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自分が読んで興味深く感じた英文記事を中心に取り上げる予定です

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坂茂さんがNew Yorkerに登場

 


Profiles AUGUST 11, 2014 ISSUE
Paper Palaces
The architect of the dispossessed meets the one per cent.
BY DANA GOODYEAR

雑誌New Yorkerの最新号で、今年建築界で最も権威のある賞Pritzker Prizeを受賞した坂茂さんが取り上げられていました。今週末開館となるAspen Art Museumを中心に、坂茂さんの経歴全般をカバーしています。記事の中で、Aspen—a city, the saying goes, where the millionaires have been driven out by billionairesとあったように、Aspenは大金持ちの避暑地なんでしょうね。毎年雑誌AtlanticなどがAspen Idea Festivalを開いているところでもあります。



最初の動画でも述べていることですが、坂さんの特徴は一部の金持ちのためではない一般大衆のための建築を目指しているところですね。The architect of the dispossessed meets the one per cent.という副題はそこからきています。One percentはここでは人口の1%の大金持ちのことです。

“Architects mostly work for privileged people, people who have money and power,” Ban said recently. “Power and money are invisible, so people hire us to visualize their power and money by making monumental architecture. I love to make monuments, too, but I thought perhaps we can use our experience and knowledge more for the general public, even for those who have lost their houses in natural disasters.” One employee on the Tokyo staff devotes the majority of his time to disaster-relief projects, and others pitch in as needed. Ban claims not to worry about balancing the books. (“That’s why he has partners,” Maltz says.) The two sides of Ban’s practice are symbiotic. His commissions pay for his pro-bono work, and the pro bono serves both as a testing ground and as a powerful marketing tool. “He is both deeply concerned about humanity and also sees it as a way to uniquely advance his career,” Hawkinson said. “They help each other.”

建築界で異端であることは下記の部分からも伺えます。“I do not know the meaning of ‘Green Architect.’ I have no interest in ‘Green,’ ‘Eco,’ and ‘Environmentally Friendly.’ I just hate wasting things.”と環境に配慮した建築さえも不十分とするところにすごみを感じます。

Toyo Ito, another Japanese Pritzker winner, wrote in an e-mail, “Many architects in the world today are competing only for the beauty of the architectural form. Ban-san’s attempt is a counter-punch against these architects, and I think he represents a new model of a ‘socially responsible’ architect.” To many in the field, though, Ban represents a conundrum. “I don’t know exactly what to do with him, really,” Kenneth Frampton, a noted architecture critic who teaches at Columbia, told me. “Underlying his work is an idea of a minimalism based on the notion of energy and ecological sustainability. He’s connected to the Japanese tradition, but also very influenced by America and a Yankee-tinker attitude, which was Buckminster Fuller’s approach. It’s a value-free technical performance, detached from anything you could call a critical cultural position.” Like Fuller, who was obsessed by structural and engineering questions but indifferent to the dialogue around aesthetics, Ban labors at his private puzzles and patents his inventions. Whatever meanings may be embedded in his materials—globalism, consumerism, thrift—he will not be the one to tease them out. “I am not reflecting on it,” he says. Another time, he wrote to me, “I do not know the meaning of ‘Green Architect.’ I have no interest in ‘Green,’ ‘Eco,’ and ‘Environmentally Friendly.’ I just hate wasting things.”

まあ、建築に興味のない方にはピンとこないかもしれないので、一般向けエピソードを。ハリケーンカトリーナに被災地ではブラッドピットが設立した被災者支援団体が坂茂さんに建築の依頼をしたそうです。セレブが関わるとすごさを実感できますね(苦笑)

Several weeks ago, I visited the single unit that Ban built in New Orleans’s Lower Ninth Ward, in collaboration with Brad Pitt’s Make It Right Foundation, after Hurricane Katrina. The house, a taupe-colored box with a triangular roof, on eight-foot concrete piles, was missing its front porch and the staircase leading up to the front door, owing to rot. I entered the back way, which meant passing underneath the house, where a network of vines dangling limply from a trellis attempted to establish themselves as a green wall, and up a steep flight of stairs to a sliding glass door. The house belonged to Ann Parfaite, a seventy-two-year-old retired financial-aid administrator, who was inside serving bread with butter and syrup to her grandchildren. Her old house, where she’d lived since 1966, had entirely washed away. She had paid a hundred and fifty thousand dollars—partly covered by her insurance money and a forgivable loan from Make It Right—for the new one. “People say, ‘You live in one of the Brad Pitt houses,’ ” she said. “I say, ‘No, I live in my own house.’ ”

この記事では坂さんの生い立ちから建築を学び始めたころも紹介しています。Cooper Unionというところで学んだようです。“I felt that it was important culturally for them to know how important Proust was to thinking about space,”とプルーストの『失われた時を求めて』を読んだエピソードのところです。英語教師でも読んだ人がほとんどいない小説なのに。。。(滝汗)

