台湾两则 – Taiwan, in two parts – English

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“Where do you come from with such good Chinese?”, the record store owner asked. He was a middle aged man with large eyes and a mild temperament. He asked the question half curiously, half politely.

I’m looking for a song by Jiang Hui, I really want to hear her song, “Hoping for a Spring breeze”.This romantic Taiwanese song can give me a different angle to understand Tawian from.

On the summer’s afternoon the Keelung port was destroyed, depressed, I wandered aimlessly. I walked past Lover’s Avenue by the seaside, its name made the street seem even more gloomy, more oily, with most of the shops closed and the signboards not cleaned in years. In a primary school playground in the mid-levels, a bust of Chang Kai Shek stood lonely and desolate. Beside the harbour, a large, white coloured statue of a female God, looked like Guan Yin and also like Ma Zu.

The other side of the harbour was more busy. I went seeking those old buildings, I hesitated in front of one “haunted house” and chatted with the owner of a fish shop. He said his own father had died in the gutter in front of his door, that was on the 27th of February 1947. He himself had been in mainland China for 10 years dunning a business, money was harder and harder to earn and he came back to fish. People on the mainland are really quick learners, they can out complete the “Taiwanese work ethic”. He said, China’s strength is really unstoppable, perhaps even America could not compare to it.

After the Japanese defeat, Taiwan which had been separated from the mainland for 50 years returned to China. The Taiwanese people were elated, and rushed to the Keelung harbour. But they found the Chinese army they were welcoming unbearable. They were too dirty, and not military enough, more like coolies, they were pushing forward out of the boats, not even carrying any guns. Facing them was the Japanese army, neatly arranged, for a final salute. They hesitated, as if afraid to face them. They were in shock looking at Keelung’s modern facilities, dumbly stared at the elevator of the Department Store going up and down. But these soldiers were children from the country, recruited by force into the army, ignorant of the outside world. Meanwhile, under Japanese rule, Taiwan enjoyed many benefits of economic development and social progress. For the people of Taiwan at the time, this was a moment of shock and loss.

Now the mainlanders are coming back. When I went to Keelung, Taiwan had just allowed free tourism from the mainland, and news about mainland tourists flooded all of Taiwan media. Tourists at the night-market, going to hospital, buying real estate, spending 24 million on a diamond, or ten people sharing a bowl of beef noodles: these details, no matter how insignificant, are enough to make the Taiwanese interested.

You can feel the excitement and anxiety among them. The mainland is no longer poor, it has become enviably rich, opening endless opportunities. From pineapple cakes to bed and breakfasts, from high speed trains to real estate, everything seems ready to welcome free roaming mainland tourists. But at the same time, the eyes of the Taiwanese reveal some deep disdain, the mainlanders are wealthy barbarians, vulgar upstarts. They watch the tourists’ every move with curiosity, as if it was the only way to slow down their anxiety faced with a stronger China.

Let’s return to the record store

“Have a guess, where am I from?” I replied to the boss.

“Are you from Singapore”, he replied, half-convinced.

This is a surprising answer. I thought he would easily guess that I came from Beijing. Is this just a misunderstanding, or is he implying something else? This is an indirect compliment, isn’t it? He’s emphasising that I’m polite and decent, unlike the noisy hordes of mainland tourists? We’re in some absurd moment where the former margins of the Chinese Empire – Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore – have formed a sort of alliance. They may be more and more dependent on China’s rise, and anxious about it, but by identifying collectively as more ‘civilised’, they gain some sort of superiority and distinct identity. And today, Chinese people are indeed giving them this sense of superiority: China has become rich and powerful, but its internal dilemma – the complete bankruptcy on culture and education – is reflected among the tourists leaving the country.

But the boundary between ‘civilised’ and ‘barbaric’ has never been very clear, and it often changes rapidly. The people of Taiwan look at the mainland tourists as a novelty, but have they forgotten how thirty years ago, they were noisily roaming around Paris and London themselves; or how twenty years earlier still, little credit was given to ‘Japanese tourists’, although people universally recognised as an educated place? The act of looking upon others with amused curiosity often leads to a narrow view of the world, it may mean the loss of a capacity to understand others, and from then, the capacity to understand oneself.

