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US author Colson Whitehead’s new novel, The Underground Railroad, was awarded a Pulitzer Prize on April 9. And it’s not hard to see why. But while it doesn’t require any great historical knowledge to be enjoyed, there are a couple of things the er should bear in mind.美国作家科尔森·怀特黑德的最新小说《地下铁道》于4月9日获得了普利策奖。而获奖原因也显而易见。读懂这本小说虽无需丰富的历史知识,但有几点读者们应当铭记。The book’s title, The Underground Railroad, is also the name for the people – some black, some white – who ran the network of secret routes and safe houses, through which slaves in America were helped to freedom.这本书的书名,《地下铁道》同时也是一些人的名字 —— 有的是黑人,有的是白人 —— 他们为帮助美国奴隶获得自由,守护着秘密的线路和安全的居所。The initial setting of the story is a slave plantation (种植园) in Georgia, in the south of the US. It is a horrific place, and every slave there wants to escape. Only a few of those who try succeed.故事一开始发生在美国南部佐治亚州的一个奴隶种植园里。那是个所有奴隶都想逃离的恐怖之地。但只有一小部分人能成功逃脱。One such is Cora, taken by slavers from West Africa. To get to her freedom in Indiana, Cora has to escape from a long list of dangerous people. Her escape gets the attention of notorious slave catcher Ridgeway, who not only wants to recover (追回) her but destroy the underground railroad at the same time.被奴隶贩子从西非带来美国的科拉便是其中之一。为了能在印第安纳州获得自由,她必须得从一长串危险人物的手下逃脱。她的逃跑引起了臭名昭著的猎奴者里奇韦的注意。他不光想追回科拉,同时还想摧毁地下铁道。The basic structure of The Underground Railroad comes from the classic “slave narrative (叙事体)” – accounts written by former slaves of their struggle to free themselves.《地下铁道》一书的基本框架来源于经典的“奴隶叙事体” —— 昔日的奴隶们为解放自我,将自己的痛苦挣扎记录了下来。But although the terrible lives of the slaves are described very believably, The Underground Railroad is not a realist novel that sticks to the facts. The story makes great use of Whitehead’s imagination. While the “Underground Railroad” is a metaphor (隐喻), Whitehead makes it an actual railway. The train travels through wormhole-style black tunnels (隧道) – like something out of science fiction – taking Cora to different realities within the US.虽然奴隶们的悲惨生活(在书中)被描绘得栩栩如生,但《地下铁道》这本书却并非是严格遵循事实的现实主义小说。怀特黑德在其中运用了大量的想象。尽管“地下铁道”一词是个隐喻,但怀特黑德却将其写成了一条真正的铁路。火车通过一节节虫洞般的漆黑隧道 —— 就像科幻小说里描写的那样 —— 将科拉带往美国境内完全不同的现实环境。The er does not expect this, because stories about slaves very rarely depart from the truth. But however inventive he allows himself to be, The Underground Railroad remains a story of slavery and an attempt to understand this awful thing whose impact is still felt in the US today.读者并没预料到这一点,因为奴隶故事很少脱离现实。但无论怀特黑德有多么地别出心裁,《地下铁道》这本书还是一个关于奴隶制的故事,试图让人们了解这个至今仍在影响美国的可怕制度。 /201704/506710Dubai International Airport, one of the world’s busiest, was forced to suspend operations for nearly six hours yesterday after an Emirates passenger jet crash-landed and burst into flames in an incident that killed a firefighter.全球最忙碌的机场之一迪拜国际机场(Dubai International Airport)昨日被迫临时关闭近6个小时,此前一架阿联酋航空(Emirates)客机在紧急迫降后起火,事故导致一名消防员殉职。Emirates said all 282 passengers and 18 crew on board were safely evacuated from the Boeing 777, which had come from the southern Indian city of Thiruvananthapuram. However, Dubai’s Civil Aviation Authority later announced a firefighter died tackling the blaze.