Lengua Inglesa III
Cecilia Saleme
Facultad de Filosofía y Letras / Universidad Nacional de Tucumán
19.03.2011 | Trabajo Práctico de prueba
A cargo de: Cecilia

LANGUAGE III – Trial test


The First Geneva Convention


1.       In 1864, the wealthy Swiss businessman Jean-Henri Dunant wanted to create an international volunteer organization to care for the wounded on both sides of the battle. He wanted an international agreement that would give protection and legitimacy to these tireless volunteers. Dunant had been inspired by the devastating scene of thousands of dead Austrian and French soldiers in a volatile regional conflict of the time. He witnessed firsthand the horrific battlefield: bloody corpses, severed body parts, and wounded and dead horses. Shocked by the barbarism and savagery he had seen, Dunant wrote a book in which he explained his ideals.

2.       With his influence, Dunant persuaded the Swiss government to organize an international meeting to discuss his proposals. In 1864, representatives of 12 governments met and ratified an agreement. It was the first version of the Geneva Conventions, or the “rules of war.” As the first attempt to institutionalize guidelines for wartime behaviour, it was the beginning of the modern humanitarian law movement.

3.       Dunant’s ideas were controversial then, just as they are today. Some people deemed that his ideas were illogical, going against a natural point of view. Critics did not believe that codes could help restrain soldiers during conflicts, yet Dunant argued that these laws were fundamental human universals, with origins in every culture.

4.       The original 1864 Conventions prevailed until 1949, when four more were added. One of these requires the sparing of civilian lives during wartime. Now more than 180 countries subscribe to the Geneva Conventions. The Red Cross devotes a great deal of effort to disseminating information about the conventions.


  1. Reading comprehension: Answer the questions IN YOUR OWN WORDS:
    1. Why did Jean-Henri Dunant want to create the Geneva Convention?
    2. Why are Dunant’s ideas controversial?
    3. Do you think war is sometimes necessary to solve conflicts? Why / why not?


  1. Vocabulary: explain the meaning of the 4 words in bold type.


  1. Paragraph development: Identify and transcribe the thesis statement of the text.


  1. Grammar: “... yet Dunant argued that these laws were fundamental human universals, with origins in every culture” What did Dunant really say in direct speech? Write down what may have been his exact words.


  1. Writing: Summarize the text in 50 words. Count the words to be sure. 

Claves: trial test



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