After leaving the record store, we went to the HOMA cafe. It suddenly appeared in the middle of clothing stalls. There’s a painting on the wall of the cafe with a man in a bow tie and a woman in an evening dress. It’s attempting to recreate European life in the 19th century. Inside the cafe, you can feel that there is taste, and surely at some stage (maybe twenty years ago), all the city’s fashionable young people, looking to assert their individuality, would spend time there, looking for a way to escape the daily boredom. They wanted to live elsewhere, live in the middle of the world. Paris or Rome were the ‘centres of civilisation’ they aspired to; these young people from Taiwan felt that they lived on ‘the edge of the world’.

也在这咖啡店里,我向同行的台湾青年读起北岛、食指的诗歌,它们都写于六、七十年代,中国最为黑暗、压抑、野蛮的时刻。出乎意料的是,他们被这些年长得多、经历也截然不同的大陆诗人深深打动了。北岛、食指对于自由、希望、独立、爱情的渴望,不也正是他们的渴望吗?

2

前往屏东的路上,我断断续续地读《原乡人》,作家钟理和的传记。一本薄薄的小书,封面是一张忧郁面孔的素描,出版于民国六十九年,印刷与装帧都带着那个时代的朴素与抒情。

书是从台北小巷的一家旧书店买来的。书店里满是泛黄的纸页与霉味,老板娘却性感妩媚,嘴角挂着撩人的笑容,像是从费里尼童年记忆中的意大利小镇里走到泰顺街。

钟理和出生在日本占领期的台湾,一心要成为一名中国作家。他是个富裕家族的少爷,爱上的却是风俗禁止结婚的同姓恋人。他带着她逃离台湾,来到北风与白雪的东北,移居到故都北平。他做司机、开煤炭店,学习做一个父亲,最重要的是,他要掌握那些汉字,把它们排列在一起,表达出一个“白薯人”的感受,他苦闷、感到被遗弃,却总是不知如何表达。曾经,中国是他的“原乡”,代表着自由与归属,在这里,没人用异样的眼光打量他的婚姻,他不用再受日本人的屈辱。但一切并非如此。

“白薯站在地球的一边!见证历史像游牧民族,在辽阔的大草原上彷徨着。祖国——但一阵西伯利亚风吹来,什么都不见了,都没有了。”他在《白薯的悲哀》中写道。那是抗战胜利之时,狂喜迷漫在整个中国。他却发现,住在北平的台湾人是这喜悦的局外人。五十年前,形状像白薯的台湾被割让给日本。日本人的侵略,激励着很多台湾人,正是这种反抗让祖国变得如此美好,它像是另一个乌托邦。如今,祖国的怀抱,却让他感到幻灭。在北平人眼中,台湾就如朝鲜,有着鲜明的日本色彩,或许它们不激起直接的仇恨,却也是轻蔑、排斥的对象。“然而我们能够说什么呢?祖国——它是那么伟大的。它不但包括一切善,并且它也包括一切恶。”他这样感慨。

他又回到了故乡。在山脚下,他饱受贫困、病痛与失败的折磨,继续写作,死在了书桌前。在某种意义上,他仍是个局外人。在山间与乡村,没人分享他的文学理想、倾听他的苦闷,而在战后的台湾,随着大批大陆流亡文化人的涌来,他这样的台籍作家仍是局外人,他们的中文怎能与这些真正的“原乡人”相比。他能仰仗的唯有坚持,血液与泪水成为了墨水,生命本身则成了燃料。

我没读到他的代表作《笠山农场》,倘若不是这本偶然的小书,恐怕都不知道他的存在。我熟悉的台湾文学是五四传统的延续,是蛰居在岛屿上的大陆人对于故土的乡愁。而至于钟理和,还有比他更富才华的赖和、吴浊流等人,却像是掉进了时代缝隙的一代人。他们的奋斗是那么的孤立无援,被吞噬进更宏大(或许也更空洞)的历史叙述中。这种挣扎不仅是政治上的——他们夹在日本人与国民党之间,更是思想、审美与日常生活的,他们该怎样艰难地在日语、汉语、台语间转化。他们曾那么渴望说出一句标准的“北京话”,但“北京话”旋及又变成了外来压迫的新象征。

屏东的一个小村里,我听了一场原住民的演唱会。这是十多年来台湾的新潮流,每个群体都在宣称自己的独特性。威权政治结束后,所有被压抑的情感都爆发出来。“中国认同”也被视作国民党统治的象征,理应被抛弃。新的“台湾认同”正迅速的形成,对于新一代人来说,“原乡”再不是中国大陆,而是自己的土地、自己的传统,是这排湾族、泰雅族,是几百年来“过唐山”的闽南人、客家人共同造就的土地与传统。

