IELTS MASTER | ielts reading test 288

ielts reading test 288

Traditional Maori medicines

The Maori are the indigenous people of the islands of New Zealand. Their traditional medicine, which is believed to date back as far as the 13th century, was a system of healing that was passed down through the generations orally. It comprised diverse practices and placed an emphasis on the spiritual dimension of health. Its practice included remedies made from herbs, and physical therapies such as massage to relieve discomfort in the muscles and bones.

Maori systems for treating illness were well developed before European arrived in New Zealand in the late 1700s: they had quite detailed knowledge of anatomy and recognition of the healing properties of various plants. When Europeans first visited New Zealand, the average age of death for Maori adults was around 30. However, apart from this, the people were fit and healthy, and troubled by few diseases.

Illness was often seen as spiritually based. Maori saw themselves as guardians of the earth, and the focus of their existence was to remain at one with the natural and supernatural world. Rather than a medical problem, sickness was often viewed as a symptom of disharmony with natures.

In Maori culture, illnesses were divided into diseases of the gods (mate atua) and physical diseases (mate tangata). Diseases sent by the gods were often attributed to attacks by evil spirits, because the person had broken a religious rule. For instance, for Maori, Places where people had died, or places where their ancestors were buried were sacred, so if someone took food from a river where someone had died, or took a stick form a tree that had held their ancestor’s bones and placed it on a cooking fire, it was believed that the gods could punish them for their disrespectful acts by making them SICK.

More than 200 plants were used medicinally by Maori. The leaves of the flax plant were used to treat skin infections and food poisoning, and the hard part of the leaf was also used as a splint or brace for broken bones and injured backs. Flax fibers were used along with a sharpened stick to sew up bad cuts. The bark and leaves of the pepper tree were used to heal cuts, wounds and stomach pain. People who had toothache were instructed to chew the leaves of this same tree, and this was found to be of considerable benefit. The pepper tree was also used in vapor baths to treat people with painful joints.

Colonization by European in the 1800s had a significant effect on traditional Maori healing. Europeans brought many new diseases with them which Maori healers had limited ability to combat. Though Western medicine was also relatively ineffectual at the time, this failure still strongly affected Maori confidence in their healers. Some western missionaries attributed the spread of disease to the fact the Maori did not believe in Christianity, and as Maori healers appeared powerless, many Maori accepted this explanation and turned to Christianity. Over time the schools of higher learning which had trained healers started to close and the tradition of the Maori healer declined.

From the late 20th century, there was renewed Maori interest in their traditional medicine. This was due to several factors. There was a resurgence of all aspects of Maori culture in New Zealand. Furthermore, people started to be less trusting of Western medicine-statistics from the 1970s came out revealing that Maori health continued to be poorer than that of other New Zealanders. There were also problems with access to health care for Maori. Additionally, there was and still a today a perceived lack of a spiritual dimension in Western health services.

Although Maori today largely accepted Western concepts of health and illness, and use the mainstream health system, there is significant demand for traditional medicine. This is true for unusual illnesses, or those that fail to respond to standard medical treatment, but also for common ailments such as the cold and influenza.

Today’s healers differ significantly from those of old times. Training is highly variable, usually informal, and often less tribally bound than the rigorous education of the traditional houses of higher learning. Many modern healers work in urban clinics, some alongside mainstream health professionals. They experiment, incorporating knowledge from Western and other medical systems. As a result, their modern day work has no standard system of diagnosis or widespread agreement about treatments. Despite this, many healers are recognized as having knowledge and ability that has been passed down from their ancestors. The Maori language is also seen as important by many of those receiving treatment.

Questions 1-6
Do the following statements agree with the information given in reading passage? In boxes 1-6 on your answer sheet, write

TRUE                               if the statement agrees with the information
FALSE                             if the statement contradicts the information
NOT GIVEN                  if there is no information on this

1. Early Maori healers learned their skills through studying written texts.
2. The first Europeans in New Zealand were surprised by how long the Maori lived.
3. Diseases of the gods were believed to be more serious than physical diseases.
4. The leaves of the pepper tree were used to treat toothache.
5. Western religion was one reason why traditional Maori medicine became less popular.
6. Modern day Maori healers often reach the same conclusion about the type of treatment which is best.

