hedgehog对《River Town》的笔记(13)

hedgehog
hedgehog (靡不有初,鲜克有终)

读过 River Town

River Town
  • 书名: River Town
  • 作者: Peter Hessler
  • 副标题: Two Years On The Yangtze
  • 页数: 416
  • 出版社: Harper
  • 出版年: 2001-1-23
  • 第9页
    Of course, none of it was that simple. I was a Peace Corps volunteer but I wasn't; China was Communist but it wasn't. Nothing was quite what it seemed, and that was how life went in thoses early days, everything uncertain and half a step off.
    2012-07-31 04:07:58 回应
  • 第24页
    In fact I was glad to be at a lower-level school, because there was an unpolished quality to the students that I had never seen before. Everywhere else I had beem, education rounded off the edge much earlier - in America, even high school students were cagey, cynical, suspicious. Education was a game and students played it, but in Fuling they hadn't yet reached that point. Their intelligence was still raw - it smelled of the countryside, of sweat and muck, of glimpses of the same sort of hard beauty that surrounded the teachers college, where the campus ended in terraced fields that ran steep up the side of Raise the Flag Mountain.
    2012-08-02 04:39:39 回应
  • 第131页
    She smiled as she spoke, but it was the Chinese smile that served as a mask against deeper feelings. Those smiles could hide many emotions - embarrassment, anger, sadness. When the poeple smile like that, it was as if all of the emotion was wound tightly and displaced; sometimes you caught a glimpse of it in the eyes, or at the corner of a mouth, or perhaps in a single wrinkle streching sadly across a forehead. Anne had high cheekbones and deep dimples, and today I thought I saw a trace of her sadness wavering along her cheek.
    2012-08-14 02:57:12 回应
  • 第142页
    Sometimes that was how I felt about democracy - regardless of whether it was the Chinese or the American government claiming to be empowered by the common man, part of it was dishonest wordplay.
    Living in Fuling taught me that democracy is as much a matter of tolerance as of choice. After talking with Teacher Kong, I thought about my own participation in America's system, and I realized just how shallow my involvement had been. I had never cast a vote that truly made a difference, and I never would; elections are not decided by a single tally. Nor had I ever played a major role in organizing a demonstration, and I had yet to react to an injustice by writing letters or altering the press. Essentially, this was the extent of my role in American democracy: casting meaningless votes and accepting the results. But still I didn't feel particularly powerless, because I knew that my role resulted from my own decisions, and I could always increse my involvement if something struck me as intolerable. In the past I had simply chosen not to be involved, and this choice was just as democratic as nay positive act.
    2012-08-15 05:06:34 回应
  • 第217页
    Everybody grumbled but nobody resisted; in China you tolerated the bad behavior of the people who were employed to serve you, the same way you tolerated bullies and all other hassles of that sort.
    2012-08-21 03:57:32 回应
  • 第259页
    Chairman Mao hated Money....
    Mao was the father of New China, and perhaps it was inreaction to him that the Chinese nowadays spent so much time thinking and talking about money. Or maybe it was simply that now they had more than ever before, with more ways to earn and spend it, and yet with all that new money it still wasn't enough. Everywhere in Fuling that was what people talked about.
    2012-08-25 05:33:39 回应
  • 第281页
    下面这几段写得太棒了
    Everything was further complicated by the influence of traditional collective thinking. The longer I lived in Fuling, the more I was struck by the view of the individual - in my opinion, this was the biggest difference between what I had known in the West and what I saw in Sichuan. For people in Fuling, the sense of self seemed largely external; you were identified by the way that others viewed you. That had always been the goal of Confucianism, which define the individual's place strictly in relation to the people around her; she was somebody's daughter, somebody else's wife, somebody else's mother; and each role had its specific obligations. This was an excellent way to preserve social harmony, but onece that harmony was broken the lack of self-identify made it difficult to put things back together again........
    Group thought could a vicious circle - your self-identity came from the group, which was respected even if it became deranged, and thus your sense of self could fall apart instantly. There wasn't a traditional anchoring one's identity to a fixed set of values regardless of what others thought, and in certain periods this had contributed to the country's disasters.....
    Group mentality seemed particularly troublesome for women, who lived under a strange combination of strictness and uncertainty. When compared to men, their traditional role in Chinese society was much more narrow, but the new economy rulsted in frighteningly vague expectations and demands. On the whole these changes were undoubtedly positive, but they were happending so quickly that freedom could easily look overwhelming to somebody who was caught in the middle.
    2012-08-26 04:50:29 回应
  • 第297页
    The first year I taught in Fuling, I had given my students a vacation assignment to write about what they did on the day of the holiday, because I was interested in learning about Chinese traditions. The second year I did not repeat that assignment. It was depressing to read about a holiday older than Christmas whose celebration seemed to have been refined to gazing at televised floor shows.
    2012-08-28 04:04:11 回应
  • 第305页
    Everywhere I went, children were crying and throwing fist, and everywhere their parents were buying them whatever they wanted. Like other Chinese holidays, the Spring Festival at moments to be a celebration of the social effects of the one-child policy
    2012-08-28 04:29:59 回应
  • 第351页
    They were like farmers anywhere - pessimistic and angry at the weather. I often heard similar comments in the relatively affluent rural suburbs of Fuling, where I sensed that these complaints were a form humility that masked contentment. And perhapss it was a sort of superstition, a way of guarding against the dangers of pride. Traditionally the Chinese did the same thing with children, trying not to lavish too much praise on a child because the attention could draw bad luck.
    2012-08-31 02:30:36 回应
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