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抹去个人历史(中英文)

(2010-01-21 14:37:32)
标签:

音乐

and

to

with

唐望

杂谈

分类: 06美文随笔
1960年12月22日 星期四
2 ERASING PERSONAL HISTORY
Thursday, 22 December 1960

唐望坐在门旁的地上,背靠着墙。他把一个装牛奶的木箱翻过来,请我坐下,不要拘束。我带一条烟给他。他说他不抽烟,但愿意接受礼物。我们谈到寒冷的沙漠夜晚以及其他日常话题。
Don Juan was sitting on the floor, by the door of his house, with his back against the wall. He turned over a wooden milk crate and asked me to sit down and make myself at home. I offered him some cigarettes. I had brought a carton of them. He said he did not smoke but he accepted the gift. We talked about the coldness of the desert nights and other ordinary topics of conversation.



我问他是否会干扰到他的惯有生活规律。他有些皱眉地看着我说,他没有这样的生活规律,如果我愿意,我可以整个下午呆在那里。
I asked him if I was interfering with his normal routine. He looked at me with a sort of frown and said he had no routines, and that I could stay with him all afternoon if I wanted to.




我准备了一些家谱与亲属图表,希望他帮助我填出来。我也从人类学文献上搜集了一系列据说是属于这一地区印第安人的文化属性,想和他一起看,把他熟习的项目勾下来。
I had prepared some genealogy and kinship charts that I wanted to fill out with his help. I had also compiled, from the ethnographic literature, a long list of culture traits that were purported to belong to the Indians of the area. I wanted to go through the list with him and mark all the items that were familiar to him.




我从亲属图表开始。
“你如何称呼你的父亲?”我问。
“我叫他爸。”他板着脸孔说。
我有些不快,但是仍旧继续下去,假设他没有听懂。
I began with the kinship charts.
'What did you call your father?' I asked.
'I called him Dad," he said with a very serious face.
I felt a little bit annoyed, but I proceeded on the assumption that he had not understood.




我把图表拿给他看,向他说明有一个空格是给父亲的,另一个空格给母亲的。我还用英文与西班牙文之间对父母亲的不同称呼做例子说明。
I showed him the chart and explained that one space was for the father and another space was for the mother. I gave as an example the different words used in English and in Spanish for father and mother.




我想也许应该先提母亲。
“你母亲叫什么?”我问。
“我叫他妈,”他用无知的语调回答。
“我的意思的是你还用什么字眼喊你的父亲、母亲?你怎么喊他们的?”我说,努力保持礼貌与耐心。
他抓抓他的头,呆呆地望着我。
“老天!”他说,“给你难倒了,让我想想。”
I thought that perhaps I should have taken mother first.

'What did you call your mother?' I asked.

'I called her Mom,' he replied in a naive tone.

'I mean what other words did you use to call your father and mother? How did you call them?' I said, trying to be patient and polite.

He scratched his head and looked at me with a stupid expression_r.

'Golly!' he said. 'You got me there. Let me think.'





迟疑了几分钟之后,他似乎记起了什么,我也赶紧拿笔准备写。
“嗯!”他说,似乎在严肃地思考:“还用什么其他的字喊他们?我喊他们‘嘿,嘿,爸!’‘嘿,嘿,妈!’”
我忍不住笑起来。他的表情实在很滑稽。我不知他是一个扯我后腿的老人;还是一个道地的笨蛋。我尽量忍耐,向他解释说这是很严肃的问题,完成这些图表对我的工作是很重要的。我努力让他了解家谱与个人历史的观念。
After a moment's hesitation he seemed to remember something and I got ready to write.

'Well,' he said, as if he were involved in serious thought, 'how else did I call them? I called them Hey, hey, Dad! Hey, hey, Mom!'

I laughed against my desire. His expression_r was truly comical and at that moment I did not know whether he was a preposterous old man pulling my leg or whether he was really a simpleton. Using all the patience I had, I explained to him that these were very serious questions and that it was very important for my work to fill out the forms. I tried to make him understand the idea of a genealogy and personal history.