钟理和的身后命运则有了戏剧性的转变。距离他逝世超过五十年,他变成了台湾独立精神的某种象征。后来者略去了他对于中国的乡愁,而把他竖立为本乡本土的热爱者。

我去了他的家乡美浓,除去尝尝久负盛名的板条,我更想看看以他命名的文学博物馆。但这一天,博物馆闭馆,在一家餐厅里,我听到钟铁民刚刚去世的消息。七十岁的铁民,正是出生在冰天雪地的东北,是钟理和投奔“原乡”后的第一个重要收获。逝世前,钟铁民像他的父亲一样,在中学教书,业余写作,也饱受疾病困扰。但他们的方向又不同,父亲曾吃力地教授台湾学生北京话,儿子致力于恢复客家文化。

Source: Bulloger, 20 October 2011 – http://www.bullock.cn/blogs/xuzhiyuan/archives/156166.aspx

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January 23, 2016 @ 08:08:18Current Revision
Content
<p>"Where do you come from with such good Chinese?", the record store owner asked. He was a middle aged man with large eyes and a mild temperament. He asked the question half curiously, half politely.</p> <p>"Where do you come from with such good Chinese?", the record store owner asked. He was a middle aged man with large eyes and a mild temperament. He asked the question half curiously, half politely.</p>
<p>I'm looking for a song by Jiang Hui, I really want to hear her song, "Hoping for a Spring breeze".This romantic Taiwanese song can give me a different angle to understand Tawian from.</p> <p>I'm looking for a song by Jiang Hui, I really want to hear her song, "Hoping for a Spring breeze".This romantic Taiwanese song can give me a different angle to understand Tawian from.</p>
<p>On the summer’s afternoon the Keelung port was destroyed, depressed, I wandered aimlessly. I walked past Lover’s Avenue by the seaside, its name made the street seem even more gloomy, more oily, with most of the shops closed and the signboards not cleaned in years. In a primary school playground in the mid-levels, a bust of Chang Kai Shek stood lonely and desolate. Beside the harbour, a large, white coloured statue of a female God, looked like Guan Yin and also like Ma Zu.</p> <p>On the summer’s afternoon the Keelung port was destroyed, depressed, I wandered aimlessly. I walked past Lover’s Avenue by the seaside, its name made the street seem even more gloomy, more oily, with most of the shops closed and the signboards not cleaned in years. In a primary school playground in the mid-levels, a bust of Chang Kai Shek stood lonely and desolate. Beside the harbour, a large, white coloured statue of a female God, looked like Guan Yin and also like Ma Zu.</p>
<p>The other side of the harbour was more busy. I went seeking those old buildings, I hesitated in front of one "haunted house" and chatted with the owner of a fish shop. He said his own father had died in the gutter in front of his door, that was on the 27th of February 1947. He himself had been in mainland China for 10 years dunning a business, money was harder and harder to earn and he came back to fish. People on the mainland are really quick learners, they can out complete the "Taiwanese work ethic". He said, China's strength is really unstoppable, perhaps even America could not compare to it.</p> <p>The other side of the harbour was more busy. I went seeking those old buildings, I hesitated in front of one "haunted house" and chatted with the owner of a fish shop. He said his own father had died in the gutter in front of his door, that was on the 27th of February 1947. He himself had been in mainland China for 10 years dunning a business, money was harder and harder to earn and he came back to fish. People on the mainland are really quick learners, they can out complete the "Taiwanese work ethic". He said, China's strength is really unstoppable, perhaps even America could not compare to it.</p>
<p>After the Japanese defeat, Taiwan which had been separated from the mainland for 50 years returned to China. The Taiwanese people were elated, and rushed to the Keelung harbour. But they found the Chinese army they were welcoming unbearable. They were too dirty, and not military enough, more like coolies, they were pushing forward out of the boats, not even carrying any guns. Facing them was the Japanese army, neatly arranged, for a final salute. They hesitated, as if afraid to face them. They were in shock looking at Keelung's modern facilities, dumbly stared at the elevator of the Department Store going up and down. But these soldiers were children from the