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纽约时报双语:“美国的灵魂”是什么

“美国的灵魂”是什么
Biden and Trump Say They’re Fighting for America’s ‘Soul.’ What Does That Mean?
ELIZABETH DIAS
2020年10月19日
纽约时报双语:“美国的灵魂”是什么

It is a phrase that has been constantly invoked by Democratic and Republican leaders. It has become the clearest symbol of the mood of the country, and what people feel is at stake in November. Everyone, it seems, is fighting for it.

这是民主党和共和党的领袖们不断使用的一个字眼。它已成为国民情绪的最清晰象征,以及人们对11月的重大利害关系的感受。每个人似乎都在为之奋斗。

“This campaign isn’t just about winning votes. It’s about winning the heart and, yes, the soul of America,” Joseph R. Biden Jr. said in August at the Democratic National Convention, not long after the phrase “battle for the soul of America” appeared at the top of his campaign website, right next to his name.

“这次竞选不仅是为了赢得选票,也是为了赢得美国的人心,也可以说,是为了赢得美国的灵魂,”小约瑟夫·R.拜登(Joseph R. Biden Jr.)今年8月在民主党全国代表大会上说。那之前不久,“为美国的灵魂而战”这句话就已经出现在他竞选网站的顶部,他的名字旁边。

Picking up on this, a recent Trump campaign ad spliced videos of Democrats invoking “the soul” of America, followed by images of clashes between protesters and the police and the words “Save America’s Soul,” with a request to text “SOUL” to make a campaign contribution.

特朗普最近的一个竞选广告也学会了这个,广告将民主党人在讲话中提到美国的“灵魂”的片段,与抗议者和警察发生冲突的画面,以及“拯救美国的灵魂”的字样连接起来,还请求支持者发以灵魂的四个英文字母“SOUL”为内容的短信为竞选捐款。

That the election has become a referendum on the soul of the nation, suggests that in an increasingly secular country, voting has become a reflection of one’s individual morality — and that the outcome hinges in part on spiritual and philosophical questions that transcend politics: What, exactly, is the soul of the nation? What is the state of it? And what would it mean to save it?

今年的大选已成为对国家灵魂的一次全民公投,这表明,在一个日益世俗的国家,投票已成为个人道德的反映,大选的结果在一定程度上取决于超越政治的精神和哲学层面的问题:究竟什么是国家的灵魂?它处于什么状态?拯救它意味着什么?

The answers go beyond a campaign slogan, beyond politics and November, to the identity and future of the American experiment itself, especially now, with a pandemic that has wearied the country’s spirit.

这些问题的答案超出了竞选口号,超出了政治和11月,涉及美国实验的本身和未来,尤其是现在,一场大流行病让这个国家的精神疲惫不堪。

“When I think of soul of the nation,” Joy Harjo, the United States poet laureate and a Muscogee (Creek) Nation member, said, “I think of the process of becoming, and what it is we want to become. That is where it gets tricky, and that is where I think we have reached a stalemate right now. What do people want to become?”

“当我想起国家的灵魂时,想到的是成为的过程,以及我们想成为什么,”美国桂冠诗人乔伊·哈乔(Joy Harjo)说,她是马斯科吉(Muskogee,又名克里克[Creek])原住民族的成员。“想成为什么让问题变得不容易回答,我觉得,这是让我们目前陷入僵持局面之处。人民想成为什么?”

Ms. Harjo said the country’s soul was “at a crucial point.”

哈乔说,这个国家的灵魂已“处于一个危急关头”。

“It is like everything is broken at once,” she said. “We are at a point of great wounding, where everyone is standing and looking within themselves and each other.”

“好像所有的东西都同时出了毛病,”她说。“我们正处在受到巨大伤害的时刻,每个人都在那里寻找自己内心的东西,也互相寻找。”

In Carlsbad, Calif., Marlo Tucker, the state director for Concerned Women for America, has been meeting regularly to pray with a group of a dozen or so women about the future of the country. The group has been working with other conservative Christian women to register voters.