Questions 7-13
Complete the notes below. Choose ONE WORD ONLY from the passage for each answer.

A short history of Maori healing

Pre-European arrival
• Maori were using plant based remedies, as well as treatment including massage
• Diseases sent from the gods were thought to be caused by disobeying a spiritual (7) ……………..
• Sickness could be attributed to eating food from a sacred (8) ………………. or burning sacred wood

After European arrival

• The inability of Maori healers to cure new diseases meant the Maori people lost (9) ……………….. in them.
• Eventually the (10) ………………. for Maori healing began shutting down 1970s
• Published (11) ………………….. showed that Maori were not as healthy as Europeans

• Maori healers can be seen working with Western doctors in (12) ……………….. in cities
• Many patients appreciate the fact that the Maoris (13) ………………. in used by healers

Chinstrap Penguin Population In The Last 50 Years

The chinstrap penguin has a cap of black plumage, a white face, and a continuous band of black feathers extending from one side of the head to the other, the “chinstrap.” The northern part of the Antarctic Peninsula, several Antarctic and subantarctic islands, and the uninhabited Balleny Islands between Antarctica and New Zealand are the habitats of the species.

Antarctic penguin colonies in some parts of the Antarctic have declined over the last 50 years, mostly because of climate change, researchers say. The colonies of chinstrap penguins, also known as ringed or bearded penguins, have dramatically dropped since they were last surveyed almost 50 years ago, scientists discovered. The findings became surprising because, until now, the chinstraps have been deemed of “least concern” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). “We really didn’t know what to expect, and then we found this huge decline on Elephant Island,” Noah Strycker, an ornithologist and penguin researcher at Stony Brook University, told CNN from Greenpeace’s Esperanza ship in the Antarctic. “It’s a little bit worrying as it means that something is shifting in the ecosystem and the fall in penguin numbers is reflecting that shift.”

Every colony of Elephant Island, which is a crucial penguin habitat northeast of the Antarctic Peninsula, when surveyed, experienced a population fall, as per the independent researchers who joined a Greenpeace expedition to the region. Elephant Island was last surveyed in 1971, and there were 122,550 pairs of penguins across all colonies. However, the recent count revealed just 52,786 pairs with a drop of almost 60%. On Elephant Island, the size of the population change varied from colony to colony, and the most significant decline was recorded at a colony known as Chinstrap Camp, which is 77%.

Just the days after temperatures hit an all-time high in the Antarctic with 18.3 Celsius (64.94 Fahrenheit) recorded on February 6, the latest study is published. The previous high 17.5 C (63.5 F) was recorded in March 2015. Scientists recorded the temperature at Argentina’s Esperanza research station, according to the meteorological agency of the country.

The reduced sea ice and warmer oceans due to climate change have led to less krill, the main component of the penguins’ diet. “Climate change is probably the underlying factor, and the effects are rippling through the food chain,” Strycker said. “Penguins, seals, and whales all depend on krill, which depends on ice. So if climate change affects the ice, that impacts on everything else.” Heather J. Lynch, associate professor of ecology and evolution at New York’s Stony Brook University and one of the expedition’s research leads, said: “Such significant declines in penguin numbers suggest that the Southern Ocean’s ecosystem has fundamentally changed in the last 50 years and that the impacts of this are rippling up the food web to species like chinstrap penguins.” She added that “while several factors may have a role to play, all the evidence we have pointed to climate change as being responsible for the changes we are seeing.”

However, some good news was also there, as the researchers reported an increase in gentoo penguins population in neighbouring colonies, beyond Elephant Island. “It’s interesting, as a tale of two penguins on the Antarctic Peninsula,” said Strycker. “Gentoo is a species from further north and they appear to be colonizing the area and are actually increasing in numbers.”