country, recruited by force into the army, ignorant of the outside world. Meanwhile, under Japanese rule, Taiwan enjoyed many benefits of economic development and social progress. For the people of Taiwan at the time, this was a moment of shock and loss. </p> <p>After the Japanese defeat, Taiwan which had been separated from the mainland for 50 years returned to China. The Taiwanese people were elated, and rushed to the Keelung harbour. But they found the Chinese army they were welcoming unbearable. They were too dirty, and not military enough, more like coolies, they were pushing forward out of the boats, not even carrying any guns. Facing them was the Japanese army, neatly arranged, for a final salute. They hesitated, as if afraid to face them. They were in shock looking at Keelung's modern facilities, dumbly stared at the elevator of the Department Store going up and down. But these soldiers were children from the country, recruited by force into the army, ignorant of the outside world. Meanwhile, under Japanese rule, Taiwan enjoyed many benefits of economic development and social progress. For the people of Taiwan at the time, this was a moment of shock and loss. </p>
<p>Now the mainlanders are coming back. When I went to Keelung, Taiwan had just allowed free tourism from the mainland, and news about mainland tourists flooded all of Taiwan media. Tourists at the night-market, going to hospital, buying real estate, spending 24 million on a diamond, or ten people sharing a bowl of beef noodles: these details, no matter how insignificant, are enough to make the Taiwanese interested. </p> <p>Now the mainlanders are coming back. When I went to Keelung, Taiwan had just allowed free tourism from the mainland, and news about mainland tourists flooded all of Taiwan media. Tourists at the night-market, going to hospital, buying real estate, spending 24 million on a diamond, or ten people sharing a bowl of beef noodles: these details, no matter how insignificant, are enough to make the Taiwanese interested. </p>
<p>You can feel the excitement and anxiety among them. The mainland is no longer poor, it has become enviably rich, opening endless opportunities. From pineapple cakes to bed and breakfasts, from high speed trains to real estate, everything seems ready to welcome free roaming mainland tourists. But at the same time, the eyes of the Taiwanese reveal some deep disdain, the mainlanders are wealthy barbarians, vulgar upstarts. They watch the tourists' every move with curiosity, as if it was the only way to slow down their anxiety faced with a stronger China. </p> <p>You can feel the excitement and anxiety among them. The mainland is no longer poor, it has become enviably rich, opening endless opportunities. From pineapple cakes to bed and breakfasts, from high speed trains to real estate, everything seems ready to welcome free roaming mainland tourists. But at the same time, the eyes of the Taiwanese reveal some deep disdain, the mainlanders are wealthy barbarians, vulgar upstarts. They watch the tourists' every move with curiosity, as if it was the only way to slow down their anxiety faced with a stronger China. </p>
<p>Let's return to the record store</p> <p>Let's return to the record store</p>
<p>"Have a guess, where am I from?" I replied to the boss. </p> <p>"Have a guess, where am I from?" I replied to the boss. </p>
<p>"Are you from Singapore", he replied, half-convinced. </p> <p>"Are you from Singapore", he replied, half-convinced. </p>
<p>This is a surprising answer. I thought he would easily guess that I came from Beijing. Is this just a misunderstanding, or is he implying something else? This is an indirect compliment, isn't it? He's emphasising that I'm polite and decent, unlike the noisy hordes of mainland tourists? We're in some absurd moment where the former margins of the Chinese Empire - Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore - have formed a sort of alliance. They may be more and more dependent on China's rise, and anxious about it, but by identifying collectively as more 'civilised', they gain some sort of superiority and