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The dark side of Winston Churchill’s legacy no one should forget
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By Ishaan Tharoor February 3

In the West, Churchill is a freedom fighter, the man who grimly withstood Nazism and helped save Western liberal democracy. It's a civilizational legacy that has been polished and placed on a mantle for decades. Churchill "launched the lifeboats," declared Time magazine, on the cover of its Jan. 2, 1950 issue that hailed the British leader as the "man of the half century."

But there's another side to Churchill's politics and career that should not be forgotten amid the endless parade of eulogies. To many outside the West, he remains a grotesque racist and a stubborn imperialist, forever on the wrong side of history.

Churchill's detractors point to his well-documented bigotry, articulated often with shocking callousness and contempt. "I hate Indians," he once trumpeted. "They are a beastly people with a beastly religion."

He referred to Palestinians as "barbaric hordes who ate little but camel dung." When quashing insurgents in Sudan in the earlier days of his imperial career, Churchill boasted of killing three "savages." Contemplating restive populations in northwest Asia, he infamously lamented the "squeamishness" of his colleagues, who were not in "favor of using poisoned gas against uncivilized tribes."


India, Britain's most important colonial possession, most animated Churchill. He despised the Indian independence movement and its spiritual leader, Mahatma Gandhi, whom he described as "half-naked" and labeled a "seditious fakir," or holy man. Most notoriously, Churchill presided over the hideous 1943 famine in Bengal, where some 3 million Indians perished, largely as a result of British imperial mismanagement. Churchill was both indifferent to the Indian plight and even mocked the millions suffering, chuckling over the culling of a population that bred "like rabbits."

Leopold Amery, Churchill's own Secretary of State for India, likened his boss's understanding of India's problems to King George III's apathy for the Americas. Amery vented in his private diaries, writing "on the subject of India, Winston is not quite sane" and that he didn't "see much difference between [Churchill's] outlook and Hitler's."

When Churchill did apply his attention to the subcontinent, it had other dire effects. As the Indian writer Pankaj Mishra explains in the New Yorker, Churchill was one of a coterie of imperial rulers who worked to create sectarian fissures within India's independence movement between Indian Hindus and Muslims, which led to the brutal partition of India when the former colony finally did win its freedom in 1947. Millions died or were displaced in an orgy of bloodshed that still echoes in the region's tense politics to this day. (India, it should be noted, was far from the only corner of the British empire victim to such divide-and-rule tactics.)


Simon Heffer: Why it’s time to debunk the Churchill myth
Our unquestioning idolatry of Winston Churchill prevents a true understanding of his life and career.


But it is his indispensable and nation-saving achievement in 1940 that obscures so much else about him, with myth suffocating reality. It diverts attention from all else that Churchill did before and after, and even discourages analysis of it. Worst of all, it discourages reflection on his management of the war, which, as anyone who has read the accounts of some of his closest colleagues – notably Sir Alan Brooke and Anthony Eden – will know, was much more hit and miss than conventional history usually has it. The effect of the often unquestioning idolatry with which he is widely regarded not only hinders us from evaluating Churchill properly but from forming an accurate assessment of the times in which he lived, and that he did so much to shape.


He was as always living in the past, uninterested in domestic affairs, and obsessed with restoring British greatness in a world that he still failed to realise had changed beyond his recognition.

These were not wasted years – his government met its pledge to build 300,000 houses a year, to replenish stock depleted by the war and to accommodate growing families – but they were largely fruitless ones.

Churchill pursued a colonial policy, notably in Malaya and Kenya, that refused to recognise the powerful movements to dissolve the British empire that existed in most colonies, or to assess the disproportionate costs in material, human and reputational terms of holding them. When he did eventually go, the Tory party he left behind him was anachronistic and fractured. Eden’s early departure would have been a blessing had he not been replaced by the intensely cynical Macmillan, who manipulated his party and public opinion to give him a handsome election victory in 1959, after which the contradictions and denials within the Tory party, and its hidebound, class-obsessed attitudes that it should have put behind it during the war, caused Churchill’s party to limp to defeat at the hands of Harold Wilson, bereft of any sense of vision whatsoever.

これらの記事を読んでつい連想してしまったのが、シュバイツアー博士でした。レイチェルカーソンの沈黙の春は彼の以下の言葉で始まっています。(ちなみに彼の有名な言葉、生命への畏敬はReverence for lifeというようですね。)

“To Albert Schweitzer who said ‘Man has lost the capacity to foresee and to forestall. He will end by destroying the Earth. “


Criticism of Schweitzer
Schweitzer was nonetheless still sometimes accused of being paternalistic, colonialist and racist in his attitude towards Africans, and in some ways his views did differ from that of many liberals and other critics of colonialism. For instance, he thought Gabonese independence came too early, without adequate education or accommodation to local circumstances. Edgar Berman quotes Schweitzer as having said in 1960:[35]
"No society can go from the primeval directly to an industrial state without losing the leavening that time and an agricultural period allow."






2月後半に環境保護団体のグリーンピースがFreedom of Information Actを通じて入手した文書を各メディアに配布したようで、ニューヨークタイムズなど大手メディアは報じています。

Deeper Ties to Corporate Cash for Doubtful Climate Researcher

One of the names they invoke most often is Wei-Hock Soon, known as Willie, a scientist at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics who claims that variations in the sun’s energy can largely explain recent global warming. He has often appeared on conservative news programs, testified before Congress and in state capitals, and starred at conferences of people who deny the risks of global warming.

But newly released documents show the extent to which Dr. Soon’s work has been tied to funding he received from corporate interests.

He has accepted more than $1.2 million in money from the fossil-fuel industry over the last decade while failing to disclose that conflict of interest in most of his scientific papers. At least 11 papers he has published since 2008 omitted such a disclosure, and in at least eight of those cases, he appears to have violated ethical guidelines of the journals that published his work.


