TED-Ed:虛構小說如何改變現實世界?

2012⋅11⋅03
TED-Ed:虛構小說如何改變現實世界?
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2012⋅11⋅03
TED-Ed:虛構小說如何改變現實世界?

有人說,看小說是逃避現實、前往異想世界的方式;但你可曾想過,這些虛構的小說竟能改變真實世界?今天精選的 TED-Ed 就要向大家介紹,從經典名著《傲慢與偏見》到近代的暢銷小說《哈利波特》為何擁有點燃歐美社會思辨火花、引發公眾討論的力量!


這支以藍色為基調、步調輕快的動畫中,Jessica Wise 一開始便引用了十九世紀美國詩人 Emily Dickinson 的詩作《There Is No Frigate Like a Book》告訴我們,書本是承載人類想像力的最佳工具:

There Is No Frigate Like a Book

沒有哪艘快船能如書本

Emily Dickinson 著 尤克強 譯

There is no frigate like a book 沒有哪艘快船能如書本 To take us lands away, 載我們遨遊四方 Nor any coursers like a page 沒有哪匹駿馬能如書頁 Of prancing poetry. 馳騁奔騰的詩章

This traverse may the poorest take 最窮的貧民也可以出遊 Without oppress of toll; 無須為路費擔憂 How frugal is the chariot 這列驛車一點兒也不貴 That bears the human soul! 讓人類的心靈受惠!

There Is No Frigate Like a Book


接著,她從西方歷史切入,帶我們看見虛構小說與現實間的微妙連繫,許多我們習以為常的價值觀都可說是文學引發文化革命後的成果!首開先例的,就是 1740 年由 Samuel Richardson 所撰寫的小說《Pamela》。他想像了一個不分階級、自由戀愛的可能性,而這本書所引發的討論與後續作品就像轉動文化的舵手,帶我們航行到現今社會的模樣。

除了引發社會變革,虛構小說更可能引發思想革命:達爾文的《演化論》很有可能就是他反覆閱讀狄更斯的《遠大前程》後,被故事男主角的許多特質啓發的論點!但達爾文的論述在這個自然環境面臨崩潰的時代仍然適用嗎?

Jessica Wise 說:也許不!現今社會需要的是更多《魔戒》中的團隊合作的默契,而非《哈利波特》裡的描寫的英雄主義思維。相信許多讀者對這兩部紅遍全世界的暢銷小說都不陌生;也許,在我們享用閱讀樂趣的同時,我們也像達爾文一樣,被這些故事潛移默化地改變我們的思維?

魔戒與哈利波特


虛構小說的力量也展現在許多國家的出版史上。不少當權者出於政治或文化等因素,將某些小說列為禁書、大舉查禁或焚燒。我們不難由此看出,故事引發社會改變的力量極為巨大,甚至可以影響社會、動搖政權!

喬治.歐威爾的《一九八四》、《動物農莊》就因批判獨裁體制與共產主義的情節而被多個集權政府列為禁書;中國明代的作品《金瓶梅》則因描繪大量腥羶性事而屢被查禁,僅有故事的節(潔)本能流通於市面;又或者,我們耳熟能詳的《少年維特的煩惱》在十八世紀時就曾在多個歐洲國家被禁,只因擔心故事男主角低靡憂鬱的獨白會引發青年的自殺潮!由此來看,虛構故事的力量擁有許多樣貌,而這一切端看閱讀書籍的人們如何感受、思考、及掌握這股強大的力量。

禁書


小說的本命,該是撼動現實

如同作家胡淑雯曾說的:「小說的本命,該是撼動現實。」以故事作為形體,讓讀者把生命置換到故事中角色的立場、隨著每一次故事的峰迴路轉,漸漸設身處地體會角色的心情,如此所能引發的同理心和共鳴絕對大過生澀而疏離的論述;而當社會的集體想像有了強烈的情感作為支撐,撼動現實絕非不可能!

各位讀者不妨想想,你是否曾因一個故事而改變你對一個議題、社會、人群的想法呢?對於未來世界,你又有什麼想像與期待?Jessica Wise 用這支動畫告訴我們:文明追隨著人們的想像,而 TEDxTaipei 便以約翰.藍濃著名的歌曲《Imagine》作為結尾,邀請各位讀者一起徜徉在美好的故事與幻想中,讓想像力自由奔馳吧!


