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可怜的梭罗——读《瓦尔登湖》翻译(191)  

2018-02-10 16:16:23|  分类: 《瓦尔登湖》 |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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Society is commonly too cheap. We meet at very short intervals, not having had time to acquire any new value for each other. We meet at meals three times a day, and give each other a new taste of that old musty cheese that we are. We have had to agree on a certain set of rules, called etiquette and politeness, to make this frequent meeting tolerable and that we need not come to open war. We meet at the post-office, and at the sociable, and about the fireside every night; we live thick and are in each other's way, and stumble over one another, and I think that we thus lose some respect for one another. Certainly less frequency would suffice for all important and hearty communications. Consider the girls in a factory, -- never alone, hardly in their dreams. It would be better if there were but one inhabitant to a square mile, as where I live. The value of a man is not in his skin, that we should touch him.

(徐迟译)社交往往廉价。相聚的时间之短促,来不及使彼此获得任何新的有价值的东西。我们在每日三餐的时间里相见,大家重新尝尝我们这种陈腐乳酪的味道。我们都必须同意若干条规则,那就是所谓的礼节和礼貌,使得这种经常的聚首能相安无事,避免公开争吵,以至面红耳赤。我们相会于邮局,于社交场所,每晚在炉火边;我们生活得太拥挤,互相干扰,彼此牵绊,因此我想,彼此已缺乏敬意了。当然,所有重要而热忱的聚会,次数少一点也够了。试想工厂中的女工,——永远不能独自生活,甚至做梦也难于孤独。如果一英里只住一个人,像我这儿,那要好得多。人的价值并不在他的皮肤上,所以我们不必要去碰皮肤。

1We meet at very short intervals, not having had time to acquire any new value for each other.这里的interval是指两次见面之间的间隔时间,不是一次见面的长短。那么,这一句不是说见面时间短而不能了解对方,而是见面太频繁,所以自己没有时间获得新东西让对方获益。下文的“meet at meals three times a day”,“ this frequent meeting”,“less frequency would suffice”都是讲见面的频率。频繁见面,经常泡在一起,不如少见或独处有益。

2a new taste是“新品味”,不是“重新品尝”。可参见上一句里的“any new value”。

3we live thick and are in each other's way, and stumble over one another,这里“thick”一词,是说我们与朋友相处得友好亲密。站在对方行进的路上,阻碍、绊倒对方。

4Certainly less frequency would suffice for all important and hearty communications.  Certainly是“确定无疑”; less frequency见面不那么频繁;suffice足够;hearty communications亲切的交流。

(戴欢译)社交收获不大。由于相会的时间很短暂,还来不及彼此深入了解,从而获得新的有价值的感觉。我们每天三餐时相见,互相在重新品尝我的这种陈腐乳酪的滋味。我们必须遵守许多惯例和约定的规则,即所谓的礼节、礼貌;使得这种公开场合的相聚愉快顺利进行,避免争风吃醋地相互打闹。我们相聚邮局、娱乐场所,每晚围坐在炉火旁,这种太拥挤的生活,互相影响,彼此干扰。由此可知,彼此失去相互应有的敬意了。不过,任何重要而热烈的相会,次数少一些也无关紧要。试想一个工厂里的女工吧——从来都不能独自过活,尤其是在梦中也难得孤单。假如一平方英里只居住一人,像我这样,那定会感觉颇佳。人的价值不在于他的外表皮肤上,因而我们没有必要去相互触碰。

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