在加州卡尔斯巴德市,“关心美国的女性”(Concerned Women for America)组织的负责人马洛·塔克(Marlo Tucker)一直定期跟大约十几名女性一起为美国的未来祈祷。该组织一直在与其他保守的基督教女性一起进行选民登记。

“It really comes down to what do you stand for, and what do you not stand for,” she said.

“这其实归根结底是你主张什么、不主张什么的问题,”她说。

“I know this is a Christian nation, the founding fathers were influenced by the biblical values,” she said. “People are confused, they are influenced by this sensationalism, they are angry, they are frustrated. They are searching for hope again in government, they are searching for leaders who actually care for their problems.”

“我知道这是一个基督教国家,这个国家的创建者受了圣经价值观的影响,”她说。“人民感到困惑,他们受到这种哗众取宠的影响,他们感到愤怒和沮丧。他们要再次在政府中寻找希望,他们在寻找真正关心他们问题的领导人。”

Framing an entire campaign explicitly around a moral imperative — with language so rooted in Christianity — has been a standard part of the Republican playbook for decades. But it is a more unusual move for Democrats, who typically attract a more religious diverse coalition.

用如此根植于基督教的语言,给整个竞选制定一个明确围绕着道德重要性问题的框架,几十年来一直是共和党的标准做法。但对民主党人来说,这样做更为不同寻常,因为他们通常想得到一个宗教信仰更加多样化的联合体的支持。

The soul, and the soul of the body politic, is an ancient philosophical and theological concept, one of the deepest ways humans have understood their individual identity, and their life together.

灵魂,以及政体的灵魂,是一个古老的哲学和神学概念,是人类理解自己的身份认同以及共同生命的一种最深层次的方法。

In biblical Hebrew the words translated as soul, nefesh and neshama, come from a root meaning “to breathe.” The Genesis story describes God breathing into the nostrils of man, making him human.

在希伯来语的圣经中,有两个词——nefesh和neshama——翻译成灵魂,它们来此同一个词根,意思是“呼吸”。《创世纪》描述了上帝往男子鼻孔里吹一口气,把他造成人的故事。

The meaning echoes through today, in a pandemic that attacks the respiratory system and police violence against Black people crying out, “I can’t breathe.”

灵魂的这个意思一直在今天回荡着。这场大流行病袭击的是人的呼吸系统,在警察对黑人的暴力中经常听到黑人大喊“我不能呼吸”。

Homeric poets saw the soul as the thing humans risk in battle, or the thing that distinguishes life from death. Plato wrote of Socrates exploring the connection between the soul and the republic in creating the virtue of justice. For St. Augustine, who wrote “The City of God,” the city could be judged by what it loves.

荷马时代的诗人把灵魂看作人类在战斗中为之冒险的东西,或者说是区分生与死的东西。柏拉图笔下的苏格拉底在创造正义的美德时,探索了灵魂与共和政体之间的联系。在《上帝之城》(The City of God)的作者奥古斯丁眼里,可以根据之所爱来评判这座城市。

The soul of the nation is “a very ancient trope that is revived when all sorts of cultural ideas are in flux,” Eric Gregory, professor of religion at Princeton University, said. “It reveals something about the current political conversation, in times of crisis and change, a corruption of sickness.”

国家的灵魂是“一个非常古老的比喻,在各种文化观念在不断演变时,它就会复活”,普林斯顿大学宗教学教授埃里克·格雷戈里(Eric Gregory)说。“在危机与变化、病态腐败的时候,它揭示了当前政治对话中的某种东西。”

Often we stress systems and institutions, he said, but in the Trump era there has been a return to ancient concepts about the welfare of the city, where politics is about right relationships. “In ancient politics the health of society had a lot to do with the virtue of the ruler,” he said.