阿联酋航空表示,机上所有282名乘客以及18名机组人员从这架波音777(Boeing 777)客机安全撤离,该机是从印度南部城市蒂鲁文南特布勒姆起飞的。然而,迪拜民航局(Civil Aviation Authority)后来宣布,一名消防员在救火时丧生。Footage posted online showed the aircraft sliding along a runway at about 12.45pm on one wing, with its engine apparently detached. A section of the right wing then appeared to explode. Fuel tanks are located in both wings and the fuselage of modern jets.网上公布的影像资料显示,下午约12时45分,这架飞机一侧机翼倾斜,沿着一条跑道滑行,发动机明显脱离,接着右翼的一段似乎发生爆炸。现代飞机的油箱位于两个机翼和机身。It was not immediately clear what caused the crash but it appeared the aircraft’s landing gear failed on landing.目前还不清楚事故原因,但该机的起落架似乎在着陆时未能打开。The airport closed immediately but reopened at 6.30pm. Dozens of departures were cancelled and incoming flights were diverted to other airports in the Gulf. There were people from 20 countries among the passengers and crew of the plane, including 226 Indian nationals, 24 from the UK and 11 ed Arab Emirates citizens.迪拜国际机场随即关闭,但在下午6时30分重新开启。很多出站航班被取消,入站航班备降海湾地区其他机场。失事飞机上的乘客和机组人员来自20个国家,包括226名印度人、24名英国人以及11名阿联酋公民。DIA is the world’s busiest international airport by passenger numbers because of the rapid growth of Emirates, which uses the airport as its worldwide hub. It is particularly important for travellers going to and from south Asia.由于阿联酋航空的业务快速增长,按乘客数量计算,迪拜国际机场是全球最忙碌的国际机场。这家航空公司把这个机场作为其全球枢纽。该机场对于进出南亚的旅客尤为重要。The 777 has generally enjoyed an excellent safety record. Its first serious crash was in January 2008 when a British Airways 777 crash-landed at London’s Heathrow airport after fuel lines to both engines froze on approach. There were no casualties.波音777总体上拥有卓越的安全记录。这种机型首次发生严重事故是在2008年1月,当时一架英国航空(British Airways)的波音777客机在伦敦希斯罗机场紧急降落,因飞机在降落时通向两个发动机的油路结冰发生堵塞。当时没有人员伤亡。In December 2013, a 777 operated by Korea’s Asiana crashed on landing at San Francisco International Airport after the pilots misjudged their approach. Two passengers died.2013年12月,由于飞行员判断失误,一架由韩亚航空(Asiana)运营的波音777客机在旧金山国际机场(San Francisco International Airport)降落时坠毁,导致两名乘客死亡。Boeing said it was thankful the aircraft had been evacuated safely. A Boeing technical team was standing by to support investigators.波音表示,对于机上人员安全撤离感到欣慰。一个波音技术团队正待命准备援事故调查人员。 /201608/458770Mosquitoes. Flies. Cockroaches. The bugs that thrive in the heat of summer vex Chinese urban dwellers just as they do in most of the world.蚊子、苍蝇、。这些在盛夏迅速繁衍的虫子给中国城市居民带来的烦恼,与它们带给世界上大多数人的并无二致。But in China, some insects are viewed not as pests, but as pets — especially if they sing for their supper.但在中国,人们不认为某些昆虫是害虫,而是把它们当作宠物——尤其是如果它们能为人们的晚餐伴唱的话。Chirping bugs like katydids, cicadas and crickets are prized throughout the country, collected by children and old men who keep them in clay vessels or bamboo cages and nourish them with grains of rice and razor-thin slices of green onion.蝈蝈、知了和蟋蟀这些会叫的昆虫,在中国各地深受人们的喜爱,孩子和老人们收集这些虫子,把它们放在瓦罐或竹笼里养起来,用米粒和切得非常细的葱叶子喂它们。Crickets are even bred for their fighting prowess, and a pedigreed champion can be worth hundreds of dollars. But typical crooners can be bought from farmers in pet markets for a few dollars.有人甚至专门培养战斗力强的蟋蟀,优良品种的冠军蟋蟀价值可达数百美元。但一般只会低声哼唱的蛐蛐儿,可以在宠物市场上从农民那里,花几美元就能买到。