to spend so much money on in vitro fertilisation for one person when the same amount of money could be used to saves hundereds of lives by vaccinating people against measles for example. The people who are for this can argue by saying that it is the right of every person to have their own child. Women who would not normally be able to have children can now do so with invitro fertilisation. Through no fault of her own she could have a blocked fallopian tube causing her to be unable to allow eggs down to the womb and it is only fair in helping her to have children. Technology has progressed quickly and in doing so ethics and practical guidelines have been left behind. I therefore think it is necessary to have certain regulations ie. 1. Fertility treatment should not be given to post-menopausal women. The menopause is the body's way of telling you that you are to old and your body is no long capable of bearing a baby. Last year there was a case of a post menopausal woman who by lying about her age was given in vitro fertilisation (IVF). I don't think this is fair or morally correct to the child since her mother would be claiming her pension when she was at primary school and her mother would probably die while the child was in her teens.... there should be a test that is given before (IVF) is carried out to check the mother is not past the menopause. 2. Eggs should not be taken from aborted foetuses. The foetuses will have been aborted for a reason for example: if it was the result of a rape or if it had congenital deformities. There should be a guideline or law stating that eggs should only be taken from the mother and not from dead, foetuses.
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7-5819189
N
Science has moved on dramatically since the C19th. Many new things have been invented and many things medically have changed. People in our modern times are now able to have liver, heart and even lung transplants, there are many complications but many are succesful. People are able to have a whole new blood supply if theirs lacks the sufficient requirements or, a bone marrow transplant if the blood lacks white cells. All the above are carried out on living people, but nowadays biological operations can be carried out on humans which are not even born. Bodies can start their days in a test tubes. This is called 'in vitro fertilisation'. This is when an egg is removed from a woman placed in a test tube and then sperm is placed in to the test tube and the egg and sperm fuse together. The test tube is then incubated for a few weeks and when the fetous is formed, the baby is then inserted back in to the mother. The fetous is left to grow and develop naturally. This idea is extremely benificial to married couples who have been trying for a baby but have been unsuccesful are able to have children. An in vitro fertilisation allows the baby to grow inside, which allows the mother and baby to bond and it would feel apart of her, this would not happen if the couple adopted. What I do feel is ethically incorrect is when a woman who is post-menopausal decides she wants a baby. Nature has already taken its course to tell her she is too old to have any children so why should she have one implanted into her. It is not fair on the child because when it grows up and all its friends are playing with their 30-40 year old parents, its mother could be drawing her pension and I am sure she would not feel like playing with her child. Also the mother may die of old age before the child has led a full life and this would be unfair to the child. The child may also have to look after the mother in her old age. As the fetous begins its life in a test tube, and the sperm is selected, this means that the sex of the sperm could also be selected. The way the sex can be chosen is by using genetics. The women has 2 X chromosomes and the man has one X and a Y-chromosomes. The way in which the sex can be selected is that the egg is always X and the sperms nucleus can either contain an X or a Y chromosome. The X chromosome sperm is slightly heavier than the Y so they can be separated. If the mother wants a boy Y sperm is selected and if a girl X is selected. This may lead to an increase in one sex, and a decline in the other. As a result this would reduce the population as there would be less couples. Also what happens if most people the year you are born are men and you are a woman, this would be the unpopular sex. Science is progressing all the time, but is it for the best?
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7-5819191
N
The main reason for the people of Britain to stop eating beef at the moment is the threat of BSB. This is a viral disease that attacks the central nervous system which can be passed on through consumsuming the animal. In cows it is commonly know as mad cow disease and by law any cow showing these signs must be destroyed and not sold for meat. The problem is however the signs are not shown for a long time, this being a viral disease. It can be passed on to humans through eating parts of the animal such as the brain which is affected and these parts are usually sold and put into fast foods such as beef burgers. The rest of the meat however is relatively safe and eating, e.g. a steak offers very little chance of the disease being passed on. However the British press has ignored this fact and blown the situation out of proportion considering only a very small number of people have died of the disease after a lifetime of eating beef. Another reason for the British people to stop eating beef is the push for vegetarianism, although this is a much smaller threat to the trade than the former point abut BSB. These factors could have a considerable impact on the agricultural industry preventing the sale of British dairy livestock not only in Britain but for export aswell. With global communications as good as they are now, it could send a scare across the world about British Beef - indeed France and Germany already have restricted and someplaces banned the sale or import of British beef for fear of it's safety. Although British farmers have learned to diversits, Dairy farming and the sale of Beef products still forms the backbone of British agriculture and would completely change the face of farming in Britain. Wether they switch to sheep or vegetable crops were made, substantial changes would be needed to change the situation.
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7-5819190
N
People throughout the United Kingdom were, doubtless shocked and perhaps upset by images in the national press and television news of cows who had contracted the disease bovine spungiform encephalapthy, or BSE. The so-called 'mad cow disease' seemed to make the cows lose all sense of balance and direction, stumbling around drunkenly. Herds where this disease was found were put down before the symptoms progressed further. Those cows which had been put down were not used for food. The disease infects the cow, and is then present in the spinal fluid within the spine and the brain, and as the spinal fluid is usually spilt in the slaughter of cattle for meat, the risk of contamination of the meat was one the industry was not willing to take. The human disease, Crentzfeld-Jacob disease, or CJD, is believed to be a human form of BSE, although no clear link has yet been established between the two. It is unclear whether incidence of CJD is on the rise, or whether awareness of the condition is heightened, but more cases, from all ages have been diagnosed recently, and the disease is always fatal. The government insists, perhaps correctly, that British beef is perfectly safe to eat. However, people are genuinely scared of the presence of the disease in the U.K., and many are abstaining from eating beef. Many schools have removed beef from their menus, substituting pork and chicken, and sales of beef have shown a decline. The implications for the beef industry could be rather serious, where everybody to boycott beef products. To compensate, beef prices have dropped, in attempts to sell more meat, but the public remains sceptical. If beef continues to fall from favour, then the beef industry's future would be unclear. Beef products are present in many foodstuffs such as jellies, fruit gums, and of course stock cubes. Would all these products have to find synthetic or substitute ingredients? Even if the entire beef industry were to grind to a halt, the numerous heads of beef cattle worldwide would no longer be needed, but, being bred as they are, for beef, they would be useless for milk products. Not all beef can be infected, though, and the situation has become a waiting game. For beef to be repreived or condemned, we are forced to turn to the scientists to establish whether or not BSE and CJD are linked, and, more importantly, whether the latter can be contracted by eating meat contaminated with the former. The nation awaits the verdict on tenterhooks, and it is in the majority's interests that there be no proven link. Watch this space. Personally, I believe that it is merely that man is better at diagnosing CJD now than ever before. Some reports say that it can take up to 20 years to develop, so we could all already have it. Whatever you believe, I shall continue to enjoy my roast beef and Yorkshire pudding, thankyou.
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7-5819192
N
There has been a big scare in Britain recently that some beef may contain BSE (bovine spongiform encephalopathy) which may lead to the human equivalent of CJD (Creutzfeldts-Jacob disease). BSE is a disease in cows that effects their brain and spiral tissue (or offal as it is sometimes known). After a few reported cases of CJD, a similar form of the disease found in humans, it is know thought that 'mad-cow disease' (BSE) is the cause. Researchers believe that eating beef containing offal will transmit the fatal disease to humans. This claim has devestated the British beef industry as people are now too scared to eat beef in case they contract the illness. Already the sales of beef in America have dropped by about 15 % and in Britain they have dropped about 6 % - 7 %. Although scientists say that to contract CJD part of the cows offal must be contained within the beef. customers are still reluctant to eat the meat incase it has come from some 'dodgy' butcher trying to cut costs. As you can imagine this has had a tremendous inffluence on sales in places such as fast food restaurants where beefburgers are the main item on the menu. An example of one is MacDonalds where they have immediately brought out a notice stating that their beefburgers are made from 100% of the finest, pure beef and contain no offal. In my views no half decent restaurant with a good reputation would risk buying poor beef in case a customer caught CJD and they managed to trace it back to the restaurant. An outcome like this would mean they would be sued for several thousands of pounds and would probably have to sell up. As a result of a lower beef demand in places of food production there would be a lower need for beef cows. This means that there would be an excess of beef (or a beef mountain) that could not be sold. Because of this the prices of beef would have to decrease in order to attract more customers. So, as a result of the claim that beef containing contaminated offal may cause CJD in humans, farmers (in particular beef farmers) are losing out as they will have to sell their meat for a lower price due to the low demand. As a result they may have to diversify towards other areas such as crops, milking cows, etc. or even have to get a government subsidy. I feel that the evidence that BSE causes CJD was not strong enough before the claims were released. It has therefore caused an unnecessary, deleterious effect on the agricultural industry and beef market.
