《经济学人》:日本之自身观&海洋观解读
日期:2011-06-08 10:51

(单词翻译:单击)

Banyan

The great wave
滔天巨浪

A look at how Japan views the sea—and itself
日本之自身观&海洋观解读

Jun 2nd 2011 | from the print edition

AT AROUND the age of 70, Katsushika Hokusai, still bounding with artistic energy, created “Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji”, a series of ukiyo-e, or woodblock prints. His most famous, since reproduced on everything from Tintin books to tea cups, is “Beneath the Wave off Kanagawa”, painted around 1830.

葛饰北斋70岁上下之时,艺术细胞仍然丝毫未减,创作了《富士三十六景》系列浮世绘(也叫做木板水印画)。而他最有名的作品莫过于1830年左右创作的《巨浪下的神户川》了,从丁丁书到茶杯上都可见这部巨作的影子。

Most Westerners, when viewing it, focus on the wave itself, which towers over Mount Fuji in a show of almost implacable force, all the more terrifying considering the three fragile boats under it. Neil MacGregor, director of the British Museum, wrote in “A History of the World in 100 Objects” that the picture reflected frightened fishermen and an insecure, cloistered Japan about to be forced by American gunboats into the modern world. But Japanese art critics differ—and they have a point. In the picture the boatmen look more serene than fearful, as their vessels slice through the waves. Their stillness in the face of danger is all the more poignant in Japan, as they have a job to do. They are racing to deliver fresh fish to market, and yet they remain, as far as many Japanese see it, in delicate balance with nature.

面对这幅画,大多数西方人关注的都是浪花本身,巨大的浪花高高地盖过富士山脉,显示出近乎无法抵挡的威力,再想想三艘岌岌可危的小船还摇曳在巨浪下,那就更加令人心惊胆战了。大英博物馆主任麦克格瑞格在“100物件看世界历史”中如是写道:这幅画展现了在美国炮舰的逼迫下,受到惊吓的日本渔民连同有失稳固而又与世隔绝的日本国一起被迫走向现代化。但是日本艺术评论家对此提出了不同的看法,他们也有自己的道理。图画中,小船在巨浪中摇曳之时,渔民表现出的平静大于恐慌。因为还有工作要做,所以面对危险,渔民沉着冷静,而这一情况出现在日本就更是令人心酸了。渔民们争先恐后地将鲜鱼运到市场,而在许多日本人看来,渔民一直与自然保持着微妙的平衡。

Since the March 11th tsunami, once again Japan is examining itself through the prism of a great wave. What it sees can at first strike an outsider as oddly romantic. Talk to mayors of port cities up and down the stricken north-eastern coast of Honshu, Japan’s main island, and they almost invariably describe the mighty ocean as a friend and source of hope—even though some lost loved ones, homes and businesses in the onslaught.

3月11日海啸来袭,日本又一次透过巨浪这把棱镜审视自己。然而,透过棱镜看到情景,起初还真是令外人匪夷所思,日本人对大海怀有一种情结。本州岛是日本内陆最大的岛屿,本州岛的东北沿海地区受到地震海啸侵袭,那里分布着一些港口城市,若同那些城市的市长聊聊,你就会发现,他们总是将大海看作自己的朋友,看作希望的源泉(虽然一些人在灾难中失去了亲人,住房以及生计)。

In Japan at large some people (though woefully few national politicians) feel that the destruction wrought by nature has revived a sense of purpose; some have even taken it as a cue to get married and procreate. During two decades of constipated economics and politics, the deadening sense grew that Japan had lost its appetite for risk, whether entrepreneurial derring-do or even, in the context of a population that had begun to shrink, the risk of picking the wrong mate. But with a disaster on a biblical scale in March, the Japanese bowed to no one. Some fishermen, faced with 40-foot (12-metre) waves, took to their boats and headed straight over them: echoes of Hokusai’s deliverymen. Granted, that was the best way to save their boats. But how refreshing if it were to reflect a reawakened sense of courage in the country as a whole.