Funding That Climate Researcher Failed to Disclose
These documents were obtained by Greenpeace and the Climate Investigations Center under the Freedom of Information Act, and were shared with several news organizations last week. They show that Wei-Hock Soon, also known as Willie, a part-time researcher at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Cambridge, Mass., received funding from fossil-fuel interests that he subsequently failed to disclose in a string of scientific papers. This is a small sampling of the 131 pages of newly released documents. FEB. 21, 2015


No strings
Details of a climate-change sceptic’s links to the energy industry make worrying reading.

25 February 2015


strings [plural] special conditions or restrictions
Major loans like these always come with strings.
It's a business proposition, pure and simple. No strings attached.

Willie Soonへの資金提供には「ひも」があったわけでニュースになっているわけです。今回の資料ではthese strings included requirements that Soon show copies of proposed publications to Southern Companyと詳細が明らかになっています。

Willie Soon has been a poster child for the small community of climate-change sceptics for more than a decade. Environmentalists and other watchdogs have examined and exposed his industry funding countless times. Unknown until now were the explicit details of the strings that come with such funding. In some cases, these strings included requirements that Soon show copies of proposed publications to Southern Company, a major electric utility that has given him nearly US$410,000 since 2006, for input before publication. The company did not have the right to require changes, but another provision prevented Soon and the CfA from revealing its involvement without prior notification. This is troubling indeed.

彼が所属する団体は調査を開始するようですが、暴露された後に始めるのは責任を果たしてないのではないかと、to protect academic freedom at all costsという言葉を皮肉として取り上げています。

CfA director Charles Alcock said that agreeing to provisions to limit disclosure was a mistake, and one that the centre will not repeat. Although it has no explicit rules on disclosure, the centre does expect scientists to follow the publishing rules that journals set out.

One thing does not add up. The CfA, after all, is launching an investigation into one of its own staff members on the basis of the evidence of its own documents, but only after it was forced to hand them to an environmental group under a Freedom of Information Act request. Whether or not Soon fully disclosed the source of his funding to all of the journals remains unclear, but the basic facts were always there.

Alcock says that his job is to protect academic freedom at all costs. Fair enough. But freedom comes with responsibilities.


Documents spur investigation of climate sceptic
Questions raised about conflict-of-interest disclosures by Willie Soon.

Jeff Tollefson
21 February 2015




Monocle [UK] March 2015 (単号)Monocle [UK] March 2015 (単号)


Japan-o-rama: can cute and kooky kick-start team Nippon again? Does Japan want to be taken seriously or will it become the Italy of Asia (a bit too slow for real global success)? A Monocle Special Report









リアルTOEIC 作家のイベント


英国ではOxford Literary Festivalなるものが開かれるようです。1週間以上かけて開かれる大規模なイベントのようで、Kazuo IshiguroはSpecial Eventに登場します。パンフレットなんかに目を通しておくと、TOEICのイベント案内で勘が働くようになるでしょう。

Kazuo Ishiguro talks to Lorien Kite
The Buried Giant

Thursday 12 March 2015 6:00pm
Duration 1 Hour
Venue Oxford Town Hall
Ticket price £12
Booker Prize-winning novelist Kazuo Ishiguro introduces his much-anticipated first new novel in a decade, The Buried Giant, in a special preview event for this year’s FT Weekend Oxford Literary Festival.
The Buried Giant opens with a couple setting off across a troubled land of mist and rain in search of a son they have not seen in years. It is a novel about lost memories, love, revenge and war. It is published in the week leading up to this preview event.
Ishiguro has been nominated for the Booker prize four times, winning it once for Remains of the Day, and has won many other domestic and international literary prizes. Both Remains of the Day and Never Let Me Go have sold more than 1,000,000 copies and been turned into highly acclaimed films. Altogether, he has written six previous novels and his work has been translated into more than 40 languages. He holds an OBE for services to literature and was awarded Chevalier de L’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by France.
Here he talks to Financial Times books editor Lorien Kite.
Supported by Oxford City Council.
Sponsored by Blackwell’s.

先日紹介した写真家のLynsey Addarioさんも登壇するようです。

Jill Leovy and Lynsey Addario Women Working in Dangerous Environments
Sunday 22 March 2015 4:00pm
Duration 1 Hour
Venue Bodleian: Divinity School
Ticket price £12

Journalists Jill Leovy and Lynsey Addario know a thing or two about working in dangerous environments. Here they give their own personal perspective on the dangerous places they have been and discuss the issue of women working in dangerous environments.
Leovy is a crime reporter for the LA Times who has spent a decade embedded with the Los Angeles Police Department homicide unit. She is author of Ghettoside: Investigating a Homicide Epidemic, about which she speaks at another festival event.
Addario is a Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist who has documented life under the Taliban and covered conflicts in Afghanistan, Iraq, Lebanon, Darfur and the Congo. She is author of It’s What I Do: A Photographer’s Life of Love and War.
Sponsored by HSBC.

英語学習的に興味を惹かれるのは、David Crystalさんが息子さんと一緒にシェイクスピア辞典を出すことでしょうか。

Oxford Illustrated Shakespeare DictionaryOxford Illustrated Shakespeare Dictionary
David Crystal、Ben Crystal 他


David Crystal and Ben Crystal The Shakespeare Dictionary
Tuesday 24 March 2015 6:00pm
Duration 1 Hour
Venue Corpus Christi College
Ticket price £12

Renowned English language expert David Crystal and his Shakespearean actor and producer son Ben unlock the mysteries of Shakespeare’s world and words. The pair have collaborated on a new book, Oxford Illustrated Shakespeare Dictionary, an explanation of the meaning of more than 4,000 difficult Shakespearean words and an insight into the world of Shakespeare and the staging of his plays.
The Crystals are uniquely placed to bring Shakespeare’s words and plays to life for readers and audiences. David is known across the world as a writer, lecturer and broadcaster on the English language. He is author of The Stories of English, Evolving English, Begat: The King James Bible and the English Language and Spell It Out: The Singular Story of English Spelling. Ben is an actor, writer and producer well known for both his innovative acting and his Shakespearean workshops. He has written a series of Springboard Shakespeare introductions to Shakespeare’s plays and his Shakespeare on Toast; Getting a Taste for the Bard was shortlisted for the Educational Writer of the Year award.

