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放下文化包袱,另眼看中国

Enough of the Bad Cultural Baggage, says Chinese Scholars

 
对于许多人来说, 他们对一从未造访过的国家的了解大多来自于朋友和旅游作品。但有时,旅游作品能使读者对某一国家的了解出现偏误,产生误解。
For many people, knowledge of foreign nations they have never visited before are largely come from friends or stories by travel writers. Sometimes their writings may lead to misconceptions in readers about a foreign country. 
 
比如,东方人可能会对加拿大有某种先入为主的看法,认为它是一个没有什么历史的现代化国家。同样,基于西方旅游作者的报道,西方人士也会对中国产生不正确的看法,认为它仍是一个黑暗而怪异的国家。
For instance, Asians may have a misconception of Canada as new and modern country with little history. Likewise, Western people may have some inaccurate view of China as a dark and exotic country, based on reports from Western travel writers.
 
阿尔伯塔大学英语与影视研究系的研究员陈蕾蕾表示:“这些偏见是错误的。加拿大有历史,而中国也并非像西方旅游作家所描述的那样黑暗或怪异。”
“These preconceptions are wrong. Canada does have history, and China is not such a dark or exotic place as being projected by the western travel writers,” says LeiLei Chen, a researcher in the University of Alberta’s Department of English and Film Studies. 
 
陈表示:“事实上中国的确存在许多阴暗面,但中国的蕴含却比这些负面现实广泛的多……也复杂的多。”
“The reality is that backwardness still exists in China, but there are other aspect of the country that goes beyond the described negative reality … The country is much more complicated than that,” says Chen.
 
陈所著的《释义新中国:旅游作品和跨文化的理解》一书即将出版.。阿尔伯塔大学的新闻公告表示,陈在此书中对过去50年中西方作家有关中国的旅游作品进行了探讨,并得出结论,西方作者对中国的看法往往过于消极并缺乏平衡。
Chen’s book“Translating New China: Travel Writing and Cross-Cultural Understanding” will soon be published. According to a news release from University of Alberta, in her book, Chen explores travel writings about China by Western writers in the past 50 years, and has concluded that their opinions about China are often too negative and lack balance. 
 
虽然陈并不否认中国存在一些阴暗面,但是她的研究主要集中在为什么西方作者仅仅选择报道负面现实,从而使他们的旅游作品对中国的描写负面消极。
While Chen does not deny the existence of the dark side of China, her research focuses on why Western writers set their negative story tones by choosing to report some facts instead of others.
 
陈告诉《大中报》,她对西方培养的作家黄明珍的作品《北京之谜》颇感失望。她认为黄在该书中借“友情背叛”,即黄于70年代第一次到中国时“背叛”了其北京女友之线索,描写中国。
Chen told Chinese News that she is “disappointed” about the book “Beijing Confidential” by Jan Wong – a Western trained writer. In her opinion, in this book, Wong was using “friendship betrayal” – where she “betrayed” a friend in Beijing during her first trip to China in 1970s -- as a storyline to portray China.
 
 
陈表示,与黄的第一本《神州怨》相比,她在第二本描写2007年重游北京的《北京之谜》中对中国的看法有所改善,但是依她看来“仍然不够好”。
Compared with Wong’s first book “Red China Blue”, Chen says that Wong expressed an improved outlook towards China in her second book that describes her revisit of Beijing in 2007. But in her opinion, “it’s still not good enough”.
 
陈认为,西方作家对中国的消极看法在很大程度上可以追溯到近一个世纪前中国的那段失去主权,并且在经济和社会方面都远远落后于西方的历史。
Chen thinks that the negative mentality that Western writers have can be largely traced back to a nation that lost its sovereignty and lagged far behind the West economically and socially nearly a century ago.
 
但是今天的西方人仍然保持着陈旧的殖民心态,将中国视于西方之下。
But today’s Westerners still maintain an old, colonial mentality, seeing China as inferior to Western countries, says Chen.
 
陈表示:“他们仍然对中国持有旧的殖民印象,质疑作为第三世界国家的中国,如何能与美国及其他西方国家抗衡。他们认为中国的崛起威胁是对西方主导地位的威胁。”
“They still hold on to an old image about China, questioning how such a third world country can stand up on an equal footing with the US and other Western countries. They consider China a rising threat to Western dominance.”
 
陈出生于仍处于未开放的,共产主义政权控制下的70年代的中国。她伴随着中国的成长而长大,目睹了中国从一个贫瘠的国家逐渐成为世界经济的超级大国之一。
Chen was born in 1970s when China was still under an isolated communist regime. She grew up in the middle of the country’s growth trajectory that brought China from a meager country into one of the world’s economic superpowers.
 
陈称:“在我成长的过程中,我目睹了中国经济的起飞,中国正处在一个全球化的时代,一个历史性的时刻,人们的生活水平显著改善。”
“I witnessed tremendous economical growth in China as I grew up,” says Chen.”China is in an age of globalization, a historical moment that sees people’s living standard improved dramatically.”
 
陈表示,随着全球经济的迅速发展,中国已经成为世界领先的经济强国之一。虽然西方世界很难接受中国崛起之必然,但有必要建议西方旅游作者在游览中国时放下负面的文化包袱。
In a rapidly evolving global economy, China has emerged as one of the world’s leading economic superpowers. While it is hard for the West to accept China’s inevitable rise, it is a time to suggest that the Western travel writers drop the negative cultural baggage when visiting China, says Chen.
 
陈表示:“旅游文学是人们了解外国风土人情和文化的主要信息来源,它在缩小不同国家间之差距上起到重要的作用……加拿大人不应该戴上色眼镜看中国。”
“Travel literature provides a major source of information on people and the culture in a foreign country, and plays a key role in bridging gaps between different countries,” says Chen. “Canadians should not see China through a distorted cultural lens”.
 
陈称:“只从其熟悉和认可的角度去看中国,对加拿大不利……我希望西方旅游作家放下他们的文化偏见,向中国敞开心扉,至少暂时如此。”
“Seeing only from the angle that we’re familiar or comfortable with is not beneficial to Canadians” says Chen.” I hope that Western travel writers drop their cultural biases, at least temporarily, and open their minds towards China.”
 
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