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7-5819193
N
The question of compensation for services rendered is never so simple as remitting a predetermined salary based on qualifications and a person's dedication to the task at hand. If one has preconceived notions concerning one's salary, one will certainly be disappointed since some employers are sure to value their skills and abilities less than others. "Contribution to society" is subjective and therefore impossible to compensate "equally'. In the 1920s in American, it became very popular to disdain people who did not actually work for a living, but merely lived off the interest of their investments. The stock market was experiencing a boom, and several formerly working-class citizens became wealthy and relished the idea of retiring early. But several great authors of that period questioned the right of these investors to effectively live as parasites; they received money, but they contributed nearly nothing to society. People who inherit money or live off the interest of investors often seem to spend their time in search of a new thrill, some sort of excitement that money cannot buy. Having almost unlimited wealth changes people, both those who are born into wealth and those who earn their own money early on. But do they have the right to live this way? What about people who work very hard yet they seem to be paid miserably. A migrant work may slave away in a field all day long and make less money in a day than a wealthy person spends on a tip at lunch. The answer this question lies in one's feelings about Democracry. Some would argue that if a person is smart enough or lucky enough to earn money for an early retirement (or for their children's inheritance) he or she is entitled to it. A rather hard view would be that if someone who works on a menial or physically taxing job does not make a fair or moderate salary then it is his or her own fault (or bad luck). These opinions are based on a rather faulty American premise that all people are given an equal chance in life and what they make of it is their own responsibly. Apparently, most people believe that they are underpaid and that others are overpaid. For instance, everyone seems to think that doctors make much too money for the work they do, yet none of the doctors are lowering their fees (they must think that it's a fair price). So, unless we wish to impose on the personal lives of wealthy people by making them work harder, or give people who are not wealthy money that society does not believe they deserve, we cannot give pay equal to contribution to society.
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7-5819194
N
I agree that in the past women have had problems with societies role of what they are expected to do in the work place and at home. Women have been looked down on if they try to get ahead and pay has differed with the same job for a man verses a woman doing the same job. Gone is the age that the woman is required to stay home. Now a lot of women work and the ones that want to stay home do it because they want to. A lot of what has changed women's roles is the feminists. These are groups of people that have defended women over the years. These people have shown the modern world what women in the work place can do. The problem is that these feminists have not looked at all women. Some women were happy with old traditions, some wanted a bit more in their lives, some wanted a lot more in their lives. What happens is that all women have to go along with these feminists rules. This makes it hard, because if they don't, they are looked down upon by their piers. An example is military women wanting to serve in combat positions when at war. Feminists argued this a lot when the Iraq war was going on. They felt that women should have been given the chance to fight. I felt that these people were crazy. Women just can't fight in a war very well. The are not strong enough and if captured could be raped. They feel that it is not fair that men are the only ones. Other women, though, are glad that the rule in the United States stands as it does. Feminists have talked about promotions in the work place as not being fair. Also sexual harassment is involved in a lot of suits. Many women believe that they are the victims. I agree that five to ten years ago this might have been true, but now many employers are the victims. They are scared of what a woman can do and sometimes women get looked at differently. There are some things that women can do better than men and there are some things that men can do better than women. God would have created us all the same if this was not true. Feminists are trying to make everyone equal and that is impossible to do because nature cannot be changed. More and more office jobs are being filled by the woman but a lot of the physical jobs are still filled by men. I think that the traditional roles were a good thing, but the modernization has changed everyone's habits. Divorce is at fifty percent and rising, women are having more heart attacks, being more stressful, and kids are being more neglected. Modernization is good, but I think that women should not be pressured into this if this is not for them. There will be a woman in the presidency, and running a lot more companies. Women should be created equal, but they can only do what nature intended they to do...
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7-5819195
N
Whenever a movement is began whether it be political, religious, or artistic, stereotypes are quick to form. People normally associated with politics, religion, or art are quickly lumped into categories regardless of individual differences. This tragedy is worsened by the tendency of those outside the movement to remember the radical and ignore the common or ordinary. This is especially true of the Women's Liberation Movement in America. Since its beginnings in the late nineteenth century, Women's Liberation has been met with adamant, and often obstinate oppostion. Some of the first radicals, Susan B. Anthony and George Sand (although French) were noticed and ridiculed, thus defeating their cause, because of their aggressive action. At the same time other feminists such as Emily Dickinson were virtually ignored during their lifetime and only acknowledged posthumously as being part of the movement. This ignorance of other less aggressive feminists, made it seem as though the feminist movement was headed only by wild, disgruntled zealots and was therfore, detrimental to the good of society. Although "radicals" such as Sand and Anthony seem docile and backward in modern standards, the problem still exists. From the very beginning the Women's Movement in America has been fighting a losing battle. However, I contend that the fault does not lie with the radical members of the movement, but rather, in the perception of those observing the movement. When Women's Lib really took off again in the late 1960s, it was again destined for failure. Immediately, the focus was on radicals like Stein, instead of the housewife who returned to college and made a career for herself. Those outside the movement could only see the differences between "normality" and Women's Lib. This is still true twenty-five years later. Women supporting equal pay for women and and other "liberal" causes like affirmative action are only seen in the shadow of the bra-burning, anti-shaving leaders of the 1970s. The good of their cause is undermined by the perception of the radicals. So what am I getting at? Only that so-called feminists have not in and of themselves harmed the Women's movement. However, the popular perception of them has. For so many years the good that feminists have promote for women has fallen by the wayside in lieu of other more interesting, i.e. radical ideas. Like many other aspects and movements in life, they would be more readiliy received if the public it was being aimed was not so jaded.
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7-5819196
N
Within this century there have been many technological advances which have resulted in a drastically different society than that of a hundred years ago. Clearly, of the inventions of this century, the one that has made the most impact on world views and lifestyle is the television. This instrument has brought other worlds right into the living room, making it possible to see life in other countries in a way that was never before possible. However, the invention of television also gave society an easy way to waste time; one has only to turn it on to tune out reality. Television has potential to offer wonderful things to its viewers, such as educational programming for children, cultural programs about far away places, and a closer look at current events than cannot be given by newspaper. Television has the power to bring war into the home as well as artistic expressions of those involved in the program production, giving society the opportunity to understand their own culture more fully. However, this is not the way in which television has influenced society. On the contrary, television has become the escape route of the masses, a way for people to flee from the conflicts they experience in their culture, rather than confront them and try to understand them. In the minds of most Americans, television is regarded as a diversion rather than an educational tool, as free entertainment instead of easily accessible knowledge. Millions of Americans can be found to be staring at the T.V. at any one time, watching sit-coms, soap-operas, and cartoons. The T.V. has become the center of many households; in many families, the only time that everyone is together is when they are watching television. T.V. is a major cause of lack of togetherness found in many American families, and has also resulted in an increase in laziness. The more time one spends watching TV, the less motivated he becomes; there is no need to seek worthwhile activities when it is much easier to sit on the couch, pick up the remote control, and stare at a box. Television, therefore, has changed society in ways that could hardly have been dreamed of 00 years ago. It has given society another creative vein, a look at worlds which could be seen in no other way, and an opportunity to better educate itself. However, throughout the years, television has lost much of its integrety; the programs offered are usually cheap entertainment rather than education. The entertainment aspect of television has offered society an easy escape from its problems and dificulties. Therefore, since the invention of television, society has becomed more informed but too lazy to think about this new information, and has distanced itself from family life.
