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文学:查尔斯·狄更斯

LITERATURE - Charles Dickens

文学
查尔斯·狄更斯
Charles Dickens was the most famous writer in the English language during the 19th century.
查尔斯·狄更斯是19世纪最负盛名的英文作家
And one of the best-selling authors, of all time.
他创作的小说历来畅销
He can seem remote, the frock coat,
他看起来离我们十分遥远:身着双排扣长礼服
the velvet collar, the fish tail beard, the bow tie.
戴着绒衣领 蓄着鱼尾须 系着蝶形结
But he has a lot to say to us today.
但现在他有许多话要对我们说
And that’s because he had a remarkable ambition.
这是因为他有一个非凡的抱负
He believed the writing could play a big role in fixing the problems of the world.
他相信写作能在解决世界性问题中发挥重大作用
娱乐表演
Dickens didn’t just write.
狄更斯不仅仅会写作
From the very beginning there were signs of a great showman.
起初 他还有望成为一名杰出的杂技演员
As a child he loved putting on plays in a family kitchen.
幼时 他喜爱在家中厨房演戏
And singing songs, standing on the table in the local pub.
站在当地酒吧桌子上唱歌
Before radio or television,
在录音机或电视机出现之前
going to hear Dickens giving a reading was to experience an exceptional showman.
听狄更斯朗诵相当于是在看一个出色表演家表演
Often to the dismay of later literary friends,
常常令后来文学界朋友感到沮丧的是
entertainment remained at the heart of what Dickens was up to.
表演永远都是狄更斯内心最想做的事
He was always hoping to get us interested in some pretty serious things.
他总是希望使我们对一些严肃的问题产生兴趣
The evils of an industrializing society.
工业化进程中的社会罪恶
The working conditions in factories.
工厂的糟糕工作条件
child labour
童工
vicious social snobbery
社会中邪恶的势利小人
the maddening inefficiencies of government bureaucracy.
政府官僚机构令人恼火的低效
In theory, we recognized that
理论上 我们意识到
these and the modern versions are pretty worthy themes.
这些问题及其现代变种具有非凡价值
Bu if we are honest with ourselves, we admit that they don’t sound very inviting
但说实话 我们得承认把这些问题作为
as things to read about in a novel in bed or the airport.
被窝里或机场中读到的小说内容 并不吸引人
Dickens’s genius was to discover that
狄更斯的天才之处在于
the big ambitions to educate the society about its failings
他发现 纠正社会错处的雄心壮志
didn’t have to be opposed to what his critics called: fun.
不一定与他的批评者所说的”有趣”相悖
Racy plots,
生动的情节
a chatty style,
健谈的风格
clownish characters,
滑稽的角色
weepy moments
催人泪下的时刻
and happy endings.
以及大团圆结局
He rejected the idea that we have to make a fatal choice between
他拒绝接受作品要么有价值但乏味
being worthy but dull, or popular but shallow.
要么通俗却浅薄的观点
Dickens set out to educate via entertainment
狄更斯通过娱乐活动来教育人们
Because he so well understood how easy it is for us
因为他非常理解
individually and collectively to resist
无论个人还是集体 拒绝接受那些
certain tricky but important lessons.
难以理解但重要的教训有多么自然
Dickens is significant because he was working out for his own time
狄更斯对我们来说很重要 因为他花时间去思考
how to do something that’s crucial for us.
如何完成那些对我们至关重要的事情
How to be seductive about serious things.
如何才能使人们对严肃的事情感兴趣
同情心
Charles Dickens was born in Portsmouth in February 1812.
查尔斯·狄更斯1812年2月出生于朴茨茅斯
His father was a clerk in a navy office.
他父亲是个海军机关的职员
They had to constantly move about to follow his different appointments.
由于父亲常接到各种委派 他们经常搬家
It was a genteel life at first
他们开始还过着上流社会的生活
But there were always money trouble looming.
但家中总会时不时出现经济问题
When he was only ten, Dickens had to leave school,
狄更斯年仅10岁时便辍了学
because his parents could not longer afford the modest fees.
原因是他的父母连低廉的学费都负担不起
He was send to work in London at the blacking factory.
他被送到伦敦 去涂料厂工作
Where they made polish for giving a dark sheen, much admired at the time,
在那里他们制作能给金属表面镀上黑色光泽的上光剂
to metal surfaces.
此光泽在当时颇受欢迎
It was a grim experience.
这是段糟糕的经历
Young Dickens hated the fumes and numbing speed
年少的狄更斯痛恨执行重复任务时
with which he had to carry out repetitive tasks.
产生的滚滚浓烟和令人麻木的飞快速度