The Greenpeace ship Esperanza has been documenting the threat to the oceans worldwide and taking the scientists for travelling abroad. For the first time, the Low Island in the South Shetland Islands, north of the Antarctic Peninsula, has been surveyed properly. The manual and drone techniques are used by the researchers, from Stony Brook and Northeastern University in Boston, to survey a series of significant but relatively unknown colonies of chinstrap penguin here. The results are, however, not yet available. Greenpeace has been campaigning for the three Antarctic sanctuaries that it would establish to offer protection to many of the colonies surveyed. These would be off-limits to humans.

Louisa Casson, Greenpeace Oceans Campaigner, said in a statement: “Penguins are an iconic species, but this new research shows how the climate emergency is decimating their numbers and having far-reaching impacts on wildlife in the most remote corners of Earth. This is a critical year for our oceans. “Governments must respond to the science and agree on a strong Global Ocean Treaty at the United Nations this spring that can create a network of ocean sanctuaries to protect marine life and help these creatures adapt to our rapidly changing climate.”

Questions 14-20
The reading passage has 8 paragraphs labelled A-H. Which paragraph contains the following information? NB You may use any letter more than once.

14. The highest temperatures ever.
15. The difference between current and past records on penguin population.
16. Places where people cannot go to.
17. Places where chinstrap penguins live.
18. Measures to protect ocean species.
19. Factors contributing to the decline in the amount of food available.
20. Description of a specific species.

Questions 21-23
Do the following statements agree with the information given in reading passage? In boxes 21-23 on your answer sheet, choose:

TRUE                           if the statement agrees with the information
FALSE                         if the statement contradicts the information
NOT GIVEN              if there is no information on this

21. The IUCN showed little concern about the fall in penguin numbers.
22. Climate change is a reason for the changes in the food chain of chinstrap penguins.
23. Gentoo penguins are not affected by climate change.

Questions 24-26
Complete the note below. Choose ONLY ONE WORD from the passage for each answer.

The Greenpeace ship has been used to:
• record the (24) ……………… to marine life over the world.
• carry the (25) ………………….. overseas.
• Build (26) …………………. to protect many surveyed colonies.

Why Do We Touch Strangers So Much? A History Of The Handshake Offers Clues

For thousands of years, the handshake has been used for different purposes.

There is a lot that can be conveyed in a handshake, a kiss, or a hug. Throughout history, such a greeting was used to signal friendship, finalize a business transaction, or indicate religious devotion. Touching strangers, however, can also transmit other, less beneficial shared outcomes—like disease outbreaks.
As fears about COVID-19, or coronavirus, mount, France has warned its citizens to pause their famous cheek kisses, and across the world, business deals are being sealed with an elbow bump. But with histories tracing back thousands of years, both greetings are likely too entrenched to be so easily halted.

A popular theory on the handshake’s origin is that it began as a gesture of peace. Grasping hands proved one was not holding a weapon—and shaking them was a way to ensure a partner had nothing hiding up their sleeve. So far, there has not been any reliable evidence to prove this assumption. Throughout the ancient world, the handshake appears on vases, gravestones, and stone slabs in scenes of weddings, gods making deals, young warriors departing for war, and the newly dead’s arrival to the afterlife. In the literary canon, it stretches to the Iliad and the Odyssey.
The handshake’s catch-all utility, used in friendship, romance, and business alike, makes interpretation difficult. “The handshake continues to be a popular image today because we too see it as a complex and ambiguous motif,” writes art historian Glenys Davies in an analysis of its use in classical art.

In America, it is likely that the handshake’s popularity was propelled by 18th century Quakers. In their efforts to eschew the hierarchy and social rank, they found the handshake a more democratic form of greeting to the then-common bow, curtsy, or hat doffing. “In their place, Quakers put the practice of the handshake, extended to everyone regardless of station, as we still do,” writes historian Michael Zuckerman.
There may be a scientific explanation for its lasting power. In a 2015 study, researchers in Israel filmed handshakes between hundreds of strangers and found nearly a quarter of participants sniffed their hands afterwards. They theorized that a handshake might be unconsciously used to detect chemical signals, and possibly as a means of communication—just as other animals do by smelling each other.

