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降低自杀率的方法 – 译学馆
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The Origins of Suicide

One of the most surprising aspects about one of the saddest of all human possibilities,
is that the suicide rate goes up markedly the richer and more developed a society
becomes. We might expect suicide rates to vary across time and place, but not to increase
但是我们不期望自杀率随着财富 健康和安保的发展而上升
alongside developments in wealth, comfort and security. That we should be unwittingly
creating nations in which more of us end up killing ourselves at our own hands appears
这似乎与经济发展的整体目的相反 然而 这种自杀与财富增加之间令人烦恼的关联
to negate the whole purpose of economic growth. Nevertheless, the disturbing connection between suicide and increase in development wealth was
first conclusively identified towards the end of the 19th century by the leading French
爱米尔·涂尔干最终确认 并且从此受到了持续关注
sociologist, Emile Durkheim – and has continued to be noted ever since. The suicide rate of
an undeveloped country like the Democratic Republic of the Congo is a fraction of the
rate in a developed nation like South Korea. The crucial factor behind people’s decision
人们决定自杀的主要因素不是贫富 正如涂尔干所发现的
to end their lives is not really wealth or poverty. As Durkheim discovered, it is the
在很大程度上 身边文化将失败的责任归于个人
extent to which the surrounding culture ascribes responsibility for failure to individuals
或者其他文化则是维持一种信念 那就是怪霉运或者天意
or else maintains a faith that poor luck, or divine intervention is to blame instead.
刚好随着社会的现代化和工业化 他们时常
It so happens that as societies become modern and industrialised, they very frequently give
会放弃他们对恶魔和上帝的信仰 转而开始相信精英管理的 个人主义的人生观
up their beliefs in demons and gods and start instead to trust in a meritocratic, individualistic
philosophy that suggests to people that their fate is always in their own hands. This may
这也许听起来很有气量 但是它携带巨大的心理负担 因为这意味着
sound generous but it carries an immense psychological burden, for it means that – when failures
当失败发生 个人得承担全部责任
occur – the individual is held entirely responsible for them. Reversals start to seem
like a horrendous judgement on one’s worth and a public humiliation from which there
在那里 极端地说 除了毁灭就无处可逃
may, at the extreme, seem no escape other than through annihilation.
有两种大的文化观念也许能缓解我们的压力 运气或者悲剧
There are two big cultural ideas that may help to mitigate the pressures upon us: Luck and Tragedy.
To believe in Luck is accurately to observe that merit and success are in fact never reliably
有人也许是笨蛋但成功了 或者有才的人却失败了 如果我们认同
aligned; one may be a fool and win – or a virtuous person and fail. If we fully internalise
并广泛分享这种概念 那么失败的羞耻感以及伴随产生的痛苦
and widely share the notion of luck, then the shame of failure will be greatly reduced
将会大大降低 我们可以对公众以及自己承认
and our agony along with it. We will be able to admit, publically and to ourselves, that
有才的人也会在外部环境中失败 因此 专业人士的成功
decent people can fail in their outward circumstances and, therefore, that professional success
不是人类价值的唯一 甚至说关键的标签
isn’t the only, or even, the crucial marker of the merit of human beings.A Tragedy, as
悲剧 源于古希腊 是关于一个智者偶然犯了错误
it originated in Ancient Greece, is the story of a capable and intelligent person who happens
to make a small mistake – which, however, leads to appalling consequences. The point
公开讲述这种故事的原因 (在希腊节日 整个社区居民必须参加)
of presenting such stories in very public ways (at Greek festivals the entire community
had to attend) was to continually renew acquaintance with a hugely important idea: that one can
一个可爱 甚至令人敬佩的人 最终在令人绝望的环境中死亡
be a likable, even admirable person, and end up in an utterly desperate situation. Tragedy
is the careful telling of how disaster can come into the lives of people like (or even
a bit nicer than) us. They – and hence we – are always deserving of compassion rather
than contempt. Durkheim knew that it is not prosperity by itself that increases the suicide
rate, the toxic element is an unwittingly cruel culture that assigns a high burden of
responsibility to us, while seeming to deny the truth that chance and tragedy will of
course always continue to affect our destinies. The real solution to a high suicide rate lies
就藏在一个意想不到的地方 有种意识形态提醒我们
in an unexpected place: an ideology that firmly reminds us that we are never the sole authors
我们不是自己命运的唯一书写者因此当我们胜利或者失败时 不要恐慌也不要庆祝
of our destinies. and therfore should neither panic nor celebrate when we win or loose.
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