The people he worked around were bullying and sinister.
与他一同工作的人恃强欺弱且狡诈阴险
Then his father was arrested for debt.
之后 他父亲因负债而被逮捕
At that time
在那个时代
debtors could be confined to prison along with their dependence
债务人是会和其家属一起被债权人监禁的
by their creditors until they were able to start paying off what they owned.
直到他们能够开始还债时才能出狱
So the whole family moved into the squalid Mashalsea prison.
因此他们全家搬进了肮脏的马夏尔西监狱
Except young Dickes who lodged nearby
而年轻的狄更斯被安排在了附近
and continued with his horrible job.
继续他那可怕的工作
Part of the continuing popular affection for Dickens
大众对狄更斯广泛持久的喜爱
comes from his very strong sense of the precariousness of life.
部分来源于他对生活不稳定性的强烈感知
And his deep compassion for those who are its victims.
以及对受害者们的深深同情
When Dickens’s live improved,
狄更斯的生活状况得到改善时
in his early twenties he discovered that he was an outstandingly brilliant journalist.
二十出头的他是一个出类拔萃的记者
Dickens was very good at remembering his own suffering.
曾经遭受过的苦难给狄更斯留下了深刻印象
And he used it in a very clever way.
他非常聪明地利用了这份记忆
He always put really nice characters
他常常把讨人喜欢的角色
into the awful places of Victorian England.
置于维多利亚时代的英格兰那糟糕的环境中
The blacking factory is described in David Copperfield
从敏感 聪慧而迷人的年轻人大卫的视角
through the eyes of young David, who is sensitive, intelligent and charming.
我们看到了《大卫科波菲尔》中的燃料厂
David is the reader when young
大卫就像读者年轻时候的样子
or the reader’s son, or nephew.
一如读者的儿子或侄儿的模样
Dickens is saying,
狄更斯说
imagine someone like you or someone you like was in somewhere like that.
想想看 像你一样的人或你珍爱的人竟是在那种环境下生活
When he writes about poor houses,
当他写到那些破房子
which were local force labour camps for people unable to support themselves,
即那些为无法养活自己的人建的地方劳改营时
Dickens sends in a little Oliver Twist
狄更斯通过小奥利弗·特威斯特来叙述
who actually belongs to a well to do family
奥利弗因一系列灾难性意外
from whom he’s been separated by a series of tragic accidents.
而被迫离开了他原本富有的家庭
Oliver is not typical at all of the people who ended up in poor houses.
他根本不应属于那些在破房子中终老的一类人
But he is there,
但他确实在那
so that his readers-who at that time would genuinely be quite prosperous-
由此 他那些当时普遍富裕的读者们会想
could think: ” What if this were me? ”
“万一那个进破房子的人是我怎么办?”
On one occasion when Dickens shows us the miseries of the debtor prison.
另一次 狄更斯向我们展示负债人监狱的悲惨情况
It’s in the company of a lovable buffoon,
我们在一个讨人喜欢的滑稽角色
A muddled but very sweet and well-meaning man, called Mr. Micawber.
稀里糊涂但非常亲切善良的米考伯先生陪伴下看到
The background protective assumption that only rather
“只有靠不住的家伙才会进破房子”
shady types could end up here is punctuated.
这种自我欺骗的假设是怎么不攻自破的
Dickens was working with the key assumption:
狄更斯从这一关键假设入手
of course everyone knew already that there were poor houses,
尽管人人都清楚 社会上存在着破房子
horrible working conditions and debtors’ prisons,
恶劣的工作环境和负债人监狱
these were obvious facts of early nineteen century life in England.
在19世纪初的英国 这些都是显而易见的事实
The point was that comfortable people,
关键在于 那些生活舒适的人
the kind of people who had the power to change things,
那些有能力改变现状的人
generally didn’t feel much sense of urgency.
普遍缺乏解决这一社会问题的紧迫感
They didn’t feel personally connected to the problems.
他们认为这些问题于己无关
So Dickens used his own experience
因此 狄更斯以他的自身经历
to get people to feel interested in and sympathetic to
激发人们对他人生存困境的兴趣与同情
the plight of others that they normally had been emotionally very distant from.
而这些困境从来未曾引起过他们情感上的关注
He didn’t say look how awful it is for them!
他没有说:“瞧 那些人多可怜!”
He said: here is what it would be like for you.
他会说 这就是你将成为的样子
In an ideal world we perhaps care equally about everyone,
理想生活中 我们对所有人都应当同等关切
But in reality our concern is much more readily directed
但在现实生活中 我们的同情却更多地