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7-5819197
N
A discovery that has significantly changed many peoples lives and their ways of thinking is the epidemic, known as AIDS. Though it has probably been around for awhile, it's presence hasn't really been known untill fairly recently, and it's consequences have been devistating. AIDS has definately had an impact on people in the United States and probably all over the world because it always leads to death and there is no cure. It has caused a lot of prejudice and paranoia among people which has torn them apart. For example, there is more of stigma attached to being a homosexual male, not only because of their sexual preference, but they probably have AIDS too. This kind of ignorant thinking is breaking us apart. Also, when Ryan White, a boy who contracted AIDS through a blood transfusion was diagnosed, the people of his town and his school treated him like a complete outcast and wouldn't allow him to attend school. With new discoveries of AIDS, paranoia is at an all time high. Doctors are discovering that some undetectable strands of AIDS do exist. This has really scared people because they may have AIDS and not even know it. I feel this has really made people think about their actions. In the early eighties "casual sex" in the United States was a widely accepted idea, now it is something people really take into consideration and rarely occurs. Relationships seemed to be valued more than one night stands. People are starting to realize that they really do have to be careful, and with more education on this disease, I'm sure more changes will come about.
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7-5819199
N
The twentieth century has seen more wars than any other previous bloc of time. Though advances in communication, transportation, and information sharing, the world as a body of people living in close proximity, has rapidly shrunk. In the second of the world wars, the race was on to create the most devastating, most powerful, and most frightening weapon our people had ever known. In my opinion, the discovery and harness of atom and its energy and the corresponding invention of nuclear weapons have been the most significant factors of change in our lifetime, if not, perhaps, in several lifetimes. As missile technology and nuclear fusion capacities increased and improved, fear began to replace nationalism, and our small world erected barriers between its members. From my experience as an American, I can remember associating communism with nuclear threat, Soviet citizens with anti-Christ, and bomb shelters, secret cities for underground, and weapons orbiting our planet, with daily, normal life. Perhaps this increasingly common mentality is the worst effect of our nuclear, cold war age. In a planet which desperately needs our focus on environmental and humanitarian issues, my country has spent uncountable trillions of dollars on nuclear weapons testing, improvement, and implementation. As a commonplace goal and testimonial landmark to 9 presidential administrations, the cold war has manifested its awesome power and control over nearly every facet of Americana; from survival kits and basement bombshelters to an ever circulating cheif Executive commandpost from the air. In just the past three years our family of nations has seen the dismantling of the Berlin Wall and hundreds of other smaller symbols of freedom, and an end to oppression in many circumstances. With this, the walls, barbed wire, and mental barriers are falling, bringing more change than our planet has seen since its genesis. Although the old habits die hard, they are indeed dying. In America the military has been reduced by several thousand troops, and the production of nuclear warheads has virtually arrived a standstill. Hopefully, with continued efforts, our use of nuclear fusion and fission will turn from mediums of strategy, destruction, and waste to matters of energy production, medicine, and other humanitarian goals. With this thawing of attitudes, our frigid planet and cold neighbors may once again be a warm and friendly people.
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7-5819200
N
The discovery of penicillin as an antibiotic was one of the greatest advances in medicinal chemistry. As a natural antibiotic, penicillin was discovered to have many uses in stopping and preventing the spread of infections. This "wonder-drug" also led to the discovery of a variety of other naturally-occurring antibiotics that could also be cultured "in vitro" in a laboratory. This sudden burst of useful compounds not only improved the chances of a patient's survival in a hospital but also caused a great need for medical chemists to study and classify each new drug as it was discovered. As discoveries of new antibiotics decreased, chemists began to wonder if certain variations of these drugs could be synthesized and also used as medicine. It was also attemped to increase the production of the naturally-occurring antibiotics through synthesis. Both of these new attempts caused a need for more research, more companies, and more medical chemists, and the industry increased tremendously. It was discovered that the older drugs could be synthesized efficiently while still remaining biologically active. New drugs were also synthesized; some were found to be medically useful while others were not. A variety of new drugs continuously appeared on the market and changed the way people thought about taking medicine. It was now much easier to obtain antibiotics for simple illnesses, such as the common cold. Huge enterprises, such as Upjohn, were formed and grew, and universities had research teams devoted to producing efficient synthesis routes for the production of all kinds of antibiotics. The discovery of one compound led to the increase of health of millions of people, to the discovery of more and more antibiotics, and to a booming industry comprised of research teams and large companies. The synthesis of antibiotics and research of their uses still continues today as thousands of universities and companies around the world continue the work of a small bacteria -- the producer of penicillin.
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7-5819201
N
The modern microcomputer (PC) has evolved at an incredibly fast pace: from the very first modern computer in the 1940's to the computers of today, there have been many technological advances and also there has been a tremendous impact on society. The computer has eliminated many jobs through automation of factories; accounting, engineering, and other scientific programs, etc. The effects of the computer have been tremendous; however, the phenomenon is a catch-22. The computer has made life easier from a physical standpoint and harder from a mental standpoint. The physical effects of the computer are numerous and easily seen. In offices, the computer is everywhere. From word processors to spreadsheet/database programs, computers have made office work easier and faster. Automation of factories has also eliminated many manual jobs. Also almost everyone has at least one simple computer, e.g. a calculator. There are of course many other things computers are used for, but a lengthy list is not necessary as everyone already knows (except for people in 2nd and 3rd world countries) how abundant computers are. The mental effect of computers is two-fold. Firstly, computers have made mathematical computations so easy to do, many people do not fully understand how or why their computer works. This has created a surplus of "needless" computations, figures, etc. People can easily do calculus or other type functions with a computer. What many people do not realize is that computers make errors all the time. Granted, it is the person who "told" the computer what to do that truly made the error; however if that person knew what he should do, or better stated "was able to do with a computer", he would not have erroneous answers. Mathematical models, theories, etc. are absolutely riddled with errors simply because there are many things people don't know or can't predict. Due to this errors frequently exist in the world of computers simply because humans are ignorant- for whatever reason - of many "variables". Secondly, computers have sometimes become more reliable than people. A computer's circuits don't get tired and, if programmed 100% correctly (another perhaps impossible computation), never make errors. This supposed reliability has left many workers out of work. The effects of this are unpredictable. Anger, frustration, fear, and many other negative feelings have sprung up simultaneously with the rise of computer usage. Clearly, there is evidence of good and bad results from the advent of the modern computer. It would be practically impossible to throw the computer away or never use it again. Yet there are practical solutions. Better mathematical education is needed for everyone who uses a computer other than a simple calculator. Also, curtailing some theoretical programming could eliminate alarming predictions or erroneous results. The key is probably in the classroom. People should learn more about the ramifications about what they are doing. (This probably would require understanding of philosophy and psychology as well as mathematics and science.) In either case, if computers are good or bad, it would be difficult to dispute their impact on people's lives.
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7-5819202
N