サイトの説明
1859年創立。創立者ペーター・クーパーの理念である「教育の無償提供」を実践し続けている名門私立大学。扱うのは建築、美術、工学の3分野で、いずれも全米トップレベルの質、教授陣、施設を誇る。ニューヨーク・マンハッタンに位置するキャンパスは五つのビルからなり、いわゆるキャンパスにあたる敷地はない。人種・性別・宗教による差別を一切排除し、学費は全額奨学金で賄われるため、学生の負担金はゼロ。大学の運営は卒業生からの寄付金で成り立っている。ジョン・ヘイダック(建築家)、坂茂(建築家)、トム・ウェッセルマン(ポップアーティスト)などが学んだほか、トーマス・エジソンが若いころ、ここで化学の授業を受けたことでも知られる

The Cooper Union curriculum was rooted in the rational modernism of Le Corbusier and Mies van der Rohe, with flourishes of Dada. One seminar consisted of Peter Eisenman reading “In Search of Lost Time” aloud to the students for several hours at a time. “I felt that it was important culturally for them to know how important Proust was to thinking about space,” Eisenman, who now teaches at Yale, told me. Hejduk asked students to design a house in the mood of Juan Gris, and to study a piece of fruit over the course of a semester, as it decayed. A self-styled poet, Hejduk also insisted that architecture students take a poetry workshop. Ban says he was often asked to read his poems aloud, as examples for the class. “Surprisingly, I was very good,” he told me. “My poems were always short.” At night, he tutored his friends in structural engineering. One of them was another transfer student, Dean Maltz, who later became his New York partner. “He just understood it intuitively, better than any architect in our class,” Maltz told me. “He’s very calculating—I don’t mean strategically calculating, though he is—but calculations are what goes on in his head.”

7000語の長い記事ですが、このような長さの記事を読めるようになることは、英検1級後の一つの学習目標にしていいと思います。これくらいの長さだとより深くトピックについて学ぶことができます。
 

(続)20周年に何を見出すか

 
政治家は功績を誇示するのが常とすれば研究者は問題点を指摘するのが仕事と言えるでしょうか。以前も紹介したLinda Melvernさんは国際社会はルワンダから何も学んでいないと辛口です。上記はルワンダで事件前に国連に危機的状況を訴えていたロメオダレール上院議員が中央アフリカ共和国への支援を訴えている動画です。

Twenty years after the genocide, we have learnt nothing from Rwanda
The situation in the Central African Republic is dangerously similar to that of Rwanda in 1994. This time, the west must heed the warnings
Linda Melvern
The Guardian, Friday 4 April 2014 20.00 BST

When Lieutenant General Roméo Dallaire, the former UN force commander in Rwanda and now a Canadian senator, calls once again for urgent action to protect civilians at risk in an impoverished African country, one would expect the whole world to listen, particularly on the eve of the 20th anniversary of the Rwandan genocide. You just could not divorce, he said, what is happening in the Central African Republic with what happened in Rwanda in 1994. "We've actually established a damn pecking order and the sub-Saharan black African – yes we're interested but it just doesn't count enough to spill our blood, to get embroiled in something complex that will need longer-term stability and influence," says Dallaire.

The similarities do seem impossible to ignore.

Melvernさんの非難は国際社会に向けられ、当時の状況を検証しようともしないし、不作為を反省もしていないと手厳しく批判しています。

The 20th commemoration of the genocide sees fine words spoken by all and it seems timely to reflect on why Rwanda was so quickly abandoned to its fate in 1994. There has never been a satisfactory explanation for the indifference over Rwanda. Western governments – the US, UK, Belgium, France – continue to withhold a wealth of information about events. Neither the US nor the UK, two permanent members of the UN security council, has ever answered accusations of a failure to abide by obligations under the 1948 genocide convention, nor revealed the information on which their decisions were based. The failure to critically examine the role of ministers and officials has further encouraged the sort of secretive and unaccountable decision-making that will no doubt shroud the decision-makers today and those who sit and read the cables.

With no official inquiry by either the US or the UK, blame for inaction over the genocide has simply slipped away from the officials and politicians responsible. This might be a suitable time to find out why the UK government was so determined in the security council that Dallaire's UN peacekeepers be withdrawn from Rwanda, leaving behind a "token force" in order to "appease public opinion" – not to protect civilians but to try to negotiate a ceasefire in the civil war.