“Summer isn’t complete without the sound of a singing katydid in your courtyard,” said Wang Xiaoming, 68, a lifelong Beijing resident who lives in a traditional hutong neighborhood, a warren of narrow alleys that are the last bastion of many Chinese traditions.“院子里没有蝈蝈的叫声,就不是真正的夏天,”68岁的北京居民王晓明(音)说,他一辈子住在一个传统的胡同社区,这种穿插着狭窄小巷的大杂院,是许多中国传统的最后堡垒。In contrast to the soft trill of the field cricket — “the bard of the grass,” one poet calls them — cicadas and katydids produce the kind of deafening hiss that can drown out conversation.与农田蟋蟀轻声短促地叫声不同(一位诗人称它们是“草地的吟游诗人”),知了和蝈蝈会发出一种嗤嗤声,淹没人们说话的声音,震耳欲聋。The practice of collecting singing insects is said to have begun 2,000 years ago. They were sought as good-luck talismans, and later as companions for imperial concubines, who kept them in gilded cages and found solace in the plaintive chirps that echoed their own cosseted, lonely lives.据说早在2000年前,收集会唱歌昆虫的做法就已经开始了。人们找寻这种虫子,把它们当作带来好运的护身符,后来皇宫里的后妃们以这些昆虫为伴,把它们养在镀金的笼子里,昆虫发出的哀怨啁啾,对她们受宠而孤寂的生活来说,成为了一种安慰。The insects are embedded in Chinese culture. Ancient poems praise their melodious songs, and many idiomatic expressions use crickets and grasshoppers as metaphors for fertility, friendship or the passage of time.昆虫在中国文化中根深蒂固。古代诗词赞美它们的悠扬歌声,许多习惯用语里用蟋蟀和蚱蜢来比喻生育能力、友谊,以及时间的流逝。In fact, in Chinese writing, the earliest character for summer takes the form of a cicada, and the one for autumn resembles a cricket.其实,在汉字书写系统中,“夏”字最早的写法来自知了的样子,“秋”字的写法像一只蟋蟀。The keeping of insects faded during the 1950s and ’60s, when Mao Zedong waged war on traditions deemed bourgeois and retrograde. But it has been revived in recent years by aficionados like Mr. Wang, a retired professor of Chinese literature, who is worried about its future. “Young people would rather play with their phones than an insect,” he said.在20世纪5、60年代,对那些被视为属于资产阶级和落后传统的东西,毛泽东发动了战争,养虫子的做法就此逐渐消失。但近几年来,这种传统已被像王晓明这样的爱好者恢复了,王晓明是一名退休的中国文学教授,担心着自己这种爱好的未来。他说,“年轻人更喜欢玩手机,而不是玩虫子。”There is, of course, a downside to befriending singing insects: They are among the most ephemeral of pets. Most live for just a few months, and even the most pampered katydid will be silenced by the first autumn frost.当然,养唱歌的虫子也有不利的一面:它们是最短命的宠物。大多数只能活几个月,就连最受宠的蝈蝈,也会在秋季初霜后不再发声。 /201608/462365China’s 322nd richest citizen eats just one meal a day, at 7pm, which possibly explains Zhang Yue’s extreme bad temper as he sits down for an interview in the early afternoon.中国富豪中排名第322位的张跃,每天只在晚上7点吃一顿饭,这或许可以解释他在午后不久接受采访时为什么脾气那么差。Then again, his anger and impatience could also be prompted by questions about his long-thwarted ambition to build the world’s tallest skyscraper.再者,他多年来未能一偿建造世界最高楼的抱负,与此相关的问题可能也激起了他的怒火和不耐烦。“Of course we will build our sky city,” he says, referring to the 838m-tall building he wants to construct using prefabricated steel sections that fit together like Lego bricks.“我们当然要建造天空城市,”他说,指的是想要像拼装乐高(Lego)积木那样利用预制钢组件建造一座高达838米的天大楼。His plan is to build it near where we are sitting in his dimly lit office on the outskirts of Changsha, a smallish provincial Chinese city with a population of 5.3m.他计划在自己位于长沙郊区、灯光昏暗的办公室(我们就是在这里采访他)附近建造这座天大楼,长沙是一个人口530万、规模不大的省会城市。The building has been delayed since Mr Zhang broke ground in 2013, thanks to “people who intervened and made trouble, [government] leaders who were scared and other people who meddled and ruined our plans,” he says.