A large, 1/2 egg, sometimes as large as a small FIAT, with a metal arrow in it's center has changed the size of the world, and communication amongst the countries within it. The satellite dish, created in the last 0 years, has changed the meaning of telecommunication. In part, it has created The Information Age, as the latter part of the 20th ctry, is often labelled. Not certain about the date of its invention, it must be recognized as one of the more vital tools used in society today, amongst world leaders, trading companies, and the media, as well as the entertainment world. Ted Turner revolutionized the use of the satellite, with his creation of CNN, the round-the-clock, round-the-world news station. Presidents and dictators alike switch the channel to recieve first hand information from the network, such as impeachments, coup d'etats or civil wars. Decisions, of governmental autonomy, are being made, based on that nights news CNN commentator. The leaders and presidents of enterprises such as panasonic and CORE refer to CNN, created by satellite dish, on a daily bases. Stocks are an integral part of their livelihood. The entertainment world has taken full advantage of the satellite dish, subtitling the Information Age, with the MTV age. The creation of MTV in 1980, has dramatically changed the entertainment business. The money poured into creating videos, and the profits from viewership- have had a strong affect on the world economy. 40% of U.S. millionares are entertainers. The Satellite dish has also created distinct advantages for Cable TV and naval programs as well. The intelligence of an average teenager is lowering itself due to cable viewing, created by the satellite dish. Naval programs have wasted exceeding amounts of money in the United States, due to the satellite dish. And one must not forget space programs such a STARWARS. The creation of the satellite dish in the past 20 years, has altered the average intelligence of the human being for the better and sometimes worse. It has created an information age, which could be dangerous, and heightened an entertainer's salary. The pro's and con's of the satellite dish are numerous. The only observation which can be made, is that: It has altered people lives significantly. It is up to the average person to decide if this alteration will be for the better or worse.
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7-5819204
N
The discovery of the Atomic energy, is undoubtedly the the most awesome as well as terrible invention not only of the 20th century but of all time. In 1945, J. Robert Oppenheimer unveiled to the world his invention in the form that is still most familiar to us today: The Atomic bomb. The reason behind the fear that this energy causes is routed in its incredible power to destroy. Never before had the world seen something with such a capacity to kill. Never before had one object of such small size been able to take so many lives. For this reason, It is considered the most awe-inspiring and dangerous weapon in the world. Unfortunately, with each progressive day, the world's need for this dangerous energy augments. For not only does it have the capacity to kill, but also the capability to supply and energize the world. The drawback is the danger. In utilizing this power in plants and factories we run the risk of contaminating our land, blowing holes in our sky, rendering our seas useless, and killing our species as well as all the species of the earth. Although we have many other power source alternatives, we still continue to use this dangerous invention. It is illogical to think that with continued nuclear use, we can escape harm. Already as a result of pollution and other various factors, we have holes in our ozone layer and problems with our soil in many parts of the world. It would be logical to think that the leaders of the world would confer and aspire to put a stop to nuclear use in an effort to avoid any further damage to the earth and its inhabitants. The saddest part of this tragedy is that there have been very few efforts to do so. The lack of sight from our leaders is almost appalling. With the lack of respect for the planet that is the general attitude of today, what is to become of our children. The current situation of the world's environment is a sad one. It is also however, a problem of which nuclear energy is only a small piece. Unfortunately, the day will soon come when the damage caused by this apathy will be irreversable. This is why it is imperative to act today. It starts with you. Write your local congressman.
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7-5819205
N
An invention of the 20th century which I think has significantly changed people's lives is the invention of the airplane. The extend to which this invention has altered people's lives is astronomical. The airplane opened doors to traveling and also broadened people's perceptions of the entire world. It also introduced what seemed a completely impossible concept which no human is capable of doing without a machine: the concept of flying. Before the invention of the airplane, long distance traveling was a very difficult, time consuming task. For this reason people did not travel extremely long distances and missed the opportunity of visiting countries with cultures very different from their own. One could travel by boat but this was inconvenient and often dangerous because of various things like disease, hunger, and threatening weather; also as noted above, it was extremely time consuming. Because of the lack of long distance travel people often had a very ethnocentric and limited concept of the world. I have learned a lot about my own culture just from being in Spain and that is the only foreign country I have ever visited. I can admit that before I came to Spain I was very ignorant about other cultures. Even though I would watch the news and read about other cultures I still did not have the opportunity to witness it first hand. The invention of the airplane has opened many doors and one other door is international relations. Since the invention of the airplane the world has increased close contact between political systems, and international business endeavors. The frequency that which foreign countries are able to communicate and negotiate face to face has improved drastically the establishment of international trade. The airplane has also basically speeded up the whole postal communication system also. Life with airplanes is more rapid paced.
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7-5819206
N
Cars, telephones, and nuclear energy are just three examples of inventions and discoveries that have had profound effects on modern day life. We must remember, however, that the field of technology is not the only one in which significant advances have been made in the 0th century. Another "discovery" of this past century has been feminism, which has had a significant impact on the lives of both men and women. Of course, the issue of feminism is not a new one, but it is just within the past century that much progress has been made towards the equality of women (with the important exception of women winning the right to vote in the 1800s). As recently as the 1950s, it was still the most typical as well as the ideal to have the woman in the home, housekeeping and tending the children. The first significant equal rights movement in the U.S. was in the 70s with the Equal Rights Amendment, which failed. Even today, the woman is still only earning something like 60 cents for every dollar that a man earns. Feminism does not only have to do with work and money, but also with the image of women. It's only recently that we've "discovered", or begun to think about rather, how much things as varying as pornography or the language we use helps to form the image of women. A recognition of such influences on the image of women is the first step in breaking it down, so that women are seen for who they truly are. Feminism is better described as a "discovery in progress"; it's a movement, an attitude that has not yet become mainstream. Only when women have achieved equality with men, will there cease to be a need for feminism, and the discovery will have been completed.
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7-5819207
N
The idea I feel that has most significantly changed people's lives in the 20th century is that of caring for the environment. Today, people have become aware of the importance of environment to our future. People are concerned with nuclear weapons. We realize that countries that which have many weapons have the power to destroy the world. Also related to this topic is nuclear waste. Nuclear waste is not only harmful to humans; it also kills animals and plants. We are now fighting for acts to clean up our lakes and rivers. Companies are no longer able to freely dump their wastes w/o being heavily fined. People have also become concerned with nature. We used to assume our natural resources were never ending. Now, though, we realize what we use, needs to be replaced. For example deforestation is a very big issue, many groups have formed to plant more trees. We also realize our fossil fuels need to be used more conservatively. Another important topic we are all aware of is recycling. This links 2 issues, one of not producing much nonbiodegradable products and the other of reusing what we have. (Recycling in a small way also helps those w/o homes b/c they receive money for their collections). Many countries realize that recycling is not only beneficial to their economy it also is beneficial to their environment. Another important issue is that of conserving energy. In the past, once again, we assumed our energy was never ending. Now though people are more inclined to turn off their lights when they're not in their rooms, to not leave taps running and basically not to waste our natural resources. We realize that conserving is not beneficial to our environment but it is also saves money. We have also become more considerable of our animal life. We are no longer able to kill animals freely. We do still raise some for food but hunting is limited and we are all aware of the possibilities of extinction. One realizes that animals have rights too. In conclusion, the idea of caring for the environment is still a new one. We are slowly becoming more aware and are beginning to take more precautions. The ideas above are just a few of the topics we are now concerned with. But we are heading in the right direction and hopeful by the 21st century we will have fixed everything we have destroyed!
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7-5819208
N