towards the misfortunes of people we know and find likeable.
给予了我们熟识的与我们喜爱的不幸之人
So if, like Dickens, your project is to draw attention to a failure in the system,
如果你和狄更斯一样想提高人们对社会问题的关注度
it’s a very good strategy to follow the methods he was using.
模仿他的做法是个好策略
Get us to like the people who are having a hard time
当且仅当我们喜欢上那些处境艰难的人们时
and then, and only then, can we start to feel engaged.
我们对他们的不幸才能感同身受
美好而平凡的小事
The other thing that Dickens did
狄更斯做的另一件
to keep us on board with his high minded vision of social reform,
使我们持续关注社会变革这一崇高议题的事是
was to keep on showing how well he understood
不断向我们展示 他是多么享受
the cosy, pleasing, enjoyable things of life.
生活中那些惬意 愉悦而有意思的小事
He desperately didn’t want the big causes, to come across as meaning,
他毫不希望 大事件在生活中占据太重要地位
to come across as meaning, you couldn’t keep on liking all the sweet comforts of life.
以至于我们连生活中的甜蜜抚慰都无法享受
So Dickens was particularly good of evoking the pleasures of home.
狄更斯尤其擅长描写家庭生活中的愉悦
In one of his novels, he takes us to the house of a lovable old eccentric
在一本小说中 他描写了一个可爱的老古怪
who’s refashioned his small suburban house as a miniature castle,
把自己的城郊小屋改造成了一座小型城堡
complete with the tiny drawbridge that can be pulled up by lengths of twine
城堡还带有可被麻绳拉起的小吊桥
to keep the wild world at bay.
以此与危险的外界相隔绝
Dickens loved picnics, games of cricket in the park,
狄更斯喜欢去野餐 在公园玩板球
going shopping for a new tie,
去买新的领结
donoughts, sitting by the fire, having friends around for a dinner,
吃甜甜圈 在炉边烤火 请朋友来吃晚餐
warm blankets and going on holiday.
温暖的毛毯以及度假
Being a caring and good person – he is saying –
他说 作为一个关心他人的善人
doesn’t mean disdaining the ordinary small pleasures.
并不意味着鄙弃生活中平凡的小确幸
This is a key element in Dickens’s general strategy.
这是狄更斯总体写作手法的核心元素
He knows it is going to be hard to get people to think about difficult things,
他明白 如果不先让人们深刻了解自己真正喜欢什么
if you don’t start from the deep recognition of what we already like.
就令他们思考复杂难懂的东西是十分困难的
Otherwise you can come across as cold and a bit obsessive .
要是不从此处入手 你就会变得冷漠且偏执
生意经
Dickens took the practical business side of writing very seriously.
他对待著作的商业部分态度极其认真
He was immensely productive, he churned out books
他是位极多产的作家 几乎是在批量生产书
and he was deeply concerned about copyright laws, sales figures and profit margins.
他对版权法律 作品销量及利润率都十分关心
But Dickens didn’t simply want to sell a lot of novels.
狄更斯写书并不仅仅是为了卖书赚钱
He wanted to change things in the world.
他还想改变世上不合理之事
But he knew perfectly well that a book wouldn’t have an effect
他无比清楚 除非他的书被人们广泛阅读
unless it was in wide circulation,
除非商业进程十分顺利
unless the business side was going well.
他的书不会对现状产生任何影响
His writing draws attention to many things that were going wrong.
他的写作聚焦于社会的丑恶现象
The poor law, the dreadful state of schools,
不完善的法律 糟糕的学校教育
rampant nepotism and harsh working conditions.
泛滥的裙带关系 恶劣的工作环境
But he wasn’t trying to advocate specific schemes of reform.
但他不是在为某一特定改革方案发声呐喊
If you’d ask what exactly the government should do
假如你问狄更斯 为了改变工厂的工作条件
to improve the conditions in factories
政府究竟应当怎么做
or what the better legal system would look like
或更完备的法律体系是什么样子
he wouldn’t have had carefully worked-out alternative policy to hand.
他手头并没有冥思苦想出的备选方案
What he was doing,
他所做的是
was shaping the climate of feeling and opinion,
助力形成关切他人与发表社会评论的风气
which makes it much easier for people trying to get an act through Parliament
这使得有益民生的法案更容易通过
raise funds or make local improvements.
筹集善款 进行地方改革也更加方便
Others can much more readily see the point of political action,
一旦人们从心理上认识了社会问题 情感上更接近它们
once the issues have moved up the mental agenda and feel close to us emotionally.
他们也就更容易地认识到政治改革的重要意义