这个项目2013年刚破土就停工了,因为“有人阻拦,(政府)领导担心,还有人从中作梗,破坏我们的计划,”他说。Chinese media say Mr Zhang’s plan for a structure 10m taller than the world’s record-holder — the Burj Khalifa in Dubai — was put on hold because of concerns about the safety of his proprietary technology, which he claimed would allow him to complete construction in only 90 days.中国媒体称,张跃建造比目前全球第一高楼——迪拜哈里法塔(Burj Khalifa)——高10米的天大楼的计划被叫停,是因为有关方面担心其专有技术的安全性。张跃声称,该技术可以让他在短短90天内盖完这座大楼。Throughout the first half of the interview, Mr Zhang barely looks up from his smartphone and when he does he closes his eyes and punctuates his speech with long pauses.采访的前半程,张跃的眼睛基本上没有离开过自己的手机,而当他抬头时,就闭目养神,长时间不吭声。Several times during our meeting he declares the interview over before ignoring his own pronouncement. But despite his rudeness it is hard not to be impressed by Mr Zhang’s vision to overhaul and dominate the global construction industry.在我们会面期间,他多次宣布采访结束,但随后他又忽略自己说的话。虽然他举止无礼,但他想要改革全球建筑行业并成为领军企业的志向很难不给你留下深刻印象。“Construction is one of the most polluting of all industries but I can make the most environmentally sound buildings for half the price and 10 times the speed of anyone else,” Mr Zhang says.“建设业是污染最严重的行业之一,但我能够以别人一半的造价、10倍的速度建成最环保的建筑,”他说。He believes his company, Broad Group, which he founded in the late 1980s making boilers and air-conditioning units, and where he remains chairman and CEO, will eventually control 30 per cent of the global construction industry with its revolutionary but largely unproven technology.他相信,凭借其革命性(但基本上未经检验)的技术,远大科技集团(Broad Group)最终将控制全球30%的建筑市场。张跃在上世纪80年代末创建了这家制造锅炉和空调设备的企业集团,目前仍担任集团董事长兼总裁。“People say I’m crazy but this does not surprise me since they said that when I first started making air conditioners too,” he says.“人们说我疯了,我不觉得奇怪,当初我开始造空调时他们也这么说,”他说。Born in Changsha in 1960, Mr Zhang was unable to attend school until he was nine years old thanks to the Cultural Revolution, which temporarily shut down most schools in the country.张跃1960年出生在湖南,由于文化大革命导致中国大多数学校都暂时停课,他直到9岁才上学。When the Cultural Revolution ended in 1976, university entrance exams were restarted and Mr Zhang was accepted to an academy to study fine art. As if to prove his education did not go to waste, Mr Zhang stops the interview, pulls out a pen and paper and sketches his interviewer, eliciting enthusiastic applause from several staff lurking in the back of his dimly lit office.1976年文革结束,高考恢复,张跃被一家专科学校录取,学习美术专业。仿佛为了明自己的专业没有荒废,他停下谈话,拿出纸笔,给我画了一张素描,灯光昏暗的办公室里坐在后面的几个工作人员对此抱以热烈的掌声。After working as a librarian and teaching drawing at primary school, Mr Zhang started a home renovations company before establishing Broad Group with his brother in 1988 to provide boilers for newly built factories.他先后做过图书管理员、美术老师,开过一家室内装潢公司,之后和自己的弟弟在1988年创立了远大集团,为新建工厂提供锅炉。“I just wanted to make money and I had no ideals,” he says. With factories springing up across the country, Broad’s industrial air conditioning units proved hugely popular and Mr Zhang soon became one of the country’s richest business people — his wealth is estimated at about .5bn.“我过去只想赚钱,没有什么理想,”他说。随着全国各地的工厂雨后春笋般出现,远大生产的工业空调设备深受市场欢迎,张跃很快便成了了中国最富有的商人之一——目前他的财富估计约为15亿美元。