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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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The Undead Past

 
先のエントリーは4年前のYuta自身の問題意識と変わらないかもしれません。

3周年を迎えた今、被災者の方を思いやろうとするならば、“The past is never dead. It's not even past.”(過去は決しして死なない。過ぎ去ってもいないのだ)というフォークナーの言葉を思い起こす必要があるのかもしれません。

Foreign Affairsの最新号のテーマはThe Undead Pastだったのですが、このフォークナーの言葉を意識してのものでしょう。Foreign Affairsは外交問題を取り扱うので個人の問題というより国家の問題を取り上げているので、カズオ・イシグロのノーベル賞スピーチで語ったことに近いかもしれません。


In October 1999 I was invited by the German poet Christoph Heubner on behalf of the International Auschwitz Committee to spend a few days visiting the former concentration camp. My accommodation was at the Auschwitz Youth Meeting Centre on the road between the first Auschwitz camp and the Birkenau death camp two miles away. I was shown around these sites and met, informally, three survivors. I felt I'd come close, geographically at least, to the heart of the dark force under whose shadow my generation had grown up. At Birkenau, on a wet afternoon, I stood before the rubbled remains of the gas chambers – now strangely neglected and unattended – left much as the Germans had left them after blowing them up and fleeing the Red Army. They were now just damp, broken slabs, exposed to the harsh Polish climate, deteriorating year by year. My hosts talked about their dilemma. Should these remains be protected? Should perspex domes be built to cover them over, to preserve them for the eyes of succeeding generations? Or should they be allowed, slowly and naturally, to rot away to nothing? It seemed to me a powerful metaphor for a larger dilemma. How were such memories to be preserved? Would the glass domes transform these relics of evil and suffering into tame museum exhibits? What should we choose to remember? When is it better to forget and move on?

1999年10月、ドイツの詩人、クリストフ・ホイプナーが、国際アウシュビッツ委員会を代表して、ポーランドにある強制収容所跡を2、3日かけて訪問する旅に招待してくれました。アウシュビッツ・ユース・ミーティング・センターというのが私の宿舎で、それは最初に訪問したアウシュビッツの収容所とそこから3キロほど離れたビルケナウの収容所の間にありました。近くを案内してもらい、かつてその場所に収容されたことがある生存者3人にも非公式に会いました。私はその時、少なくとも地理的には、これまで私たちの世代に影を落としていた暗く暴力的なものの核心の近くに来ている、と感じました。ある雨の日の午後、ビルケナウへ行って、ガレキになったガス室跡の前に立ちました。不思議なことに、そこはだれも注意を払わず、面倒をみる人もいない場所で、赤軍の進軍を前にドイツ軍が爆破したまま放置されていました。ガス室跡は今や湿って壊れた板切れとなり、ポーランドの厳しい気候にさらされ、年ごとにさらに傷んでいくようでした。私を呼んでくれた人たちは、自分たちはジレンマを抱えているのです、と言いました。収容所跡は保存されるべきなのか? 次世代の人々に見てもらうため、アクリルのカバーなどで覆って保存すべきなのか? あるいはゆっくりと自然のまま朽ち果てさせてよいものか? これは、もっと大きなジレンマのメタファー(隠喩)に思えました。こうした記憶はどう保存すべきなのか? ガラスのドームをかぶせれば、悪と苦痛を象徴する遺跡を、博物館にあるようなおとなしい展示物に変えることができるのか? 私たちは何を記憶すべきなのか? いつになったら、忘れて先へ進んだ方がいいと言えるのか?

I was 44 years old. Until then I'd considered the Second World War, its horrors and its triumphs, as belonging to my parents' generation. But now it occurred to me that before too long, many who had witnessed those huge events at first hand would not be alive. And what then? Did the burden of remembering fall to my own generation? We hadn't experienced the war years, but we'd at least been brought up by parents whose lives had been indelibly shaped by them. Did I, now, as a public teller of stories, have a duty I'd hitherto been unaware of? A duty to pass on, as best I could, these memories and lessons from our parents' generation to the one after our own?

私は44歳でした。その時まで私は、第二次世界大戦というもの、その恐怖や勝利などは両親の世代に属していると考えていました。ところが、そこで思ったのは、もうしばらくたてば、とてつもない大戦を実際に経験した人々がいなくなるということでした。そうすればどうなるのだろう? 私たちの世代が記憶という責任を負うことになるのか? 私たちは戦時中には生まれていませんでしたが、少なくとも戦争によって自分たちの人生が影響された両親に育てられました。物語を書く者として、今まで気づいていなかった義務があるのではないか? 私たちには、両親の世代の記憶や教訓を、できる限り次の世代に伝えるという義務があるのではないか。

A little while later, I was speaking before an audience in Tokyo, and a questioner from the floor asked, as is common, what I might work on next. More specifically, the questioner pointed out that my books had often concerned individuals who'd lived through times of great social and political upheaval, and who then looked back over their lives and struggled to come to terms with their darker, more shameful memories. Would my future books, she asked, continue to cover a similar territory?