註:

由於TED-Ed官方還在進行網站與影片的中文化,目前尚未開放有中文字幕的TED-Ed影片。如果對完整中文稿有興趣,以下是我們為您準備的影片中英對照稿,敬請參考:

Emily Dickinson said over a century ago that there is no frigate like a book to take us lands away, and it's true. When we pick up a book, turn on the TV, or watch a movie, we're carried away down the currents of story into a world of imagination. And when we land, on a shore that is both new and familiar, something strange happens.

Emily Dickinson 在一個世紀多前曾說過,沒有一艘船能比擬書本,能帶我們遨遊異想世界,而她所言不虛!當我們翻開書、打開電視、欣賞電影時,我們便被故事劇情帶往想像力的國度;而當我們上岸時,岸上的景象既新穎又熟悉,有些奇怪的事便發生了。

Stepping on to the shore, we're changed. We don't retrace the footsteps of the authors or characters we followed here: no. Instead we walk a mile in their shoes. Researchers in psychology, neuroscience, child development, and biology are finally starting to gain quantifiable scientific evidence showing what writers and readers have always known: That stories have a unique ability to change a person's point of view.

我們在踏上岸的那刻被改變了。我們並不是追隨著帶我們前來此地的作者或角色的足跡。不,不是的,我們已化身為他們!近來,心理學、神經學、兒童發展學、和生物學的學者開始提出許多科學證據,證明一件作者和讀者老早就知道的事:故事有改變人們觀點的獨特力量。

Scholars are discovering evidence that stories shape culture and that much of what we believe about life comes not from fact but from fiction, that our ideas of class, marriage, and even gender are relatively new, and that many ideologies which held fast for centuries were revised within the 18th century, and re-drafted in the pages of the early novel.

學者們發現,故事形塑了我們的文化,而大部分我們所相信的生命意義並不來自事實,而是來自小說。現今我們對於階級、婚姻、甚至是性別的觀點都是十分嶄新的;許多延續了好幾世紀的思想體系都在十八世紀時發生改變,並被早期的小說改寫。

Imagine a world where class, and not hard work, decide a person's worth. A world where women are simply men's more untamed copy. A world where marriage for love is a novel notion. Well, that was the world in which Samuel Richardson's Pamela first appeared. Richardson's love story starred a poor, serving-class heroine who is both morally superior and smarter than her upper-class suitor. The book, challenging a slew of traditions, caused quite a ruckus. There was more press for Pamela than for Parliament. It spawned intense debate and several counter-novels.

請想像這樣一個世界:階級而非努力決定了一個人的價值、女人被視為「未馴化的男性複製品」、因自由戀愛而結婚更是個全新的想法。其實呢,這就是 Samuel Richardson 在出版小說《Pamela》時的社會現況。Richardson 的愛情故事裡,女主角是個道德高尚、比起她那上流社會追求者還要聰慧的女僕。這本書挑戰了許多傳統觀念並引起大眾嘩然,討論這本小說的報章篇幅甚至遠多於對國會的討論。它引發了大眾辯論,也催生了往後幾本持相反立場的小說。

Still, for all those who couldn't accept Pamela, others were eager for this new fictional world. This best-seller, and all its literary heirs, Pride and Prejudice, Jane Eyre, and yes, even Twilight, have continuously shared the same tale, and taught similar lessons which are now conventional and commonplace.

雖然仍有人不能接受《Pamela》,許多人卻對這幻想中的世界十分嚮往。這本暢銷小說及許多它的延伸作品《傲慢與偏見(Pride and Prejudice)》、《簡愛(Jane Eyre)》、甚至是《暮光之城(Twilight)》持續地向世界訴說同樣的故事,而這些觀念也漸漸普及於現代、被社會接受。

Similarly, novels have helped shape the minds of thought leaders across history. Some scholars say that Darwin's Theory of Evolution is highly indebted to the plots he read and loved. His theory privileges intelligence, swiftness, and adaptability to change - all core characteristics in a hero. Whether you're reading Harry Potter or Great Expectations, you're reading the kind of plot that inspired Darwin.