He was one of the first people in China to buy a private jet. At one point he personally owned seven aircraft but after an epiphany about 15 years ago he decided to protect the environment and tackle climate change instead.他是中国最早买私人喷气式飞机的人之一。他一度拥有7架飞机,但约15年前一场大彻大悟让他决定转向保护自然环境、应对气候变化问题。“Private jets are really very polluting so now I only have three,” he explains. “I was killing 16 trees every week.”“私人飞机真的对环境非常不好,所以我现在只剩三架了,”他解释说,“我过去每周的消耗相当于砍掉16棵树。”A desire to mitigate the shocking environmental degradation he saw all around him in China led him to enter the construction industry and establish a subsidiary, Broad Sustainable Building, in 2009.他希望减缓中国令人触目惊心的环境退化,正是这种渴望将他带入建筑业,并于2009年创建子公司——远大可建科技有限公司(Broad Sustainable Building)。Although his ambition to build the world’s tallest skyscraper is yet to be realised, Mr Zhang’s prefabricated steel technology has been used to construct about 30 shorter buildings.虽然建造世界最高天大楼的抱负尚未实现,但张跃的预制钢构件技术已被用来建造了约30栋不那么高的大楼。The most prominent example is a 57-storey “mini sky city” built on Mr Zhang’s Broad Town campus on the outskirts of Changsha in just 19 days last year. The time-lapse YouTube of its construction has been viewed about 2.5m times.最著名的就是在长沙郊区张跃的远大城仅用19天就建成的57层的“小天城”。一段记录这座大楼建造过程的延时拍摄视频在YouTube上的访问量达到了约250万次。The windows are four panes thick and designed not to open — polluted air from outside cannot enter and internal temperatures can be regulated more efficiently. Residents separate their rubbish into eight different categories via evacuation tubes from each floor.大楼的窗户采用四层玻璃,并设计为无法打开——外面受污染的空气进不来,楼内温度可以更高效地调节。楼内居民通过各层安装的真空管道将垃圾分为8类。The rest of the Broad Town campus is a physical manifestation of Mr Zhang’s mix of hubris and environmental evangelism.远大城的其他区域鲜明地展现了张跃性格上的狂妄和宣传环保的热情。There is a small forest where animals are allowed to roam, an organic farm to feed company employees, a 40m-high golden Egyptian pyramid, a scale replica of a Versailles-like palace, and dozens of statues of historical figures from Abraham Lincoln to Plato.这里有一片动物们可以游荡其中的小树林、一个为公司员工提供食材的有机农场、一座40米高的金色埃及金字塔、一处仿凡尔赛宫建筑以及亚伯拉罕.林肯(Abraham Lincoln)、柏拉图(Plato)等许多历史人物的雕像。A bronze statue of Napoleon on horseback stands in front of the faux palace and Mr Zhang, who is said to be the same height as the French autocrat, is fond of ing him in corporate handbooks.一尊马背上的拿破仑(Napoleon)铜像矗立在山寨凡尔赛宫前,张跃——据称与这位法国独裁者身高相仿——非常喜欢在公司手册中引用拿破仑的话。All Broad Group job applicants must undergo a week-long military-style boot camp and memorise Mr Zhang’s code of 110 rules, including one requiring employees to “love Broad Group”. Another orders them to brush their teeth twice day.所有远大集团的求职者必须经受为期一周的军事化训练,还要记住张跃撰写的包含110条规定的员工守则,其中一条要求员工“热爱远大”。还有一条规定要求他们每日刷两次牙。Mr Zhang makes no apologies for his uncompromising corporate culture.张跃并未对自己严厉的企业文化进行辩解。“This is my personality,” he says.“我的性格就是这样,”他说。“In a very short time I became a very top entrepreneur making air conditioning units and I perfected air conditioning. Later I decided I needed to perfect the environment. You can’t do this without being a perfectionist.”“在非常短的时间内,我成为了一个制造空调设备的非常顶尖的企业家,我完善了空调系统。后来,我决定,我需要去改善环境。如果不是一个完美主义者,你就做不到这一点。” /201611/479996

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