Shake Hands with the Devil: The Failure of Humanity in RwandaShake Hands with the Devil: The Failure of Humanity in Rwanda
(2004/12/21)
Romeo Dallaire

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図書館にあったので当時の司令官ロメオダレールさんのShake Hands with the Devilを読み始めました。帰国後はPTSDに苦しんだそうですが、どうやら彼だけでなく当時参加したカナダ兵士も同じ苦しみを味わっているそうです。

Rwanda genocide: Canadian soldiers struggle with psychological legacy
20 years after massacre, Canadians who tried to protect Rwandans struggle with horrific memories
By Sylvia Thomson, CBC News

It's been 20 years since the Rwandan genocide, but for the Canadian soldiers who were there as part of a doomed UN peacekeeping mission, the sights, sounds and smells have not faded from memory.
“There was an overpowering stench of death,” said Major Brent Beardsley, who served alongside General Romeo Dallaire (both are now retired).

 

(自分メモ)国連憲章7章に書いてあること

 
シリアの化学兵器に関する決議案で国連憲章7章に触れる部分は以下でした。

21. Decides, in the event of non-compliance with this resolution, including unauthorized transfer of chemical weapons, or any use of chemical weapons by anyone in the Syrian Arab Republic, to impose measures under Chapter VII of the United Nations Charter;

普通に読むと決議を順守しないと、措置を取るという感じですが、そこは外交の世界、いろいろとあるようです。ロシアの強い意向で、順守しない=対抗措置とはならないようで、順守しない場合別の安保理決議が必要なようです。英国のテレグラフによる記事からの抜粋です。

The resolution does not allow for automatic punitive action in the form of military strikes or sanctions if Syria does not comply. At Russia’s insistence, Friday’s resolution makes clear a second council decision would be needed for that.

But Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said the Security Council would be prepared to take punitive steps in the event of confirmed violations of the resolution by either side in the conflict.
“The United Nations Security Council ... will stand ready to take action under Chapter 7 of the (U.N.) charter, quite clearly,” he said.
A major sticking point to the resolution had been Russia’s opposition to writing it under Chapter 7 of the U.N. charter, which covers the council’s authority to enforce its decisions with measures such as sanctions or military force.

Russia has made clear, however, it would not support the use of force against Assad’s government, a major importer of Russian weapons.

同じく英国のガーディアンも確認しておきます。こちらもAny such measures would require a further resolution.と説明しています。

The biggest question mark over the plan is what happens if Syria is caught cheating or dragging its heels. The west lost the battle to have the UN resolution implementing the plan under chapter seven of the UN charter, involving automatic punitive measures. Any such measures would require a further resolution.

But a senior US administration ­official argued that the wording of the draft ­resolution due to be voted on was tough, and implied serious consequences for noncompliance. "I think you'll see in the final language that, in fact, for the first time, we have said that the use of chemical weapons is a threat to international peace and security," the official said.

国連憲章7章についてはどちらも簡単な説明を加えてくれています。

(テレグラフ)Chapter 7 of the U.N. charter, which covers the council’s authority to enforce its decisions with measures such as sanctions or military force.

(ガーディアン)chapter seven of the UN charter, involving automatic punitive measures.

しかしせっかくだから、国連憲章も確認しておきます。

CHAPTER VII: ACTION WITH RESPECT TO THREATS TO THE PEACE, BREACHES OF THE PEACE, AND ACTS OF AGGRESSION
第7章 平和に対する脅威、平和の破壊及び侵略行為に関する行動

measures such as sanctions or military forceと説明がありましたが、41条がsanctions、42条がmilitary forceについて書いてあり、段階的に措置をとるようになっているのですね。

Article 41
The Security Council may decide what measures not involving the use of armed force are to be employed to give effect to its decisions, and it may call upon the Members of the United Nations to apply such measures. These may include complete or partial interruption of economic relations and of rail, sea, air, postal, telegraphic, radio, and other means of communication, and the severance of diplomatic relations.
安全保障理事会は、その決定を実施するために、兵力の使用を伴わないいかなる措置を使用すべきかを決定することができ、且つ、この措置を適用するように国際連合加盟国に要請することができる。この措置は、経済関係及び鉄道、航海、航空、郵便、電信、無線通信その他の運輸通信の手段の全部又は一部の中断並びに外交関係の断絶を含むことができる。
Article 42
Should the Security Council consider that measures provided for in Article 41 would be inadequate or have proved to be inadequate, it may take such action by air, sea, or land forces as may be necessary to maintain or restore international peace and security. Such action may include demonstrations, blockade, and other operations by air, sea, or land forces of Members of the United Nations.
安全保障理事会は、第41条に定める措置では不充分であろうと認め、又は不充分なことが判明したと認めるときは、国際の平和及び安全の維持又は回復に必要な空軍、海軍または陸軍の行動をとることができる。この行動は、国際連合加盟国の空軍、海軍又は陸軍による示威、封鎖その他の行動を含むことができる。