“你父母亲叫什么名字?”我问。
他用清澈、温和的眼光看着我。
“不要把你的时间浪费在那些无聊的事上,”他轻柔地说,但带着意想不到的力量。我不知道说什么好,那些话仿佛出自另一人的口中。一会儿之前,他还是个搔着头的傻印第安人,一瞬之间,他扭转了我们两人的角色。我成了愚蠢的一个。而他以一种无法形容的眼光盯着我,那不是傲慢、违抗、仇恨或轻蔑。他的眼神祥和、清澈又锐利。
'What were the names of your father and mother?' I asked.

He looked at me with clear kind eyes.

'Don't waste your time with that crap,' he said softly but with unsuspected force.

I did not know what to say; it was as if someone else had uttered those words. A moment before, he had been a fumbling stupid Indian scratching his head, and then in an instant he had reversed the roles; I was the stupid one, and he was staring at me with an indescribable look that was not a look of arrogance, or defiance, or hatred, or contempt. His eyes were kind and clear and penetrating.




“我没有任何个人历史,”他沉默了很久,然后说,“有一天我发现我不再需要个人历史,就把它抛掉了,就像抛掉饮酒的习惯一样。”
我不太了解他的意思。我突然感到很不舒服,觉得受到威胁。我提醒他,他曾经向我保证过,可以问他任何问题。他再次对我表示,他真的一点也不介意。
“我不再有任何个人历史”,他刺探地看着我说,“有一天我觉得可以不需要它,就把它丢掉了。”

'I don't have any personal history,' he said after a long pause. 'One day I found out that personal history was no longer necessary for me and, like drinking, I dropped it.'

I did not quite understand what he meant by that. I suddenly felt ill at ease, threatened. I reminded him that he had assured me that it was all right to ask him questions. He reiterated that he did not mind at all.

'I don't have personal history any more,' he said and looked at me probingly. 'I dropped it one day when I felt it was no longer necessary."




我瞪着他,想发现他话中所隐藏的意义。
“一个人怎么能把他个人的历史丢掉?”我争辩说。
“首先必须有这种欲望,”他说,“然后再一点一点把它抹掉,和谐地进行。”
I stared at him, trying to detect the hidden meanings of his words.

'How can one drop one's personal history?' I asked in an argumentative mood.

'One must first have the desire to drop it,' he said. 'And then one must proceed harmoniously to chop it off, little by little.'




“为什么要有这样的欲望呢?”我大叫。
'Why should anyone have such a desire?' I exclaimed.





我对我个人的历史有着强烈的依赖。我家世渊源深厚。我坚信,没有这些个人历史,我的生命就没有脉络可寻,没有目标。
I had a terribly strong attachment to my personal history. My family roots were deep. I honestly felt that without them my life had no continuity or purpose.





“也许你该告诉我,抛弃个人历史是什么意思?”我说。
“把它丢掉,那就是我的意思,”他直截了当地说。
我强调说一点也不了解他的想法。
“拿你作为例子,”我说,“你是一个亚基族人。你没有办法改变这一事实。”
“我是吗?”他微笑着问:“你怎么知道?”
“不错!”我说,“目前我无法确切知道,但是你自己知道,这就算数,那就使得它成为个人历史。”
我觉得我十分有理。
'Perhaps you should tell me what you mean by dropping one's personal history,' I said.

'To do away with it, that's what I mean," he replied cuttingly.

I insisted that I must not have understood the proposition.

'Take you for instance,' I said. 'You are a Yaqui. You can't change that.'

'Am I?" he asked, smiling. 'How do you know that?'

'True!' I said. 'I can't know that with certainty, at this point, but you know it and that is what counts. That's what makes it personal history.'

I felt I had driven a hard nail in.





“我知道我是否是亚基人,这个事实并不足以构成个人历史,”他回答说,“只有在别人知道时,它才会成为个人历史。我可以向你保证,永远也不会有人确知这件事。”
'The fact that I know whether I am a Yaqui or not does not make it personal history,' he replied.' Only when someone else knows that does it become personal history. And I assure you that no one will ever know that for sure.'