個人的にはインド作家のAmitav Ghoshさんのお話を聞きたかったなと思います。フィナンシャルタイムズでちょうどDavid Pillingさんがインタビューをしていました。

Oxford Literary Festival/Events 2015/Monday 23 March/
Amitav Ghosh talks to Chris ClarkChancellor’s Lecture: History and Fiction – a Conversation

February 27, 2015 5:58 pm
Lunch with the FT: Amitav Ghosh
David Pilling
Over spicy ‘Calcutta Chinese’ food, the novelist talks about the ‘cognitive problem’ that separates India and China, and surfacing for air after completing his epic Ibis trilogy





The Buried GiantThe Buried Giant
Kazuo Ishiguro


ようやくカズオ・イシグロの本を読み始めました。聖杯Holy Grailが表紙に描かれているように、ストーリーはどうしてもアーサー王物語を連想させます。

King Arthur
(5th or 6th century) a king of England who led the Britons in battles against the Saxons. There are many stories about King Arthur, e.g. that he pulled his sword Excalibur from a stone, and that he sat with his knights at a Round Table. Nobody knows if the stories are true, but they are very popular and have been used in poems, plays and films.

(New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy)
Arthur, King definition
A legendary king in England in the Middle Ages. The life of King Arthur has been retold many times over the centuries; hence, most of the incidents in his life have several versions. According to one well-known story, Arthur gained the throne when he withdrew the sword Excalibur from a stone after many others had tried and failed. Arthur established a brilliant court at Camelot, where he gathered the greatest and most chivalrous warriors in Europe, the knights of the Round Table. King Arthur's knights included Sir Lancelot, Sir Galahad, Sir Percival, and Sir Gawain. Other characters associated with the legends of Arthur are the wizard Merlin, the enchantress Morgan le Fay, Queen Guinevere, and Arthur's enemy and kinsman, Modred (or Mordred), who caused his downfall. According to some legends, Arthur sailed to a mysterious island, Avalon, at the end of his life; some stories say that someday he will return. The legends of Arthur may have originated with an actual chieftain named Arthur who lived in Wales in the sixth century, but the many retellings have taken the story far from its original place and time. Because of the belief that he will return, he is sometimes called “the once and future king.”

Note : The popular Broadway musical Camelot was based on the stories about King Arthur.


Kazuo Ishiguro: Quintessentially British
Like T.H. White before him, Ishiguro sees the central theme of the Arthurian myths as the search for an antidote for war.

The dangers of unearthing that slaughter are at the heart of “The Buried Giant.” Mr. Ishiguro has drawn selectively from the various Arthurian chronicles and poems in fleshing out his tale—his Gawain is an amusing inversion of the dashing ladies’ man of legend, and the marriage of Axl and Beatrice alludes to that of Arthur and Guinevere. But the closest source for the novel is T.H. White’s “The Once and Future King” series and in particular its sad, beautiful final volume, “The Book of Merlyn.” Written in the midst of World War II and depicting an aged king trying vainly to stem the tide of bloodshed, the book reflected White’s conviction that “the central theme of Morte d’Arthur is to find an antidote to war.”

THE ONCE AND FUTURE KING: THE TETRALOGY. The Sword in the Stone, The Witch in the Wood, The Ill-Made Knight, The Candle in the Wind. (Timeless Wisdom Collection Book 4025) (English Edition)THE ONCE AND FUTURE KING: THE TETRALOGY. The Sword in the Stone, The Witch in the Wood, The Ill-Made Knight, The Candle in the Wind. (Timeless Wisdom Collection Book 4025) (English Edition)


Book of Merlynはまだ安く買えないですが、The Once and Future Kingに関してはアマゾンで200円くらいで買えるんですね。

永遠の王(えいえんのおう、英語: The Once and Future King)は、イギリスの作家テレンス・ハンベリー・ホワイトによるアーサー王伝説を題材にしたファンタジー小説。


Camelot 「キャメロット」
ジョン・ケネディ John F. Kennedy (1917-63)が大統領に就任した1961年に、ブロードウェイではミュージカルCamelotが人気を呼んでいた。リチャード・バートン Richard Burton (1925-84)とジュリー・アンドリュース Julie Andrews (1935-)の主演であった。Camelotは中世伝説のアーサー王がその宮廷をおいた町の名である。理想主義に燃える若き大統領と魅力的な夫人の醸し出す新政権の雰囲気が、アーサー王の宮廷の華やかさと重なって、いつしか、ケネディ政権のことをCamelotと言うようになった。








一 夢




Oxford Junior DictionaryOxford Junior Dictionary
Oxford Dictionaries


Oxford Junior Dictionaryが自然に関する語を見出語として採用せずに、IT関連の語を選んだことが1月に話題になったようですね。

Oxford Junior Dictionary’s replacement of ‘natural’ words with 21st-century terms sparks outcry
Margaret Atwood and Andrew Motion among authors protesting at dropping definitions of words like ‘acorn’ and ‘buttercup’ in favour of ‘broadband’ and ‘cut and paste’
Alison Flood
Tuesday 13 January 2015 07.00 GMT

“A” should be for acorn, “B” for buttercup and “C” for conker, not attachment, blog and chatroom, according to a group of authors including Margaret Atwood and Andrew Motion who are “profoundly alarmed” about the loss of a slew of words associated with the natural world from the Oxford Junior Dictionary, and their replacement with words “associated with the increasingly interior, solitary childhoods of today”.

The 28 authors, including Atwood, Motion, Michael Morpurgo and Robert Macfarlane, warn that the decision to cut around 50 words connected with nature and the countryside from the 10,000-entry children’s dictionary, is “shocking and poorly considered” in the light of the decline in outdoor play for today’s children. They are calling on publisher Oxford University Press to reverse its decision and, if necessary, to bring forward publication of a new edition of the dictionary to do so.

The likes of almond, blackberry and crocus first made way for analogue, block graph and celebrity in the Oxford Junior Dictionary in 2007, with protests at the time around the loss of a host of religious words such as bishop, saint and sin. The current 2012 edition maintained the changes, and instead of catkin, cauliflower, chestnut and clover, today’s edition of the dictionary, which is aimed at seven-year-olds starting Key Stage Two, features cut and paste, broadband and analogue.

