English-Video.net comment policy

The comment field is common to all languages

Let's write in your language and use "Google Translate" together

Please refer to informative community guidelines on TED.com

TEDSalon NY2013

Parul Sehgal: An ode to envy

帕鲁尔·塞加尔: 嫉妒的颂歌

Filmed
Views 2,168,522

什么是嫉妒?是什么驱使了它?为何我们秘密地爱着它? 帕鲁尔·塞加尔说,还未有任何研究捕获了嫉妒的“寂寞,长久,冷酷的刺激”,除了小说。在她雄辩而发人深省的演讲中,塞加尔从文学作品中搜寻出些许片段,来说明嫉妒与对知识的追寻或有共同之处。

- Literary critic
Parul Sehgal is an editor for "The New York Times Book Review." Full bio

So when I was eight years old,
我八岁的时候,
00:13
a new girl came to join the class,
班里新来了个女生,
00:15
and she was so impressive,
她如此引人注目,
00:17
as the new girl always seems to be.
就像所有新来的女孩那样。
00:20
She had vast quantities of very shiny hair
她有一大把光泽的秀发
00:23
and a cute little pencil case,
一个可爱的小文具盒
00:25
super strong on state capitals,
特别擅长记周分首都名字
00:28
just a great speller.
在拼写上无人能比
00:32
And I just curdled with jealousy that year,
那一年我整个人被嫉妒笼罩
00:34
until I hatched my devious plan.
直到我想出那个邪恶的计划
00:39
So one day I stayed a little late after school,
有一天我放学后又逗留了一会儿
00:43
a little too late, and I lurked in the girls' bathroom.
其实留到挺晚的,我一直潜伏在女卫生间
00:47
When the coast was clear, I emerged,
等时机一到,我就出动了
00:51
crept into the classroom,
潜入教室
00:53
and took from my teacher's desk the grade book.
从老师桌子上拿了分数册
00:55
And then I did it.
然后我的阴谋得逞了——
00:59
I fiddled with my rival's grades,
我篡改了我对手的分数
01:01
just a little, just demoted some of those A's.
只改了一点,就是把某些A等降级了
01:04
All of those A's. (Laughter)
好吧,其实是所有的A(笑声)
01:07
And I got ready to return the book to the drawer,
当我准备把册子放回抽屉时
01:10
when hang on, some of my other classmates
不过等等!其他有些同学的分数
01:13
had appallingly good grades too.
也高得令人发指!
01:16
So, in a frenzy,
于是,由于一时的疯狂错乱
01:20
I corrected everybody's marks,
我改了所有人的分数
01:22
not imaginatively.
但方式并没什么创造性
01:24
I gave everybody a row of D's
我给了所有人一行的D等分
01:26
and I gave myself a row of A's,
然后给自己一行A
01:28
just because I was there, you know, might as well.
因为我已经在这了,倒不如做得彻底些
01:31
And I am still baffled by my behavior.
我现在还难以理解我的行为
01:34
I don't understand where the idea came from.
我不理解这主意是从哪儿冒出来的
01:40
I don't understand why I felt so great doing it.
我不懂为什么这样做时居然很爽
01:42
I felt great.
我当时感觉棒极了
01:45
I don't understand why I was never caught.
我也不明白为啥我从未被发现
01:47
I mean, it should have been so blatantly obvious.
我是说,这件事做得如此明显
01:50
I was never caught.
我居然没被发现!
01:51
But most of all, I am baffled by,
但重要的是,我为何如此在乎
01:52
why did it bother me so much
这个女孩,这个身材瘦小的小女孩
01:55
that this little girl, this tiny little girl,
那么擅长于拼写?
01:56
was so good at spelling?
这点一直让我困惑
01:58
Jealousy baffles me.
嫉妒让我困惑
02:00
It's so mysterious, and it's so pervasive.
它如此神秘,无处不在
02:02
We know babies suffer from jealousy.
我们知道婴儿们受嫉妒之苦
02:05
We know primates do. Bluebirds are actually very prone.
也知道灵长类动物会嫉妒,蓝知更鸟极易嫉妒
02:08
We know that jealousy is the number one cause
我们知道嫉妒是美国配偶谋杀的
02:11