相同的,小說也改變了歷史上許多思想先驅的心靈。有些學者說,達爾文的演化論受到一本他喜愛的小說的高度影響。他的理論高度推崇智慧、敏捷、適應環境變化的能力,而這些特質都是小說的男主角所擁有的。不管你正在讀《哈利波特(Harry Potter)》或是《遠大前程(Great Expectations)》,你所讀的就是啟發達爾文的故事。

Yet recent studies show that his theory might not be the whole story, our sense of being a hero- one man, or one woman, or even one species taking on the challenges of the world might be wrong. Instead of being hard-wired for competition, for being the solitary heroes in our own story, we might instead be members of a shared quest. More Hobbit than Harry.

然而,最近的研究顯示他的理論並非真理;我們認為一個英雄人物或一個物種便能單獨迎向世界挑戰的意念,很有可能是錯的。比起與生俱來擁有競爭思維、或是想獨挑大梁的英雄心態,我們更像是一個擁有共同目標的群體;更像哈比人而不是哈利波特。

Sometimes, of course, the shoes we've been walking in can get plain worn out. After all, we haven't walked just one mile in Jane Austen or Mark Twain's shoes, we've walked about a hundred trillion miles in them. This isn't to say that we can't read and enjoy the classics, we should travel with Dickens, let Pip teach us what to expect from ourselves, have a talk with Austen and Elizabeth about our prides and prejudices. We should float with Twain down the Mississippi, and have Jim show us what it means to be good.

當然,有時候我們並不能完全體會書中所描寫的故事,畢竟珍.奧斯汀和馬克.吐溫身處的年代實在太久遠了。但這並不是說我們就沒辦法享受經典著作;我們應該和狄更斯一起旅行,讓皮普(《遠大前程》的男主角 )引導我們思考對自己前程的期望、或是和珍.奧斯汀及伊莉莎白(《傲慢與偏見》的女主角)談談我們的傲慢與偏見。我們也該和馬克.吐溫一起漂流到密西西比,讓《頑童流浪記( The adventures of Huckleberry Finn)》的 Jim 告訴我們何謂善良。

But on our journey, we should also keep in mind that the terrain has changed. We'll start shopping around for boots that were made for walking into a new era. Take, for instance, Katniss Everdeen and her battle with the Capitol. Can Hunger Games lead us into thinking about capitalism in a new way? Can it teach us a lesson about why the individual should not put herself before the group? Will Uglies reflect the dangers of pursuing a perfect body and letting the media define what is beautiful? Will Seekers trod a path beyond global warming? Will the life and death struggles of Toklo, Kallik, Lusa, and the other bears chart a course for understanding animals and our place in their world?

但在我們的旅途中要謹記:我們所處的時代不同了,而現在該換我們想像未來世界的模樣。例如,小說《飢餓遊戲三部曲(The Hunger Games trilogy)》中女主角 Katniss Everdeen 與她對抗都城(Capitol)的過程,是否可以讓我們以新的角度思考資本主義?或是告訴我們菁英主義有何不妥之處?小說《醜人兒(Uglies)》是否反映了我們追求完美體態,並讓媒體定義「美」所帶來的危險?《熊武士(Seekers)》中的 Toklo, Kallik, Lusa 和其他熊隻,能否走出一條渡過全球暖化危機的路,而我們又能不能被他們的生存故事激發起對於動物的關懷,並瞭解牠們眼中人類的模樣?

Only the future will tell which stories will engage our imagination, which tales of make-believe we'll make tomorrow, but the good news is this: There are new stories to venture in every day. New tales that promise to influence, to create, and to spark change. Stories that you might even write yourself. So I guess the final question is this: what story will you try on next?

只有「未來」才能揭曉謎底,告訴我們哪些虛構故事終將成真;但好消息是,每天都是一場冒險,每則新的故事都有可能影響、創造、並引發改變!你甚至可以自己撰寫你的故事!所以我想,最後一個問題應該是:下個你想讀的故事是什麼?


來源   >   撰稿及翻譯:劉耘   |   影片:Jessica Wise: How fiction can change reality

發佈於2012⋅11⋅03
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