英語と日本語は以下のサイトから引用させていただきました。
(英語)http://www.un.org/en/documents/charter/chapter7.shtml
(日本語)http://www.unic.or.jp/info/un/charter/text_japanese/

以下が7章全文です。

CHAPTER VII: ACTION WITH RESPECT TO THREATS TO THE PEACE, BREACHES OF THE PEACE, AND ACTS OF AGGRESSION
第7章 平和に対する脅威、平和の破壊及び侵略行為に関する行動
Article 39
The Security Council shall determine the existence of any threat to the peace, breach of the peace, or act of aggression and shall make recommendations, or decide what measures shall be taken in accordance with Articles 41 and 42, to maintain or restore international peace and security.
安全保障理事会は、平和に対する脅威、平和の破壊又は侵略行為の存在を決定し、並びに、国際の平和及び安全を維持し又は回復するために、勧告をし、又は第41条及び第42条に従っていかなる措置をとるかを決定する。
Article 40
In order to prevent an aggravation of the situation, the Security Council may, before making the recommendations or deciding upon the measures provided for in Article 39, call upon the parties concerned to comply with such provisional measures as it deems necessary or desirable. Such provisional measures shall be without prejudice to the rights, claims, or position of the parties concerned. The Security Council shall duly take account of failure to comply with such provisional measures.
事態の悪化を防ぐため、第39条の規定により勧告をし、又は措置を決定する前に、安全保障理事会は、必要又は望ましいと認める暫定措置に従うように関係当事者に要請することができる。この暫定措置は、関係当事者の権利、請求権又は地位を害するものではない。安全保障理事会は、関係当時者がこの暫定措置に従わなかったときは、そのことに妥当な考慮を払わなければならない。

Article 41
The Security Council may decide what measures not involving the use of armed force are to be employed to give effect to its decisions, and it may call upon the Members of the United Nations to apply such measures. These may include complete or partial interruption of economic relations and of rail, sea, air, postal, telegraphic, radio, and other means of communication, and the severance of diplomatic relations.
安全保障理事会は、その決定を実施するために、兵力の使用を伴わないいかなる措置を使用すべきかを決定することができ、且つ、この措置を適用するように国際連合加盟国に要請することができる。この措置は、経済関係及び鉄道、航海、航空、郵便、電信、無線通信その他の運輸通信の手段の全部又は一部の中断並びに外交関係の断絶を含むことができる。
Article 42
Should the Security Council consider that measures provided for in Article 41 would be inadequate or have proved to be inadequate, it may take such action by air, sea, or land forces as may be necessary to maintain or restore international peace and security. Such action may include demonstrations, blockade, and other operations by air, sea, or land forces of Members of the United Nations.
安全保障理事会は、第41条に定める措置では不充分であろうと認め、又は不充分なことが判明したと認めるときは、国際の平和及び安全の維持又は回復に必要な空軍、海軍または陸軍の行動をとることができる。この行動は、国際連合加盟国の空軍、海軍又は陸軍による示威、封鎖その他の行動を含むことができる。

Article 43
1. All Members of the United Nations, in order to contribute to the maintenance of international peace and security, undertake to make available to the Security Council, on its call and in accordance with a special agreement or agreements, armed forces, assistance, and facilities, including rights of passage, necessary for the purpose of maintaining international peace and security.
国際の平和及び安全の維持に貢献するため、すべての国際連合加盟国は、安全保障理事会の要請に基き且つ1又は2以上の特別協定に従って、国際の平和及び安全の維持に必要な兵力、援助及び便益を安全保障理事会に利用させることを約束する。この便益には、通過の権利が含まれる。
2. Such agreement or agreements shall govern the numbers and types of forces, their degree of readiness and general location, and the nature of the facilities and assistance to be provided.
前記の協定は、兵力の数及び種類、その出動準備程度及び一般的配置並びに提供されるべき便益及び援助の性質を規定する。

3. The agreement or agreements shall be negotiated as soon as possible on the initiative of the Security Council. They shall be concluded between the Security Council and Members or between the Security Council and groups of Members and shall be subject to ratification by the signatory states in accordance with their respective constitutional processes.
前記の協定は、安全保障理事会の発議によって、なるべくすみやかに交渉する。この協定は、安全保障理事会と加盟国との間又は安全保障理事会と加盟国群との間に締結され、且つ、署名国によって各自の憲法上の手続に従って批准されなければならない。

Article 44
When the Security Council has decided to use force it shall, before calling upon a Member not represented on it to provide armed forces in fulfilment of the obligations assumed under Article 43, invite that Member, if the Member so desires, to participate in the decisions of the Security Council concerning the employment of contingents of that Member's armed forces.
安全保障理事会は、兵力を用いることに決定したときは、理事会に代表されていない加盟国に対して第43条に基いて負った義務の履行として兵力を提供するように要請する前に、その加盟国が希望すれば、その加盟国の兵力中の割当部隊の使用に関する安全保障理事会の決定に参加するようにその加盟国を勧誘しなければならない。

