英语口语培训班：The Nature of Myths 神话性质
Shirley: So you said Paul Bunyan is famous. How dopeople know about him. Is he in children’s storybooks or do you learn about him at school?
Jake: Yes, both. At school I remember having maybea Paul Bunyan day. It’s not an actual national holidaybut at school I think we had maybe one day when I was in preschool or kindergarten where wewould just talk about Paul Bunyan. They would show us picture books of Paul Bunyan and wewould make art based on Paul Bunyan. Things like that.
Shirley: That’s pretty amazing that he’s so famous and just for making the Mississippi river. Isthere something special about the river that makes it important in America?
Jake: Well it’s definitely the most important river in America, I would say. It’s large and itcrosses the entire United States down the middle and, yes, the Mississippi river is veryimportant to the United States and especially where I’m from because I live near the Mississippiriver in the United States.
Shirley: Are there any Native American stories to explain why the Mississippi river is such a bigriver and why it’s there?
Jake: I’m sure there are but unfortunately we choose to talk about the Paul Bunyan story morefor one reason or another. I’m not sure why it’s the most famous, but I’m sure the NativeAmericans have much older stories to explain the Mississippi river.
Shirley: So Jake, is he famous for anything else other than making that big river?
Jake: Well, I think it’s maybe just a story about hard work for children and things like that,because they would say he had a huge ax and he could cut down ten trees with one swing andthings like that.
Shirley: So, not really an environmentalist.
Jake: Not really. I think the story was invented before the environment (movement) wasinvented, so it’s a bit of an old story…
Shirley: So do they want children to go cut down trees or what’s the purpose of the storynow?
Jake: Well I think it just means work hard and prosper, like many stories in the United States.
Shirley: I see.