总的来说,一些日本人认为,由于自然灾难,“活着是为了什么”这个问题重新又浮上了人们的心头(虽然可惜的是,少有政客有如此想法)。有些人甚至将自然灾难看作是结婚生子的一个暗示。二十年来,日本的经济政治陷于萧条状态,本已逐渐消逝的“生存目的观念”重又抬头,以至于日本人已经不那么热衷冒险了,企业家放弃了蛮勇,人们择偶也不再轻率(即使是在如今人口开始下滑的大背景下,人们也不愿意冒嫁or娶错人的风险)。但是面对史无前例惨烈的自然灾难,日本人却丝毫没有屈服。面对40英尺(12米)高的巨浪,还是有渔民跳上自己的渔船,迎着巨浪而上,与葛饰北斋画笔下的运货人毫无二致。这倒算是保护自己渔船最好的办法了吧。但是若是能唤起日本全民心中的勇气,那该是有多振奋人心啊!

If it does, where better to look than by the sea, chief pillar of national identity? Japan, though small in surface area, stretches far. To go from the northernmost tip of the Japanese archipelago to its farthest-flung southern rock is to travel from Norway’s North Cape to Rome. The surrounding seas have long been regarded as Japan’s protective armour, or sometimes its womb. (Until 1945 Japan had never been occupied by an enemy.) Moreover, the oceans are a bountiful source of the nation’s food.

如若真要唤起大和民族的勇气,作为支撑民族认同感最重要的支柱,大海无可厚非最有能力达成此愿。日本的表面面积虽然不大,但是却延伸到很远。从日本列岛最北端到日本领土最南端的距离,相当于从挪威北角到罗马的距离那么远。日本人一直将环绕国土的大海看作是自己的铠甲,有时甚至将她看作是自己的发源地。直到1945年,日本从未受到过外敌入侵。并且,海洋也为大和民族供给了丰富的食材。

Yet the seas, and what Japan does with them, are also the main sources of friction with the outside world. The trouble starts with the names: the Sea of Japan is the East Sea to South Korea, and the East Sea of Korea to Pyongyang. Outlying islands are no less contentious, largely thanks to the memories of pre-1945 Japanese aggression that they stir up. So Dokdo, occupied by South Korea, is claimed by Japan, which calls it Takeshima. (Koreans denigrate the claim, pointing out that the island has no take, or bamboo, at all.) Island disputes with China and Russia also fester. And then comes whaling and dolphin-slaying, where the cultural gap with much of the Western world appears at its widest. The Oshika peninsula, devastated by the tsunami, welcomes visitors by boasting of its two main industries, whaling and nuclear power. No wonder that even before the Fukushima nuclear crisis, its stunning scenery was not on most foreign tourist itineraries.

然而,海洋连同日本人利用海洋的所作所为却沦为了大和民族与外界摩擦的一个焦点。麻烦始于名字:韩国人把日本海称作是自己的东海,而朝鲜又将其视为自己的朝鲜东海。截止到1945年为止,日本的侵略扩张更是搅起了势头毫不逊色的离岛之争。日本发表声明称;韩属多克多岛为日本领土,并将其称为竹岛,韩国人反对此项声明,同时指出此岛根本就没有竹子。日本同中国及俄罗斯的领土纷争也是纷纷扰扰,愈演愈烈。而正当这个时候,捕杀鲸鱼以及刺杀海豚的丑闻又被爆出,日本同多数西方国家的文化鸿沟也由此到了极限状态。日本杜鹿郡半岛(后遭海啸洗劫),大大吹嘘其捕鲸以及核能两大产业以招徕游客。因此即便福岛尚未遭受核危机之时,那里美丽的景色就不受多数外国游客的待见,也就不足为怪了。

Now that Japan faces the task of rebuilding its coastal communities, can it cast its relationship with the sea in a new light? That is the hope of some who want Tohoku, Honshu’s north-eastern region, to become a blueprint for a more harmonious balance between man and nature—once the Fukushima nuclear plant stops pouring radioactive bilge into the ocean. Shigeru Sugawara, mayor of semi-destroyed Kesennuma, is one of them. Since the tsunami, he has printed new business cards that say: “Kesennuma is immortal as long as there is the sea.” But he wants the relationship to change: a smaller deep-sea fishing industry, for example, and more “slow-life”industries, such as tourism, organic food and day-boat fishing.