distinct identity. And today, Chinese people are indeed giving them this sense of superiority: China has become rich and powerful, but its internal dilemma - the complete bankruptcy on culture and education - is reflected among the tourists leaving the country. </p> <p>This is a surprising answer. I thought he would easily guess that I came from Beijing. Is this just a misunderstanding, or is he implying something else? This is an indirect compliment, isn't it? He's emphasising that I'm polite and decent, unlike the noisy hordes of mainland tourists? We're in some absurd moment where the former margins of the Chinese Empire - Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore - have formed a sort of alliance. They may be more and more dependent on China's rise, and anxious about it, but by identifying collectively as more 'civilised', they gain some sort of superiority and distinct identity. And today, Chinese people are indeed giving them this sense of superiority: China has become rich and powerful, but its internal dilemma - the complete bankruptcy on culture and education - is reflected among the tourists leaving the country. </p>
<p>But the boundary between 'civilised' and 'barbaric' has never been very clear, and it often changes rapidly. The people of Taiwan look at the mainland tourists as a novelty, but have they forgotten how thirty years ago, they were noisily roaming around Paris and London themselves; or how twenty years earlier still, little credit was given to 'Japanese tourists', although people universally recognised as an educated place? The act of looking upon others with amused curiosity often leads to a narrow view of the world, it may mean the loss of a capacity to understand others, and from then, the capacity to understand oneself. </p> <p>But the boundary between 'civilised' and 'barbaric' has never been very clear, and it often changes rapidly. The people of Taiwan look at the mainland tourists as a novelty, but have they forgotten how thirty years ago, they were noisily roaming around Paris and London themselves; or how twenty years earlier still, little credit was given to 'Japanese tourists', although people universally recognised as an educated place? The act of looking upon others with amused curiosity often leads to a narrow view of the world, it may mean the loss of a capacity to understand others, and from then, the capacity to understand oneself. </p>
<p>After leaving the record store, we went to the HOMA cafe. It suddenly appeared in the middle of clothing stalls. There's a painting on the wall of the cafe with a man in a bow tie and a woman in an evening dress. It's attempting to recreate European life in the 19th century. Inside the cafe, you can feel that there is taste, and surely at some stage (maybe twenty years ago), all the city's fashionable young people, looking to assert their individuality, would spend time there, looking for a way to escape the daily boredom. They wanted to live elsewhere, live in the middle of the world. Paris or Rome were the 'centres of civilisation' they aspired to; these young people from Taiwan felt that they lived on 'the edge of the world'. </p> <p>After leaving the record store, we went to the HOMA cafe. It suddenly appeared in the middle of clothing stalls. There's a painting on the wall of the cafe with a man in a bow tie and a woman in an evening dress. It's attempting to recreate European life in the 19th century. Inside the cafe, you can feel that there is taste, and surely at some stage (maybe twenty years ago), all the city's fashionable young people, looking to assert their individuality, would spend time there, looking for a way to escape the daily boredom. They wanted to live elsewhere, live in the middle of the world. Paris or Rome were the 'centres of civilisation' they aspired to; these young people from Taiwan felt that they lived on 'the edge of the world'. </p>