of spousal murder in the United States.
罪魁祸首
02:15
And yet, I have never read a study
但我却从未读到一篇研究
02:18
that can parse to me its loneliness
能够解释“嫉妒”的寂寞
02:21
or its longevity or its grim thrill.
它的长久存在,或它的残酷刺激
02:24
For that, we have to go to fiction,
为了理解它,我们不得不看小说
02:29
because the novel is the lab
因为小说是一个实验室
02:31
that has studied jealousy
能研究“嫉妒”的
02:34
in every possible configuration.
所有可能的形态
02:35
In fact, I don't know if it's an exaggeration to say
其实,我不知道这样说是不是夸张:
02:37
that if we didn't have jealousy,
如果我们没有嫉妒
02:41
would we even have literature?
我们会有文学吗?
02:43
Well no faithless Helen, no "Odyssey."
如果没有不忠的海伦,就没有《奥德赛》
02:45
No jealous king, no "Arabian Nights."
没有心怀妒忌的国王,就没有《一千零一夜》
02:49
No Shakespeare.
也不会有莎士比亚
02:52
There goes high school reading lists,
我们高中都有阅读书单
02:55
because we're losing "Sound and the Fury,"
因为我们正在失去《喧嚣与骚动》
02:57
we're losing "Gatsby," "Sun Also Rises,"
正在失去《了不起的盖茨比》《太阳照常升起》
02:59
we're losing "Madame Bovary," "Anna K."
正在失去《包法利夫人》《安娜·卡列琳娜》
03:01
No jealousy, no Proust. And now, I mean,
没有嫉妒,就没有普鲁斯特。现在我是说
03:05
I know it's fashionable to say that Proust
我知道人们总爱说
03:08
has the answers to everything,
普鲁斯特什么都知道
03:09
but in the case of jealousy,
但说到嫉妒这件事
03:11
he kind of does.
他确实比较懂
03:14
This year is the centennial of his masterpiece, "In Search of Lost Time,"
今年是他的巨著《追忆似水年华》一百周年
03:16
and it's the most exhaustive study of sexual jealousy
这部作品是对性嫉妒最透彻的研究
03:20
and just regular competitiveness, my brand,
还包括我们可以想到的常见的竞争性
03:24
that we can hope to have. (Laughter)
也就是我在行的那种(笑声)
03:27
And we think about Proust, we think
当我们想到普鲁斯特
03:29
about the sentimental bits, right?
我们会想到那些情感细节对吧?
03:32
We think about a little boy trying to get to sleep.
我们想到一个小男孩正要入梦
03:33
We think about a madeleine moistened in lavender tea.
想到一块玛德琳蛋糕泡在薰衣草茶中
03:35
We forget how harsh his vision was.
我们却忘了他的眼光多么犀利
03:39
We forget how pitiless he is.
他多么冷酷无情
03:41
I mean, these are books that Virginia Woolf said
这些书在弗吉尼亚·伍尔夫看来
03:43
were tough as cat gut.
跟猫的肠子一样硬
03:45
I don't know what cat gut is,
我不知道猫肠是什么
03:48
but let's assume it's formidable.
不过我们就假设它坚如顽石吧
03:50
Let's look at why they go so well together,
我们来看看这些因素为何走在一起会如此合拍。
03:53
the novel and jealousy, jealousy and Proust.
小说和嫉妒,嫉妒和普鲁斯特
03:56
Is it something as obvious as that jealousy,
妒忌归结到人,欲望,阻碍
04:00
which boils down into person, desire, impediment,
成为一个如此牢固的叙事基础
04:03
is such a solid narrative foundation?
是不是非常明显?
04:06
I don't know. I think it cuts very close to the bone,
我不知道。我认为它极大地触动我们的敏感神经
04:11
because let's think about what happens
因为只需想想当我们嫉妒时
04:14
when we feel jealous.
会发生什么
04:16
When we feel jealous, we tell ourselves a story.
当我们感到嫉妒时,我们会给自己编个故事
04:17
We tell ourselves a story about other people's lives,
讲述一个关于他人生活的故事
04:21
and these stories make us feel terrible
这些故事让我们感觉很糟糕
04:26
because they're designed to make us feel terrible.
因为它们本来就是为了让我们难受的
04:28
As the teller of the tale and the audience,