Computers have definitely effected peoples lives. I have a computer and my life has change because of it. I'm able to store almost all the information I need for school and for other things in my computer whereas before I had a computer my desk was cluttered w/ paper and records of all sorts, I no longer need to keep these records but only to transfer them to my computer. This means I'm able to store more information in an organized fashion. Though I have only used a fraction of my computer's ability, I'm still aware of the tremendous opportunities which I have or will have. Aside from being able to store great amounts of info, I'm also able to process and to edit things quickly. For example, without the use of a computer I had to balance my checkbook once a month and had to this w/ a calculator, a pen and a piece of paper. Of course, this was very time consuming and open to error. W/ the use of a computer I have programmed the computer to make the calculations which I once had to make. Also, w/ the use of the Word Processor I'm able to edit and rearrange documents w/out altering the entire document, and furthermore, though I have yet to use the Communications program in my computer, this program seems to be extraordinarily helpful. My father has the same program in his computer and is able to buy on line tickets w/out leaving the house and moreover w/out picking up the phone. Also, I realize that my experience w/ computers is limited and that the power of computers, for me, is incomprehensible. I'm now here in Madrid. How did I get there? Well, I applied to the this program, was accepted, and flew here form the US. But, w/out the use of computers I would still be struggling w/ the secretary in the International Programs Office at Boston University, no doubt. Instead, once I applied to the program- the application for which was probably computer generated- I assume my info was processed by a computer. W/out this luxury, the International Programs Office would inevitably inundated w/ paperwork and things would therefore be lost or at least misplaced. When booking my flight, though I did not do this myself, the transaction would seem impossible minus the aid of computers. Computers have had a most significant impact on the people in the latter 1/2 of the 20th century.
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7-5819209
N
An invention of the 20th century that I think has significantly changed people's lives is television. TV allows the instantaneous communication of ideas, images, news, etc. Now, if something is happening in any part of the world- from across town all the way to Beijing -- every person in the world can watch this event as it is happening. While previously people had to wait days, or even weeks for news (which consisted of second-or third-hand accounts, which always involved much interpretation and distortion) now they can see it happening, for themselves, as it is happening, this allows them to make their own, informed judgment about the event; and if a reaction is necessary- such as the gathering of opposition to a certain law -- it can be made immediately, while the emotions are still strong, and before the action is finalized. As well, the fact that so many people (especially in the US) have television sets means that everybody (well, at least everybody who watches) receives the same inflow of information and ideas. So, for example, people in Spain can be informed about how people in California or Japan speak and act, this allows people from different cultures to come together and discuss ideas. In my opinion, this is one part of the process of making the world a "smaller", more unified place, or a "global village" as one journalist has called this world of the Information Age. Not only the news, but also entertainment is an important practical function of television, through television entertainment, as through literature and drama, people learn different messages about life. They can see various actions acted out to their ends, and understand the consequences of these actions, without having to perform the same actions and experience the consequences for themselves. Unfortunately these TV shows are not always accurate portrayals of real life and have a tendency to glorify violence, as well as making life seem the good guy always wins, and always lives thru dangerous situations. However, this sense of reality is not so distorted, and so hidden that people are going around acting like Superman. As long as one has a well-developed sense of reality, TV can be an excellent tool for understanding the world we live in.
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7-5819210
N
The waters of the culunary seas have been calm and consistant for centuries. Progress has move slow like the tides and the constant rythm of the waves have showed little changed. However with the daybreak of the twentyth century a storm has brewed. With this storm the waters have churned and spawned a wave that has crashed upon the rocks of every kitchen. This wave is the microwave. Never before has such an invention revolutionized a science like this. A complete break has been forged in the way food is prepared. At the dawn of time, cave men cooked animal flesh over open fires. As History progressed, spits and barbeques emerged. Technology saw the advent of the wood stove, and later ones fueled by coal. Modern times saw gas and electric ranges as to staple. All these things had one thing in common: FIRE. Flame, the source of life, always used to prepare the fool of mankind throughout History. However, the microwave uses radiation to excite water particles in food, thus creating friction, which creates heat. This is a prime example of thinking that does not follow in old footsteps but breaks away from convention and forges new routes. If this were not amazing enough, the microwave cuts cooking time in half. If you had told someone 100 yrs ago that you could cut cooking time in half, and not use fire, they would have thought you crazy, or bewitched, or under the influence of heavy drugs. In an age where time is the scarcest comodity, our society has embraced this eliminator of wasted hours in the kitchen. A mother who works, can come home can whip up something in minutes in the microwave, whereas before she would have been slaving in the kitchen. The microwave is excellent for re-heating making it easier for people to make excess food to be eaten later. Again time is conserved -- Children are able to use this simple device without parental fear of fires starting. For As I have said before, there is no fire! This marvel of technology has helped propel people into the dizzing pace of life that most of us lead in the 20th century. Throughout History one can see that great revelations in all areas come from breaks in tradition, new insights, and differents perspectives. All these were needed to create the microwave which is essential nowadays. Eating is something everyone must do. This device has sped up one of our most important activities and thus revolutionized life in the fast paced 20th century.
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7-5819211
N
When I was in tenth grade a teacher said that the 2 most important inventions that made possible the idea of a repressive government were the machine gun and the radio. A machine gun can be used to keep civil peace, enforce Marshall Law. The radio can be used to communicate ideas and under a dictatorship, propaganda. In the 20th Century the machine gun has not changed all that many lives (except for those that it' s killed), but the invention of radio has made a tremendous impact. The idea behind the radio is simple. There is one transmitter and it sends its signals through the air, waves, with potential for millions of receivers. In the 20th Century radio has become a source of information and entertainment. Radio keeps people informed. I don' t think any people of my generation can even comprehend now our lives would be different. Every morning I listen for the weather forcast and dress accordingly. At night one can sit by the radio and hear how the events of the day unfolded. Radio, hence, gives people the option of becoming passive observers rather than active participants in the news making process. Newspapers had been around for many years but it was not until the invention of radio that the power of the media became evident. Radio gives the ability to reach many more people, instantly. As a form of entertainment, radio and its most important and now more common offshoot, television, has changed people's lives. A typical day for a child in today's world, consists of going to school and coming home to watch T.V. There have even been forms of entertainment, for example videogames, made for this other form of entertainment. Nowadays everybody watches T.V. My señora, for example, is over 100 years old, and for her T.V. is the greatest thing in the world. She sits in front of it all day and it keeps her happy. Television offers soap operas, game shows, sit-coms, sporting events, movies and much more to keep us entertained 24 hours a day. In short, I don' t know what life was like before radio, but its invention has changed the way we see and do things.
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7-5819213
N
A current ideology in the United States today is for one to be successful, one must follow all of the written and unwritten rules of society, everyone has an equal opportunity to succeed and when one does not do this one fails. One can see these ideas in popular media everyday. T.V. comercials and T.V. programs project models of how one should be. In the 20th cen, the values of/that the United States was founded on have changed in meaning and sense when applied to modern day America, nothing was ever equal. And today, since the invention and utilization of modern technologies such as computers life for americans moves at a much faster pace. People are more mobile, can work more, and buy more things, but time for relaxation and family are often substitued with T.V. In America, this growing individualistic society, one nolonger sees the realitive humanness between people, instead one sees the differences, the unlucky, the unsuccessfull, and attribute thier inadequacy to achieve to a lack of effort. With everyone moving at such a fast pace, the gaps are easy to miss, the voices of the mass media easily replace those voices that struggle to be heard. The parts of the new machine that need oiled and regulated.
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7-5819216
N