<p>也在这咖啡店里,我向同行的台湾青年读起北岛、食指的诗歌,它们都写于六、七十年代,中国最为黑暗、压抑、野蛮的时刻。出乎意料的是,他们被这些年长得多、经历也截然不同的大陆诗人深深打动了。北岛、食指对于自由、希望、独立、爱情的渴望,不也正是他们的渴望吗?</p> <p>In this coffee shop, I started reading the poems of Taiwan's young people, Bei Dao, Shi Zhi. They wrote in the sixties and seventies, during China's darkest, lowest and most brutal moments. The surprising thing is, they were deeply moved by these older, more experienced mainland poets. Bei Dao and Shi Zhi long after freedom, hope, independence, love, is this not what they also aspired to? </p>
<p>2</p> <p>2</p>
<p>前往屏东的路上,我断断续续地读《原乡人》,作家钟理和的传记。一本薄薄的小书,封面是一张忧郁面孔的素描,出版于民国六十九年,印刷与装帧都带着那个时代的朴素与抒情。</p>  
<p>书是从台北小巷的一家旧书店买来的。书店里满是泛黄的纸页与霉味,老板娘却性感妩媚,嘴角挂着撩人的笑容,像是从费里尼童年记忆中的意大利小镇里走到泰顺街。</p>  
<p>钟理和出生在日本占领期的台湾,一心要成为一名中国作家。他是个富裕家族的少爷,爱上的却是风俗禁止结婚的同姓恋人。他带着她逃离台湾,来到北风与白雪的东北,移居到故都北平。他做司机、开煤炭店,学习做一个父亲,最重要的是,他要掌握那些汉字,把它们排列在一起,表达出一个“白薯人”的感受,他苦闷、感到被遗弃,却总是不知如何表达。曾经,中国是他的“原乡”,代表着自由与归属,在这里,没人用异样的眼光打量他的婚姻,他不用再受日本人的屈辱。但一切并非如此。</p>  
  <p>As I travelled on the road to Pingtung, I browsed through 'people from the village', the biography of writer Zhong Lihe. It's a thin book, the sketch of a melancholy face on the cover, published in 1969 in the Republic of China, the printing and binding both carry the simple lyricism of that era. </p>
  <p>I bought the book from an old bookstore in an alley of Taipei. The bookstore is full of yellowing, musty paper. The boss was a charming middle aged woman, with a sultry smile, as if she'd emerged on Taishun street from the little Italian towns of Fellini's childhood. </p>
  <p>Zhong Lihe was born in Taiwan during the Japanese occupation, and he determined that he wanted to become a famous Chinese writer. He was the son of a wealthy family, but he fell in love with a woman who had the same surname, and tradition forbid them to marry. He fled Taiwan with her, and arrived in cold and windy Manchuria, then finally settled in Beijing. He worked as a taxi driver, ran a coal store, learnt how to be a father, but the most important was, how to master these characters, how to arrange them together, and express the feelings of a 'white potato man'. He was depressed, felt abandoned, but never knew how to express this. Once, China was his 'hometown', it expressed freedom and belonging. Here, nobody would look on his wedding with strange eyes, he wouldn't have to suffer humiliation from the Japanese. But that's not how it was. </p>
  <p>"White potato stands on one side of the earth! He witnesses history like nomads wandering across the broad grasslands. Motherland? With one blow of the Siberian wind, everything was gone, nothing remained." This is what he wrote in "The Sorrows of the white potato". This was after victory in the war, when ecstasy was pervading China. But he realised that a Taiwanese man living in Beiping was foreign to that joy. Fifty years ago, potato-shaped Taiwan was ceded to Japan. The Japanese agression inspired many Taiwanese people to believe that the motherland was an object of perfect beauty, a sort of Utopia. But now, the embrace of the motherland left him disillusioned. In the eyes of the Beijingers, Taiwan was like Korea, it had a distinctive Japanese flavour. They might not directly provoke hatred, but were received with contempt, and excluded. "And yet, what can we say? The motherland - it includes everything good, and includes everything evil." That is how he felt. </p>
  <p>He returned to his hometown. At the foot of the mountain, he suffered poverty, illness, and the torture of failure, but he continued writing, and died in front of his desk. In a sense, he was still an outsider. In the mountains and rural areas, nobody shared his literary ideal, nobody listened to his anguish. In post-war Taiwan, with many mainland intellectuals moving to the island, a Taiwanese writer like him was still an outsider. How could their Chinese be compared to that of such a true 'native son'? He could only rely on his perseverance, blood and tears became ink, and his life itself became his fuel.</p>
