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BBC 6 minute English-Is there more of the world to explore

BBC 6 minute English-Is there more of the world to explore

BBC 6 minute English-Is there more of the world to explore


Transcript of the podcast

NB: This is not a word-for-word transcript

Rob: Hello, I’m Rob. Welcome to 6 Minute English. I’m joined today by Finn. Hello Finn

Finn: Hello Rob

Rob: In this programme we’re talking about exploration – that’s a journey to a place to learn something new about it. It’s a sort of educational trip

Finn: Yes, you may have heard about famous explorers – the people who made these journeys and learned new and amazing things – like Captain Cook or Christopher Columbus

Rob: Yes, Columbus was the Italian explorer who explored the Americas over 500 years ago. There are many other people who travelled around the world seeking out – or looking for – new land, people, plants and animals. But now in the 21st century, do you think there’s any more of the world left to discover

Finn: Ah, well, that’s a question we’ll be ‘exploring’ today and we’ll also discover some exploration-related vocabulary. But first Rob, I’m sure you have a question for me

Rob: Of course, yes. My question is about a modern-day explorer from the UK. He’s called Ed Stafford. In 2011 he became the first person to do what? Was it

a) circumnavigate – or go all the way round – the world in a canoe

b) ski down Mount Everest

c) walk the length of the Amazon River

Finn: I’m going to say a) the first person to go round the world in a canoe

Rob: OK, well, we’ll find out if you are right or wrong later on. So let’s talk more about exploration. There are many reasons why people have wanted to explore

Finn: Yes. Sometimes it was to find new natural resources – things like oil, rubber or gold. Sometimes people wanted to find new land to occupy and build on; and sometimes people have just been inquisitive – or interested – in finding out what somewhere is like. That sounds a bit like you Rob

Rob: Well, I do enjoy travel and adventure – and although I’ve explored places that are new to me – I haven’t yet found an undiscovered river or island

Finn: Well, I hope you do. With satellite technology and modern transport, maybe every corner of planet Earth has already been discovered and there’s nothing left to find, I wonder

Rob: Well, that’s not something that the travel journalist, Christina Lamb, would agree with. She’s seen a lot of the world but says there’s still more to be discovered. Let’s hear from her now. What phrase does she use to describe somewhere that hasn’t been found yet

Christina Lamb, travel journalist

There still are a few places in the world that are unexplored. I’ve travelled quite a lot in the Amazon and there, there really are still places where maps don’t have anything on them and it says uncharted territory, which I think is the most exciting thing you can see on a map

Rob: So there are still a few places to explore – places that are not on a map! Christina Lamb called them uncharted territory

Finn: ‘Uncharted’ means a place that is completely new – and ‘territory’ is another word for an area of land. So, uncharted territory – imagine discovering somewhere like that

Rob: It would be amazing – but sometimes people are already living in these places – these are the tribes – or groups of people – who have never had contact with the outside world

Finn: Well, even if every tribe, every lost city, every piece of land had already been discovered, a travel writer called Colin Thurbron claims we can still re-explore and discover new things. So, what things keep changing which mean we should never stop exploring

Colin Thurbron, author

What there’s always a role for, is for reinterpreting a culture – going back there for every generation. Not just because the culture has changed but the judgements and priorities of every generation of traveller has changed too

Rob: OK, so he talks about culture – that’s the way of life for a particular group of people. Cultures change, but also our views change too: he says our judgements and priorities change – that means we keep seeing things differently

Finn: So you mean we see things in a new way every time we go back and look at them. In that case, maybe we will never stop exploring our planet

Rob: Yes, there’s always something new to discover in the world and even beyond it – people are already venturing into space, the universe – where next

Finn: Yes, absolutely. But I think I still need to explore my own city first – there’s a lot more to discover in London before I head off to Mars

Rob: Maybe you just haven’t got any wanderlust – that’s the desire to travel – unlike explorer Ed Stafford. Earlier I asked you what he became the first person to do in 2011

Finn: I said a) go round the world in a canoe. I guess I’m wrong

Rob: You’re wrong. Nice try! He was actually the first person to walk the length of the Amazon River. Your challenge now Finn is to remind us of some of the vocabulary that we’ve explored today

Finn: In a canoe? Of course. Well, we had

exploration explorers seeking out circumnavigate natural resources inquisitive uncharted territory tribes culture venturing wanderlust

Rob: Well, that brings us to the end of today’s 6 Minute English. We hope you’ve enjoyed today’s programme. Please join us again soon

Both: Bye

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