マーガレットアドウッドのような著名な作家が抗議の文章を送ったことでニュースになったようです。下記がそのOpen Letterの書き出しです。

12 January 2015
Reconnecting kids with nature is vital, and needs cultural leadership

We the undersigned are profoundly alarmed to learn that the Oxford Junior Dictionary has systematically been stripped of many words associated with nature and the countryside. We write to plead that the next edition sees the reinstatement of words cut since 2007.

We base this plea on two considerations. Firstly, the belief that nature and culture have been linked from the beginnings of our history. For the first time ever, that link is in danger of becoming unravelled, to the detriment of society, culture, and the natural environment.

Secondly, childhood is undergoing profound change; some of this is negative; and the rapid decline in children’s connections to nature is a major problem.

This is not just a romantic desire to reflect the rosy memories of our own childhoods onto today’s youngsters. There is a shocking, proven connection between the decline in natural play and the decline in children’s wellbeing. Compared with a generation ago, when 40% of children regularly played in natural areas, now only 10% do so, while another 40% never play anywhere outdoors. Ever. Obesity, anti-social behaviour, friendlessness and fear are the known consequences. The physical fitness of children is declining by 9% per decade, according to Public Health England.


A spokesperson for Oxford University Press said: “All our dictionaries are designed to reflect language as it is used, rather than seeking to prescribe certain words or word usages. We employ extremely rigorous editorial guidelines in determining which words [can] be included in each dictionary, based on several criteria: acknowledging the current frequency of words in daily language of children of that age; corpus analysis; acknowledging commonly misspelled or misused words; and taking curriculum requirements into account.


Why the OED are right to purge nature from the dictionary
Martin Robbins
Martin Robbins: Attacking a dictionary for removing archaic words is like punching your thermometer when it’s too cold.
Tuesday 3 March 2015 09.30 GMT


I’m sympathetic to the campaign. They’re right to be concerned about a generation of indoor kids raised by cowardly parents, and the impact that may have on health, obesity, or even just the appreciation of nature and our place in it. It’s a tragedy that kids don’t get out more, and any effort to reverse the trend should be applauded.

But Oxford Dictionaries are absolutely correct in what they’re doing, and the people moaning at them have got the whole situation completely backwards.

Firstly, the job of a dictionary is to document words and usage, not dictate them. The Oxford English Dictionary is a historical record, analyzing contemporary writing and parsing the results according to strict guidelines to provide its users with an accurate depiction of how language is used.


Attacking a dictionary for removing these words is like punching your thermometer when it’s too cold, or shouting at journalists because you don’t like the news from Syria. They’re simply reflecting reality, and if that troubles you then maybe you should be out confronting these issues in the real world rather than in the pages of a book. It isn’t the job of the OUP to get kids to play outside: that’s called parenting, and maybe that’s where campaigners should be focusing their attention.




自然有機食品スーパーの‪Whole Foods‬のCEO, John Mackeyが書いたConscious Capitalismを読みました。以下の一節に象徴されているように、利益優先、エゴ優先の資本主義ではない、思いやりのある資本主義を目指していると謳っているものでした。

Conscious Capitalism: Liberating the Heroic Spirit of BusinessConscious Capitalism: Liberating the Heroic Spirit of Business
John Mackey、Raj Sisodia 他


We must move past the cultural myths such as "Only the paranoid survive" and "Nice guys finish last," and allow our organizations and our leaders to be more fully human. They need to be able to express the highest and best virtues that humans embody- and love and care are right at the top of that list. As Jane Dutton of the University of Michigan says, "Humans are born to care. Our institutions magnify or depress our capacity to care."


The Conscious Capitalist Credo


Ultimately, the aspiration to embody these virtues is what helps raise us to a higher level. It is essential that we strive to embody the higher virtues and practice living them every day. This isn't easy; it requires determination, consistency, persistence, and willpower. as Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “Sow a thought and you reap an action; sow an act and you reap a habit; sow a habit and you reap a character; sow a character and you reap a destiny.”


Sow a thought and you reap an action;
sow an act and you reap a habit;
sow a habit and you reap a character;
sow a character and you reap a destiny.


Watch your thoughts, for they become words.
Watch your words, for they become actions.
Watch your actions, for they become habits.
Watch your habits, for they become your character.
Watch your character, for it becomes your destiny.

Doctor: ‘Still, it must be a bit disorienting. You’re bound to be feeling – ‘

Thatcher: ‘What? What am I bound to be feeling? . . . People don’t think any more; they feel. . . . Do you know, one of the great problems of our age is that we are governed by people who care more about feelings than they do about thoughts and ideas. Now, thoughts and ideas – that interests me. Ask me what I’m thinking.’

Doctor: ‘What are you thinking, Margaret?’

Thatcher: ‘Watch your thoughts, for they become words. Watch your words, for they become actions. Watch your actions, for they become habits. Watch your habits, for they become your character. Watch your character, for it becomes your destiny. What we think, we become. My father always said that. And I think, I am fine.’

Watch your thoughts, for they become wordsからのくだりは、日本では以下のような言葉でしられていますね。




Whole Foods Stock Plummets as Natural and Organic Food Competition Grows
Sam Frizell @Sam_Frizell May 7, 2014
Whole Foods shares tumbled as investors lost faith in the grocer's command on the organic food market

Whole Foods stock plummeted nearly 20 percent Wednesday, its biggest one-day fall in more than five years, after informing skittish investors late on Tuesday that sales at established stores have slowed.

The grocery chain has been fighting to compete in an increasingly crowded natural and organic foods market, a niche it once had cornered.