我笨拙地把他的话记下来后,停下来看着他。我实在猜不透他。我回想过去对他的种种印象:第一次见面时他看我的那种神秘的、前所未见的眼神;他宣称从四周一切获得同意时所显现的魅力;他恼人的幽默与警觉;在我问到他父母时他那副不折不扣的蠢样;还有,他的那几句充满力量的话,使我完全不知所措。
I had written down what he had said in a clumsy way. I stopped writing and looked at him. I could not figure him out. I mentally ran through my impressions of him; the mysterious and unprecedented way he had looked at me during our first meeting, the charm with which he had claimed that he received agreement from everything around him, his annoying humour and his alertness, his look of bona fide stupidity when I asked about his father and mother, and then the unsuspected force of his statements which had snapped me apart.




“你不知道我是怎样的人,对不对?”他说,似乎看到我脑中所想的。“你永远也不会知道我是谁、我是怎样的人,因为我没有个人历史。”
'You don't know what I am, do you?' he said as if he were reading my thoughts. 'You will never know who or what I am, because I don't have a personal history.'




他问我有没有父亲,我说有。他要我回忆父亲对我的看法。
He asked me if I had a father. I told him I did. He said that my father was an example of what he had in mind. He urged me to remember what my father thought of me.




“你的父亲知道你的一切,”他说,“因此他对你了如指掌。他知道你是谁、知道你做的事情,世上没有任何力量能改变他对你的看法。”
'Your father knows everything about you,' he said. 'So he has you all figured out. He knows who you are and what you do, and there is no power on earth that can make him change his mind about you.'




唐望说第一个认识我的人都对我有一个看法,而我也不断以自己所做的一切支持他们的看法。“你看不出来吗?”他戏剧性地问:“你必须告诉父母、亲戚、朋友自己所做的一切,用这样的方法来更新你的个人历史。相反,如果没有个人历史,就不需要解释;没有人会对你的行为感到愤怒或失望。尤其重要的是,没有人会用思想把你束缚住。”
Don Juan said that everybody that knew me had an idea about me, and that I kept feeding that idea with everything I did. 'Don't you see?' he asked dramatically. 'You must renew your personal history by telling your parents, your relatives, and your friends everything you do. On the other hand, if you have no personal history, no explanations are needed; nobody is angry or disillusioned with your acts. And above all no one pins you down with their thoughts.'



突然间,这个观念在我脑中变得清晰起来。我在过去已经有过这样的想法,可是从来没有好好想过。没有个人历史,的确是一个很吸引人的观念,至少在理性层次上是如此,然而这让我感到孤独,觉得受到威胁和不愉快。我想和他讨论一下我的感觉,可是克制住了;眼前的情况有些荒谬:和一个没有大学生“复杂思维”的老印第安人做哲学上的辩论让我觉得可笑。本来我只是要问他家谱方面的事,他不知如何就把我引到别的地方去了。
Suddenly the idea became clear in my mind. I had almost known it myself, but I have never examined it. Not having personal history was indeed an appealing concept, at least on the intellectual level; it gave me, however, a sense of loneliness which I found threatening and distasteful. I wanted to discuss my feelings with him, but I kept myself in check; something was terribly incongruous in the situation at hand. I felt ridiculous trying to get into a philosophical argument with an old Indian who obviously did not have the 'sophistication' of a university student. Somehow he had led me away from my original intention of asking him about his genealogy.




“我不知道我们怎么会谈到这方面去,我只是想要在图表上填入一些名字,”我说,努力让谈话回到我希望的题目上去。
'I don't know how we ended up talking about this when all I wanted was some names for my charts,' I said, trying to steer the conversation back to the topic I wanted.




“理由很简单,”他说,“我们会谈到这个话题是因为我说,探问别人的过去是很无聊的事。”
'It's terribly simple,' he said. 'The way we ended up talking about it was because I said that to ask questions about one's past is a bunch of crap.'




