【6 min Read】Whom Money Has Turned Us Into?

Claire Peng 
5 PM Mar 27, 2014

Whom money has turned us into? 


/ Claire Peng 




(A) 良心

(B) 權力

(C) 加劇 ; 惡化 

It’s 8:30 in the morning. You know you are going to be late for work again. You are standing in a long queue to get your coffee and breakfast, complaining to the waiter for not delivering your order promptly. After an exhausting day at work, you feel like going home immediately. You start messaging your friend after spotting a seat on the MRT without seeing a five-year-old girl standing just in front of you. 


The scenario is familiar to all of us; or we can say it happens to us or around us almost every single day. We tend to prioritize our needs above the interests of other people. When having a bad A) conscience, we would come up with a whole bunch of excuses to justify our behaviors. It makes us wonder if the hustle and bustle of life in the big city has turned us into ruthless people. How does money affect the way we behave? A famous social psychologist, Paul Piff, uses a rigged monopoly game to answer the question. 


Paul and his research group conducted a study at the University of California, Berkeley, to look into how people behave when feeling wealthy. They brought more than 100 pairs of strangers into the lab to play the monopoly game. One of the players in each pair was assigned as the “privileged” one and the other one as the “poor” one. The privileged players collected twice the salary on passing “Go” and rolled two dice rather than one. 

為了研究當人類感受到富有時的行為,保羅和他的研究團隊在加州柏克萊大學進行一個實驗。他們將100 對彼此不認識的陌生人帶到實驗室裡玩大富翁。每對玩家裡面有一位分配到優勢權,而另一位是相對弱勢。具有優勢的玩家在通過起點的時候都能領取兩倍的錢,並且每回可以骰兩顆骰子,而另一位玩家只能骰一顆骰子。 

Significant differences between the privileged and the poor players were revealed as the game unfolded. The rich ones became louder, followed by display of power and dominance through nonverbal language. The privileged players even behaved in ruder ways towards the poor ones 1) as a means of showing off their material success. The experiment demonstrates that as one’s wealth goes up, one’s feelings of compassion and empathy decrease while self-focus and feelings of B) entitlement increase. 2) On top of that, some research showcases that financial inequality undermines positive things in the society, such as economic growth, social trust, and educational performance. 

兩位玩家在遊戲開始之後便展現出極大的差異。有錢的那位玩家聲音變得越來越大聲,並用肢體動作展現出自己的權力和優越感。他們甚至開始對於貧窮的玩家變得無禮,並以物質上的優越作為炫耀。此實驗顯示,隨著一個人的財富增加,對他人的同情心和同理心會下降,並且自我中心和權力的意識會增強。除此之外,有研究顯示財富不均會危害社會的積極面向, 如經濟成長、社會信任和教育成效。 

The Global Wealth Report in 2013 shows that the top 10% of the world population own close to 83% percent of the total wealth while half of the population possesses barely 1% of global wealth. It also suggests that economic growth has C) exacerbated this income inequality. As governments around the world try to grow their economies we should perhaps ask ourselves how much economic growth are we willing to compromise, if any, for the wellbeing of our fellow citizens? 

2013 年全球財富報告指出,世界人口中10% 富豪佔了近83%的全世界總財富,但全球一半的人口僅擁有1%的全球財富。這也顯示出經濟發展加劇了財富不均的現象。當全球政府都致力於發展經濟的同時,我們不禁要反問: 為了人民的福祉,多大的經濟成長是我們可以妥協的? 


1) as a means of 作為…的方式

mean 當動詞用是「意味著」,means 是名詞,原意是「手段」或「方法」,結尾一定要記得

加s。有個常見的片語by no means,意思是「絕不」。

E.g., Silence is also considered a means of communication.


E.g., By no means do I agree with this time.


2) on top of… 了解狀況/除…之外

當了解狀況解釋時,可以表示掌握最新狀況, 或處理某事很成功。

E.g., You can ask Susan about the case. She is on top of it. 你可以詢問蘇珊有關情況, 她最了解。

The boss asked her to stay on top of the things. 老闆要求她要好好處理事情。

當除.. 之外時, 也可換成in addition to/ besides/ apart from + 名詞 / 動名詞 (Ving)。

Claire was good at English throughout her undergraduate studies, but on top of that, she excelled in

her art subjects too. Claire 在大學的時候英文很好。除此之外,她也很擅長藝術相關科目。

參考資料:Ted Talk 

文章分類:6 min. Read, Business, Intermediate, Advanced, Vocab., Reading, 5. 一讀再讀, 11. 數字會說話, 22. 轉折點, 29. 下標題, 33. 搭配法 - 英語速配
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