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历史:现代化 – 译学馆
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历史:现代化

HISTORY OF IDEAS - Modernity

生命学院
历史
现代主义
Since the middle of the eighteenth century,
自十八世纪中叶以来
beginning in Northern Europe and then spreading to every corner of the world,
从北欧开始蔓延至世界的每个角落
people have become aware of living in an age radically different from any other
人们意识到生活在一个与以往截然不同的时期
and which they have called — ‘the modern age’,
并称其为——现代时期
or more succinctly, ‘modernity’.
或简称为——现代
We are now all inhabitants of modernity;
现在 我们都是现代化的居民
every last hamlet and remote island has been touched
每个村庄以及偏远的岛屿
by the outlook and ideology of a new era.
都被新时代的观念和思想影响
The story of our emergence into the modern world
我们进入现代化世界的故事
can be traced in a number of fields
在许多领域都有迹可循
– in politics, religion, art, technology, fashion, science –
政治 宗教 艺术 科技 时尚 科学
all of which have ultimately contributed to an alteration in consciousness,
所有这些最终都导致了意识上的改变
This is some of what becoming modern has involved:
以下是现代化所涉及​​的方面:
世俗化
Perhaps the single greatest marker of modernity has been a loss of faith
也许现代的最伟大标志就是信仰的丧失
– the loss of a belief in the intervention of divine forces in earthly affairs.
也就是对神圣力量在处理人间事务上失去信心
All other ages before our own held that
在我们之前的所有时期都认为
our lives were at least half in the hands of gods or spirits,
我们的生活至少有一半是由神灵掌握
But we have put our energies into understanding natural events through reason;
但是现在我们投入了精力通过理性来理解自然事件
there are no more omens or revelations,
不再有什么预兆和启示
our futures will be worked out in laboratories, not temples;
我们的未来将在实验室中推演 而不是寺庙
God has died and modernity has killed Him.
神死去了 现代社会杀死了他
进步
Premodern societies envisaged history in cyclical terms;
前现代社会设想历史是周期性地变化
there was no forward dynamic to speak of;
毫无前途可言
one imagined that things would always be as bad or as good as they had ever been.
人们以为事情总是会变得和以往一样糟或好
But to be modern is to believe that we can continually surpass what has come before;
但是作为现代人 我们相信可以不断超越以往
national wealth, knowledge, technology, politics and,
国家财富 知识 技术 政治
most broadly, our capacity for fulfilment seem capable of constant increase.
最概括地讲 我们的执行能力可以不断提高
Time is not a wheel of futility,
时间不是无意义的轮回
it is an arrow pointing towards a perfectible future.
而是指向更完美的未来的箭
科学
We have replaced gods with equations.
我们用方程式取代了神
Science will give us mastery over ourselves,
科学使我们掌握自我
over the puzzles of nature – and ultimately – over death.
超越自然之谜-最终超越死亡
It is only a matter of time before we work out how to be immortal.
我们弄清楚如何获得永生只是时间问题
个人主义
To be modern is to throw off the claims of history, precedent and community.
现代化就是抛弃历史 抛弃先例和集体
We will make our own identities
我们自己定义自己的身份
-rather than being defined by families or tradition.
-而不再是由家庭或传统来定义
We will choose who to marry, what job to pursue, what gender to be,
我们将自己选择结婚的对象 从事的工作 应该是什么性别
where to live and how to think.
生活在哪里以及如何思考
We can be free and, at last, fully ‘ourselves’.
我们可以是自由的 最后完全实现“自我”
爱情
We are Romantics, that is, we seek a soulmate,
我们是浪漫主义者 也就是说 我们寻求知己
an exemplary friend who can at the same time be an intrepid sexual partner,
寻找一个模范的 同时可以成为强悍的性伴侣的朋友
a reliable co-parent and a kindly colleague.
可靠的父母 以及友善的同事
We refuse to remain in unhappy unions that no longer possess the thrill of the early moments.
我们拒绝留在童年不幸 不快乐的集体中
城市
We have had enough of the narrowness of village life.
我们已经受够了乡村生活的狭隘
We don’t want to go to bed when the sun sets
太阳下​​山后我们不想上床睡觉
or limit our acquaintances to the characters we went to school with.
也不希望我们的同学仅限于我们的熟人之间
We want to move – along with 85% of the population of modern nations – to the brightly illuminated city,
我们想和现代国家中85%的人口一样搬到夜晚明亮的城市
where we can mingle in crowds, observe faces on underground trains,
我们可以混在人群中 在地铁上观察别人
try out unfamiliar foods, and sleep with strangers.