Still AliceStill Alice
Lisa Genova


The Sorrows of an AmericanThe Sorrows of an American
Siri Hustvedt


Ordinary Grace: A NovelOrdinary Grace: A Novel
William Kent Krueger


The Death of BeesThe Death of Bees
Lisa O'Donnell


Ebola: The Natural and Human HistoryEbola: The Natural and Human History
David Quammen


Spillover: Animal Infections and the Next Human PandemicSpillover: Animal Infections and the Next Human Pandemic
David Quammen


Revival: A NovelRevival: A Novel
Stephen King


The Martian: A NovelThe Martian: A Novel
Andy Weir


Suspended Sentences: Three Novellas (The Margellos World Republic of Letters)Suspended Sentences: Three Novellas (The Margellos World Republic of Letters)
Patrick Modiano


Brick by Brick: How LEGO Rewrote the Rules of Innovation and Conquered the Global Toy IndustryBrick by Brick: How LEGO Rewrote the Rules of Innovation and Conquered the Global Toy Industry
David Robertson、Bill Breen 他


Conscious Capitalism: Liberating the Heroic Spirit of BusinessConscious Capitalism: Liberating the Heroic Spirit of Business
John Mackey、Raj Sisodia 他


Thank You for Your ServiceThank You for Your Service
David Finkel


Social Machines: How to Develop Connected Products That Change Customers' LivesSocial Machines: How to Develop Connected Products That Change Customers' Lives
Peter Semmelhack


Foxcatcher: A True Story of Murder, Madness and the Quest for Olympic GoldFoxcatcher: A True Story of Murder, Madness and the Quest for Olympic Gold
Mark Schultz、David Thomas 他




レベッカソルニットさんのエッセイはメディアの変化は行き過ぎではないかという懸念を表明したものでしたが、今週のEconomistはこれから本格的に起こるスマホの普及、IoT(Internet of Things)を前向きに捉えていこうというものでした。いつもEconomistの取材力・分析力には感心させられます。社説は日本語にすでに訳されています。

Planet of the phones
The smartphone is ubiquitous, addictive and transformative

Feb 28th 2015 | From the print edition

2015.03.02(月) The Economist


Telecoms and society
The truly personal computer

The smartphone is the defining technology of the age
Feb 28th 2015 | From the print edition

THE Ood are an odd bunch. Among the more enigmatic of the aliens regularly encountered in “Doctor Who”, a television series about a traveller in time and space, they are mostly silent—though sometimes given to song—and disconcertingly squid-like. What is more, evolution has equipped them with two brains—one in their heads, the other carried around in their hand.

Put an Ood onto public transport anywhere in the developed world, though, and—tentacles apart—he would barely raise a questioning eyebrow. The other passengers would be too busy paying attention to the parts of their brain that they now carry in their hands to notice anything particularly odd about an alien doing something very similar.

キャッチとして記事の核心を象徴する例を見つけることが腕の見せ所ですが、Doctor Whoに出てくるAlien,
Oodが選ばれていました。自分はまったくしらなかったのでピンとこなかったです。。。(涙)one in their heads, the other carried around in their handとあるように確かに右手に丸いものを持っています。スマホを持った現代人はOodみたいになっていると言いたいようですね。このキャラクターを見慣れた人ならスッとくる例えかもしれません(汗)

スマホによる世界はどのようになるのか、Economistは製品とサービスといった明確な区別が曖昧なThe world is becoming more fluid.となるとみています。今では世界で一番価値のある会社はアップルであることもこのような世界になりつつある証拠だといっています。

Like the book, the clock and the internal combustion engine before it, the smartphone is changing the way people relate to each other and the world around them. By making the online world more relevant, and more applicable, to every task from getting from A to B to finding a date to watching over a child to checking the thermostat it is adding all sorts of convenience. Beyond convenience, though, a computer that is always with you removes many previous constraints on what can be done when and where, and undermines old certainties about what was what and who was who. Distinctions that were previously clear—the differences between a product and a service, between a car owner and a taxi driver, between a city square and a political movement—blur into each other. The world is becoming more fluid.

These changes and the tools driving them have refocused the computer industry. Thanks mostly to the iPhone, Apple—not so long ago a maker of niche desktops and laptops—is now worth more than any other company in the world and just had the most profitable quarter in history. Mr Evans reckons that its revenues are now greater than those of the whole personal computer (PC) business. Xiaomi, a fast-growing Chinese maker of smartphones, has become the world’s most valuable startup (see article). The smartphone has become information technology’s key product. It generates the most profits; it attracts the most capital and the brightest brains.


That fluidity fits with other notions of the effects that the smartphone’s truly personal computing could have. Mechanical clocks allowed the days of the industrial revolution to be regularised in new ways; cars changed the landscape and extended the geography of people’s lives; the printed book made human knowledge more accessible, more easily built on and more thoroughly examinable, fixing it in bindings onto shelves. In its present, admittedly early, days the phone seems to permit earlier regimentation to relax. It encourages renting over buying, trying out over tying yourself down, co-ordinating things on the fly rather than in advance.

Recent political protests have taken advantage of the new fluidity. Smartphones have not caused uprisings or revolutions, but they have affected their dynamics: mobilising has become much cheaper, centralised organisation less necessary. During recent protests in Ferguson, a suburb of St Louis, Missouri, and Hong Kong, messaging apps were used to co-ordinate activities on the ground in real-time.


The new computing’s tendency to the fluid will, in all likelihood, mean that the current form of the phone will not last forever. The truly personal computing phones make possible, though—the sort which adapts you to your surroundings and vice versa—seems sure to persist. People will live in perpetual contact both with each other and with the computational power of the cloud.

The Ood, it is worth remembering, did not just have two brains, one in the head and one in the hand—they had a third, planetary brain, telepathically shared by all. It may yet be to such a world that, with phones in hand, pocket and purse, humanity makes its way.

Social Machines: How to Develop Connected Products That Change Customers' LivesSocial Machines: How to Develop Connected Products That Change Customers' Lives
Peter Semmelhack


ちょうどSocial Machineという洋書を読んだばかりだったので、スマホやIoTが切り開く社会というものに興味深々となっています。

この本でThe data is the new oil という言葉を知ったのですが、Appleの時価総額が石油会社のエクソンの2倍になっている今、この言葉は時代を表す言葉と言えそうです。


車保険、データ診断で安く 損保が主力に育成
2015/2/3 2:04[有料会員限定]








I read an article that said that winning an Oscar could lead to living five years longer. If that’s true, I’d really like to thank the Academy because my husband is younger than me.

