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  • President Faust, members of the Harvard Corporation

    弗斯特校長、哈佛理事會

  • and the Board of Overseers, members of the faculty, proud parents,

    和監督委員會的各位成員、各位教職員、驕傲的父母們,

  • and, above all, graduates.

    以及最重要的畢業生們。

  • The first thing I would like to say is "T hank you."

    首先我想說的是「謝謝你們」。

  • Not only has Harvard given me an extraordinary honor,

    哈佛不僅給了我至高無上的榮譽,

  • but the weeks of fear and nausea I have endured

    也讓我在幾週以來承受了恐懼及嘔吐感,

  • at the thought of giving this commencement address have made me lose weight.

    光是想到我要來這場畢業典禮演講就已經讓我的體重減輕了。

  • A win-win situation!

    一個雙贏的局面!

  • Now all I have to do is take deep breaths, squint at the red banners,

    現在我所要做的就是深呼吸、瞇眼看向那紅色的旗幟,

  • and convince myself that I am at the world's largest Gryffindor reunion.

    然後說服我自己正處在全世界最大的葛萊芬多同學會之中。

  • Delivering a commencement address is a great responsibility,

    發表畢業演說是一個重大的責任,

  • or so I thought, until I cast my mind back to my own graduation.

    抑或我是這麼認為的,直到我回想起我自己的畢業典禮。

  • The commencement speaker that day was

    那天畢業典禮的演講者是

  • the distinguished British philosopher Baroness Mary Warnock.

    著名的英國哲學家沃諾克公爵夫人。

  • Reflecting on her speech has helped me enormously in writing this one,

    回憶起她的演說對我寫這篇講稿的幫助極大,

  • because it turns out that I can't remember a single word she said.

    因為結果是她說的任何一個字我都想不起來。

  • This liberating discovery enables me to proceed

    這項令人解脫的發現讓我得以繼續下去,

  • without any fear that I might inadvertently

    完全不用害怕我可能會不經意地

  • influence you to abandon promising careers in business, the law,

    影響你,讓你放棄在商業界、法律界

  • or politics for the giddy delights of becoming a gay wizard.

    或政治圈內有大好前程的職業,只為了做輕浮愉悅之事,當個同性戀巫師。

  • You see? If all you remember in years to come is the 'gay wizard' joke,

    你看到了嗎?如果幾年後你所記得的就是這個「同性戀巫師」的笑話,

  • I've come out ahead of Baroness Mary Warnock.

    那我還比沃諾克公爵夫人略勝一籌。

  • Achievable goals: the first step to self-improvement.

    可達成的目標:自我提升的第一步。

  • Actually, I have wracked my mind and heart for what I ought to say to you today.

    事實上,我已經竭盡心力就為了想出今天我該跟你們說什麼。

  • I have asked myself what I wish I had known at my own graduation,

    我問自己當時希望在自己的畢業典禮上知道些什麼,

  • and what important lessons I have learned in the 21 years that have expired between that day and this.

    還有從我畢業那天到今日的這21年間,我學到了哪些重要的課題。

  • I have come up with two answers.

    我已得出兩個答案。

  • On this wonderful day when we are gathered together to celebrate your academic success,

    在這美好的一天,當我們聚在一起慶賀你們在學業上的成就時,

  • I have decided to talk to you about the benefits of failure.

    我決定要與你們談談失敗的好處。

  • And as you stand on the threshold of what is sometimes called "real life,"

    當你們站在這個有時被稱作「現實生活」的起點時,

  • I want to extol the crucial importance of imagination.

    我想要宣揚想像力的至關重要性。

  • These may seem quixotic or paradoxical choices, but bear with me.

    這些也許會像是異想天開或自相矛盾的選擇,但請耐心聽我說。

  • Looking back at the 21-year-old that I was at graduation

    回顧畢業典禮時21歲的我,

  • is a slightly uncomfortable experience for the 42-year-old that she has become.

    對於後來成為42歲女人的她來說是一項不太舒服的體驗。

  • Half my lifetime ago, I was striking an uneasy balance

    在我一半的人生之前,我在為自己的抱負

  • between the ambition I had for myself and what those closest to me expected of me.

    及那些最親近的人對我的期待之間尋求一個搖搖欲墜的平衡。

  • I was convinced that the only thing I wanted to do, ever, was write novels.

    我確信一直以來,我唯一想做的事,就是寫小說。

  • However, my parents, both of whom came from impoverished backgrounds

    然而,我的父母,他們都來自貧窮的背景,

  • and neither of whom had been to college, took the view that my overactive imagination

    而且也都沒有讀大學,認為我過於活躍的想像力

  • was an amusing personal quirk that would never pay a mortgage or secure a pension.