The kiss-as-greeting has a similarly rich history. It was incorporated into early Christianity and used in religious ceremonies. “In his Epistle to the Romans, St. Paul instructed followers to ‘salute one another with a holy kiss,’” writes Andy Scott in the book One Kiss or Two: In Search of the Perfect Greeting. In the Middle Ages, a kiss was used as a sign of fidelity and to seal agreements like property transfers.

Today, a swift kiss on the cheek known in French as “la bise,” is a standard greeting in much of the world. The word may have originated with the Romans, who had a different term for each type of kiss and called the polite version “basium.” In Paris, two kisses are common. In Provence expect three, and four is the norm in the Loire Valley. The cheek kiss is also common in countries like Egypt, where three kisses is customary, Latin America, and the Philippines. It is thought that during the plague in the 14th century, la bise may have stopped and was not revived again until 400 years later, after the French Revolution. In 2009, la bise was temporarily paused as swine flu became a concern. At the end of February, the French Health Minister advised against it as the coronavirus cases increased. “The reduction in social contacts of a physical nature is advised,” he said. “That includes the practice of the bise.”

In her book Don’t Look, Don’t Touch, behavioural scientist Val Curtis of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, says that one possible reason for the kiss and handshake as a greeting is to signify that the other person is trusted enough to share germs with. Because of this, the practice can go in and out of style depending on public health concerns.

In a 1929 study, a nurse named Leila Given wrote an article in the American Journal of Nursing lamenting the loss of the last generation’s “finger-tipping and the high handshake” customs in favour of a handshake. She warned that hands “are agents of bacterial transfer” and cited early studies showing that a handshake could easily spread germs. In conclusion, she recommended that Americans adopt the Chinese custom at the time of shaking one’s own hands together when greeting a friend. “At least our bacteria would then stay at home,” she wrote.

Questions 27-33
Do the following statements agree with the information given in reading passage? In boxes 27-33 on your answer sheet, choose:

TRUE                         if the statement agrees with the information
FALSE                       if the statement contradicts the information
NOT GIVEN           if there is no information on this

27. Shaking hands is an indicator of hospitality.
28. Evidence showed that the handshake started as a sign of peace.
29. When shaking hands, people often rolled up their sleeves.
30. The use of a handshake in different situations can be unpredictable.
31. In America, handshakes became prevalent because they represented equality and freedom.
32. A research conducted in 2015 showed that exactly 25% of participants smelled their hands after a handshake.
33. People often smell their hands to spot poisonous chemicals.

Questions 34-38
Complete the summary below. Choose no more than THREE WORDS AND/OR A NUMBER from the passage for each answer.

The history of cheek kissing

In the past, Christian used cheek kisses in (34) ………………….. In the Middle Age, the kiss-as-greeting was used to show (35) …………….. or used in making agreements. At present, it is a norm for people almost all over the world to greet each other. In Rome, people named different types of kisses in different ways. It is common for people in Paris to exchange (36) ………………….. The standard is three in Provence and four in the Lore Valley. A kiss on the cheek is also popular among people of Egypt, Latin America and the Philippines. People believe that in the 14th century, the cheek kiss might have been paused and it remained so for (37) …………………. In 2009, due to (38) ………………….. cheek kisses were also stopped for a while.

Questions 39-40
Answer the question below. Choose NO MORE THAN TWO WORDS from the passage for each answer.

39. What did French Health Minister advise people to avoid to prevent the spread of coronavirus?
40. What can be transferred from a handshake?

1. False
2. Not given
3. Not given
4. True
5. True
6. False
7. Rule
8. River
9. Confidence
10. Schools
11. Statistics
12. Clinics
13. Language
14. D
15. C
16. G
17. A
18. H
19. E
20. A
21. Not given
22. True
23. Not given
24. Threat
25. Scientists
26. Sanctuaries
27. True
28. False
29. Not given
30. True
31. True
32. False
33. Not given
34. Religious ceremonies
35. Fidelity
36. Two kisses
37. 400 years
38. Swine flu
39. Social contacts
40. Germs or bacteria