我们自己作为故事的讲者与观众
04:31
we know just what details to include,
明确知道要加入哪些细节
04:33
to dig that knife in. Right?
从哪插入致命一刀。对吗?
04:35
Jealousy makes us all amateur novelists,
嫉妒让我们都成为业余小说家
04:39
and this is something Proust understood.
而这一点普鲁斯特能明白
04:42
In the first volume, Swann's Way,
在第一卷,《去斯万家那边》
04:44
the series of books,
这是一系列作品中的一部
04:47
Swann, one of the main characters,
斯万是主要人物之一
04:49
is thinking very fondly of his mistress
正思念他的情人
04:51
and how great she is in bed,
想着她在床上多棒
04:54
and suddenly, in the course of a few sentences,
突然,在几句话中间
04:56
and these are Proustian sentences,
还有,这些都是普鲁斯特式的句子
04:59
so they're long as rivers,
所以它们长得像河
05:01
but in the course of a few sentences,
但是就在这几句中间
05:02
he suddenly recoils and he realizes,
斯万猛然一惊,他意识到
05:04
"Hang on, everything I love about this woman,
“等等,这个女人身上我爱的一切
05:07
somebody else would love about this woman.
也会是别人可能爱上她的理由
05:10
Everything that she does that gives me pleasure
所有她所做的令我快乐的事
05:14
could be giving somebody else pleasure,
也会给别人快乐
05:17
maybe right about now."
或许这会儿就在发生呢。”
05:19
And this is the story he starts to tell himself,
这就是他开始给自己编织的故事
05:21
and from then on, Proust writes that
然后,普鲁斯特写道
05:24
every fresh charm Swann detects in his mistress,
斯万每发现他情人的一种新魅力
05:26
he adds to his "collection of instruments
就加进他“性虐密室中的
05:29
in his private torture chamber."
一系列工具”中
05:31
Now Swann and Proust, we have to admit,
现在我们不得不承认,斯万和普鲁斯特
05:35
were notoriously jealous.
两人的嫉妒心臭名昭著
05:37
You know, Proust's boyfriends would have to leave
知道吗,普鲁斯特的男朋友们若要跟他分手
05:39
the country if they wanted to break up with him.
就不得不逃离这个国家
05:41
But you don't have to be that jealous
但是你不需要那么嫉妒
05:43
to concede that it's hard work. Right?
才会承认嫉妒的确不容易,对吧?
05:46
Jealousy is exhausting.
嫉妒让人身心俱疲
05:49
It's a hungry emotion. It must be fed.
它是一种饥渴的情感,必须得到满足
05:51
And what does jealousy like?
嫉妒喜欢什么呢?
05:54
Jealousy likes information.
嫉妒喜欢信息
05:56
Jealousy likes details.
喜欢细节
05:59
Jealousy likes the vast quantities of shiny hair,
喜欢一大把光泽的秀发
06:02
the cute little pencil case.
可爱的文具盒
06:05
Jealousy likes photos.
嫉妒喜欢照片
06:07
That's why Instagram is such a hit. (Laughter)
这也是Instagram这么火的原因(笑声)
06:09
Proust actually links the language of scholarship and jealousy.
普鲁斯特其实将学术语言与嫉妒的语言相联
06:12
When Swann is in his jealous throes,
当斯万挣扎在他的嫉妒中
06:16
and suddenly he's listening at doorways
突然他就开始站在门口偷听
06:19
and bribing his mistress' servants,
开始贿赂他情人的佣人
06:21
he defends these behaviors.
他为这些行为辩护
06:23
He says, "You know, look, I know you think this is repugnant,
他说:“瞧,我知道你觉得这令人讨厌,
06:24
but it is no different
但这与诠释一篇古文
06:27
from interpreting an ancient text
或看着一座纪念碑
06:29
or looking at a monument."
没什么两样。”
06:31
He says, "They are scientific investigations
他说:“这些是科学的调查,
06:33
with real intellectual value."
有真正的知识价值。”
06:35
Proust is trying to show us that jealousy
普鲁斯特试图告诉我们
06:38
feels intolerable and makes us look absurd,
嫉妒让人难以忍受,让我们看起来荒谬
