双语 | 我们为什么爱读科幻小说

新东方英语 2018-09-04 12:21:18

阅读是一种可以逃避现实的嗜好,

而读科幻与奇幻类小说更是如此

——人们可以逃离自己的世界,

走进现在不存在、

将来也不会存在的时空。

Just as Obi-Wan Kenobi1) presented a lightsaber2) to Luke Skywalker with the words, "Your father wanted you to have this when you were old enough," my father gave me two books when I turned 11: Pebble in the Sky by Isaac Asimov3) and The Puppet Masters by Robert Heinlein4). I don't remember which book I read first, only that I finished both in one day. 

就像欧比旺·肯诺比将一把光剑交给天行者卢克并对他说“你父亲希望你年龄够大后可以拥有它”一样,在我满11岁的时候,父亲送给我两本书:艾萨克·阿西莫夫的《苍穹微石》和罗伯特·海因莱因的《傀儡主人》。我不记得我先读的是哪一本,只记得我在一天里就看完了这两本书。我是一口气读完的。

1. Obi-Wan Kenobi: 欧比旺·肯诺比,《星球大战》(Star Wars)中的一个绝地大师,是卢克的导师。

2. lightsaber: 光剑,是肯诺比送给卢克的绝地武器。

3. Isaac Asimov: 艾萨克·阿西莫夫(1920~1992),美国著名科幻小说家、科普作家、文学评论家,是美国科幻小说黄金时代的代表人物之一,其三大系列代表作《基地》(Foundation)、《银河帝国》(Galactic Empire)和《机器人》(Robot)更是被誉为“科幻圣经 ”。

4. Robert Heinlein: 罗伯特·海因莱因(1907~1988),美国著名科幻小说家、硬科幻小说大师,被誉为“美国现代科幻小说之父”,其代表作有《星际迷航》(Tunnel in the Sky)、《严厉的月亮》(The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress)等。

I never stopped.Kevin J. Maroney, managing editor of the New York Review of Science Fiction, says, "I started reading Science Fiction (SF) because of peer pressure: My older brother was a heavy SF reader, so the stuff was all around the house when I was growing up. The earliest books I can remember reading were fantasies (Oz, Narnia, Lewis Carroll5), The Phantom Tollbooth) and SF (The Spaceship Under the Apple Tree, the Tom Swift Jr.6) novels, The Wonderful Flight to the Mushroom Planet)."

《纽约科幻小说评论》杂志的总编辑凯文·马罗尼说:“我开始读科幻小说是碍于同龄人的压力:我哥哥是个科幻小说迷,所以从小到大家里满屋子都是科幻小说。我能记得我最早读的书是奇幻小说(《绿野仙踪》《纳尼亚传奇》、刘易斯·卡罗尔的小说、《神奇的收费亭》)和科幻小说(《苹果树下的太空船》、小汤姆·斯威夫特系列小说、《飞往蘑菇星球的奇幻之旅》)。”

5. Lewis Carroll: 刘易斯·卡罗尔(1832~1898),英国数学家、逻辑学家、童话作家,其代表作有《爱丽丝漫游奇境记》(Alice's Adventures in Wonderland)、《爱丽丝镜中世界奇遇记》(Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There)。

6. Tom Swift Jr.: 小汤姆·斯威夫特,是五部美国青少年科幻小说系列中的主要人物,是个在家上学的天才少年发明家。

Diana Tixier Herald, author of Fluent in Fantasy: The Next Generation, says she has always been a SF reader. "I changed schools 13 times before I graduated high school, and every time I moved I would go into the library and all of my friends were there. I established relationships with the characters in these books." Herald's literary companions? Besides Nancy Drew, she read, A Wrinkle in Time, The Once and Future King, and The Mushroom Planet books by Eleanor Cameron7).

《畅读奇幻:新生代作品指南》一书的作者戴安娜·蒂克西尔·赫勒尔德则表示,她一直是科幻小说的忠实读者。“到中学毕业为止,我总共换过13次学校,每次转到新学校,我就会去学校的图书馆——我所有的朋友都在那儿呢。我跟那些科幻小说中的人物都建立了感情。”赫勒尔德都有哪些文学伴侣呢?除了《少女妙探》之外,她还读过《时间的皱纹》《永恒之王》以及埃莉诺·卡梅伦的《蘑菇星球》系列。

7. Eleanor Cameron: 埃莉诺·卡梅伦(1912~1996),加拿大童书作家,其代表作为《蘑菇星球》系列科幻小说,《飞往蘑菇星球的奇幻之旅》是该系列小说第一部。

The science fiction and fantasy genre is an oeuvre8) of weird and wondrous. People come to science fiction and fantasy for the familiarity—most children's fairy tales are deeply fantastical—but they stay for reasons as varied as why people read at all.