Article 45
In order to enable the United Nations to take urgent military measures, Members shall hold immediately available national air-force contingents for combined international enforcement action. The strength and degree of readiness of these contingents and plans for their combined action shall be determined within the limits laid down in the special agreement or agreements referred to in Article 43, by the Security Council with the assistance of the Military Staff Committee.
国際連合が緊急の軍事措置をとることができるようにするために、加盟国は、合同の国際的強制行動のため国内空軍割当部隊を直ちに利用に供することができるように保持しなければならない。これらの割当部隊の数量及び出動準備程度並びにその合同行動の計画は、第43条に掲げる1又は2以上の特別協定の定める範囲内で、軍事参謀委員会の援助を得て安全保障理事会が決定する。

Article 46
Plans for the application of armed force shall be made by the Security Council with the assistance of the Military Staff Committee.
兵力使用の計画は、軍事参謀委員会の援助を得て安全保障理事会が作成する。

Article 47
1. There shall be established a Military Staff Committee to advise and assist the Security Council on all questions relating to the Security Council's military requirements for the maintenance of international peace and security, the employment and command of forces placed at its disposal, the regulation of armaments, and possible disarmament.
国際の平和及び安全の維持のための安全保障理事会の軍事的要求、理事会の自由に任された兵力の使用及び指揮、軍備規制並びに可能な軍備縮小に関するすべての問題について理事会に助言及び援助を与えるために、軍事参謀委員会を設ける。

2. The Military Staff Committee shall consist of the Chiefs of Staff of the permanent members of the Security Council or their representatives. Any Member of the United Nations not permanently represented on the Committee shall be invited by the Committee to be associated with it when the efficient discharge of the Committee's responsibilities requires the participation of that Member in its work.
軍事参謀委員会は、安全保障理事会の常任理事国の参謀総長又はその代表者で構成する。この委員会に常任委員として代表されていない国際連合加盟国は、委員会の責任の有効な遂行のため委員会の事業へのその国の参加が必要であるときは、委員会によってこれと提携するように勧誘されなければならない。

3. The Military Staff Committee shall be responsible under the Security Council for the strategic direction of any armed forces placed at the disposal of the Security Council. Questions relating to the command of such forces shall be worked out subsequently.
軍事参謀委員会は、安全保障理事会の下で、理事会の自由に任された兵力の戦略的指導について責任を負う。この兵力の指揮に関する問題は、後に解決する。

4. The Military Staff Committee, with the authorization of the Security Council and after consultation with appropriate regional agencies, may establish regional sub-committees.
軍事参謀委員会は、安全保障理事会の許可を得て、且つ、適当な地域的機関と協議した後に、地域的小委員会を設けることができる。

Article 48
1. The action required to carry out the decisions of the Security Council for the maintenance of international peace and security shall be taken by all the Members of the United Nations or by some of them, as the Security Council may determine.
国際の平和及び安全の維持のための安全保障理事会の決定を履行するのに必要な行動は、安全保障理事会が定めるところに従って国際連合加盟国の全部または一部によってとられる。

2. Such decisions shall be carried out by the Members of the United Nations directly and through their action in the appropriate international agencies of which they are members.
前記の決定は、国際連合加盟国によって直接に、また、国際連合加盟国が参加している適当な国際機関におけるこの加盟国の行動によって履行される。

Article 49
The Members of the United Nations shall join in affording mutual assistance in carrying out the measures decided upon by the Security Council.
国際連合加盟国は、安全保障理事会が決定した措置を履行するに当って、共同して相互援助を与えなければならない。

Article 50
If preventive or enforcement measures against any state are taken by the Security Council, any other state, whether a Member of the United Nations or not, which finds itself confronted with special economic problems arising from the carrying out of those measures shall have the right to consult the Security Council with regard to a solution of those problems.
安全保障理事会がある国に対して防止措置又は強制措置をとったときは、他の国でこの措置の履行から生ずる特別の経済問題に自国が当面したと認めるものは、国際連合加盟国であるかどうかを問わず、この問題の解決について安全保障理事会と協議する権利を有する。

Article 51
Nothing in the present Charter shall impair the inherent right of individual or collective self-defence if an armed attack occurs against a Member of the United Nations, until the Security Council has taken measures necessary to maintain international peace and security. Measures taken by Members in the exercise of this right of self-defence shall be immediately reported to the Security Council and shall not in any way affect the authority and responsibility of the Security Council under the present Charter to take at any time such action as it deems necessary in order to maintain or restore international peace and security.
この憲章のいかなる規定も、国際連合加盟国に対して武力攻撃が発生した場合には、安全保障理事会が国際の平和及び安全の維持に必要な措置をとるまでの間、個別的又は集団的自衛の固有の権利を害するものではない。この自衛権の行使に当って加盟国がとった措置は、直ちに安全保障理事会に報告しなければならない。また、この措置は、安全保障理事会が国際の平和及び安全の維持または回復のために必要と認める行動をいつでもとるこの憲章に基く権能及び責任に対しては、いかなる影響も及ぼすものではない。
 

最高の自分撮り写真とは?