06:40
but it is, at its crux, a quest for knowledge,
但在其关键之处,是一种对知识的追求
06:43
a quest for truth, painful truth,
对令人痛心的真理的追求
06:48
and actually, where Proust is concerned,
事实上,就普鲁斯特而言
06:51
the more painful the truth, the better.
真理越令人痛苦越好
06:53
Grief, humiliation, loss:
悲伤,耻辱,丧失:
06:56
These were the avenues to wisdom for Proust.
这些都是通往普林斯特智慧的路
07:01
He says, "A woman whom we need,
他说:“一个我们需要的女人,一个让我们痛苦的女人
07:04
who makes us suffer, elicits from us
引发了我们全部的情感
07:08
a gamut of feelings far more profound and vital
远比一个让我们感兴趣的天才所能有的
07:11
than a man of genius who interests us."
更加深刻和致命。”
07:14
Is he telling us to just go and find cruel women?
他是在告诉我们去找残忍的女人吗?
07:18
No. I think he's trying to say
不。我想他是说
07:21
that jealousy reveals us to ourselves.
嫉妒让我们看清自己
07:24
And does any other emotion crack us open
有没有其他情感也能以这种特别的方式
07:27
in this particular way?
让我们发掘自己?
07:30
Does any other emotion reveal to us
其他情感会不会让我们看到
07:32
our aggression and our hideous ambition
自己的敌意,自己丑恶的企图心
07:34
and our entitlement?
和自己所应得的?
07:37
Does any other emotion teach us to look
其他情感能不能教会我们
07:40
with such peculiar intensity?
如此独特而透彻地看待世界?
07:42
Freud would write about this later.
弗洛伊德不久后就写道这一点
07:46
One day, Freud was visited
有一天,一位心神不宁的青年拜访弗洛伊德
07:48
by this very anxious young man who was consumed
这个青年认为他妻子背叛了他
07:50
with the thought of his wife cheating on him.
并因此心力憔悴
07:52
And Freud says, it's something strange about this guy,
弗洛伊德觉得这个家伙有点诡异
07:55
because he's not looking at what his wife is doing.
因为他并没有真正关注他妻子做了什么
07:57
Because she's blameless; everybody knows it.
因为他妻子是清白的,大家都知道
07:59
The poor creature is just
这个可怜的家伙只是
08:01
under suspicion for no cause.
毫无缘由地怀疑着
08:02
But he's looking for things that his wife is doing
但他却在寻找他妻子的一些
08:04
without noticing, unintentional behaviors.
无意识的、纯属无意的举动
08:07
Is she smiling too brightly here,
她是不是笑得太灿烂了
08:10
or did she accidentally brush up against a man there?
或者,她真是无意中碰到了那个男人吗?
08:12
[Freud] says that the man is becoming
弗洛伊德说这个男人正在变成
08:15
the custodian of his wife's unconscious.
他妻子无意识行为的看守人
08:18
The novel is very good on this point.
小说关于这点写得很好
08:22
The novel is very good at describing how jealousy
该小说很善于描述嫉妒是如何训练我们
08:24
trains us to look with intensity but not accuracy.
极端地看问题,却不是准确性
08:27
In fact, the more intensely jealous we are,
其实,我们的嫉妒越强烈
08:31
the more we become residents of fantasy.
我们会越频繁地幻想
08:35
And this is why, I think, jealousy doesn't
所以我认为嫉妒不仅仅
08:38
just provoke us to do violent things
引诱我们去做暴力的事
08:41
or illegal things.
或非法的事
08:43
Jealousy prompts us to behave in ways
嫉妒会促使我们的行为
08:45
that are wildly inventive.
变得异常极端
08:48
Now I'm thinking of myself at eight, I concede,
我承认我想到了八岁时候的自己
08:50
but I'm also thinking of this story I heard on the news.
但我也想到了在新闻上看到的一个故事
08:52
A 52-year-old Michigan woman was caught
密歇根一个52岁的妇女被发现
08:56
creating a fake Facebook account
注册一个虚假Facebook账户
09:00
