Do films like Les Miserables make you cry? Rob and Feifei discuss why we love to watch films that bring out an emotional response, and cause us to blub and sob.
We hear how watching a film gives us a chance to let our emotions out and learn several expressions to describe crying and feeling upset.
Rob: Hello and welcome to 6 Minute English from bbclearningenglish.com. My name is Rob and I’m joined in the studio by Jennifer.
Rob: In today’s programme we are talking about anger – that’s the strong feeling you get when you feel someone has treated you badly or unfairly. Does that sound familiar Jen?
Jennifer: Oh yes. There are many things that make me lose my temper – usually just things that annoy me.
Rob: We’ll hear what they are soon and we’ll look at why some research says our modern life is making us angrier. But first, keep calm Jen and see if you can answer today’s question.
Jennifer: It’s OK Rob, I’m in a good mood – I feel happy – so let me have it!
Rob: OK. In a BBC survey, what was found to be the thing that made British people most annoyed? Was it:
a) Someone jumping the queue
b) Delays on public transport
c) Being kept on hold by a call centre
Jennifer: I’ll go for c) being kept on hold by a call centre because that’s very annoying.
Rob: OK, well, we’ll find out if you’re right at the end of the programme. Jen, you say that annoys you, does anything else annoy or anger you?
Jennifer: Public transport annoys me but it’s the passengers that I find most annoying especially when they push and shove and cram onto a train. How about you Rob?
Rob: Well, for me, it’s got to be rudeness. It really makes my blood boil when people who work in shops are rude to me, the customer – it is as if they don’t want me to buy anything! But I suppose that is quite small compared with things that used to make us angry.
Jennifer: Yes. Humans developed the feeling of anger as a basic survival skill – the emotion of anger helped us to do things – so hunger would make us angry and that would make us to look for food.
Rob: Interesting stuff. But now we start fuming – so we get very angry – by just small things which aren’t that important. This is according to new research published by the University of Central Lancashire in the UK.
Jennifer: The research found people today are angrier than ever. And Doctor Sandi Mann from the university says it is modern life that’s to blame.
Rob: Well, let’s hear from her now. What words does she use to describe what modern life is like?
Dr Sandi Mann, Senior Psychology Lecturer, University of Central Lancashire:
Stress levels are that much higher these days. We’ve got so much more fast-paced life, more going on – more stress, more ongoing frustrations rather than the big stresses.
Rob: So, she says modern life is fast-paced – we do things quickly and we have more going on – so we do lots of activities. Well, that’s probably true.
Jennifer: Yes. I have to go to the gym, meet my friends, go shopping and fit in work and sleep too. That can lead to stress – that’s feeling nervous or worried – I just can’t relax!
Rob: It’s odd that all the time we are trying to find time to relax – but we get stressed trying to do that. As Doctor Mann says, there are so many frustrations. These are the feelings we get when we are stopped from doing what we want to do. Arggggh!
Jennifer: Rob calm down – you’re seeing a red mist – a feeling of anger that stops you thinking clearly. I think the problem is, perhaps, that we are all trying to do too much.
Rob: Well, Doctor Mann believes – certainly in the Western world – that our expectations have been raised. Now we expect things to be perfect. So, if your Wi-Fi connection doesn’t work as it should, or your train is two minutes’ late, we stamp our feet like children. We want things and we want them now!
Jennifer: And sometimes we get angry with other people. Have you done that Rob?
Rob: Oh yes! I curse – or think bad things about people who take so long getting through the ticket barriers at the station when I have a train to catch! I only get angry on the inside, I don’t actually shout at them but it still makes me mad.
Jennifer: Well, I think the solution is to allow more time to do things or do less. But I think the angriest people probably need anger management. That’s training or therapy on how to control your anger or aggression.
Rob: Hmm, I don’t think I’m ready for that yet. But let’s see if you can keep your cool Jen when I reveal the answer to today’s question. Earlier I asked you, according to a BBC survey, what was found to be the thing that made British people most annoyed?
Jennifer: And I said c) being kept on hold by a call centre.
Rob: And you are right. Yes, the survey found that being kept on hold by a call centre, particularly for a long time, was the thing most likely to make people angry. Interestingly, the survey also found more women than men – almost three-quarters compared to two-thirds – said they took a deep breath to calm down. Well, take a deep breath now Jen and please remind us of some of the words that we’ve heard today.
Jennifer: Here goes. We heard:
lose my temper
makes my blood boil
Rob: Thanks. Time now to chill out, relax and say goodbye from 6 Minute English from BBC Learning English.
Vocabulary and definitions
anger: strong feeling you want to hurt or shout at someone because they treated you badly or unfairly
lose my temper: suddenly become angry
makes my blood boil: causes me to be very angry
fuming: showing anger
fast-paced: moving very quickly
stress: feeling nervous or worried so you cannot relax
frustrations: situations that make you feel annoyed because something is stopping you from doing what you want
red mist: feeling of extreme anger that stops you thinking clearly
curse: say or think offensive or bad things about someone
anger management: therapy or training to help you control your anger
aggression: physical or verbal behaviour towards someone
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