英译中国现代散文选 | 冯亦代 忘了过去就是犯罪


Forgetting the Past Is a Crime

Today remnants of the Japanese militarists still refuse to admit the aggression against China and other Asian countries by Japanese imperialism. As a Chinese, however, I can never forget the blood debts owed by the Japanese military to the Chinese people. During the eight-year War of Resistance Against Japan, Japanese troops killed a total of more than 20 million Chinese. In the Rape of Nanking alone, they slaughtered as many as 300,000, most of them old and weak and women and children. The monstrous crimes of the Japanese military have been evidenced by hard facts. And what's more, some Japanese ex-soldiers who took part in massacres, brutal acts of burying people alive, rapes or murders, have now been aroused by conscience to confess their crimes and show repentance. Could all that be covered up or blotted out by remnants of the Japanese militarists and a handful of Japanese politicians?

During the eight years when the Japanese invaders were running amok in China, they took the lives of three of my relatives. Today, in my declining years, I can still occasionally recall their features distinctly. No matter how hard the Japanese butchers may try to gloss over their wartime savagery in the name of patriotism or loyalty to the Mikado, the people of China will never forget their past crimes.

My uncle Feng Qiangshi, a returned student from Japan, was by profession a doctor. At first, while working at Zhejiang Hospital in Hangzhou, he took great pride in doing a job aimed at healing the wounded and rescuing the dying, and regarded the medical profession as transcending national boundaries. Later, through recommendation of a Japanese teacher of his, he became a physician in charge at Qingdao Sifang Hospital affiliated to the Qingdao-Jinan Railway until after the outbreak of the July 7 Incident of 1937, an incident staged by the Japanese imperialists in initiating their all-out war of aggression against China. After the Japanese navy occupied our territory along the Qingdao-Jinan Railway, he had no choice but to resign on a pretext and return to Shanghai because he could no longer put up with the arrogance of Japanese ronin and armymen. At that time, my father happened to have been evacuated to Shanghai from Hankou, so he and uncle now both made a home in the then foreign settlement. My uncle, however, was unwilling to be a "docile subject" under foreign rule, so he set out with an old friend for Chongqing via Zhejiang and Jiangxi Provinces. But, unfortunately, while on the way through Jiangxi, he died of serious wounds during a Japanese bombing raid. I was then in Chongqing and, after receiving a letter from him, had been eagerly awaiting his arrival only to be stunned by the sad news of his tragic death. Up to now, I still don't know the details of his death, nor do I know where his bones were laid. Often a feeling of sadness will come over me when I think of him. He was among one of the early groups of returned students from Japan, but he bitterly resented the Japanese invasion of China and never expected himself to end up in a tragic death in the hands of the Japanese militarists.

My uncle had a mentally retarded daughter by his former wife. Unfortunately, she fell a victim to the bestiality of Japanese soldiers when they ransacked the city of Hangzhou. The whereabouts of the poor little girl have since remained unknown. She disappeared at the age of barely over twenty.

Another relative of mine missing in the war was Cousin Ren Yu, my aunt's only son. Having lost his father in his childhood and being physically handicapped, he had long been living in my home. After the outbreak of the war, he crossed the Qiantang River with some of his friends to join the East Zhejiang Anti-Japanese Guerrilla Detachment organized by the Communist Party of China. Since then, we have never heard from him. Presumably he has laid down his young life for his motherland.

The remanent Japanese militarists and a handful of shameless Japanese politicians have been bent on making believe that Japan was the victim of World War Ⅱ and the liberator of Asia. What a pack of lies! The death of 20 million Chinese is irrefutable evidence of barbaric atrocities committed by Japanese militarism. The remanent Japanese militarists and a handful of Japanese politicians have been trying in every possible way to deny their crimes, but the people of China and other Asian countries will never forget the untold sufferings they went through during the war. We will unremittingly condemn the brutalities of the Japanese imperialists, and, meanwhile, call on the Japanese people to see through their deceptions and keep a vigilant watch on their clamour. All that is crucial for the peace-loving people of Japan.




①“南京屠城”亦曰“南京大屠杀”,国外常称之为the rape of Nanking,其中rape作“洗劫”解。此语也可译为the massacre of Nanjing。

②“而且大都是老弱妇孺”译为most of them old and weak and women and children,是独立主格most of them being old and weak and women and children,其中省略了being。

③“有事实为证”译为have been evidenced by hard facts,其中hard一词的意思是“确实的”、“铁一般的”,为译文中的增益成分,原文虽无其词而有其意。


⑤“拿忠君爱国作挡箭牌”意即“以忠君爱国为名义(藉口)”,故译为in the name of patriotism or loyalty to the Mikado。“忠君”不宜译为loyalty to the monarch,应结合上下文把它译为loyalty to the Japanese emperor或loyalty to the Mikado,后者用外来语Mikado或tenno(天皇),更鲜明醒目。

⑥“一直到1937年七七事变以后”译为until after the outbreak of the July 7 Incident of 1937, an incident staged by the Japanese imperialists in initiating their all-out war of aggression against China,其中an incident staged by... aggression against China是译文中的增益成分,用以说明七七事变的起因,帮助外国读者更好地理解原文的意思,属释义性翻译。

⑦“日本浪人”译为Japanese ronin,其中ronin是源自日语的外来语,本指“日本失业武士”,后来指“为日本军国主义所利用的日本流氓或无业游民”。

⑧“我有时还会想到他不免凄然”译为Often a feeling of sadness will come over me when I think of him,其中come over是成语,作“开始支配”(take possession of或seize)解。

⑨“也许他已为自己的祖国献出了年轻的生命”可译为Presumably he has laid down his young life for his motherland或Most probably he has given his young life to save his own country。

⑩“日本军国主义的残余分子”除译Remnants of the Japanese militarsts外,也可译为The remanent Japanese militarists,较简短,其中形容词remanent和remaining同义。

?“我们将会一次复一次地重提日帝带给我们的暴行”意即“我们将不断地谴责日帝带给我们的暴行”,故译We will unremittingly condemn the brutalities of the Japanese imperialists,而未译We will reiterate again and again the brutalities of the Japanese imperialists。