When Voltaire wrote Candide, a literary style known as Neoclassicism was at its peak. There was a group of scholars in France, l'Academie Français, that set guidelines for French literature. According to l'Academie Français, all literature of the Neoclassic period must follow the rules of propriety which regulated the author should avoid certain topics, including sex, violence, church, and state issues. Another standard upheld by the Academie is the idea of verisimilitude, making literature as realistic as possible by keeping the time, setting and plot true to life. Voltaire, as a Neoclassicist, knew all these regulations and followed them in his literature. However, when writing Candide, Voltaire defied the Academie's rules. Candide is a parody on the guidelines of Neoclassicism. Neoclassicists liked for literature to have good manners: they did not want to step on anyone's toes by mentioning sex, violence, church, or state issues. In Candide Voltaire did not seem to mind stepping on toes - in fact, he did not mind smashing feet! Voltaire went beyond the comfort level when he mentioned sex. He told of the two girls of Orellion who were lovers of monkeys, and of the Baron who bathed with the Musselman and was punished for his homosexual act. Sex turned into violence when Cunegonde was being raped by a Barber, and witnessed his murder while he was on top of her. The wise old woman underwent the removal of a buttock by pirates, as well as experiencing rape. After the Baron is caught bathing with the Mussalman, he receives 100 lashes for his sin. Candide stabs the Baron, a Jesuit Priest, after the Baron forbids Candides marriage to Cunegonde. Ironically, although Voltaire mentions many acts of violence, each act is treated lightly: Cunegonde and the old woman both tell their tales of being defiled like an entertaining story in their conversations about their travels; the Baron also continues his tale with style after telling of his beating; and after Candide "kills" the Baron, he leaves to search for Cunegonde with no second thought until he reencounters the Baron later in his travels. The light attitude in which these acts of sex and violence are written shows the parody form in which Voltaire writes Candide. Voltaire chooses not to stay away from the church and state issues. He attracts the hippocracy of the Church in the old woman's father being the Pope. When Candide visits the land of Eldorado, Voltaire shows the people's perfect relationship to God: they only praise God because there is nothing they want from God. Voltaire uses this perfect relationship to God in an unrealistic situation to foil society's imperfect relationship with God in the real world. Voltaire makes fun of aristocracy in his description of the Baron, who came from 71 generations of nobility but still lacks gentilesse. Candide and his companions dine with 6 dethroned kings who represent the overimportance society places on hierarchy. In his portrayal of the utopian society of Eldorado, Voltaire toils the imperfections of our society.
{ "start": [ 138, 215, 247, 306, 960, 1214, 1526, 1639, 2078, 2234, 2289, 2335, 2645, 2835, 2920, 3026 ], "end": [ 146, 223, 257, 315, 960, 1223, 1535, 1647, 2090, 2240, 2293, 2345, 2649, 2845, 2934, 3031 ], "text": [ "Française", "Française", "Neoclassical", null, ",", "Muslim", "Muslim", "Candide's", "re-encounters", "wrote", "", "hypocrisy", null, "gentility", null, null ] }
7-5819217
N
According the Lunde, 35% of homicide victims are killed by someone they know. Statistics from 56 are greater than Lundes' thesis. Frustration is the main factor most implicated in these tragedies. Most cases are those of the "trigger puling the finger". Today, racial prejudice still exists, but less action has taken place than 30 years ago. Thirty years ago, minorities couldn't ride a bus, vote, or go to school with white people. Desegragation reduced some prejudice, but it still exists. The difference is, today social prejudice is not openly expressed as it was 30 years ago. I would tell the client to be extremely nice to that person and do favors for that person. That person would then feel obligated to do nice things back and return favors. This is based on eauity theory. It would be better for the client to do nice things for the person that it would be to ask a favor of the person. Someone who live in the north who comes to live in the south may not be prejudice toward Blacks at first. After living in the south for a while, they may adopt southern attitudes toward Blacks and feel prejudice toward them. This is conformity. The same goes for Southerners who move north. They come to feel prejudice toward Jews. I know someone who has lived all over the world. He is prejudice toward Jews, Blacks, and Mexicans. He adopted white attitudes against minorities in the different regions he has lived in.
{ "start": [ 304, 437, 520, 777, 859, 921, 981, 1297 ], "end": [ 310, 450, 520, 783, 863, 925, 990, 1306 ], "text": [ "activity", "Desegregation", ",", "equity", "than", "lives", "prejudiced", "prejudiced" ] }
7-5819218
N
Our country has been coined a "melting-pot" inferring that we all come from different that we all come from different background but have joined or melted together to produce homogeneous Americans. But a persons heritage, as we are realizing, is important to their sense of self and community. Ethnic American cultures have been reviving and trying to reestablish roots that were once lopped off to a model U.S. citizen. The differences they are rediscovering only add more color, flavor and excitement to that brewing "pot" of our people. However, some individuals and even groups of Americans are reacting negatively to this ethnic explosion (seen most clearly through the arts). They don't want to accept these differences. They choose to remain indifferent to the plights of their fellow Americans. As Ellie Weisel, author of such books as Night says about indifference: it is the opposite of everything good. The opposite of love, beauty, intelligence, light, joy, life and growth are not their familiar ontonyms but indifference. Ethnic American literature tries to fight this indifference by vividly and uniquely expressing certain aspects of different American culture. The gamut of ethnic American literature is without bounds. Each group has its own peculiarities and attributes that make it's writing unique. In many cases the words used in ethnic American literature reflect a knowledge of a different "mother tongue". For instance, Native Americans poetry is more expressive and visual partly because their language is deeply rooted in the observation of the natural environment. Chinese American Literature is philisophical/literal because their native language is so. African American literature is often melodious and rhythmic mirroring their similar achievements in Jazzy and Blues music. All these examples (and more) give us some insight to other cultures we would otherwise never know. The stories told in this genre of literature, however, are likely the most important aspect of Ethnic American literature. It is through the experiences of the characters that we learn about the different cultures in the United States. When we learn of the trials and hardships that they went through we can sympethize with their emotions and try to accept that diversity. The stories of black American slaves and of concentration camp victems are necessary to avoid indifference. Without learning about the past (and present) horrors there is no way to ensure future humanity. Ethnic American literature benefits U.S. citizens in many ways. It opens our eyes to the reality of the suffering of others. It gives us a fresh and new perspective on the world around us. It helps us to understand our personal relationships better. Most of all, it gives us more common ground on which to live, and grow, and prosper. Hopefully we will someday fulfill Elie Weisel's goal and end indifference; this literature is a step in the right direction towards acceptance in the diversity of our country. Different is beautiful!
{ "start": [ 21, 44, 85, 118, 204, 398, 1009, 1169, 1302, 1334, 1453, 1743, 1784, 1858, 2209, 2217, 2345, 2443, 2832, 2896, 2966 ], "end": [ 27, 53, 117, 128, 211, 398, 1017, 1176, 1304, 1334, 1462, 1743, 1789, 1860, 2209, 2227, 2352, 2443, 2832, 2902, 2968 ], "text": [ "called", "implying", "", "backgrounds", "person's", " ", "antonyms", "cultures", "s", ",", "American", ",", "Jazz", "into", ",", "sympathize", "victims", ",", ",", ". This", "of" ] }
7-5819219
N
Violence on television can be seen throughout the many channels that cable has to offer. With an average national TV viewing time of 7 1/4 hours daily, the prevalence of violence in broadcasts is a serious concern. Television programming in the United States is considered the most violent in advanced industrialized nations (Hepburn 1). Many children watch violent tv shows because the action thrills them and can sometimes cause the child to become violent. Violence is common in TV entertainment-- the dramas that portray stories about crime, psychotic murderers, police cases, emergency services, international terrorism, and war (Hepburn 1). Television violence is prevalent in the United States and some people disagree with its effects on children. The V-chip is an electrical device that blocks out violent television shows. Some people, such as the Senate Commerce Committee, are not satisfied with it. The Senate Commerce Committee approved bills creating a partial ban on TV violence and a so-called report card that would identify stations carrying violent programming and the advertisers sponsoring it. The bills would apply to broadcasting and cable (Stern 1). Some of the proposals to antiviolence are as follows: the Senate V-chip, the House V-chip, a Technology Fund, a Violence Safe Harbor, and a Violence Report Card. These proposals could work if Congress had some support. The National Association of Broadcasters accused the Senate of "piling on a stream of proposals to build up an unprecedented federal censorship bureaucracy". The NAB also insisted that broadcasters already have responded to concerns over violence on television (Stern 1). Some television shows show violence because it appeals to adult viewers. If a certain plot involves a murder, then the murder must happen. Some people may not want the actual murder to be shown, but that is up to whomever is writing the television show. Many made for television movies say that it may contain violent scenes and that viewer discretion is advised, but how many parents actually watch television with their teenager? An exhaustive examination of the broadcast networks' programming during the 1995-1995 season has concluded that sinister combat violence' pervades a significant number of Saturday-morning cartoons (Jensen 1). How much violence is there? The most violent cartoons are 'Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles', 'Spider Man', and some 'Bugs Bunny' episodes with Elmer Fudd. As for the shows containing sinister combat violence, well that is strictly up to the viewer to decide. The cause for television violence is to add texture to the show and not to poison children's minds. The infamous V-chip may stop some shows from being shown to children, but one day that child will see violence and they will have to deal with it, rationally or not.
{ "start": [ 369, 731, 1195, 1939, 1947, 1975, 2248, 2583 ], "end": [ 371, 735, 1220, 1947, 1948, 1977, 2249, 2588 ], "text": [ "TV", "about", "anti-violence proposals", "made-for", "", "they", "", "reason" ] }