我们通常强调体制和制度,他说,但在特朗普时代,有一种向上帝之城福祉这个古老概念的返回,在那里,政治关乎正确的关系。“在古代政治中,社会的健康与统治者的德行有很大关系,”他说。

This year President Trump has positioned himself as the defender of a threatened Christian America under siege. “In America, we don’t turn to government to restore our souls, we put our faith in Almighty God,” he said at the Republican National Convention. Franklin Graham, one of his evangelical supporters, wrote last year that this age is “a battle for the soul of the nation,” as the original “moral and spiritual framework, which has held our nation together for 243 years, is now unraveling.”

今年,特朗普总统已将自己定位为受到围困的基督教美国的捍卫者。“在美国,我们不会求助于政府来挽回我们的灵魂,我们相信全能的上帝,”他在共和党全国代表大会上说。他的福音派支持者之一富兰克林·格雷厄姆(Franklin Graham)去年曾写道,由于“已维系了我国243年的(最初的)道德和精神框架现在正在瓦解”,这个时代是“为国家的灵魂而战的时代”。

For Mr. Biden, the soul of the nation came into focus after the deadly white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Va., three years ago. “We have to show the world America is still a beacon of light,” he wrote at the time.

对拜登来说,三年前在弗吉尼亚州夏洛茨维尔的白人民族主义集会上发生了致人死亡的事件后,国家的灵魂就成了关注的焦点。“我们必须向世界表明,美国仍是一座灯塔,”他当时写道。

From the start, his campaign message has been one of broader morality, versus specific policy or ideology. When Mr. Biden says this is a battle for the soul of the nation, he is not using it religiously but as a synonym for character, said the presidential historian Jon Meacham, who has spoken often with Mr. Biden about the soul.

他的竞选信息从一开始就是关于更广泛的道德,而不是具体的政策或意识形态。研究总统的历史学家乔恩·米查姆(Jon Meacham)说,当拜登说竞选是为国家的灵魂而战时,他并不是在宗教意义上使用这个词,而是把它作为品格的同义词。米查姆经常与拜登讨论灵魂的问题。

“People hear it as light versus dark, service versus selfishness, Trump versus the rest of the world,” he said.

“人们在这个词中听到的是光明与黑暗,为他人服务与自私自利,特朗普与世界其他国家,”他说。

“My sense is, it is much less about an Elizabeth Warren 10-point plan, or a Bernie Sanders revolution than it is a restoration of a politics that is more familiar and not so agitating,” he said. Voters “just want somebody to run the damn thing with a modicum of efficiency and sanity.”

“我的感觉是,它涉及的与其说是伊丽莎白·沃伦(Elizabeth Warren)的十点计划或伯尼·桑德斯(Bernie Sanders)的革命,不如说是恢复一种我们更熟悉的、不那么激动人心的政治,”他说。选民们“只是希望有人能以一点效率和理智来管理这个讨厌的东西”。

But even amid the lofty questions of the soul, voters have problems they want solved, and systems they want changed.

但即使在关于灵魂的崇高问题中,选民们仍有他们想要解决的问题和他们想要改变的体制。

North of Boston, Andrew DeFranza, executive director of Harborlight Community Partners, an organization that develops affordable housing, reflected on the disastrous impact of the coronavirus pandemic for many people, from essential workers to people with disabilities. The country’s soul is disoriented, adversarial and tired, he said.

在波士顿北部,开发经济适用房的海港社区伙伴组织(Harborlight Community Partners)的执行主任安德鲁·德弗兰扎(Andrew DeFranza)思索着新型冠病毒大流行对许多人的灾难性影响,从基本工作者到残疾人在内。他说,这个国家的灵魂迷失了方向,充满了对抗,而且疲惫不堪。

“I don’t think Group A is going to beat Group B and everything is going to be fine,” he said of the election. “We are eager to see political leaders at every level regardless of party demonstrate concrete, actionable plans to address these issues of inequity around health and race, and to do so in a way that is concrete and has outcomes to which they can be accountable.”

“我不认为A队打败了B队,一切就会好起来,”他提到大选时说。“我们非常想看到各个层次的政治领导人,无论党派如何,都能拿出具体的、可执行的方案来,以解决围绕着健康和种族的不平等问题,而且要用一种具体的、让他们可以被问责的方式来解决这些问题。”

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