 
Japan Timesの土曜日は英国のObserverの長めの記事を紹介してくれています。今回はselfieという自分撮りについて、いろいろと考察しているエッセイでした。そこで、selfieの究極形として宇宙飛行士の星出彰彦さんによる写真が紹介されていました。英語ではAki Hoshideとなっています。覚えやすいようにAkiにしているのかもしれませんね。

The trend has even reached outer space: in December, Japanese astronaut Aki Hoshide took what might be the greatest selfie of all time at the International Space Station. The resulting image encompassed the sun, the Earth, two portions of a robotic arm, a spacesuit and the deep darkness of the infinite beyond.

英検1級や国連英検特A級を目指す方は、このような作者自身の考えを伝えるエッセイを読んだ方がいいかもしれません。3000語近い長い記事ですが、それなりの考えを伝えるには或る程度の長さがあった方が理解しやすいと思います。

How selfies became a global phenomenon
The smartphone self-portrait or 'selfie' has established itself a form of self-expression. Is it a harmless fad or a dangerous sign of western society's growing narcissism?
Elizabeth Day
The Observer, Sunday 14 July 2013

Words checked = [2772]
Words in Oxford 3000™ = [84%]

導入部はSelfie(自分撮り)のやり方の説明です。少し長いですが引用させてもらいます。手順を説明しているので、段階を追って淡々と説明しているのが分かります。「この英文は手順の説明をしている」と分かって読めば、難易度は高くないのですが、記事がこういう風に始まるととまどってしまう人もいるかもしれません。

It starts with a certain angle: a smartphone tilted at 45 degrees just above your eyeline is generally deemed the most forgiving. Then a light source: the flattering beam of a backlit window or a bursting supernova of flash reflected in a bathroom mirror, as preparations are under way for a night out.
The pose is important. Knowing self-awareness is conveyed by the slight raise of an eyebrow, the sideways smile that says you're not taking it too seriously. A doe-eyed stare and mussed-up hair denotes natural beauty, as if you've just woken up and can't help looking like this. Sexiness is suggested by sucked-in cheeks, pouting lips, a nonchalant cock of the head and a hint of bare flesh just below the clavicle. Snap!
Afterwards, a flattering filter is applied. Outlines are blurred, colours are softened, a sepia tint soaks through to imply a simpler era of vinyl records and VW camper vans.
All of this is the work of an instant. Then, with a single tap, you are ready to upload: to Twitter, to Facebook, to Instagram, each likeness accompanied by a self-referential hashtag. Your image is retweeted and tagged and shared. Your screen fills with thumbs-up signs and heart-shaped emoticons. You are "liked" several times over. You feel a shiver of – what, exactly? Approbation? Reassurance? Existential calm? Whatever it is, it's addictive. Soon, you repeat the whole process, trying out a different pose. Again and again, you offer yourself up for public consumption.
This, then, is the selfie: the self-portrait of the digital age. We are all at it. Just type "selfie" into the Twitter search bar. Or take a look at Instagram, where over 90m photos are currently posted with the hashtag #me.

このエッセイでは、自分を表現して、他者からの承認や自己肯定することは大昔からあったもののが進化した形態にすぎないのではとか、いろいろと考察していきます。

There is nothing new about this, of course. Human beings are social animals and have long been driven by the need for approval and self-affirmation – albeit on a smaller scale. The desire for a pictorial representation of the self goes all the way back to early handprint paintings on cave walls more than 4,000 years ago. In a fast-paced world of ever-changing technology, it could be argued that the selfie is simply a natural evolution of those hands dipped in paint.

"As with so many 'new trends', this one has a fairly distinguished prehistory," explains essayist and author Geoff Dyer. "In 1925 DH Lawrence was bemoaning the way that 'each of us has a complete Kodak idea of himself'. This new phenomenon of the selfie has already been turned into a work of art which is also a sort of visual essay: Richard Misrach's 11.21.11 5.40pm consists of him taking a telephoto shot of a couple on a beach taking a picture of the sea. Then we zoom in closer and closer on each subsequent page until we are able to see the screen of their phone in which is revealed… a self-portrait."

