英语四级六级培训课程

在过激的世界中坚守礼仪

时间:2022-5-10 作者:趣学网

As someone instilled with the British habit of automatic apology, I have often wished to be freed from the tyranny of good manners.

作为一个被灌输了英式自动道歉习惯的人,我常常渴望逃脱这种礼仪的暴政。

The mildest kerfuffle tends to trigger in me an outburst of contrition, as uncontrollable as a sneezing fit.

最温和的摩擦也总是会促进我不由自主地表达一长串愧意,就像打喷嚏一样没办法控制。

I find myself apologising in a forced high voice to the oaf who blunders into me in the street (Sorry!).

我发现自己用强迫发出的高声向那个在街口鲁莽撞上我的傻瓜道歉(对不起!)。

Strangers are addressed with extravagant levels of courtesy: Excuse me, I’m so sorry to interrupt, I wonder if you could possibly tell me the way to?.?.?.

我对陌生人开口说话的礼貌达到极其夸张的程度:不好意思,我深表歉意地打扰你,我在揣测一测你有没可能告诉我去……的路?

If hypocrisy is the English vice, then manners are its public face.

假如说伪善是英国人的恶习,那样礼仪就是它的公开面孔。

The polite patter of pleases and thank-yous with which we embroider our speech is a ritual show of courtesy, an unthinking way of advertising solicitude for the feelings of someone doing something for one.

大家用请和谢谢这类唠唠叨叨的礼貌用语来点缀大家的言辞,这是一种仪式性的礼貌展示,一种对某人为大家做了哪些事而表达好意的不假思索的方法。

The relentless gratitude that I display in such settings — thanking shop assistants as though they have saved my life with the Heimlich manoeuvre, not simply handed me a chip-and-pin reader — is a salve for a guilty conscience.

我在这种情景下所表现的无尽感激之情——感谢店员就好似他/她用哈姆立克急救法(Heimlich Maneuver)救了我一命,而不止是递给了我一部刷卡机——是对内疚良心的抚慰。

The same is true of the contrition.

对于道歉也是一样。

There is much in British history for which to be sorry — especially from those of us who are its beneficiaries — such as the slave trade and colonising large swaths of the world.

在不列颠历史上有那样多可道歉的——特别是大家这类受益者——比如奴隶贸易和对世界大片领土的殖民。

For all the reasons to be patriotic — real ale, cricket, Shakespeare, Led Zeppelin — the debit side of the ledger carries some serious bad karma.

尽管大家有大把理由爱国——real ale啤酒、板球、莎士比亚、齐柏林飞船乐队(Led Zeppelin)——但账簿的借方带有紧急的坏业力(Karma)。

It is my belief that, with every sorry a Briton utters when he or she is bumped into, a larger sorrow goes unaddressed.

我相信,英国人每一次由于被路人撞到而说对不起的背后,都有一个更大的悲哀没得到抚慰。

To paraphrase the bard, we doth apologise too much.

借用莎士比亚的话,大家道歉得太多了。

Or do we? I hope you, dear reader, will permit me to explain how my attitude towards manners has undergone a shift.

难道不是吗?亲爱的读者,我期望你能允许我向你讲解我对待礼貌的态度是怎么样发生转变的。

Having children is one reason.

一个缘由是有了小孩。

Barking rudely at my poor progeny in public to say please and thank you — behaving like precisely the brusque monster I am supposedly warning them off becoming — has brought home to me the need to live up to the sentiments being phrased.

在公共场所粗声敦促我的小孩们说请和谢谢——这行为恰恰就像我理应警告他们不要成为的那种无礼怪物——让我了解了情绪需要被如实表达。

So did a recent encounter on the London Underground.

另一个类似是什么原因我近期在伦敦地铁上的一次遭遇。

I waved an older woman to go on the stairs ahead of me with an unctuous gesture.

我用圆滑的手势向一名老妇挥了挥手,示意她在我之前上楼梯。

An onlooker thanked me so profusely, as though I were Sir Walter Raleigh flinging his cloak over the puddle for Elizabeth I to tread upon, that I was forced to interrogate the meaning of my trivial act.

结果一名旁观者一个劲地向我表达感激,就仿佛我是沃尔特.罗利爵士(Sir Walter Raleigh),把我们的斗篷脱下来盖在水坑上让伊丽莎白一世踩过去,以至于我不能不反省自己这一琐碎行为的意义。

The woman I had waved ahead wore a hijab: she was evidently Muslim.

我挥手让她先过的那名妇女包着头巾,显然是穆斯林。

My very minor display of goodwill took place in a much larger context of ill will and intolerance, and had been noted as such.

我展示的很微小的善意发生在一个充满恶意和不宽容的大背景下,也在这个背景下让人注意到。

The public realm is full of spite and bile these days.

现在公共范围充满怨恨和敌意。

Debate descends into shouting matches, with neither side prepared to concede an inch.

辩论降格为对骂,双方都不想退让一寸。

The opening up of forums for voices to be heard on social media and the internet has had the consequence of making everyone think they are cleverer than everyone else, an illogical state of affairs.

社交媒体和网络开启了被人们的声音被听到的平台,其后果是让每一个人都觉得自己比其他人更聪明,这是一种不合逻辑的状况。

One’s own ego seems so incomparably more sensitive, more perceptive, wiser and more profound than other people’s, the philosopher Bertrand Russell noted.

人的自我好像无可比拟地比其他人愈加敏锐、愈加敏锐、愈加睿智和愈加深刻。

Yet there must be very few of whom this is true, and it is not likely that oneself is one of those few.

哲学家伯特兰.罗素(Bertrand Russell)曾指出,然而这一点势必只适用于极少数人,普通人不太可能是这少数人之一。

There is nothing like viewing oneself statistically as a means both to good manners and to good morals.

要同时达到好的礼仪和道德境界,没什么比从统计学视角察看自己更有效的方法了。

Properly deployed, politeness is a kind of activism.

若能正确用,礼貌是一种能动性。

It insists that we should treat each other kindly, a word derived from kin.

它坚持需要大家友善地对待彼此,这是一个由亲人延伸而来的词。

Leonard Cohen’s death last week brought this home to me.

莱昂纳德.科恩(Leonard Cohen,见上图)近期过世提醒了我这一点。

In concerts, he serenaded his audience on bended knee and told self-deprecating jokes.

在音乐会上,他曾弯下双膝为观众吟唱,还开了些自嘲的玩笑。

Each one of the thousands observing him felt as though they were inpidually valued.

在成千上万的观众中,每个人都感到自己得到个别的珍视。

In him, good manners and good morals were as one.

在他身上,好的礼仪和道德浑然天成。

I shall do my best to follow his example.

我会尽力以他为榜样。

It is time to reclaim politeness from hypocrisy in order to wield it against rudeness.

是时候将礼貌从伪善中解放,以便用其对抗粗鲁。

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