尝试不熟悉的食物 和陌生人上床
自然
Premoderns lived in close proximity to nature;
前现代的生活与自然联系密切
they knew how to recognise shepherd’s purse
那时人们知道如何辨认荠菜
and make something edible out of pineapple weed.
如何用香甘菊制成食物
They venerated nature as one might a deity.
他们崇敬自然 将其视为神灵
But modern people don’t tremble before the night sky
但是 现代人不会在夜空下冷得发抖
or feel a need to give thanks to the rising sun.
也不必感谢朝阳
We have freed ourselves from our previous awe at natural phenomena;
我们从以前对自然现象的敬畏中解脱出来
The emblematic modern location is the 24 hour supermarket,
现代社会的标志性地点是24小时营业的超市
brightly lit and teeming with the produce of the four continents,
里面灯火通明 装满来自四大洲的农产品
proudly defying the barriers of geography and of the night.
自豪地说 这克服了地理上的和夜晚的障碍
We will eat pomegranates from Arizona and dates from the Sahel.
我们可以吃到亚利桑那州的石榴和萨赫勒地区的枣
速度
For most of history, the maximum speed was set by the constraints of our own feet
在长期的历史中 我们最快的速度由我们的步行速度决定
– or at best, the velocity of a horse or sailing ship.
-最快也就是一匹马或帆船的速度
It might take three weeks to tramp from London to Edinburgh,
从伦敦到爱丁堡可能要花三周的时间
four months to sail from Southampton to Sydney.
从南安普敦到悉尼要航行四个月
Now nowhere on earth is further than twenty six hours away from us,
现在 地球上任何地方距离我们最多只有二十六个小时的路程
the contents of a national library can fit onto a circuit the size of a finger nail
国家图书馆的内容可以放进一块指甲大小的芯片中
and the Voyager 1 probe hurtles at seventeen kilometers per second through interstellar space,
旅行者1号探测器在离我们212亿千米的距离
21.2 billion kilometres from us.
以每秒17公里的速度穿越宇宙空间
工作
We are modern because we work not only to earn money,
我们之所以是现代人 是因为我们不仅致力于赚钱
but to develop our individuality,
而且努力发展自身的个性
to exercise our distinctive talents and to find our true selves.
锻炼我们独特的才能并找到真正的自我
We are on a quest for something our ancestors would have thought entirely paradoxical:
我们正在追寻我们祖先认为完全矛盾的东西:
work we can love.
做我们热爱的工作
Much of the transformation of modernity has been exciting, thrilling even.
现代的许多转变让人兴奋 令人激动不已
The word ‘modern’ still rightly suggests a state of glamour, desire and aspiration.
“现代”一词仍然恰当地展示着着诱惑 欲望和渴望
But the advent of modernity has – in many ways – also been a story of tragedy.
但是 现代化的在许多方面也是一个悲剧故事
We have bought our new freedoms at a very high price indeed.
我们确实花了很高的代价以获得新自由
We can pick up on aspects of the catastrophe in a range of areas:
我们可以从以下几个方面了解这一悲剧:
失败
It was the French late nineteenth century sociologist Emile Durkheim
这是19世纪末的法国社会学家埃米尔·迪克海姆
who first made the sobering discovery of an essential difference between traditional and modern societies.
他率先清醒的认识到传统社会与现代社会之间的本质区别
In the former, when people lived in small communities,
在传统社会中 人们生活在小社群中
when the course of one’s career was understood to lie in the hands of the gods
人们的职业生涯掌握在众神的手中
and when there were few expectations of individual fulfilment,
对个人成就的期望不高
at moments of failure, the agony knew bounds;
在遭受失败时 痛苦是有限的
reversal did not seem like a verdict on one’s value as a human being.
逆转似乎并不是对一个人的价值的判断
One never expected perfection,
一个人从来没有期望过完美
and did not respond with self-hatred when problems occurred.
在出现问题时就不会表现出自我憎恨
One simply fell to one’s knees and asked the Gods.
就只会跪下询问神灵
But Emile Durkheim knew that modern societies were far crueller
但是埃米尔·迪尔克海姆明白现代社会更加残酷
No longer could people who have failed in them, blame the Gods for their troubles.
失败的人们不能再将问题归咎于上帝了
It seemed as if there was only one person responsible
似乎好像只有一个人需要负责
and sometimes only one fitting response.
似乎有时只有一种合适的解决办法
As Durkheim showed, in perhaps the largest single indictment of modernity,
正如迪尔克海姆展示的那样 也许对现代化的最大控诉就是
suicide rates in advanced societies are up to ten times as high as those in traditional ones.
先进社会的自杀率是传统社会的十倍
Modern people aren’t only more in love with success,
现代人不仅更爱成功
they are also far more likely to kill themselves when they fail.
