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Selective memory 选择性记忆

更新时间:2012-09-10    来源/发布:www.en369.cn    作者/编辑:英语作文网

Books and Arts; Book Review;Japanese history;

文艺;书评;日本历史;

Selective memory;

选择性记忆;

Ways of Forgetting, Ways of Remembering: Japan in the Modern World. By John Dower.

《淡忘之道,铭记之途:现代日本》,约翰·道尔著。

As the ghosts of the Pacific war judder back to life in Asia, it seems appropriate to consider how nation states remember, and misremember, the past. Japan's current tiffs with its neighbours, China and South Korea, are rooted in the march to war and its undigested aftermath, more than 75 years ago. They are inflamed, however, by different narratives of history, and by national media coverage that is often parochial and amnesiac.

近日,太平洋地区发生战争的阴霾再次笼罩着亚洲。现在来思考民族国家是如何铭记及误记历史的,似乎正是时候。 日本最近和中韩两个邻国之间起了种种争执,这都源于75年多以前发动的那场战争和它所带来的尚未平复的创伤。 然而,各国对历史的记述不同,国家媒体的报道也往往狭隘而有所回避,因此,这些争执被激化了。

Conflict and memory are the themes that animate this new collection of essays by John Dower, author of the Pulitzer prize-winning “Embracing Defeat” (1999), which looked at Japan after the second world war. Mr Dower is particularly interested in Japan's sanitisation of its military past, but also the way history in general is often a tool used by the powerful.

冲突和回忆这两种主题为约翰·道尔这本新散文集赋予了生命。 他另著有《拥抱战败》(1999),该书研究了二战后的日本,获得了普利策奖。 道尔对于日本粉饰其军国主义历史的行为特别感兴趣,但他也同样关注当权者通常是如何利用历史的。

Mr Dower discusses his surprise at hearing his own work cited after 9/11, when American officials evoked the post-war occupation of Japan as a model for post-invasion Iraq. President George W. Bush should have seen that Japan provided “no model” for occupying Mesopotamia, Mr Dower wrote in a strikingly prescient 2002 New York Times op-ed, reproduced here. “To rush to war without seriously imagining all its consequences, including its aftermath, is not realism but a terrible hubris.”

在9.11事件之后,美国官员援引了道尔的作品,要求以战后占领日本的模式在入侵伊拉克之后占领该国,道尔表示他听到这一消息以后有些错愕。 他在2002年《纽约时报》的社论专栏里极有先见之明地写道:乔治·W·布什总统应该认识到,日本不能为攻占美索不达米亚“提供模式”。 “不认真考虑战争的后果、包括可能带来的创伤就匆匆发动战争,这不是现实主义,而是一种可怕的傲慢狂妄。”

He returns to the terrain of “Embracing Defeat”, marvelling at how the vicious racial hatreds of the Pacific war dissipated so quickly, as though “turned off like a spigot”. The lesson for Mr Dower is not only that reluctant civilians must be mobilised by propaganda to fight and die, but also that new realities force new biases.

回到《拥抱战败》 的主题上,道尔惊叹于太平洋战争深刻的种族仇视竟然平息得如此之快,就像“水龙头一样关掉了”。 道尔得到了一个教训:问题不仅仅在于不情愿的平民被政府宣传所鼓动才去拼死一战;还在于新的现实形成了新的偏见。

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