Dickens was very interested in trying to help the world.
狄更斯热衷于改善世界现状的事业
And hugely sensitive to the suffering of others.
对遭受痛苦的他人十分关切同情
But closer to home, things didn’t work out so well.
在家庭问题上 他就没有这么高尚了
He wasn’t a good husband or father.
他不是个称职的丈夫或父亲
He got married in 1837 when he was in his mid-twenties to Catherine Hogarth.
1837年 二十五六岁时 他与凯瑟琳·贺加斯结了婚
And they had 10 children together,
他们共有10个孩子
8 of whom survived into adulthood.
其中8个活到了成年
But Dickens increasingly found her dull and passive,
随着时间的推移 他越发觉得她乏味消极
and when he was in his mid-forties
已四十五六岁的他
he fell in love with a nineteen year old actress, Ellen Ternan.
爱上了19岁的年轻女演员艾伦·特南
He couldn’t get divorce: it was completely taboo for a major public figure to take such a step.
但是他不能离婚:这是知名公众人物的大忌
So they separated, his wife left after 20 years together
于是他选择与妻子分居 结束了20年的共同生活
and they never saw each other again.
此后 他们从未再见面
Dickens was unimpressed by all of his children
狄更斯对他的孩子们冷漠无情
whom he regarded as idle and ever ready to sponge off him.
他认为他们好吃懒做 还随时准备敲他一笔
They were prone to drinking too much and to gambling.
并且生来就是些酒鬼和赌徒
Dickens is a painful reminder of the terrible conflicts
狄更斯的惨痛教训提醒着我们
that can arise between different kinds of devotion.
对于不同事业的献身之间存在着可怕冲突
Dickens was immensely painstaking with his work.
狄更斯工作起来极端刻苦
He’d stay up as late as needed.
他熬夜 需要多晚熬多晚
He’d think of it at first thing in the morning, he exhausted himself.
工作是他早起后想到的第一件事 他透支着生命
Yet around his children and his wife,
然而 在妻子儿女身边
he was plodding, conventional and often coldly detached.
他显得乏味无趣 古板守旧且常常冷淡无情
We could blame him and say he should have been a better partner and father,
我们可以责备他说 他本应成为一位更负责的丈夫和父亲
or we can feel a touch of pity to the horrible limitations of our nature,
或者为我们受到可怕限制的天性感到惋惜:
which can make it hard to us to be very good
在截然不同的两个领域
at two very different kinds of things at the same time.
同时成就一番事业是多么艰难
And hopefully a little of this pity can extend to ourselves.
但愿这种惋惜的一部分能推及我们自身
Since we are the ones who now actually need it.
我们才是现在最需要怜惜的人
On the 8th of June 1870, when he was 58,
1870年6月8日 58岁的狄更斯
Dickens died at home after his usual intense day’s work.
结束了他一天惯常的高强度工作后于家中辞世
He was at the early stages of his fifteenth novel.
此时正值他第15部小说的创作初期
The Guardian published in the obituary the next day:
次日《卫报》登了他的讣告:
“Wherever the English language is spoken,
英语所及之处
the intelligence we published this morning of the decease of Mr. Charles Dickens
人们将带着深切的痛惜 得知我们今晨发布的
will be received with feelings of deep regret.
查尔斯·狄更斯先生离世的消息
Early last night it became known that the distinguished novelist
据悉 昨晚早些时候
had been seized with paralysis
这位伟大小说家在他肯特郡盖兹丘的家中
at his residence, Gad’s Hill, Kent
因突然中风而不幸离世
Dickens’s power doesn’t lie just in the particular things he wrote.
狄更斯留给后世的宝贵财富不仅藏于其作品中
What’s even more impressive is the bigger idea to which he was loyal all his life.
更让人印象深刻的是他贯彻一生的伟大理想
That the task of writing, and art more generally
文学家或广义上的艺术家的责任与使命
is to make goodness attractive,
就是令“善良”更富吸引力
to make it easier and more bearable for us to learn uncomfortable lessons
让人们更容易也更平静地接受令人不快的教训
and to broaden our sympathies by helping us to identify with people
通过做这些事情 我们的同情心会更加宽广:
whose outward lives are maybe unlike us
怜悯那些外在表现与我们毫无共同之处
but whose inner lives are not unsimilar.
而内心生活与我们并非全然相异的人们

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视频概述

主要介绍了英国文豪狄更斯的理想追求与人生经历

听录译者

收集自网络

翻译译者

Clio

审核员

审核员 V

视频来源

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N9dB9BZWDBU

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