既然日本准备重建沿海地区,那么能否用一个新的视角来处理同海洋的关系呢?有人希望福岛核电站不再向海洋排放辐射性废水之后,本州岛东北部地区能够成为“天人合一”(人和自然更加和谐相处)的蓝图,这些人自然是盼望新视角出现。气仙沼市市长菅原就是这群人中的一个(仙台市惨遭天灾侵袭)。自海啸席卷之后,他就为自己打造了新名片,上书:“只要大海还在,仙台就永垂不朽”。但同时他也希望人与大海的关系能够有所改变,比方说,打造较小规模的深海渔业,打造更多诸如旅游业,有机食品业,船钓渔业等短期产业项目。

The prefectural governor, Yoshihiro Murai, takes a somewhat different tack. He is trying to use the disaster to bypass co-operatives, whose priority rights over fishing along the coast, he claims, often put off private enterprise. Intriguingly, his calls for deregulation have struck a chord even in ancient fishing communities whose members are as old as Hokusai was when he created his masterwork. In Momonoura, an oyster-farming village, fishermen whose families have harvested the sea for centuries realise that, tsunami or not, their community is dying out, since young men and women do not want to step into their grandfathers’ rubber boots. Private capital might not only buy new boats, but give offspring jobs close to home. Another village has set up an enterprising share scheme to finance new oyster beds and skiffs to work them.

地方长官鹊鸟略微改变了策略,走上了另一条路。日本的渔业合作团体在沿海渔业上享有优先权,但是用鹊鸟的话来说这种优先权经常妨碍到私营企业的发展,所以鹊鸟打算利用这次天灾打破合作社的垄断(绕道渔业合作社而行)。有意思的是,鹊鸟倡导的“放松渔业管制”,竟然能博得古老渔业社区的共鸣,这些社区的成员同当年创作《巨浪下的神户川》时的葛饰北斋年龄相仿。桃浦是一个牡蛎养殖村,那里世代靠打渔为生的渔民意识到,就算没有海啸侵袭,他们的社区也会逐渐走向消亡,因为年轻人都不再愿意子承父业。私人资产可能就不再只是用于添置新船了,而也用来为子孙在家附近找份工作。另一个村子则设立了颇具胆识的企业股份计划,用来集资开辟新的牡蛎养殖场,以及购买用于劳作的船只。

Japan’s most liquid bank
日本的提现银行

Yet for all the talk of change, many also know that the co-operative style of organisation has done a service to Japan’s local waters by saving them from greater overfishing. Few now take for granted the abundance of the area’s fish, even though they live by one of the world’s richest fishing grounds, where Pacific currents meet. Some still call the ocean a bank, though no longer in the sense of limitless cash. They know the more they take out, the less is left. Such people are, like Hokusai, wise in their old age. Will they, like him, dare to embark on something new?

虽然人们大谈特谈要改变现状,但是许多人心里也清楚,对于日本地区海域来说,合作社的组织方式还是有其贡献的,使日本免于深陷过度捕捞的泥沼。日本渔场是世界上最富饶的渔场之一(这里是太平洋洋流交汇的地方),即便是生活在渔场附近,也很少再有人把这丰富的渔业资源看作是理所当然了。如今有人还是将海洋看作是银行,但是早已不再视其为取之不竭的现金宝库了。他们心里清楚,索取的越多,所剩也就越少。跟葛饰北斋无异,他们这些人年老之时越发智慧通晓。那么他们会同葛饰北斋那样勇于开创新事物麽?

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重点单词
  • frictionn. 摩擦,摩擦力,分歧
  • pillarn. 柱子,支柱,核心(人物) vt. 用柱支持
  • describevt. 描述,画(尤指几何图形),说成
  • artisticadj. 艺术的
  • romanticadj. 浪漫的 n. 浪漫的人
  • claimn. 要求,要求权;主张,断言,声称;要求物 vt. 要
  • appetiten. 嗜好,食欲,欲望
  • identityn. 身份,一致,特征
  • cuen. 暗示,提示,信号 vt. 给 ... 提示,把 .
  • castv. 投,掷,抛,铸造,丢弃,指定演员,加起来,投射(目