科幻与奇幻类小说是关于怪异与奇妙的文学。人们读科幻与奇幻类小说是想找到一种熟悉感——儿时读的童话故事大多都带着浓厚的奇幻色彩,不过让他们一直读下去的原因却一如人们为何读书一样多种多样。

8. oeuvre [ˈɜːvrə] n. (作家、画家或其他艺术家的)全部作品,作品全集

Tor9) editor Teresa Nielsen-Hayden wisely says, "If you ask 20 different readers why they read, they will all be right." People read non-genre fiction10) to enjoy a world that is not their own, to live someone's life tangentially11) and vicariously12). People read fiction to be informed, to be entertained, to escape, etc.

托尔出版社的编辑特雷莎·尼尔森-海登说过一句妙语:“如果你问20个不同的读者他们为何读书,他们给的理由全都是对的。”人们阅读非通俗小说是想体验别样的世界,是想既置身事外又能间接体验别人的生活。人们读小说则是为了长见识,为了休闲消遣,为了逃避等等。

9. Tor: 指美国科幻权威出版社Tor Books。

10. genre fiction: (亦称popular fiction)通俗小说

11. tangentially [tænˈdʒenʃəli] adv. 无关地

12. vicariously [vɪˈkeəriəsli] adv. 间接感受到地;间接获得地

Reading is an escapist13) hobby, but science fiction and fantasy reading even more so—people can escape out of their own worlds into places and times that do not exist nor ever will.

阅读是一种可以逃避现实的嗜好,而读科幻与奇幻类小说更是如此——人们可以逃离自己的世界,走进现在不存在、将来也不会存在的时空。

13. escapist [ɪˈskeɪpɪst] adj. 逃避现实的

Science fiction speaks to14) people who feel, well, "alienation".

科幻小说对于那些觉得,嗯,“格格不入”的人来说具有吸引力。

14. speak to: 对……有特殊意义;对……很重要

Tamara Nichols, who practiced psychotherapy for 11 years, says, "Certainly I think everybody has that feeling of being an outsider at some point in their lives. A lot of people feel like they don't belong at all. SF hits on15) what it's like to go out into an alien environment. SF organizes the unknown in a sense, and makes it more psychologically available."

从事心理治疗11年的塔玛拉·尼科尔斯说:“可以肯定地说,我认为每个人都会在人生的某个时刻感到自己是个局外人,很多人觉得自己根本没有归属感。科幻小说则虚构出了走进一个陌生环境会是什么样子。科幻小说在某种意义上把未知变得有章可循,让人在心理上更能接受这个未知环境。”

15. hit on: 虚构出;凭空设想出

Science fiction and fantasy also appeal to other temperaments, including readers of a "romantic" nature.

科幻与奇幻文学也吸引着其他性格的人,包括生性“浪漫”的读者。

"SF is called the literature of ideas, and it really is, but the ideas aren't about fusion16) or nano-tubules17) or seven schools of magic; they're the same ideas of love and anger and the human heart in conflict with itself that drive all other stories, but foregrounded18) and made new," says Maroney.

“科幻小说被称为思想文学,事实也确实如此,但科幻小说的思想并不是核聚变或纳米管或七大魔法学派,而是和推动其他所有故事发展的思想一样,也都是爱、愤怒以及内心的自我挣扎,只不过是被突出强调了,用了种新的形式。”马罗尼说。

16. fusion [ˈfjuːʒn] n. 融合;结合

17. tubule [ˈtjuːbjuːl] n. 小管(非常小的管道,构成植物或动物的一部分)

18. foreground [ˈfɔːɡraʊnd] vt. 强调,突出(某事物的重要性)

"Even [books about] distant space travel boils down to19) human emotion and human thought," says Sherry Sontag, a science fiction reader and non-fiction writer.

“就连长途太空旅行[类的小说]归根结底讲的也是人的情感和思想。”非虚构小说家谢里·桑塔格如是说,她也是一位科幻小说读者。

19. boil down to: (形势或问题)主要原因在于,归结为

Then does what we read shape who we are?

那么,是不是我们读什么样的书就能成为什么样的人呢?

I can't speak for everybody, but I read science fiction and fantasy for an even more important reason than it appeals to my critical thinking. I read SF because it's a genre full of ideas and optimism and inspiration. Hopefully, I am what I read.

我不能代表所有人,但我自己之所以读科幻和奇幻小说,有比它能激发我进行批判性思考更重要的原因。我读这类小说是因为它是一个充满思想、乐观主义精神和灵感的文学流派。但愿我即我所读!

(本文源自《新东方英语·中学生》杂志。By 

Carol Pinchefsky 译 / 申申然)


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