他的语气很坚定。我想我是没办法叫他让步了,于是我改变做法。
“没有个人历史这个观念是亚基族人的观念吗?”我问。
“是我的观念。”
“你从哪儿学来的?”
“我从我一生中学来的。”
“是你父亲教你的吗?”
“不是。不妨这样说,是我自己学到的。现在我要把这个秘密告诉你,让你今天不会空手而返。”
His tone was firm. I felt there was no way to make him budge, so I changed my tactics.

'Is this idea of not having personal history something that the Yaquis do?' I asked.

'It's something that I do.'

'Where did you learn it?'

'I learned it during the course of my life.'

'Did your father teach you that?'

'No. Let's say that I learned it by myself and now I am going to give you its secret, so you won't go away empty-handed today.'



他故意压低嗓子。我笑他装模作样。我必须承认他在这方面真是有一手。我突然觉得站在我面前的是一个天生的演员。
“写下来,”他哄着我说,“为什么不写呢?你在写字的时候似乎比较自在。”
我看着他,我的眼睛一定泄露了我的迷惑。他拍着大腿,非常高兴地笑起来。
He lowered his voice to a dramatic whisper. I laughed at his histrionics. I had to admit that he was stupendous at that. The thought crossed my mind that I was in the presence of a born actor.

'Write it down,' he said patronizingly. 'Why not? You seem to be more comfortable writing.'

I looked at him and my eyes must have betrayed my confusion. He slapped his thighs and laughed with great delight.




“最好抹掉一切个人历史,”他慢慢地说,似乎让我有时间笨拙地写下采。“免得我们受别人思想的牵绊。”
'It is best to erase all personal history,' he said slowly, as if giving me time to write it down in my clumsy way, 'because that would make us free from the encumbering thoughts of other people.'





我无法相信他真的说了那样的话,我觉得非常迷惑。他一定从我脸上的表情看到我内心的不安,立刻加以利用。
“拿你自己作为例子,”他继续说,“现在你不知道你是留下来好还是离开好,因为我已经抹掉了我的个人历史。我已经一点一点地在我以及我生命的周围创造了一层雾,现在没有人确切知道我是谁、是什么样的人。”
I could not believe that he was actually saying that. I had a very confusing moment. He must have read in my face my inner turmoil and used it immediately.

'Take yourself, for instance,' he went on saying. 'Right now you don't know whether you are coming or going. And that is so, because I have erased my personal history. I have, little by little, created a fog around me and my life. And now nobody knows for sure who I am or what I do.'





“可是你自己知道你是谁,不是吗?”我插嘴说。
“你可以打赌,我……不知道,”他说道,然后在地上打滚,笑我惊愕的样子。
'But you yourself know who you are, don't you?' I interjected.

'You bet I ... don't,' he exclaimed and rolled on the floor, laughing at my surprised look.




他故意停顿了一下,让我以为他会说他知道。他的狡猾很具威胁性,我真的害怕起来。
“这是我今天要告诉你的小秘密,”他低声说。“没有人知道我的个人历史;没有人知道我是谁、我做什么。连我自己也不知道。”
He had paused long enough to make me believe that he was going to say that he did know, as I was anticipating it. His subterfuge was very threatening to me. I actually became afraid. 'That is the little secret I am going to give you today," he said in a low voice. 'Nobody knows my personal history. Nobody knows who I am or what I do. Not even I.'





他眯起眼睛,不是向我看,而是越过我的右肩向远方看。这时他背脊挺直盘腿坐着,可是又似乎很轻松。在这时候,他可以说是威力的化身。我把他想象成一个印第安酋长,儿时英勇故事里的“红番战士”。我沉浸在浪漫的幻想中,一种爱恨交加的情感包围着我。我可以真诚地说,非常喜欢他,同时又能说,我怕他怕得要死。
He squinted his eyes. He was not looking at me but beyond me over my right shoulder. He was sitting cross-legged, his back was straight and yet he seemed to be so relaxed. At that moment he was the very picture of fierceness. I fancied him to be an Indian chief, a 'red-skinned warrior' in the romantic frontier sagas of my childhood. My romanticism carried me away and the most insidious feeling of ambivalence enveloped me. I could sincerely say that I liked him a great deal and in the same breath I could say that I was deadly afraid of him.