Dataset Card for Cambridge English Write & Improve + LOCNESS Dataset

Dataset Summary

Write & Improve (Yannakoudakis et al., 2018) is an online web platform that assists non-native English students with their writing. Specifically, students from around the world submit letters, stories, articles and essays in response to various prompts, and the W&I system provides instant feedback. Since W&I went live in 2014, W&I annotators have manually annotated some of these submissions and assigned them a CEFR level.

The LOCNESS corpus (Granger, 1998) consists of essays written by native English students. It was originally compiled by researchers at the Centre for English Corpus Linguistics at the University of Louvain. Since native English students also sometimes make mistakes, we asked the W&I annotators to annotate a subsection of LOCNESS so researchers can test the effectiveness of their systems on the full range of English levels and abilities.

Supported Tasks and Leaderboards

Grammatical error correction (GEC) is the task of automatically correcting grammatical errors in text; e.g. [I follows his advices -> I followed his advice]. It can be used to not only help language learners improve their writing skills, but also alert native speakers to accidental mistakes or typos.

The aim of the task of this dataset is to correct all types of errors in written text. This includes grammatical, lexical and orthographical errors.

The following Codalab competition contains the latest leaderboard, along with information on how to submit to the withheld W&I+LOCNESS test set: https://competitions.codalab.org/competitions/20228

Languages

The dataset is in English.

Dataset Structure

Data Instances

An example from the wi configuration:

{
  'id': '1-140178',
  'userid': '21251',
  'cefr': 'A2.i',
  'text': 'My town is a medium size city with eighty thousand inhabitants. It has a high density population because its small territory. Despite of it is an industrial city, there are many shops and department stores.  I recommend visiting the artificial lake in the certer of the city which is surrounded by a park. Pasteries are very common and most of them offer the special dessert from the city. There are a comercial zone along the widest street of the city where you can find all kind of establishments: banks, bars, chemists, cinemas, pet shops, restaurants, fast food restaurants, groceries, travel agencies, supermarkets and others. Most of the shops have sales and offers at least three months of the year: January, June and August. The quality of the products and services are quite good, because there are a huge competition, however I suggest you taking care about some fakes or cheats.',
  'edits': {
    'start': [13, 77, 104, 126, 134, 256, 306, 375, 396, 402, 476, 484, 579, 671, 774, 804, 808, 826, 838, 850, 857, 862, 868],
    'end': [24, 78, 104, 133, 136, 262, 315, 379, 399, 411, 480, 498, 588, 671, 777, 807, 810, 835, 845, 856, 861, 867, 873],
    'text': ['medium-sized', '-', ' of', 'Although', '', 'center', None, 'of', 'is', 'commercial', 'kinds', 'businesses', 'grocers', ' in', 'is', 'is', '', '. However,', 'recommend', 'be', 'careful', 'of', '']
  }
}

An example from the locness configuration:

