Actvitity 4 Instructions for How to Write a Summary (part 2) - English 163 Techniques of Reading - English Learning Center

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Instructions and Article for Activity 4:
How To Write A Summary

Now read the first nine (9) paragraphs of the following article.

Can People be Judged by Their Appearance?*

  1. Everyone knows that a human being, like a chicken, comes from an egg. At a very early state, the human embryo forms a three-layered tube, the inside layer of which grows into the stomach and lungs, the middle layer into bone, muscle, joints, and blood vessels, and the outside layer into the skin and nervous system.

  2. Usually these three grow about equally, so that the average human being is a fair mixture of brains, muscles, and inward organs. In some eggs, however, one layer grows more than the others, and when the angels have finished putting the child together, he may have more gut than brain, or more brain than muscle. When this happens, the individual's activities will often be mostly with the overgrown layer.

  3. We can thus say that while the average human being is a mixture, some people are mainly "digestion-minded," some "muscle-minded," and some "brain-minded," correspondingly digestion-bodied, muscle-bodied, or brain-bodied. The digestion-bodied people look thick; the muscle-bodied people look wide; and the brain-bodied people look long. This does not mean the taller a man is the brainier he will be. It means that if a man, even a short man, looks long rather than wide or thick, he will often be more concerned about what goes on in his mind than about what he does or what he eats; but the key factor is slenderness and not height. On the other hand, a man who gives the impression of being thick rather than long or wide will usually be more interested in a good steak than in a good idea or a good long walk.

  4. Medical men use Greek words to describe these types of body-build. For the man whose body shape mostly depends on the inside layer of the egg they use endomorph. If it depends mostly upon the middle layer, they call him a mesomorph. If it depends mostly on the outside layer, they call him an ectomorph. We can see the same roots in our English words "enter," "medium," and "exit," which, might just as easily have been spelled "ender," "mesium," and "ectit."

  5. Since the inside skin of the human egg, or endoderm, forms the inner organs of the belly, the viscera, the endomorph is usually belly-minded; since the middle skin forms the body tissues, or soma, the mesomorph is usually muscle-minded; and since the outside skin forms the brain, or cerebrum, the ectomorph is usually brain-minded. Translating this into Greek, we have the viscerotonic endomorph, the somatotonic mesomorph, and the cerebrotonic ectomorph.

  6. Words are beautiful things to a cerebrotonic, but a viscerotonic knows you cannot eat a menu no matter what language it is printed in, and a somtotonic knows you cannot increase your chest expansion by reading a dictionary. So it is advisable to leave these words and see what kinds of people they actually apply to, remembering again that most individuals are fairly equal mixtures and that what we have to say concerns only the extremes. Up to the present, these types have been thoroughly studied only in the male sex.

  7. Viscerotonic Endomorph. If a man is definitely a thick type rather than a broad or long type, he is likely to be round and soft, with a big chest but a bigger belly. He would rather eat than breathe comfortably. He is likely to have a wide face, short, thick neck, big thighs and upper arms, and small hands and feet. He has overdeveloped breasts and looks as though he were blown up a little like a balloon. His skin is soft and smooth, and when he gets bald, as he does usually quite early, he loses the hair in the middle of his head first.

  8. The short, jolly, thickset, red-faced politician with a cigar in his mouth, who always looks a though he were about to have a stroke, is the best example of this type. The reason he often makes a good politician is that he likes people, banquets, baths, and sleep; he is easygoing, soothing, and his feelings are easy to understand.

  9. His abdomen is big because he has lots of intestine. He likes to take in things. He likes to take in food, and affection and approval as well. Going to a banquet with people who like him is his idea of a fine time. It is important for a psychiatrist to understand the natures of such men when they come to him for advice.


* From A Layman's Guide to Psychiatry and Psychoanalysis, by Eric Berne. Copyright 1947, 1957, 1968 by Eric Berne. Reprinted by permission of Simon & Schuster, a Division of Gulf & Western Corporation.

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