 それからしばらくして東京で講演をする機会があり、そこでフロアから、次はどんなものを書くかという、いつも聞かれるような質問を受けました。具体的に言うと、この質問者から、私の小説には社会的、政治的な激動の時期を生きてきて、後に人生を振り返り、自分の暗い恥ずかしい過去と折り合いをつけられなくて悩むような人たちがしばしば登場する。これからも同じ領域を扱うのか、と聞かれたのです。

I found myself giving a quite unprepared answer. Yes, I said, I'd often written about such individuals struggling between forgetting and remembering. But in the future, what I really wished to do was to write a story about how a nation or a community faced these same questions. Does a nation remember and forget in much the same way as an individual does? Or are there important differences? What exactly are the memories of a nation? Where are they kept? How are they shaped and controlled? Are there times when forgetting is the only way to stop cycles of violence, or to stop a society disintegrating into chaos or war? On the other hand, can stable, free nations really be built on foundations of wilful amnesia and frustrated justice? I heard myself telling the questioner that I wanted to find a way to write about these things, but that for the moment, unfortunately, I couldn't think how I'd do it.

 まったく用意していなかった答えを口にしていました。「そうです。私はこれまで、忘れることと記憶することの間で葛藤する個人を書いてきました。でも、これから本当に書きたいのは国家や共同体が同じ問題にどう向き合うかというテーマです」。国家は、個人と同じように記憶したり、忘れたりするのだろうか? 個人と国家で、重要な違いはあるのだろうか? 国家の記憶とは一体、何なのか? どこに保存されるのか? どういう形で記憶され、どういう形で管理されるのか? 忘れることでしか暴力の連鎖を止めたり、大混乱や戦争を招きかねない分裂を止めたりができない時もあるのではないか? その一方で、意図的に記憶を喪失し、公正さが守られない地盤に、安定した自由な国家をつくれるのか? 私は質問した人に、こうしたことを書く方法を見つけたいのだが、残念ながら今のところ見つかっていない、と答えていました。 


この号ではアメリカ、ドイツ、中国、ロシア、ルワンダ、南アフリカといった国々が自国の歴史の暗部にどう向き合っているかということを特集しています。特集の前書きにあたる編集長による紹介の抜粋です。

Politics & Society
What's Inside
By Gideon Rose

How do nations handle the sins of the fathers and mothers? Take genocide, or slavery, or political mass murder. After such knowledge, what forgiveness—and what way forward?

The Germans have a word for it, of course: Vergangenheitsbewältigung, or “coming to terms with the past.” But the concept is applicable far beyond the Nazis—as Americans belatedly recognized when Robert E. Lee shot to the front of the culture wars last August after the riots in Charlottesville, Virginia.

To put the debates over memorializing the Confederacy in context, this issue’s lead package explores how various countries have handled similar problems. There have been all too many crimes in all too many places, but six cases stand out—two of genocide, two of political mass murder, and two of enduring racial oppression. Individually, the articles here delve into how each country has processed its tragic past. Together, they reveal interesting patterns and lessons. 

(中略)

Worst practices are easy to identify: denying what actually happened. Best practices are more scattered, but one country leads the field. Germany’s crimes rank with the worst in history. But at least, over time, the right lessons were indeed learned, and responsible engagement with the past has become a new national tradition. (One example is the Stolpersteine plaques—two of which are pictured on the cover, remembering Martin and Sophie Happ, who were murdered at Auschwitz in 1943.)

Perhaps facing a problem so directly and brutally that you coin an actual word for it is a smart idea after all.

—Gideon Rose, Editor

予想通りドイツは優等生のように書かれていますが、過去には西ドイツでも異論があったこと、東ドイツではロシア共産党が勝利したこともありナチスの犯罪と向き合う必要性も少なかったというのは以外でもありました。

How Germany Came to Terms With Its Past
By Richard J. Evans

There was a limit, as well, to what the Allies could achieve in encouraging or forcing the Germans to come to terms with what they had done. West Germans, the vast majority of the formerly united country’s population, seemed to suffer from a generalized historical and moral amnesia in the postwar years; on the rare occasions when they spoke about the Nazi dictatorship, it was usually to insist that they had known nothing of its crimes and to complain that they had been unfairly victimized and humiliated by the denazification programs and the “victors’ justice” of the war crimes trials. Many still seethed with anger at the Allies’ carpet-bombing of German towns and resented the expulsion of 11 million ethnic Germans by the postwar governments of Hungary, Poland, Romania, and other eastern European countries. An opinion poll carried out in West Germany in 1949 revealed that half the population considered Nazism to be “a good idea, badly carried out.” In the East, the country’s new Stalinist leaders wanted the public to identify with the memory of the communist resistance to Nazism, which had been real enough, but which the authorities massively exaggerated. As a result, East Germans were not really forced to face up to their involvement in the crimes of Nazism at all. 

