Economics, as we know it, is the social science concerned with the production, distribution, exchange, and consumption of goods and services. Economists focus on the way in which individuals, groups, business enterprises, and governments seek to achieve efficiently any economic objective they select. (46) Other fields of study also contribute to this knowledge: Psychology and ethics try to explain how objectives are formed, history records changes in human objectives, and sociology interprets human behavior in social contexts.
Standard economics can be divided into two major fields. (47) The first, price theory or microeconomics, explains how the interplay of supply and demand in competitive markets creates a multitude of individual prices, wage rates, profit margins, and rental changes. Microeconomics assumes that people behave rationally. Consumers try to spend their income in ways that give them as much pleasure as possible. As economists say, they maximize utility. For their part, entrepreneurs seek as much profit as they can extract from their operations.
The second field, macroeconomics, deals with modern explanations of national income and employment. Macroeconomics dates from the book, The General Theory of Employment, Interest, and Money (1935), by the British economist John Maynard Keynes. His explanation of prosperity and depression centers on the total or aggregate demand for goods and services by consumers, business investors, and governments, (48) Because, according to Keynes, inadequate total demand increases unemployment, the indicated cure is either more investment by businesses or more spending and consequently larger budget deficits by government.
Economic issues have occupied people’s minds throughout the ages. (49) Aristotle and Plato in ancient Greece wrote about problems of wealth, property, and trade, both of whom were prejudiced against commerce, feeling that to live by trade was undesirable. The Romans borrowed their economic ideas from the Greeks and showed the same contempt for trade. (50) During the Middle Ages the economic ideas of the Roman Catholic church were expressed in the law of the church, which condemned the taking of interest for money loaned and regarded commerce as inferior to agriculture. Economics as a subject of modern study, distinguishable from moral philosophy and politics, dates from the work, Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations (1776), by the Scottish philosopher and economist Adam Smith. Mercantilism and physiocracy were precursors of the classical economics of Smith and his 19th-century successors.
46.[精解] 本题考核的知识点是：并列分句、后置定语。 该句子中冒号后是并列的三个简单句。第一个分句中how引导的从句做explain的宾语；第二个和第三个分句中都有介词in的短语做后置定语，翻译时应提前。 词汇方面：contribute to意为“是……的原因；增进，有助于”；knowledge意为“知识；知晓，了解”，文中活译为“对…的理解”。
47.[精解] 本题考核的知识点是：宾语从句、状语。 句子的主干是The first explains how…。主语后的名词短语price theory or microeconomics是其同位语，因此翻译the first时，应增译为“第一个领域”。how引导宾语从句，其主干是the interplay … creates …。介词短语in competitive markets做地点状语，翻译时应前置。 词汇方面：interplay意为“相互影响”；a multitude of意为“许多的，大量的”；individual意为“个别的，单独的， 个人的”；margin意为“（时间、空间、金钱的）余地”，profit margin指“利润空间”。
48.[精解] 本题考核的知识点是：词性转换。 该句是包含原因状语从句的复合句,句子主干是the indicated cure is…,表语由并列连词either … or…连接。 词汇方面：indicated是过去分词用做形容词，动词indicate意为“表明，暗示，提及，建议”，根据上下文indicated译为“建议的”。more investment，more spending和larger budget deficits是形容词比较级加名词，根据汉语习惯转换成动词加名词的搭配，即“扩大投资”、“增加开支”和“增加预算赤字”。
49.[精解] 本题考核的知识点是：定语从句、分词做状语。 主句是Aristotle and … wrote about problems …，后面接有both of whom引导的定语从句，采用拆译法单独成句。句子最后的分词结构feeling that …在定语从句中做状语，翻译时也应单独成句，that后引导的是宾语从句，做feeling的宾语。 词汇方面：be prejudiced against意为“对…有偏见”，undesirable意为“不想要的，不得人心的”。
50.[精解] 本题考核的知识点是：非谓语动词作后置定语、定语从句。 该句含有which引导的非限定性从句做定语，翻译时拆开单独成句，并重复先行词，做从句的主语。 词汇方面：condemn意为“谴责”，taking of interest是动名词结构，可增译为“获利的行为”。