The popularity of the selfie is, says Mariann Hardey, "an extension of how we live and learn about each other" and a way of imparting necessary information about who we are. By way of an example, Hardey says that when her father died suddenly last year, she took refuge in her Instagram feed.

スマホによるselfieの特徴はself-exposure and controlという考えにも触れています。見たい/見せたい自分を撮って発表するという流れですね。

The key is the idea of "manageable reality": celebrities can now exercise more control than ever over the dissemination of their image. The paradox at the heart of the selfie is that it masquerades as a "candid" shot, taken without access to airbrushing or post-production, but in fact, a carefully posed selfie, edited with all the right filters, is a far more appealing prospect than a snatched paparazzo shot taken from a deliberately unflattering angle.

"It's about self-exposure and control," says artist Simon Foxall, whose work questions the parameters of individuality and self-expression. "A selfie blurs the line between 'reality' and the performance of a fantasy self, so one collapses into the other."

Beyond that, a judicious use of selfies can make good business sense too: Alexa Chung and Florence Welch have both used selfies to post daily updates on what they are wearing, thereby cementing their position as modern style icons and guaranteeing, no doubt, the continuation of a series of lucrative fashion deals. (Chung, for one, has designed a womenswear line for the fashion brand Madewell for the last three years.)

とは言っても、自分でコントロールできるのはネットにアップするまで。その後はコントロールきかなくなると警告してこのエッセイを締めていました。

In some ways, of course, the notion of control is disingenuous: once a selfie is posted online, it is out there for public delectation. Future employers can see it. Marketers can use it. A resentful former lover could exploit it.

You can use digital technology to manipulate your own image as much as you like. But the truth about selfies is that once they are online, you can never control how other people see you.

selfieという単語については、英辞郎が載せていました。さすがですね。このエッセイの最後にこの後の変遷を紹介してくれています。2005年に生まれた新語のようですね。

(英辞郎)
selfie
【名】
《イ》自分で撮った自分の写真


Selfies: A brief history
2005 The term "selfie" is first used by Richard Krause in a "how-to" photography guide. "The guesswork that goes into selfies often results in serendipitous photographic surprises," he notes.

Feb 2007 A user of the photo-sharing site Flickr creates a group called "selfie shots", defining selfie as: "A photograph of oneself in an arm-extended posture. Not to be confused with a photo of oneself in a mirror or other reflected surface."

June 2010 Apple releases the iPhone 4 featuring a very basic front-facing camera, which was included to enable users to take advantage of video-calling apps such as Apple's FaceTime and Skype, but also allows users to frame their self-portraits.
Oct 2010 Instagram is launched, reaching more than 100 million active users by April 2012. The app enables people to share photos from their smartphones and enhance them with filters. Since its launch more than 23m photos have been uploaded to the app with the "#selfie" hashtag.

June 2012 Selfie joins the OED's watchlist of words for possible inclusion. "This colloquial term for a photographic self-portrait has thus far appeared primarily in social media contexts," it notes.

Dec 2012 Selfie appears in Time magazine's top buzzwords of 2012. "Selfies are often snapped at odd angles with smartphones and include part of the photographer's arm," it observes.
Jan 2013 The Obamas' daughters, Malia and Sasha, are pictured taking a selfie at their father's presidential inauguration.

March 2013 The Daily Mail publishes its first moral panic piece about selfies, headlined: "The craze for pouting pictures I fear my daughters will end up regretting." The writer adds: "It's as though a whole generation of teenage girls has lost the ability to smile naturally."

April 2013 The Samsung Galaxy S4 is released, featuring a 2 megapixel front-facing camera.

June 2013 Instagram launches the fourth version of its software, the app's new 15-second video feature. The age of the selfie movie is upon us…
 

ディヴィッド・ミッチェルによる『砂の女』の書評

 

Woman in the Dunes (Vintage International)Woman in the Dunes (Vintage International)
(1991/04/16)
Kobo Abe

商品詳細を見る


今年は安部公房の没後20周年にあたりますが、先ほどの記事を書いているときに、『クラウドアトラス』を書いたディヴィッド・ミッチェルが安部公房の『砂の女』の書評を書いている記事をみつけました。

この書評は2006年にペンギンクラシックスとして『砂の女』と『他人の顔』が再刊されるために、日本に住んでいたディヴィッド・ミッチェルに依頼したという感じでしょうか。

• The Woman in the Dunes and The Face of Another by Kobo Abe are reissued by Penguin Classics this month. To order a copy of The Woman in the Dunes for £8.99 with free UK p&p call Guardian book service on 0870 836 0875. The DVD is rereleased by BFI Video Publishing (£19.99).