So many people with this disease feel isolated and marginalized, and one of the wonderful things about movies is it makes us feel seen, and not alone. And people with Alzheimer’s deserve to be seen so that we can find a cure.

NewshourではStill Aliceの原作者Lisa Genovaさんが登場してお話しされていました。

Still Aliceのペーパーバックでは彼女のインタビューがあり、早期アルツハイマーにも注目がいくようにと話しています。

Do you believe we need to be more educated on Alzheimer’s?
I do, especially about early-onset and the early stages of Alzheimer’s. There are over a half million people in the United States alone under the age of sixty-five diagnosed with dementia, and they’re not included in what gets talked about when people talk about Alzheimer’s. The general public knows what the eighty-five-year-old grandparent in end stages of the disease looks and sounds like, but they have little idea what the fifty-year-old parent with Alzheimer’s looks and sounds like. It’s high time this group had a face and a voice.

A greater awareness of the early symptoms and experiences matters because people need to recognize the symptoms so they can get diagnosed and on proper medication sooner. It matters because people with early-onset need resources (like access to support groups) that are now primarily given to caregivers. It matters because drug companies need to start to recognize this as a sizable group worthy of inclusion in their clinical trials. Right now, many people with early-onset Alzheimer’s cannot enroll in clinical trials because they are too young. It matters because families deserve to plan properly for the future, both financially and emotionally. It matters because awareness will reduce the stigma placed on people still living their lives with this disease.


Discussion Questions
• 1. When Alice becomes disoriented in Harvard Square, a place she's visited daily for twenty-five years, why doesn't she tell John? Is she too afraid to face a possible illness, worried about his possible reaction, or some other reason?
• 2. After first learning she has Alzheimer's disease, "the sound of her name penetrated her every cell and seemed to scatter her molecules beyond the boundaries of her own skin. She watched herself from the far corner of the room" (pg. 70). What do you think of Alice's reaction to the diagnosis? Why does she disassociate herself to the extent that she feels she's having an out-of-body experience?
• 3. Do you find irony in the fact that Alice, a Harvard professor and researcher, suffers from a disease that causes her brain to atrophy? Why do you think the author, Lisa Genova, chose this profession? How does her past academic success affect Alice's ability, and her family's, to cope with Alzheimer's?
• 4. "He refused to watch her take her medication. He could be mid-sentence, mid-conversation, but if she got out her plastic, days-of-the-week pill container, he left the room" (pg. 89). Is John's reaction understandable? What might be the significance of him frequently fiddling with his wedding ring when Alice's health is discussed?
• 5. When Alice's three children, Anna, Tom and Lydia, find out they can be tested for the genetic mutation that causes Alzheimer's, only Lydia decides she doesn't want to know. Why does she decline? Would you want to know if you had the gene?

Genovaさんのインタビューで影響を受けた作家について語っている部分です。先月ニューヨークタイムズで末期ガンを告白したOliver Sacksさんをあげています。In examining the person with disease, we gain wisdom about life.という言葉はいいですね。

Which writers inspire you?
Oliver Sacks is my biggest inspiration. In fact, The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat was really the spark that ignited my interest in neuroscience to begin with. There’s this quote from him:

“In examining disease, we gain wisdom about anatomy and physiology and biology. In examining the person with disease, we gain wisdom about life.”

That’s everything right there. That’s what I hope to do with my writing, both fiction and nonfiction.

ちょうどOliver SacksさんがOpEdで大きな問題は若い人に任せるよと書いていたので、この部分を指摘したいなと思いました。

My Own Life
Oliver Sacks on Learning He Has Terminal Cancer


I feel a sudden clear focus and perspective. There is no time for anything inessential. I must focus on myself, my work and my friends. I shall no longer look at “NewsHour” every night. I shall no longer pay any attention to politics or arguments about global warming.

This is not indifference but detachment — I still care deeply about the Middle East, about global warming, about growing inequality, but these are no longer my business; they belong to the future. I rejoice when I meet gifted young people — even the one who biopsied and diagnosed my metastases. I feel the future is in good hands.

Lisa Genovaさんが登場したのはPBSのNewsHourですが、Oliver Sacksさんも観ていた番組だったのですね。




Foxcatcher: A True Story of Murder, Madness and the Quest for Olympic GoldFoxcatcher: A True Story of Murder, Madness and the Quest for Olympic Gold
Mark Schultz、David Thomas 他




I was wrestling great, at a real high point in my career with Olympic and World championships in successive years. But being fired had not only left me feeling insulted, it had also thrown me into financial desperation. I lost my health insurance when I lost my job. I was used to wrestling without insurance, but I had never liked it. Without income, I was one freak injury in a violent sport from being wiped out financially


Throughout my career, I'd had to figure out a way to defeat everyone in the world —to create that “magic” in every match. Once I had reached the top of the world, I realized the difference between winning a world title and placing second was razor thin. I definitely wasn't an emotionally fragile wrestler, but there was a sort of fragile nature within me, in that I was vulnerable to having my training routines disrupted. I needed and coveted stability. It was the one thing I needed most to succeed.






How do the societies, how do the nations, How do the society remember and forget? When is it better for the society to leave its troubled past behind and move on? When is it better to look back and face some deeply disturbing things that the community and country have done in the past? That same question, you know, when she would remember and when she would forget, that’s always fascinate me at a societal level as well as individual level. In my new book, the Buried Giant I’ve tried that question at both levels for the first time, I think.


Review: The Buried Giant Is an Arthurian Epic
Lev Grossman @leverus Feb. 26, 2015

But it’s been 10 years since his last novel, the stunning Never Let Me Go, which also became a movie. “I couldn’t get started,” he says, speaking by phone from his home in London. “I just couldn’t get a story to fit the questions I wanted to deal with.” Those questions were of a different order from the ones he asked in his earlier books. In the past, he focused on individual experiences, but now he wanted to look at the behavior of societies as a whole. Specifically, he was interested in memory, and the role that collective remembering and forgetting plays in the ways societies recover after catastrophes. He mentions Germany, the former Yugoslavia, Rwanda, South Africa–places where people did terrible things to one another and then had to learn how to live together afterward, side by side. How does a community move past that? “When is it better for a society to just agree to forget some bad things, so they don’t disintegrate into civil war or disorder or chaos?” he asks. “And when is it necessary to go back and really examine the seeds of things that are going wrong?”