他那种奇怪的凝视持续了好长时间。
“我怎么能知道我是谁,当我是这一切时?”他一边说,一边环视四周。
然后,他瞥了我一下,笑了。
He maintained that strange stare for a long moment.

'How can I know who I am, when I am all this?' he said, sweeping the surroundings with a gesture of his head.

Then he glanced at me and smiled.





“你要一点点地在自己周围创造一层云雾;必须把周围一切抹掉,直到没有一样事情是理所当然,是确定或真实。你现在的问题是你太真实——你的努力太真实;你的情绪太真实。不要把事情看得太理所当然。你必须开始抹掉自己。”
'Little by little you must create a fog around yourself; you must erase everything around you until nothing can be taken for granted, until nothing is any longer for sure, or real. Your problem now is that you're too real. Your endeavours are too real; your moods are too real. Don't take things so for granted. You must begin to erase yourself.'





“为什么呢?”我带着敌意问。
很明显,他在规范我的行为。在我的生活中,每次有人想要告诉我我该做什么时,我就忍不住发火,并立刻警惕起来。
“你说想学习植物,”他平静地说,“你希望不劳而获吗?你以为这是游戏吗?你会问问题,而我也会告诉你我所知道的,这是我们所同意的。如果你不喜欢这样的安排,我们也就没有什么好说的了。”
'What for?' I asked belligerently.

It became clear to me then that he was prescribing behaviour for me. All my life I had reached a breaking point when someone attempted to tell me what to do; the mere thought of being told what to do put me immediately on the defensive.

'You said that you wanted to learn about plants,' he said calmly. 'Do you want to get something for nothing? What do you think this is? We agreed that you would ask me questions and I'd tell you what I know. If you don't like it, there is nothing else we can say to each other.'




他的坦率让我恼火。我承认他是对的,但十分不甘心。
“让我们这样说好了,”他继续说,“如果你希望学习关于植物的事,植物实在没什么好说的,所以你必须做其他的事,其中一项是抹除个人历史。”
“怎么做呢?”我问。
“从简单的事情开始,例如不要透露你是什么什么的,然后离开所有熟悉你的人。这样你就可以在自己周围制造起一层雾来。”

His terrible directness made me feel peeved, and begrudgingly I conceded that he was right.

'Let's put it this way then,' he went on. 'If you want to learn about plants, since there is really nothing to say about them, you must, among other things, erase your personal history.'

'How?' I asked.

'Begin with simple things, such as not revealing what you really do. Then you must leave everyone who knows you well. This way you'll build up a fog around yourself.'





“可是那很荒谬,”我抗议说,“为什么人们不该知道我?这又有什么不对?”
“问题在于他们一旦知道你,你就被视为理所当然的一件事,从那一刻开始,你就没有办法打破他们思想的束缚。我个人很喜欢那种不为人知的终极自由。没有人能确切地了解我,像人们了解你一样。”
“可是那是撒谎。”
'But that's absurd,' I protested. 'Why shouldn't people know me? What's wrong with that?"

'What's wrong is that once they know you, you are an affair taken for granted and from that moment on you won't be able to break the tie of their thoughts. I personally like the ultimate freedom of being unknown. No one knows me with steadfast certainty, the way people know you, for instance.'

'But that would be lying.'





“我不关心什么谎言或实话,”他严肃地说,“只有在你有个人历史时,谎言才会是谎言。”
我辩解说我不喜欢故意把事情神秘化或误导人,他的回答是,其实我还是在用各种方法误导每一个人。
'I'm not concerned with lies or truths,' he said severely. 'Lies are lies only if you have personal history."

I argued that I did not like to deliberately mystify people or mislead them. His reply was that I misled everybody anyway.




老头子触到了我的一个痛处。我没有停下来问他这话的意思,也没有问他怎么知道我经常误导人。我只是直接对他的话作出反应,用言语为自己辩护。我说我非常痛苦地感知到,我的家人、朋友都认为我不可靠,而实际上我一生里从来没说过谎。
The old man had touched a sore spot in my life. I did not pause to ask him what he meant by that or how he knew that I mystified people all the time. I simply reacted to his statement, defending myself by means of an explanation. I said that I was painfully aware that my family and my friends believed I was unreliable, when in reality I had never told a lie in my 'life.