そうはいってもこの論考ではドイツに好意的に書いていて極右がメインストリームになることはないと書いています。雑誌の表紙にも採用され、編集長の前書きにもあったStolpersteineという芸術プロジェクトに触れている部分です。



A wave of memorials accompanied and encouraged this collective embrace of the truth. In 1992, the artist Gunter Demnig launched the Stolpersteine (“stumbling blocks”) project, in which small brass plaques the size of cobblestones were laid into the sidewalks of German towns and cities outside the houses where the murdered victims of Nazism had lived until their arrest. The plaques carry the names of the victims and the dates and places of their birth and death. The project quickly became popular as a way of memorializing the dead. To date, more than 56,000 Stolpersteine have been placed in urban locations in some 22 countries, the vast majority in Germany itself. By placing them where people would walk over them, the artist intended to remind passersby of the complicity of ordinary Germans in the violence. Although some towns still resist their placement, the number of these small but powerfully evocative memorials continues to grow. 

Larger, more elaborate forms of memorialization took shape, as well. The sites of former concentration camps were turned into large-scale memorials to the victims, with elaborate exhibitions that now took a more comprehensive approach to their subject, replacing the partial view of the Cold War years. The modern Neuengamme prison was closed in 2006. A supermarket built on the grounds of the Ravensbrück women’s concentration camp was never opened after widespread protests (although the building itself was not demolished). The camp at Sachsenhausen, to the north of Berlin, in the former East Germany, was cleared of rubble, and a new exhibition center was opened there in 2001. And in 2005, perhaps the highest-profile of these projects opened: the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, located in the center of Germany’s new capital, Berlin. 

Gunter Demnig本人のウエブサイトでの紹介はこちら。

HOME
The artist Gunter Demnig remembers the victims of National Socialism by installing commemorative brass plaques in the pavement in front of their last address of choice. There are now STOLPERSTEINE (lit. “stumbling stones or blocks”) in over 610 places in Germany as well as in Austria, Hungary, the Netherlands, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Norway and Ukraine.

Gunter Demnig cites the Talmud saying that "a person is only forgotten when his or her name is forgotten". The Stolpersteine in front of the buildings bring back to memory the people who once lived here. Each “stone” begins with HERE LIVED… One “stone”. One name. One person.
For 120 euros, anybody can sponsor a stone, its manufacture and its installation. Please contact info(at)stolpersteine.eu for more information.

過去の暗部とどう向き合うのか。その難しさはイシグロの言葉によく現れています。

I found myself giving a quite unprepared answer. Yes, I said, I'd often written about such individuals struggling between forgetting and remembering. But in the future, what I really wished to do was to write a story about how a nation or a community faced these same questions. Does a nation remember and forget in much the same way as an individual does? Or are there important differences? What exactly are the memories of a nation? Where are they kept? How are they shaped and controlled? Are there times when forgetting is the only way to stop cycles of violence, or to stop a society disintegrating into chaos or war? On the other hand, can stable, free nations really be built on foundations of wilful amnesia and frustrated justice? I heard myself telling the questioner that I wanted to find a way to write about these things, but that for the moment, unfortunately, I couldn't think how I'd do it.

 まったく用意していなかった答えを口にしていました。「そうです。私はこれまで、忘れることと記憶することの間で葛藤する個人を書いてきました。でも、これから本当に書きたいのは国家や共同体が同じ問題にどう向き合うかというテーマです」。国家は、個人と同じように記憶したり、忘れたりするのだろうか? 個人と国家で、重要な違いはあるのだろうか? 国家の記憶とは一体、何なのか? どこに保存されるのか? どういう形で記憶され、どういう形で管理されるのか? 忘れることでしか暴力の連鎖を止めたり、大混乱や戦争を招きかねない分裂を止めたりができない時もあるのではないか? その一方で、意図的に記憶を喪失し、公正さが守られない地盤に、安定した自由な国家をつくれるのか? 私は質問した人に、こうしたことを書く方法を見つけたいのだが、残念ながら今のところ見つかっていない、と答えていました。 

彼はその後書き方を見つけ「忘れらた巨人」という作品にしましたが、一国家としてどのように振る舞えるかは難しそうです。ロシアにしろ、中国にしろ、過去の暗部はなかったことにしていますし、南アフリカも過去の抑圧的な差別構造は温存したままだそうですから。。。
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