Epreuve de langue

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  1. Epreuve de langue :

Samedi 10 mai 2008 14h-16h

PART ONE (Comprehension and Vocabulary) : /10

1A Translate the following text into English (5points)
  1. Democrats Divided Over Gas Tax Break (New York Times April 29)

WASHINGTON — As angry truckers encircled the Capitol in a horn-blaring caravan and consumers across the country agonized over $60 fill-ups, the issue of high fuel prices flared on the campaign trail on Monday, sharply dividing the two Democratic candidates.

Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton lined up with Senator John McCain, the presumptive Republican nominee for president, in endorsing a plan to suspend the federal tax on gasoline, for the summer travel season. But Senator Barack Obama, Mrs. Clinton’s Democratic rival, spoke out firmly against the proposal, saying it would save consumers little and do nothing to curtail oil consumption and imports.

While Mr. Obama’s view is shared by environmentalists and many independent energy analysts, his position allowed Mrs. Clinton to draw a contrast with her opponent in appealing to the hard-hit middle-class families and older Americans who have proven to be the bedrock of her support. She has accused Mr. Obama of being out of touch with ordinary Americans who are struggling to meet their mortgages and gas up their cars and trucks. [.......]

1B Read the text below then replace the underlined words by English synonyms or equivalent phrases. They must fit gramatically into the text without changing its meaning.(5 points)

Obama calls Wright’s remarks “outrageous” (The Guardian April 29th)

Barack Obama today forcefully distanced himself from his former pastor Jeremiah Wright, publicly severing (1) a relationship that has become a source of concern (2)among some Democrats and may have helped drive away (3)voters.

Speaking in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, where a primary is scheduled for (4)May 6, the Illinois senator sought (5) to quell (6)attempts among his political rivals to link him to the pastor, describing Wright's recent public appearances as "outrageous,".

Obama's remarks came after Wright yesterday reiterated some of his most contentious ideas on AIDS and race relations, and again praised (7)Louis Farrakhan, a black Muslim leader whom many see as anti-Semitic.

"The problems that we face as a country are too great to continue to be divided," Obama said during today's news conference. "What we saw yesterday out of Reverend Wright was a resurfacing, and I believe an exploitation, of those old divisions."

"It is antithetical to our campaign, it is antithetical to what I am about, it is not what I think America stands for (8), and I want to be very clear that Reverend Wright does not speak for me, he does not speak for our campaign … [What he said] contradicts everything that I am about and who I am."

The Democratic candidate's association with Wright, a former pastor at Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago who married Obama and his wife Michelle and baptised the couple's two daughters, became a focus of the presidential election last month, when video clips of some of Wright's fiery (9) sermons surfaced on television and the internet.

In one, Wright was seen crying, "God Damn America," and in others he said the US shares the blame for the September 11 terrorist attacks. He also said the government created the AIDS virus to destroy "people of colour".

Obama's Democratic rival Hillary Clinton and some in the Republican party have insinuated that Obama shares Wright's inflammatory sentiments, and criticised Obama for continuing to attend [10] the church after Wright made those statements.

  1. severing 6. to quell

  2. concern 7. praised

  3. drive away 8. stands for

  4. scheduled for 9. fiery

  5. sought 10. to attend

PART TWO (Written Expression – Essay of about 300 words) : /10

Can we expect to see a Democrat in the White House after the next US presidential election?

Use your own words. Do not quote the articles.

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