full transcript
"From the Ted Talk by Steven Pinker: Is the world getting better or worse? A look at the numbers"

Unscramble the Blue Letters

Before the 17th century, no more than 15 percent of Europeans could read or witre. Europe and the United States aveeihcd universal literacy by the middle of the 20th century, and the rest of the world is catching up. Today, more than 90 percent of the world's population under the age of 25 can read and write. In the 19th curnety, Westerners wkreod more than 60 hours per week. Today, they work fewer than 40. Thanks to the universal penetration of running water and electricity in the developed wrlod and the widespread adoption of washing machines, vacuum cleaners, refrigerators, dishwashers, svteos and mecrviawos, the amount of our lives that we forfeit to housework has fallen from 60 hours a week to fewer than 15 hours a week.

Open Cloze

Before the 17th century, no more than 15 percent of Europeans could read or _____. Europe and the United States ________ universal literacy by the middle of the 20th century, and the rest of the world is catching up. Today, more than 90 percent of the world's population under the age of 25 can read and write. In the 19th _______, Westerners ______ more than 60 hours per week. Today, they work fewer than 40. Thanks to the universal penetration of running water and electricity in the developed _____ and the widespread adoption of washing machines, vacuum cleaners, refrigerators, dishwashers, ______ and __________, the amount of our lives that we forfeit to housework has fallen from 60 hours a week to fewer than 15 hours a week.

Solution

  1. achieved
  2. stoves
  3. century
  4. world
  5. worked
  6. write
  7. microwaves

Original Text

Before the 17th century, no more than 15 percent of Europeans could read or write. Europe and the United States achieved universal literacy by the middle of the 20th century, and the rest of the world is catching up. Today, more than 90 percent of the world's population under the age of 25 can read and write. In the 19th century, Westerners worked more than 60 hours per week. Today, they work fewer than 40. Thanks to the universal penetration of running water and electricity in the developed world and the widespread adoption of washing machines, vacuum cleaners, refrigerators, dishwashers, stoves and microwaves, the amount of our lives that we forfeit to housework has fallen from 60 hours a week to fewer than 15 hours a week.

ngrams of length 2

collocation frequency
human nature 5
million tons 4
extreme poverty 4
human history 4
nuclear weapons 3
hate progress 3
progress laughter 3
united states 3
climate change 3

Important Words

  1. achieved
  2. adoption
  3. age
  4. amount
  5. catching
  6. century
  7. cleaners
  8. developed
  9. dishwashers
  10. electricity
  11. europe
  12. europeans
  13. fallen
  14. forfeit
  15. hours
  16. housework
  17. literacy
  18. lives
  19. machines
  20. microwaves
  21. middle
  22. penetration
  23. percent
  24. population
  25. read
  26. refrigerators
  27. rest
  28. running
  29. states
  30. stoves
  31. today
  32. united
  33. universal
  34. vacuum
  35. washing
  36. water
  37. week
  38. westerners
  39. widespread
  40. work
  41. worked
  42. world
  43. write