{
  'id': '7-5819177',
  'cefr': 'N',
  'text': 'Boxing is a common, well known and well loved sport amongst most countries in the world however it is also punishing, dangerous and disliked to the extent that many people want it banned, possibly with good reason.\nBoxing is a dangerous sport, there are relatively common deaths, tragic injuries and even disease. All professional boxers are at risk from being killed in his next fight. If not killed then more likely paralysed. There have been a number of cases in the last ten years of the top few boxers having tragic losses throughout their ranks. This is just from the elite few, and theres more from those below them.\nMore deaths would occur through boxing if it were banned. The sport would go underground, there would be no safety measures like gloves, a doctor, paramedics or early stopping of the fight if someone looked unable to continue. With this going on the people taking part will be dangerous, and on the streets. Dangerous dogs who were trained to kill and maim in similar underound dog fights have already proved deadly to innocent people, the new boxers could be even more at risk.\nOnce boxing is banned and no-one grows up knowing it as acceptable there will be no interest in boxing and hopefully less all round interest in violence making towns and cities much safer places to live in, there will be less fighting outside pubs and clubs and less violent attacks with little or no reason.\nchange the rules of boxing slightly would much improve the safety risks of the sport and not detract form the entertainment. There are all sorts of proposals, lighter and more cushioning gloves could be worn, ban punches to the head, headguards worn or make fights shorter, as most of the serious injuries occur in the latter rounds, these would all show off the boxers skill and tallent and still be entertaining to watch.\nEven if a boxer is a success and manages not to be seriously hurt he still faces serious consequences in later life diseases that attack the brains have been known to set in as a direct result of boxing, even Muhamed Ali, who was infamous(?) both for his boxing and his quick-witted intelligence now has Alzheimer disease and can no longer do many everyday acts.\nMany other sports are more dangerous than boxing, motor sports and even mountaineering has risks that are real. Boxers chose to box, just as racing drivers drive.',
  'edits': {
    'start': [24, 39, 52, 87, 242, 371, 400, 528, 589, 713, 869, 992, 1058, 1169, 1209, 1219, 1255, 1308, 1386, 1412, 1513, 1569, 1661, 1731, 1744, 1781, 1792, 1901, 1951, 2038, 2131, 2149, 2247, 2286],
    'end': [25, 40, 59, 95, 249, 374, 400, 538, 595, 713, 869, 1001, 1063, 1169, 1209, 1219, 1255, 1315, 1390, 1418, 1517, 1570, 1661, 1737, 1751, 1781, 1799, 1901, 1960, 2044, 2131, 2149, 2248, 2289],
    'text': ['-', '-', 'in', '. However,', '. There', 'their', ',', 'among', "there's", ' and', ',', 'underground', '. The', ',', ',', ',', ',', '. There', 'for', 'Changing', 'from', ';', ',', 'later', '. These', "'", 'talent', ',', '. Diseases', '. Even', ',', "'s", ';', 'have']
  }
}

Data Fields

The fields of the dataset are:

  • id: the id of the text as a string
  • cefr: the CEFR level of the text as a string
  • userid: id of the user
  • text: the text of the submission as a string
  • edits: the edits from W&I:
    • start: start indexes of each edit as a list of integers
    • end: end indexes of each edit as a list of integers
    • text: the text content of each edit as a list of strings
    • from: the original text of each edit as a list of strings

Data Splits

name train validation
wi 3000 300
locness N/A 50

Dataset Creation

Curation Rationale

[More Information Needed]

Source Data

Initial Data Collection and Normalization

[More Information Needed]

Who are the source language producers?

[More Information Needed]

Annotations

Annotation process

[More Information Needed]

Who are the annotators?

[More Information Needed]

Personal and Sensitive Information

[More Information Needed]

Considerations for Using the Data

Social Impact of Dataset

[More Information Needed]

Discussion of Biases

[More Information Needed]

Other Known Limitations

[More Information Needed]

Additional Information

Dataset Curators

[More Information Needed]

Licensing Information

Write & Improve License:

Cambridge English Write & Improve (CEWI) Dataset Licence Agreement

1. By downloading this dataset and licence, this licence agreement is
   entered into, effective this date, between you, the Licensee, and the
   University of Cambridge, the Licensor.

2. Copyright of the entire licensed dataset is held by the Licensor.
   No ownership or interest in the dataset is transferred to the
   Licensee.

3. The Licensor hereby grants the Licensee a non-exclusive
   non-transferable right to use the licensed dataset for
   non-commercial research and educational purposes.

4. Non-commercial purposes exclude without limitation any use of the
   licensed dataset or information derived from the dataset for or as
   part of a product or service which is sold, offered for sale,
   licensed, leased or rented.

5. The Licensee shall acknowledge use of the licensed dataset in all
   publications of research based on it, in whole or in part, through
   citation of the following publication:

   Helen Yannakoudakis, Øistein E. Andersen, Ardeshir Geranpayeh, 
   Ted Briscoe and Diane Nicholls. 2018. Developing an automated writing 
   placement system for ESL learners. Applied Measurement in Education.
   
6. The Licensee may publish excerpts of less than 100 words from the
   licensed dataset pursuant to clause 3.

7. The Licensor grants the Licensee this right to use the licensed dataset
   "as is". Licensor does not make, and expressly disclaims, any express or
   implied warranties, representations or endorsements of any kind
   whatsoever.

8. This Agreement shall be governed by and construed in accordance with
   the laws of England and the English courts shall have exclusive
   jurisdiction.

LOCNESS License:

LOCNESS Dataset Licence Agreement

1. The corpus is to be used for non-commercial purposes only

2. All publications on research partly or wholly based on the corpus should give credit to the Centre for English Corpus Linguistics (CECL), Université catholique de Louvain, Belgium. A scanned copy or offprint of the publication should also be sent to <sylviane.granger@uclouvain.be>. 

3. No part of the corpus is to be distributed to a third party without specific authorization from CECL. The corpus can only be used by the person agreeing to the licence terms and researchers working in close collaboration with him/her or students under his/her supervision, attached to the same institution, within the framework of the research project.

Citation Information

@inproceedings{bryant-etal-2019-bea,
    title = "The {BEA}-2019 Shared Task on Grammatical Error Correction",
    author = "Bryant, Christopher  and
      Felice, Mariano  and
      Andersen, {\O}istein E.  and
      Briscoe, Ted",
    booktitle = "Proceedings of the Fourteenth Workshop on Innovative Use of NLP for Building Educational Applications",
    month = aug,
    year = "2019",
    address = "Florence, Italy",
    publisher = "Association for Computational Linguistics",
    url = "https://www.aclweb.org/anthology/W19-4406",
    doi = "10.18653/v1/W19-4406",
    pages = "52--75",
    abstract = "This paper reports on the BEA-2019 Shared Task on Grammatical Error Correction (GEC). As with the CoNLL-2014 shared task, participants are required to correct all types of errors in test data. One of the main contributions of the BEA-2019 shared task is the introduction of a new dataset, the Write{\&}Improve+LOCNESS corpus, which represents a wider range of native and learner English levels and abilities. Another contribution is the introduction of tracks, which control the amount of annotated data available to participants. Systems are evaluated in terms of ERRANT F{\_}0.5, which allows us to report a much wider range of performance statistics. The competition was hosted on Codalab and remains open for further submissions on the blind test set.",
}

Contributions

Thanks to @aseifert for adding this dataset.

Models trained or fine-tuned on wi_locness

None yet