The closer Axl and Beatrice get to the source of the memory enchantment, the more our sense of triumphant anticipation is invaded by a creeping dread of what it might be concealing. If their memories come back, what will they remember? What would Axl and Beatrice learn about their ostensibly happy marriage? What would they learn about their own identities? (There are hints early on that Axl is more than he seems, or knows–there’s a whiff of Jason Bourne about him.) Likewise, the Saxons and Britons coexist uneasily but peacefully, but what might they have done to one another in the past? Is there a history of violence here, a cycle of vengeance that the mist of forgetfulness has temporarily paused? Maybe the forgetting isn’t a curse but a blessing. Visiting a monastery, the Saxon warrior perceives that it must originally have been built as an armed fortress. “This is today a place of peace and prayer,” he says, “yet you needn’t gaze so deep to find blood and terror.” As a species humans need to remember, but they also need, desperately, to forget, both as people and as communities, and those twin needs are finely, precariously balanced.


Kazuo Ishiguro’s ‘The Buried Giant’

Fantasy and historical fiction and myth here run together with the Matter of Britain, in a novel that’s easy to admire, to respect and to enjoy, but difficult to love. Still, “The Buried Giant” does what important books do: It remains in the mind long after it has been read, refusing to leave, forcing one to turn it over and over. On a second reading, and on a third, its characters and events and motives are easier to understand, but even so, it guards its secrets and its world close.

Ishiguro is not afraid to tackle huge, personal themes, nor to use myths, history and the fantastic as the tools to do it. “The Buried Giant” is an exceptional novel, and I suspect my inability to fall in love with it, much as I wanted to, came from my conviction that there was an allegory waiting like an ogre in the mist, telling us that no matter how well we love, no matter how deeply, we will always be fallible and human, and that for every couple who are aging together, one or the other of them — of us — will always have to cross the water, and go on to the island ahead and alone.


Kazuo Ishiguro’s turn to fantasy
Dragons, ogres, pixies? It’s not what is expected of Kazuo Ishiguro, but they feature in The Buried Giant, his first novel for 10 years. Behind the turn to fantasy, however, lies his familar fascination with the past and individual moral choices. He talks to Alex Clark about film, memory – and his taste for tea and cake
Alex Clark
Thursday 19 February 2015 16.42 GMT


Morite2さんのブログに紹介されていた東大入試問題を見てみました。結構本格的なんですね(滝汗)解いてみる根性もないのでぱらっとみてみたら、大問3で「メディアの発展とその影(約 460 語) 」に目が留まりました。

災害ユートピア (亜紀書房翻訳ノンフィクション・シリーズ)災害ユートピア (亜紀書房翻訳ノンフィクション・シリーズ)


出典が載ってあったのでわかったのですが、あの『災害ユートピア』を書いたRebecca Solnitさんです。はっとさせるような切り口から今の社会のあり方を根本のところから考え直させてもらえる自分も大好きな作家の一人です。

Vol. 35 No. 16 · 29 August 2013
pages 32-33 | 3218 words

Rebecca Solnit

In or around June 1995 human character changed again. Or rather, it began to undergo a metamorphosis that is still not complete, but is profound – and troubling, not least because it is hardly noted. When I think about, say, 1995, or whenever the last moment was before most of us were on the internet and had mobile phones, it seems like a hundred years ago. Letters came once a day, predictably, in the hands of the postal carrier. News came in three flavours – radio, television, print – and at appointed hours. Some of us even had a newspaper delivered every morning.

Those mail and newspaper deliveries punctuated the day like church bells. You read the paper over breakfast. If there were developments you heard about them on the evening news or in the next day’s paper. You listened to the news when it was broadcast, since there was no other way to hear it. A great many people relied on the same sources of news, so when they discussed current events they did it under the overarching sky of the same general reality. Time passed in fairly large units, or at least not in milliseconds and constant updates. A few hours wasn’t such a long time to go between moments of contact with your work, your people or your trivia.


I wonder sometimes if there will be a revolt against the quality of time the new technologies have brought us, as well as the corporations in charge of those technologies. Or perhaps there already has been, in a small, quiet way. The real point about the slow food movement was often missed. It wasn’t food. It was about doing something from scratch, with pleasure, all the way through, in the old methodical way we used to do things. That didn’t merely produce better food; it produced a better relationship to materials, processes and labour, notably your own, before the spoon reached your mouth. It produced pleasure in production as well as consumption. It made whole what is broken.

Some of the young have taken up gardening and knitting and a host of other things that involve working with their hands, making things from scratch, and often doing things the old way. It is a slow everything movement in need of a manifesto that would explain what vinyl records and homemade bread have in common. We won’t overthrow corporations by knitting – but understanding the pleasures of knitting or weeding or making pickles might articulate the value of that world outside electronic chatter and distraction, and inside a more stately sense of time. (Of course, for a lot of people this impulse has been sublimated by cooking shows: watching the preparation of food that you will never taste by celebrities you will never meet, a fate that makes Tantalus’ seem rich.)



MARCH 30, 2011

Dear brothers and sisters in northeastern Japan and beyond,
So many of us here in the West watched and read about and listened to the news of your disaster with deep concern and empathy, with solidarity and tears. You are not alone. One beautiful editorial in New Orleans remembered what Japan did for the people of the Gulf after Hurricane Katrina and vowed to help in return. Those of us who know something about disaster know that the full story is not yet clear and may never be, and that the disaster is not over and in many ways will never be even after the reactors are shut down and sealed.


