2014.05.07【英译中】为什么我教水管工柏拉图哲学?(2/2)

RunnerTracy (MFA161-A21) 初涉译坛
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发表于:2014-05-07 09:53 [只看楼主] [划词开启]




We don’t intellectually embrace a society where the privileged few get to enjoy the advantages of leisure and wealth while the masses toil on their behalf. Yet that’s what a sell-out of the liberal arts entails. For the most part, the wealthy in this country continue to pay increasingly exorbitant tuition to private prep schools, good liberal arts colleges, and elite universities, where their children get strong opportunities to develop their minds, dress themselves in cultural capital, and learn the skills necessary to become influential members of society. Meanwhile, the elite speak of an education’s value for the less privileged in terms of preparation for the global economy. Worse yet, they often support learning systems designed to produce “good employees”—i.e., compliant laborers.  Then, money for public education is slashed, and tuition soars. Those in the middle class, let alone the poor, have to fight an ever-steepening uphill battle to spend their time and money on the arts appropriate to free people.

理性上,我们不会接受一个只有有特权的少数人能够享受闲暇与财富而平凡大众却要自我拼搏的社会。但这却是背弃通识教育所必需的。大多数情况下,这个国家的富人会不断为私立的大学预科学校、好的文理学院以及顶尖大学支付与日俱增的昂贵学费,他们的孩子会在那儿得到充足的机会来发展思维并且以文化资本点缀自己。与此同时,精英们谈起缺乏特权者的教育的价值就是为全球经济发展做准备。更为糟糕的是,他们通常还会支持哪些为了培养出“优秀职员”(即顺从的劳作者)的学习体系。这之后,公共教育的资金大幅缩减,学费不断飞涨。穷人自不必说,中产阶级也不得不在这场愈发严峻的上升之战中耗费时间和精力,去获得本是任何人都应该赋予的通识教育

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Why Study Philosophy? 'To Challenge Your Own Point of View'

As a professor with lots of experience giving Ds and Fs, I know full well that the value of the liberal arts will always be lost on some people, at least at certain points in their lives.  (Whenever I return from a conference, I worry that many on whom the value of philosophy is lost have found jobs teaching philosophy!) But I don’t think that this group of people is limited to any economic background or form of employment. My experience of having taught at relatively elite schools, like Emory University and Oglethorpe University, as well as at schools like Kennesaw State University and Kirkwood Community College, is that there are among future plumbers as many devotees of Plato as among the future wizards of Silicon Valley, and that there are among nurses’ aides and soldiers as many important voices for our democracy as among doctors and business moguls.

作为一个给过很多D和F的教授,我很是了解通识教育的价值总是不为一些人接受,至少在他们人生的特定阶段。(每次我开会归来,我总是担心那些丧失哲学价值观的人找到了教哲学的工作!)但是我并不认为这种人会受到经济背景或者雇佣模式的限制。我有在艾莫利大学和奥格尔索普大学这样相对有名的院校教学的经验,也有在肯尼索州立大学和柯克伍德社区大学教学的经验,我的经验诉我,未来的水管工与未来的硅谷奇才中,柏拉图的信徒是一样多的,同样,助理护士和士兵与医生和商业显贵人物对我们民主能发出同样重要的评价。

I recently got a letter from a former student, a factory worker, thanking me for introducing him to Schopenhauer. I was surprised, because I hadn’t assigned the German pessimist. The letter explained that I’d quoted some lines from Schopenhauer in class, and they’d sparked my student’s imagination. When he didn’t find what I’d quoted after reading all of volumes one and two of The World as Will and Representation, he started in on Parerga and Paralipomena, where he was eventually successful. Enclosing a short story that he’d recently written on a Schopenhauerian theme, he wrote me a long letter of thanks for inadvertently turning him on to a kindred mind. 

近来,我收到一封以前学生的来信,他是一个工厂的工人,他感谢我向他介绍叔本华。我很惊讶,我并没有专门讲过这位德国悲观主义者。他的来信中解释说我曾在课堂上引用过几句他的名言,而这激发了他的想象力。他读完了《作为意志和表象的世界》的卷一和卷二时,他没有找到我引用的内容,他又开始读《附录与补遗》,在这本书里他成功找到了。他不仅写长信感谢我无意中使他成为一个有志趣的人,还附了他最近围绕叔本华思想写的一个短篇故事。

Once, during a lecture I gave about the Stoics, who argue that with the proper spiritual discipline one can be truly free and happy even while being tortured, I looked up to see one of the students in tears. I recalled that her sister in Sudan had been recently imprisoned for challenging the local authorities. Through her tears my student was processing that her sister was likely seeking out a hard Stoic freedom as I was lecturing.

曾有一次,我做了一个关于斯多葛学派的演讲,他们强调一个在精神上能够正确自律的人即使在饱受折磨之时也能真正的做到自由快乐,当我抬头,看到一个学生眼泪盈眶。我想起她在苏丹的姐姐近来因为质疑地方当局被关入监狱。她的眼泪告诉我,我的学生认为她的姐姐也很有可能正在努力寻找我演讲中提到的斯多葛式的自由。

I once had a janitor compare his mystical experiences with those of the medieval Sufi al-Ghazali’s. I once had a student of redneck parents—his way of describing them—who read both parts of Don Quixote because I used the word “quixotic.” A mother who’d authorized for her crippled son a risky surgery that led to his death once asked me with tears in her eyes, “Is Kant right that the consequences of an action play no role in its moral worth?” A wayward veteran I once had in Basic Reasoning fell in love with formal logic and is now finishing law school at Berkeley.

一个门卫学生,将自己的神秘经历与那些中世纪苏菲派的安萨里们相比;一个有着乡巴佬父母(他自己的描述)学生,在我用了这个“堂吉诃德式的”词后看完了堂吉诃德的两部分;一位母亲,为她的跛腿儿子签了不幸令其致死的风险外科手术的同意书后,满眼泪水地问我:“康德说,一个人行为的苦果不会对行为的道德价值有影响,这话正确吗?”一个不羁的老兵爱上了形式逻辑中基本推理,现在也将结束他在伯克利法学院的学习。

 

The fire will always be sparked. Are we going to fan it, or try to extinguish it?

智慧之火一直在被点燃。我们应该鼓励它,还是应该扼杀它?


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最后编辑于:2014-05-17 18:11
分类: 英语
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