No escape
Is Kobe Abe's strange, bleak novel The Woman in the Dunes, about a man imprisoned in a pit of sand, a parable of damnation or salvation? Both, argues David Mitchell. It is a metaphor for the human predicament
David Mitchell
The Guardian, Saturday 7 October 2006

Words checked = [1915]
Words in Oxford 3000™ = [81%]


安部公房の生い立ちなどにも触れていてる随分長い書評で、内容も少し難しいです。例えば部落民の問題も指摘しています。

Things fail to go as planned, and the woman reveals a more chilling face. She tells the man how the village union sells sand illegally to a concrete manufacturer. The man fulminates that this would endanger the lives of all those dependent on dams not bursting and bridges not collapsing. The woman replies, accusingly, "Why should we worry what happens to other people?" A Japanese reader of The Woman in the Dunes is invited to assume that the villagers are burakumin, the little-discussed caste of untouchables historically obliged to work in "unclean" trades such as butchery, tanning or sewage removal and live where nobody else wanted to, and who were considered little better than animals. The villagers thus have just cause to distrust - to despise - a mainstream society that has always oppressed them.

The novel is not an apologia for the burakumin, but it does suggest that the man is trapped in a class war - or caste war - unacknowledged by society at large, yet taken for granted by the burakumin. This flash of relativism challenges the man's conviction that he is the innocent victim and the villagers the guilty perpetrators.

舞台監督、詩人でもあった安部公房ならではの文体を指摘しているところは作家ならではの詩的かもしれません。

Abe is an accomplished stylist. He was apt to frame his novels in "found" notebooks or other written artefacts, and The Woman in the Dunes closes with the missing persons report mentioned on its first page. It includes a page or two of its protagonist's jottings to himself; a dream, a hallucinatory flashback here and there, but the structure is simple and linear. The language, in E Dale Saunders' prudent and still crisp 1964 translation, has the clarity of a parable. Abe's first publication in 1947 was a privately mimeographed book entitled Poems of an Unknown Poet (Mumei Shishu), and the poet's eye - and discretion - informs Abe's use of imagery in his novels: "the sun was boiling mercury"; "it was like trying to build a house in the sea by brushing the water aside".

A further point of stylistic interest in many of Abe's novels is the sparseness both of their casts and their locations. Most of The Woman in the Dunes occurs either inside or immediately outside the woman's house, almost as if it were conceived for the theatre. Abe also enjoyed an international reputation as a playwright, and Abe the Stylist was informed by Abe the Stage Manager as well as Abe the Poet.

「鳥のように、飛び立ちたいと願う自由もあれば、巣ごもって、誰からも邪魔されまいと願う自由もある。飛砂におそわれ、埋もれていく、ある貧しい海辺の村にとらえられた一人の男が、村の女と、砂掻きの仕事から、いかにして脱出をなしえたか――色も、匂いもない、砂との闘いを通じて、その二つの自由の関係を追求してみたのが、この作品である。砂を舐めてみなければ、おそらく希望の味も分るまい」という安部公房自身の解説を読んでからだと以下の部分は少し分かりやすくなるかもしれません。

For this reader, the novel flaunts its symbolic and literal point and counter-point in its title. The woman is the animate; the mortal; the flesh; the impetus for sex; consolation in the cell of the unendurable. The dunes are the inanimate; the eternal; what confines us; the unendurable itself. Sand permeates the novel like a third major character. Sand gets in the food, the house, in clothes, into clocks. It is while brushing sand off each other's bodies that the man and the woman are ushered into sex. The sand of these dunes, laden with dampness, does not preserve but rots everything it touches: wood, leather, fabric, "morality". Like time itself, "Sand not only flows, but this very flow is the sand". To combat its voracity is what requires hapless men to be held captive in the first place. Sand is the prison: literally, symbolically; and not just for the man. We, too, are down in this burning sandpit. We, too, must spend a lifetime doing a job as meaningless (to the universe at large, if not to ourselves) as shovelling never-ending deposits of sand into buckets, getting nothing for our pains but the barest essentials. As we read about the man's predicament, existentially speaking, we are reading about our own.

Maybe, maybe, maybe. Buddhism is predicated on the impermanence of all things, including Buddhism. In a not dissimilar way, the meditations on freedom, captivity, the transient and the immutable in The Woman in the Dunes invite, and allow for, misinterpretations - which might be another word for "reinterpretations". Even the novel's opening epigram, "Without the threat of punishment there is no joy in flight", has fuzzy edges: is this an oppressor's justification or a would-be fugitive's consolation?

勅使河原宏監督で、武満徹音楽の映画も評価が高いですね。音楽家のグールドが好きな映画としてこの映画をあげて、100回以上も観たといっていたようです。

GLENN GOULD FROM A TO Z (BY MICHAEL STEGEMANN)
Film

Gould in turn was a self-confessed cineaste – his favourite film was Hiroshi Teshigahara’s Woman in the Dunes (1964).






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