from which she sent vile, hideous messages
并用该账户对自己发送了
09:03
to herself for a year.
一年的恶意消息
09:07
For a year. A year.
一年。整整一年。
09:11
And she was trying to frame
她还试图陷害
09:13
her ex-boyfriend's new girlfriend,
她前男友的现任女友
09:15
and I have to confess when I heard this,
我必须承认当我听到这时
09:17
I just reacted with admiration.
我的反应是对她钦佩
09:21
(Laughter)
(笑声)
09:23
Because, I mean, let's be real.
因为,我想说,大家面对现实吧
09:24
What immense, if misplaced, creativity. Right?
多么有创造力啊!只不过用错了地方,不是么?
09:27
This is something from a novel.
这事来源于小说
09:31
This is something from a Patricia Highsmith novel.
一部派翠西亚·海史密斯的小说
09:34
Now Highsmith is a particular favorite of mine.
海史密斯是我特别喜爱的作家
09:37
She is the very brilliant and bizarre woman of American letters.
她是美国文学史上非常杰出而又奇诡的一位
09:39
She's the author of "Strangers on a Train"
她是《火车怪客》和
09:43
and "The Talented Mr. Ripley,"
《天才里普利先生》的作者
09:45
books that are all about how jealousy,
这些书都是关于嫉妒如何
09:47
it muddles our minds,
让我们思维混乱
09:51
and once we're in the sphere, in that realm of jealousy,
而且一旦我们进入了嫉妒的领域
09:52
the membrane between what is and what could be
真实性和可能性之间的薄膜
09:55
can be pierced in an instant.
瞬间就被刺穿
10:01
Take Tom Ripley, her most famous character.
例如汤姆·里普利,她作品里最著名的人物
10:04
Now, Tom Ripley goes from wanting you
里普利一开始想要你
10:06
or wanting what you have
或想要你所拥有的
10:09
to being you and having what you once had,
然后又想成为你,并拥有你曾经拥有的
10:11
and you're under the floorboards,
你被关在地下室
10:14
he's answering to your name,
他应答着你的名字
10:16
he's wearing your rings,
戴着你的戒指
10:17
emptying your bank account.
花光你的银行账户
10:19
That's one way to go.
这是一条路
10:21
But what do we do? We can't go the Tom Ripley route.
但我们怎么做呢?我们不能重复里普利的路
10:23
I can't give the world D's,
我不能给这个世界带来巨大变化
10:27
as much as I would really like to, some days.
即便我愿意有一天这点能实现
10:29
And it's a pity, because we live in envious times.
这很遗憾,因为我们生活在羡慕的时代
10:32
We live in jealous times.
我们生活在嫉妒的时代
10:35
I mean, we're all good citizens of social media,
我是说,我们都是社交媒体的好公民
10:38
aren't we, where the currency is envy?
在那里嫉妒是一种潮流,不是吗?
10:40
Does the novel show us a way out? I'm not sure.
小说能给我们解决办法吗?我不确定
10:43
So let's do what characters always do when they're not sure,
那我们就来学学小说人物吧,看他们在遇到难解之事
10:48
when they are in possession of a mystery.
且不确定时是怎么做的
10:51
Let's go to 221B Baker Street
让我们回到贝克街221B号
10:53
and ask for Sherlock Holmes.
问问夏洛克·福尔摩斯
10:56
When people think of Holmes,
当人们想到福尔摩斯
10:58
they think of his nemesis being Professor Moriarty,
就会想到他的对手莫里亚蒂教授
11:00
right, this criminal mastermind.
这个犯罪天才
11:03
But I've always preferred [Inspector] Lestrade,
但我一直更喜欢警探雷斯垂德
11:06
who is the rat-faced head of Scotland Yard
一副阴险面孔的苏格兰场头子
11:08
who needs Holmes desperately,
他非常需要福尔摩斯
11:11
needs Holmes' genius, but resents him.
需要他的智慧,但憎恨他
11:13
Oh, it's so familiar to me.
哦,我对这再熟悉不过了
11:15
So Lestrade needs his help, resents him,
雷斯垂德需要他的帮助,同时憎恨他
11:17
and sort of seethes with bitterness over the course of the mysteries.