他们失败时更爱自杀
嫉妒
But modernity has told us that we are all equal and can achieve anything:
但是现代化告诉我们 我们都是平等的 可以取得任何成就:
boundless possibility seems to await every one of us.
似乎无限的可能正在等着我们
We too might start a billion dollar company,
我们很可能创办一家市值十亿美元的公司
become a famous actor or run a country.
成为著名的演员 或管理一个国家
No longer is opportunity unfairly restricted to just a favoured few.
机会不再被不公平地限制在受青睐的少数人身上
It sounds charitable but it is a fast route
这听起来很仁慈 但是与爆发相比
to an outbreak of comparison – and its associated pain, envy.
这是一条捷径 而且其与痛苦 嫉妒相关
It would never have occurred to a goat herder in seventeenth century Picardie
十七世纪皮卡第的牧羊人是绝对不可能羡慕
to envy Louis XIV of France;
法国的路易十四世
the king’s advantages were as unfair as they were beyond emulation.
国王的优势与无法超越同样不公平
Such peace is no longer possible.
这样的和平不复存
In a world in which everyone can achieve what they deserve,
世界上每个人都能实现应有的成就
why do we not have more?
为什么我们不能?
If success is merited,
如果取得成功是理所应当
why do we remain mediocre?
为什么我们一直平庸?
The psychological burden of a so-called ordinary life has become hugely harder
即使生活中的物质优势变得越来越搓手可得
– even as its material advantages have become ever more available.
但所谓平凡生活的心理负担变得更加艰巨
孤独
Modernity has in a practical sense connected us to other people like never before
实际上 现代化使我们与其他人建立起前所未有地联系
but it has also left us emotionally bereft,
但这也剥夺了我们的情感
perhaps late at night, on our own, in a corner of a diner,
也许就像爱德华·霍珀画中的人物一样
like a figure in an Edward Hopper painting,
深夜里 独自一人坐在小餐馆的一角
The belief that we deserve one special person
我们值得一个特别的人的想法
has rendered all our relationships unnecessarily difficult.
为我们所有的关系增加了不必要地困难
The first question we are asked
在每次的社交聚会中
in every new social encounter is ‘What do you do?’
我们问的第一个问题都是“你是做什么的?”
and we know how much an impressive answer will matter.
我们知道令人印象深刻的答案有多重要
We fall asleep in high-rise apartments
我们在高层公寓里入睡
and wonder if anyone would notice if we died.
想知道是否有人会注意到我们的死亡
感情用事
If it were not already so difficult, we are asked – on top of it all – to smile continually,
如果还不那么困难 那么-首先 我们被要求不断微笑
to hope against hope, to have a nice day, to have a lot of fun, to cheer on holiday
希望与希望成反比 度过美好的一天 有很多乐趣 为假期加油
and to be exuberant that we are alive.
让我们活着充满活力
Modernity has stripped us of our right to feel melancholy,
现代性剥夺了我们感到忧郁的权利
unproductive, surly, in despair and confused.
徒劳无益 绝望而困惑
Not for nothing did Theodor Adorno remark that
狄奥多·阿多诺(Theodor Adorno)没有说过
modern America had produced one overwhelming villain:
现代美国制造了一个压倒性的恶棍:
Walt Disney.
华特·迪士尼
Though modernity may have made us materially abundant, it has imposed a heavy emotional toll:
尽管现代性可能使我们在物质上变得丰富 但它却造成了沉重的情感损失:
it has alienated us, bred envy, increased shame, separated us from one another,
它疏远了我们 引起了嫉妒 增加了耻辱 使我们彼此分开
bewildered us, and left us restless and enraged.
使我们感到迷惑 使我们不安和生气
Fortunately, we do not need to suffer alone.
幸运的是 我们不需要一个人受苦
Our condition is at heart the work of an era, not just of our own minds.
我们的条件是时代的核心 而不仅仅是我们自己的思想
By learning to diagnose our condition, we can come to accept that
通过学习诊断我们的状况 我们可以接受
we are not so much individually demented as living in times of unusually intense
我们与其说是个人痴呆 不如说是生活在异常紧张的时代
and societally-generated trouble.
和社会产生的麻烦
We can accept that in many ways modernity is a kind of disease
我们可以接受 现代在许多方面都是一种疾病
– and that understanding it will be the cure.
-并且了解这将是治愈的方法
Our book, A Replacement for Religion, lays out how we might absorb the best lessons of religion,
我们的《替代宗教》一书阐述了我们如何吸收最好的宗教教训
update them for our times and incorporate them into our daily lives.
为我们的时代更新它们并将它们融入我们的日常生活中

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