After all, Hurricane Katrina and the big BP spill in the Gulf of Mexico are not over, and neither are Chernobyl or the Exxon-Valdez spill in Alaska or the Indian Ocean tsunami of 2004, and I am not sure that Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Auschwitz and Treblinka are over yet either. Disasters begin suddenly and end slowly. They are terrible, first of all—and then what else they are is open-ended. Many things come from them, and some of the changes are permanent.
結局、暴風カトリーナもメキシコ湾の BP大オイル漏れも終わってはいません。同様に、チェルノブイリ、アラスカのエクソンーヴァルデス、2004年のインド洋津波も終わっていません。さらにわたしには、広島と長崎、アウシュビッツ、そしてトレブリンカも終わっているかどうか定かではありません。災害は,突然始まり、そしてゆっくりと終わるのです。まずそれらは悲痛なものです。だが、それらがそれ以外何であるかは未定なのです。多くのものがそれらから到来し、それらがもたらす変化のあるものは永続していくでしょう。

The Encyclopedia of Trouble and SpaciousnessThe Encyclopedia of Trouble and Spaciousness
Rebecca Solnit



Vol. 34 No. 9 · 10 May 2012
pages 35-37 | 5365 words
Rebecca Solnit

Arrival Gates

Granta 127: JapanGranta 127: Japan
Brian Bergstrom、 他



EASY CHAIR — From the February 2015 issue
The War of the World

By Rebecca Solnit

It’s not endless, though; the war will end. Soon, in victory, or later, in defeat. Victory would mean not having destroyed the earth as much as we might have — a modest achievement, but one that would expand the margin of survival for species, places, and billions of people. Defeat will mean that future generations will curse this turning point in our history and look back on the world as it was in 1980 or 1940 or 1750 as an almost unimaginable paradise of stability and abundance. They will not need fairy tales or stories of the supernatural; verbal and cinematic accounts of the abundant oceans, or of an unravaged Africa or Arctic, will seem more than magical for people who live on an earth that looks like Warsaw did in 1945. It will be interesting to see how those who deny climate change try to position themselves in the future, though maybe the history of slavery and Jim Crow is a good model for how something can be misrepresented, denied, and defended in ways that marry incoherence with confidence. Or maybe they will be like those French after World War II who, it turned out, had been Resistance fighters and had never supported the widely embraced collaborationist Vichy regime.

Looking back to 1945 reminds us how new this ecological status quo is, and how quickly things can change. It is remarkable how well Europe recovered from so much devastation, and how much work the parties to the continent’s civil war put into the effort. Americans, perhaps because we are exceptionally amnesiac, distracted, and misinformed, or because we don’t share a history of dramatic political upheaval with Latin America, Africa, and continental Europe, don’t quite believe in change. We have a hard time acknowledging that things used to be different and that they can be again. But they can. And, one way or the other, they will. That’s the best news, and the worst.





27 February 2015 Last updated at 13:56
Prince William remembers Commonwealth war dead in Japan

The Duke of Cambridge has laid a wreath to commemorate the Commonwealth war dead at Japan's Yokohama War Cemetery.

"May we never forget all those who paid the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom."

"Your majesty, it's very nice to see you again. Thank you for having me here - fantastic.”



Prince William pays respects to British PoWs at war graves in Japan
Duke of Cambridge follows in mother's footsteps as he visits Commonwealth war graves, leaving a touching note

By Gordon Rayner, Chief Reporter, in Tokyo
1:51AM GMT 27 Feb 2015

The Duke of Cambridge has paid his respects to British prisoners of war killed in Japan by laying a wreath at a Commonwealth War Graves cemetery outside Tokyo.

The Duke placed his floral tribute on a stone cross at the Yokohama War Cemetery with the hand-written message: “May we never forget all those who paid the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. William.”

The cemetery holds the graves of 1,555 British and Commonwealth soldiers, sailors and airmen who died in the Second World War and 171 who died during the Allied occupation of Japan up to 1952. There are also the ashes of 335 men contained in a single bronze urn.

Many of the dead were killed during Allied bombing raids on Tokyo towards the end of the war. Others were worked to their deaths in horrendous conditions in mines, factories and dockyards supplying Japan’s military machine.


Friday 27 February 2015
The Japanese torture of my father was horrific — so why are they considering watering down the apology for their wartime past?

Around 80,000 allied troops were captured by Japan in Singapore, and suffered some of the worst treatment imaginable

The Japanese have always had a problem admitting they did anything wrong during the Second World War or during their long colonial rule in Asia.

So it's sadly unsurprising that their Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, has just announced that he is considering watering down the country's 1995 apology over its wartime past, “for waging aggressive war and oppressing its neighbours”. Abe has appointed a panel of experts to consider for the first time what he should say at ceremonies to be held to mark the end of World War Two, to coincide with the 70th anniversary of Victory over Japan Day.


Churchill called Japan's capture of Singapore the “worst disaster” and “largest capitulation” in British military history. Around 80,000 British, Indian and Australian troops based there became POWs as a result.

Once taken prisoner, my father was subjected to the most horrific torture. Torture which included being staked out in the midday sun with a glass of water just out of reach, to routine beatings and operations without anaesthetic.

Some prisoners even told stories of being forced to drink pints of water, being tied to the ground and then having gleeful guards jump on their stomachs.

映画『レイルウェイ 運命の旅路』もそうでしたが、帰国後もトラウマがすごかったとあります。the many years it took to get the Japanese to apologise for the part it playedとあるようになかなか謝罪をしなかったイメージが日本に対してあるようです。

The trauma my father experienced damaged him for the rest of his life. When he returned he was skin and bone. At six foot he weighed little more than 6 stone. When my mother received the news she had waited three and a half years to hear she went to meet him off the train. She walked past him twice on the platform before she recognized him.
He lost his Catholic faith and indeed his faith in the whole of mankind. Once home, he was prone to long bouts of deep depression and terrifying nightmares which frightened my mother and had a tremendous impact on our family. But he could never bring himself to talk about the horrors he had witnessed.

The war in the Far East is often called the Forgotten War — not helped by the many years it took to get the Japanese to apologise for the part it played. Even now some Japanese, just like Holocaust deniers, still believe that accounts of Japan’s wartime atrocities were lies or gross exaggerations. Japanese children are taught very little about this part of their history.


For my part those men who were captured and so brutally tortured should never be forgotten; Japan must face up to its past actions and leave the apology as it is. And I'm sure that if my father was alive he would agree.