  <p>I never read his masterpiece, 'lil hill farm', and if it hadn't been for this little book I found by chance, I would never have known of his existence. What I am most familiar with in terms of Taiwanese literature is the continuation of the 1954 tradition, seclusion on the island and nostalgia for the homeland. As for Zhong Li He, and others even more talented than him, Lai He, Wu Zhouliu, it's as if they fell into a gap between generations. Their struggles were so personal and isolated that they were swallowed in the more ambitious (and perhaps emptier) grand historical narrative. This kind of struggle is not only political - They're stuck in between the Japanese and the Guomingdang, even more so through their thinking, their aesthetic, and their daily life. How and with what difficulty can they evolve in amidst the languages of Japan, China and Taiwan? They've been so eager to speak in proper 'Beijing dialect', but then 'Beijing dialect' turned around and became a new form of foreign oppression. </p>
  <p>In a small village called Pingtun, I listened to a concert of aboriginal music. This has been a new trend in Taiwan for the last ten years, each group claims its own uniqueness. After the end of the authoritarian regime, all pent up emotions have erupted to the surface. "Chinese identity" is seen as a symbol of the Guomingdang, and should be abandoned. The new "Taiwanese identity" is quickly forming, and for a new generation, the "homeland" is no longer the Chinese mainland, but their own land and traditions, it is the ethnic Wans and Taya, it is the land and traditions that the Minnan and Hakka people have created together for over a century 'over Tangshan'. </p>
<p>“白薯站在地球的一边!见证历史像游牧民族,在辽阔的大草原上彷徨着。祖国——但一阵西伯利亚风吹来,什么都不见了,都没有了。”他在《白薯的悲哀》中写道。那是抗战胜利之时,狂喜迷漫在整个中国。他却发现,住在北平的台湾人是这喜悦的局外人。五十年前,形状像白薯的台湾被割让给日本。日本人的侵略,激励着很多台湾人,正是这种反抗让祖国变得如此美好,它像是另一个乌托邦。如今,祖国的怀抱,却让他感到幻灭。在北平人眼中,台湾就如朝鲜,有着鲜明的日本色彩,或许它们不激起直接的仇恨,却也是轻蔑、排斥的对象。“然而我们能够说什么呢?祖国——它是那么伟大的。它不但包括一切善,并且它也包括一切恶。”他这样感慨。</p> <p>The later fate of Zhong Li He went through a dramatic change. Fifty years after his death, he became a sort of symbol for Taiwan's independence. The new generations omitted his nostalgia for China as a homeland, and made him into a keen lover of the local. </p>
<p>他又回到了故乡。在山脚下,他饱受贫困、病痛与失败的折磨,继续写作,死在了书桌前。在某种意义上,他仍是个局外人。在山间与乡村,没人分享他的文学理想、倾听他的苦闷,而在战后的台湾,随着大批大陆流亡文化人的涌来,他这样的台籍作家仍是局外人,他们的中文怎能与这些真正的“原乡人”相比。他能仰仗的唯有坚持,血液与泪水成为了墨水,生命本身则成了燃料。</p>  
<p>我没读到他的代表作《笠山农场》,倘若不是这本偶然的小书,恐怕都不知道他的存在。我熟悉的台湾文学是五四传统的延续,是蛰居在岛屿上的大陆人对于故土的乡愁。而至于钟理和,还有比他更富才华的赖和、吴浊流等人,却像是掉进了时代缝隙的一代人。他们的奋斗是那么的孤立无援,被吞噬进更宏大(或许也更空洞)的历史叙述中。这种挣扎不仅是政治上的——他们夹在日本人与国民党之间,更是思想、审美与日常生活的,他们该怎样艰难地在日语、汉语、台语间转化。他们曾那么渴望说出一句标准的“北京话”,但“北京话”旋及又变成了外来压迫的新象征。</p>  
<p>屏东的一个小村里,我听了一场原住民的演唱会。这是十多年来台湾的新潮流,每个群体都在宣称自己的独特性。威权政治结束后,所有被压抑的情感都爆发出来。“中国认同”也被视作国民党统治的象征,理应被抛弃。新的“台湾认同”正迅速的形成,对于新一代人来说,“原乡”再不是中国大陆,而是自己的土地、自己的传统,是这排湾族、泰雅族,是几百年来“过唐山”的闽南人、客家人共同造就的土地与传统。</p>  
<p>钟理和的身后命运则有了戏剧性的转变。距离他逝世超过五十年,他变成了台湾独立精神的某种象征。后来者略去了他对于中国的乡愁,而把他竖立为本乡本土的热爱者。</p>  
<p>我去了他的家乡美浓,除去尝尝久负盛名的板条,我更想看看以他命名的文学博物馆。但这一天,博物馆闭馆,在一家餐厅里,我听到钟铁民刚刚去世的消息。七十岁的铁民,正是出生在冰天雪地的东北,是钟理和投奔“原乡”后的第一个重要收获。逝世前,钟铁民像他的父亲一样,在中学教书,业余写作,也饱受疾病困扰。但他们的方向又不同,父亲曾吃力地教授台湾学生北京话,儿子致力于恢复客家文化。</p>  
  <p>I went to his hometown, Mei Nong, and apart from the various plaques and notes, I was hoping to see the literary museum. But on that day, the museum was closed. In a restaurant, I heard the news than Zhong Tiemin had just died. Seventy year old Tiemin, although he was born in the cold and snow of the distant North East, was Zhong Li He's first 'harvest' after defecting his hometown. Before he died, Zhong Tiemin, like his father, was a secondary school teacher, wrote as an amateur, and faced health issues. But their directions differed. The father had struggled to teach Taiwanese students the Beijing dialect, while the son was committed to restoring Hakka culture. </p>
<p>Source: Bulloger, 20 October 2011 - <a href="http:// www.bullock.cn/ blogs/xuzhiyuan/ archives/156166.aspx" target="_blank" >http://www.bullock.cn/blogs/ xuzhiyuan/archives/ 156166.aspx</a></p> <p>Source: Bulloger, 20 October 2011 - <a href="http:// www.bullock.cn/ blogs/xuzhiyuan/ archives/156166.aspx" target="_blank" >http://www.bullock.cn/blogs/ xuzhiyuan/archives/ 156166.aspx</a></p>

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About julien.leyre

French-Australian writer, educator, sinophile. Any question? Contact julien@marcopoloproject.org