在神秘案件的侦破中,总是恼火又苦闷
11:21
But as they work together, something starts to change,
但他们一起工作使得有些事开始改变
11:24
and finally in "The Adventure of the Six Napoleons,"
最终在“六个拿破仑”的案子中
11:28
once Holmes comes in, dazzles everybody with his solution,
福尔摩斯一登场,他的智慧就让所有人惊艳
11:31
Lestrade turns to Holmes and he says,
雷斯垂德转向福尔摩斯对他说:
11:35
"We're not jealous of you, Mr. Holmes.
“福尔摩斯先生,我们不嫉妒你,
11:38
We're proud of you."
我们为你骄傲。”
11:43
And he says that there's not a man at Scotland Yard
还说,苏格兰场里没有人会不愿意
11:46
who wouldn't want to shake Sherlock Holmes' hand.
与福尔摩斯握手
11:48
It's one of the few times we see Holmes moved
这是少数几次我们看到福尔摩斯
11:51
in the mysteries, and I find it very moving,
在探案时被感动,我也很受感动
11:54
this little scene, but it's also mysterious, right?
这个情节也很神秘不是吗?
11:56
It seems to treat jealousy
这好像把嫉妒看做
11:59
as a problem of geometry, not emotion.
一个几何问题,而不是情感
12:01
You know, one minute Holmes is on the other side from Lestrade.
这一分钟,福尔摩斯站在雷斯垂德对立面
12:04
The next minute they're on the same side.
下一分钟他们站在同一边
12:06
Suddenly, Lestrade is letting himself
突然间,雷斯垂德允许自己
12:08
admire this mind that he's resented.
来仰慕这个他曾憎恶的人
12:10
Could it be so simple though?
不过难道如此简单吗?
12:13
What if jealousy really is a matter of geometry,
如果嫉妒真的是一个几何问题改怎么办,
12:15
just a matter of where we allow ourselves to stand
一个关于我们如何选择
12:18
in relation to another?
与他人关系的立场的问题?
12:22
Well, maybe then we wouldn't have to resent
或许到那时,我们不会再憎恨
12:24
somebody's excellence.
某人的才华
12:26
We could align ourselves with it.
我们会努力追赶
12:28
But I like contingency plans.
但我喜欢应急计划
12:31
So while we wait for that to happen,
所以当我们等待那一刻到来时
12:33
let us remember that we have fiction for consolation.
我们要记住,我们还有小说作为慰藉
12:36
Fiction alone demystifies jealousy.
小说就已经将嫉妒阐明
12:38
Fiction alone domesticates it,
小说将嫉妒驯化
12:41
invites it to the table.
将它请上餐桌
12:43
And look who it gathers:
看看它把谁都叫来了:
12:45
sweet Lestrade, terrifying Tom Ripley,
可爱的雷斯垂德,可怕的汤姆·里普利
12:47
crazy Swann, Marcel Proust himself.
疯狂的斯万,还有马塞尔·普鲁斯特自己
12:51
We are in excellent company.
我们有如此优秀的伙伴
12:55
Thank you.
谢谢大家
12:57
(Applause)
(掌声)
12:59
Translated by Daisy Hong
Reviewed by Ho Man Li

▲Back to top

About the speaker:

Parul Sehgal - Literary critic
Parul Sehgal is an editor for "The New York Times Book Review."

Why you should listen

"No scorn, no condescension. We read first for distraction then consolation then for company. And finally to be worthy of the company we kept," writes literary critic Parul Sehgal, whose reviews are as delicious and delightful as the books themselves. Sehgal is an editor at The New York Times Book Review. Previously the Books Editor at NPR.org and the Senior Editor at Publisher's Weekly, Sehgal is the recipient of the 2010 Nona Balakian Citation for Excellence in Reviewing and the 2008 Pan African Literary Forum’s OneWorld Prize for fiction. She lives in New York City.

More profile about the speaker
Parul Sehgal | Speaker | TED.com