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双语:外国人对中国的偏见到底是怎么形成的

分类:英语资讯 作者:月上柳梢 评论:0 点击: 272 次 日期:2017-02-07


  不少外国人都对中国带有偏见,同样的中国人对外国人的刻板印象也不少,这些不合实际的观念是怎么得来的呢?

  I recently bumped into a fellow Canadian as we waited for an elevator. We had a pleasant exchange about respective birthplaces and length of time in China.

  我最近在等电梯的时候偶遇了一位加拿大同胞。我们对于各自的出生地和在中国的时间长短有了一场愉快的交谈。

  We happened to be going to the same place, enhancing the delightful coincidence. I pushed the button for the fourth floor, but he told me the office was on the seventh. Unfortunately, our next simple exchange showed that our shared nationality didn’t mean we were likeminded.

  我们碰巧要去同一个地方,这更加增强了这场巧合带来的愉悦。我按下了四楼,但是他告诉我办公室在七楼。不幸的是,我们接下来一段简短的谈话表明,我们国籍相同并不代表我们志趣相同。

  It was just a simple comment, the kind I hear all the time, but one that forces me to bite my tongue.

  这只是一句简单的话语,就是那种我总是听到的,但是却使我张口结舌的话。

  I don’t understand how some people think that sharing an exotic experience, such as living in China, entitles them to say something derogatory and expect concurrence just because we’re in the same boat.

  我不明白为什么有些人会认为如果两人都有一些异国他乡的经历(例如都住在中国),那么他就可以说一些贬低那个国家的话,并仅仅因为相同国籍就期待对方也出声附和自己。

  As the elevator doors closed, I tried to correct my mistake and double pressed the button for the fourth floor, hoping it would erase the selections and prevent an unnecessary stop. Unfortunately, it was an older model and it didn’t work.

  当电梯门关闭时,我试着纠正自己的错误,按了两下四楼的按钮,希望可以抹除掉我之前的选择、不做不必要的停留。但是不幸的是,电梯是旧型号,我的补救措施没有起作用。

  The next words he said told me everything I needed to know about his attitude toward China. "Not going to happen in this country," he said nonchalantly. Sure, it was just a simple observation, but to me it immediately showed his sense of superiority.

  接下来那个人说的一番话让我完完全全了解了他对中国的态度。他满不在乎的说:“在这个国家你那样做是没用的。”当然,这只是一个简单的观察,但是对我来说那立刻表明了他的优越感。

  Understanding the better part of valor, I usually let offhanded comments like this slide, but not this time.

  谨慎即大勇,以前遇到这样“的高论”我一般会马上怼上去,但是这次我没有。

  "Interesting you’d say that, I’ve only ever seen the ’cancel-floor’ option on elevators in China. I think it was invented by a Chinese elevator company," I said.

  我说道:“你说的可真有趣,我只在中国的电梯里看到过‘取消楼层’的选项。我认为这是一家中国电梯公司发明的功能。”

  Okay, that is enough of the elevator story.

  好啦,电梯的故事就到这里结束吧!

  Studies show that we all carry around built-in, implicit bias on just about every topic. They are almost impossible to overcome, but we should strive to recognize when we are feeding our prejudice.

  研究表明,我们所有人都对几乎所有事物存在着内在的、不言明的偏见。这些偏见几乎是无法克服的,但是当我们助长偏见时,我们应该认识到这一现象。

  Too often, a long-term "China experience" seems to entitle foreigners to walk around with a giant chip on their shoulder.

  通常,一个长期的“中国经历”似乎可以让外国人像一个将军那样趾高气昂。

  I’ve seen how this attitude evolves. The newly arrived are keenly interested in this very different place. Soon the novelty wears off, and the formerly interesting differences become objects of ridicule. Then the yearning for the way things are back home begins, and the "expert" expat critic emerges.

  我知道这种态度是如何演变而来的。新到中国的外国人都对这个非常不同的地方很感兴趣。但是很快这种新鲜感就消失了,以前觉得有趣的差异就变成了嘲笑的对象。然后这些人就开始念着自己国家的好,“专业的”外国评论家就出现了。

  I know this critique is more than a little rough, and I admit that a rant can feel good, but mine are never in the tone of "them" against "us." I never say "the Chinese" or use collective pronouns that encompass 1.3 billion people. Please stop yourself when you are tempted to say, "the Chinese" or "these people." It is chauvinistic and arrogant.

  我知道这样的批评多少有些粗暴,我也承认大声责骂感觉很好,但我绝不是“他们”对“我们”那样的语气。我从来不说“那些中国人”,也不使用其他代指13亿人的集体名词。请不要轻蔑地说出“那些中国”或“这些人”之类的词。这是沙文主义和傲慢的表现。

  Those of us from multicultural nations should know better, and this is why I can partially excuse the stereotyping I hear from Chinese friends about foreigners. It starts with grouping all laowai as one.

  我们这些来自多文化国家的人应该知道得更清楚一些,这也是为什么我可以部分地原谅从中国朋友们那里听到的关于外国人的刻板印象。这些刻板印象总是把所有“老外”归为一体。

  While checking out at a local supermarket the other day, I was forced to feign some serious outrage. The clerks had shared an observation about one of my purchases. One clerk said, "They (foreigners) all like to eat those things," the others agreed, not noticing the same item was also in the basket of the Chinese person behind me.

  前几天在一家当地超市结账的时候,我被迫假装做出一些暴行。超市店员们看到了我买的一样商品。一个店员说道:“他们(外国人)都喜欢吃这些东西。”其他人也表示同意,但是却并没有注意到我后面那位中国人的购物篮里也有一样的东西。

  "Who are ’they’?" I bellowed in mock indignation and good comic relief. "Can one person really represent all others?" I said, lecturing the slightly embarrassed and chuckling clerks. I am pretty sure they got the point.

  我假装愤怒地喊道:“‘他们’是谁?一个人真的可以代表所有人吗?”我给那几个有点小尴尬、笑着的店员们上了一课。我敢肯定他们一定知道我说的是什么意思。

致儒先生




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