“你一直都晓得如何说谎”,他说,“你唯一不知道的是,为什么要说谎。现在你知道了。”
我提出抗议。
“你看不出来我很厌恶别人认为我不可靠吗?”我说。

'You always knew how to lie,' he said. 'The only thing that was missing was that you didn't know why to do it. Now you do.'

I protested.

'Don't you see that I'm really sick and tired of people thinking that I'm unreliable?' I said.






“但你是真的不可靠呀,”他很肯定地说。
“该死!我不是那样!”我大叫。
我的情绪没有让他严肃起来,反而使他歇斯底里地大笑起来。我实在厌恶这个老人的狂妄。不幸的是,他说得没错。
一会儿后,我平静下采,他继续说下去。
'But you are unreliable,' he replied with conviction.

'Damn it to hell, man, I am not!' I exclaimed.

My mood, instead of forcing him into seriousness, made him laugh hysterically. I really despised the old man for all his cockiness. Unfortunately he was right about me.

After a while I calmed down and he continued talking.




“如果一个人没有个人历史,”他解释说,“不论他说什么,都不会被当成谎言,而你的麻烦是你一定得向每个人说明每一件事,同时又希望保持行为的新鲜感。可是在说明所做的一切之后,你没法再兴奋,为了能好好活下去,你只好撒谎。”
'When one does not have personal history,' he explained, 'nothing that one says can be taken for a lie. Your trouble is that you have to explain everything to everybody, compulsively, and at the same time you want to keep the freshness, the newness of what you do. Well, since you can't be excited after explaining everything you've done, you lie in order to keep on going.'




我真是为我们谈话的内容感到迷惑。我巨细无遗地记下交谈的所有细节,把注意力放在他说的话上,不去想自己的偏见,或他话中的涵义。
I was truly bewildered by the scope of our conversation. I wrote down all the details of our exchange in the best way I could, concentrating on what he was saying rather than pausing to deliberate on my prejudices or on his meanings.




“从现在开始,”他说,“你必须只让人知道你愿意让人知道的,但是不必说明你是怎样做到的。”

'From now on,' he said, 'you must simply show people whatever you care to show them, but without ever telling exactly how you've done it.'





“我守不住秘密!”我大叫,“你说的对我没用。”
'I can't keep secrets!' I exclaimed. 'What you are saying is useless to me.'




“那么就要改变!”他斩钉截铁地说,眼中露出慑人的光芒。
他看上去像一匹奇怪的野兽,但是他思想如此一致,言语流畅。我的不快慢慢地转变成令人不安的困惑。
'Then change!' he said cuttingly and with a fierce glint in his eyes.
He looked like a strange wild animal. And yet he was so coherent in his thoughts and so verbal. My annoyance gave way to a state of irritating confusion.



“你看,”他继续说:“我们只有两条路:或者把一切都当成是确定的、真实的;或者不这么做。如果走第一条路,最后会对自己以及世界感到厌倦至死。如果走第二条路,抹去个人历史,我们就在自己周围制造出一层雾,那是一种让人刺激而且神秘的状态,没有人知道兔子会从哪里冒出来,甚至连自己也不知道。”


'You see,' he went on, 'we only have two alternatives; we either take everything for sure and real, or we don't. If we follow the first, we end up bored to death with ourselves and with the world. If we follow the second and erase personal history, we create a fog around us, a very exciting and mysterious state in which nobody knows where the rabbit will pop out,, not even ourselves."


我辩解说抹去个人历史只会增加不安全感。
I contended that erasing personal history would only increase our sensation of insecurity.



“在没有一样事情是确定时,我们会一直保持警觉,会永远小心翼翼,”他说,“不知道兔子藏在哪棵灌木后面,要远比假装知道一切来得刺激。”

'When nothing is for sure we remain alert, perennially on our toes,' he said. ' It is more exciting not to know which bush the rabbit is hiding behind than to behave as though we know everything.'

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