    只是一種消遣用的個人怪癖,永遠無法償還抵押貸款,或取得退休金。

  • I know the irony strikes with the force of a cartoon anvil now. But...

    我知道這在現在很諷刺,有個卡通鐵砧會用力擊打下來。但是...

  • So they hoped that I would take a vocational degree;

    所以他們希望我能去修職業學校的學位。

  • I wanted to study English literature.

    我當時想讀英國文學。

  • A compromise was reached that in retrospect satisfied nobody, and I went up to study modern languages.

    回想起來,協議是達成了,卻沒人對它感到滿意,然後我去修讀了現代語言學。

  • Hardly had my parent's car rounded the corner at the end of the road

    我爸媽的車子都還沒走到道路盡頭的轉角處,

  • then I ditched German and scuttled off down the Classics corridor.

    我就拋棄了德文然後倉皇逃向古典文學的迴廊。

  • I cannot remember telling my parents that I was studying Classics;

    我不記得有告訴我爸媽我正在讀古典文學;

  • they might well have found out for the first time on graduation day.

    他們很可能是到畢業典禮當天才首次發現這件事。

  • Of all the subjects on this planet,

    在這星球上的所有科目中,

  • I think they would have been hard put to name

    我想他們應該很難列舉出

  • one less useful than Greek mythology when it came to securing

    比希臘神話還不實用的學科,若是談到要獲得

  • the keys to an executive bathroom.

    一把高級昂貴浴室的鑰匙的時候。

  • Now, I would like to make it clear, in parenthesis,

    現在我要澄清,註解說明,

  • that I do not blame my parents for their point of view.

    我不會因為我爸媽的觀點而責怪他們。

  • There is an expiry date on blaming your parents for steering you in the wrong direction;

    責怪你父母引導你往錯誤的方向是有期限的;

  • the moment you are old enough to take the wheel, responsibility lies with you.

    當你年紀大到足以掌控方向盤的那一刻,責任就在於你自己了。

  • What is more, I cannot criticize my parents for hoping that

    再者,我無法批評我的父母,

  • I would never experience poverty.

    因為他們希望我永遠不要經歷貧窮。

  • They had been poor themselves, and I have since been poor.

    他們自身曾經貧困過,而我也因而貧窮過。

  • And I quite agree with them that it is not an ennobling experience.

    而我非常同意他們,貧窮不是個高尚的經驗。

  • Poverty entails fear and stress, and sometimes depression;

    貧窮使人蒙受恐懼、壓力,有時是沮喪;

  • it means 1,000 petty humiliations and hardships.

    它意味著上千次的小屈辱及難關。

  • Climbing out of poverty by your own efforts,

    靠你自己的努力走出貧窮,

  • that is something on which to pride yourself,

    那是你可以引以為傲的事,

  • but poverty itself is romanticized only by fools.

    但只有傻子才會把貧窮本身浪漫化。

  • What I feared most for myself at your age was not poverty, but failure.

    在你們這個年紀時我最害怕的不是貧窮,而是失敗。

  • At your age, in spite of a distinct lack of motivation at university,

    在你們這個年紀,儘管我在大學裡明顯缺乏動力,

  • where I had spent far too long in the coffee bar writing stories

    我花太多時間在咖啡館寫故事,

  • and far too little time at lectures,

    太少時間在課堂上,

  • I had a knack for passing examinations,

    但我卻有本事考試過關,

  • and that, for years, had been the measure of success in my life and that of my peers.

    而這一點在多年來,一直都是衡量我以及我同儕的人生是否成功的標準。

  • Now, I am not dull enough to suppose that because you are young, gifted,

    現在,我也不會蠢到認為因為你們都還很年輕、有天份

  • and well educated, you have never sh.. known heartbreak, hardship, or heartache.

    並受過良好教育,就從未經歷過...心碎、困境或心痛。

  • Talent and intelligence never yet inoculated anyone against the caprice of the fates,

    天賦和聰明才智從未能幫任何人打上預防針以避免命運的反覆無常,

  • and I do not for a moment suppose that everyone here has enjoyed an existence of unruffled privilege and contentment.

    而我一刻也沒想過在座各位都曾享受過一帆風順的特權和滿足。

  • However, the fact that you are graduating from Harvard suggests that you are not very well acquainted with failure.

    然而,你們要從哈佛畢業的這個事實表明了你們不甚熟悉失敗。

  • You might be driven by a fear of failure quite as much as a desire for success.

    你們對失敗的恐懼也許就如你們對成功的渴望,一樣地驅策著你們。

  • Indeed, your conception of failure might not be too far removed from the average person's idea of success,

    的確,你們對失敗的概念或許與一般人對成功的想法相去不遠,

  • so high have you already flown.

    你們已翱翔得如此之高了。

  • Ultimately, we will have to decide for ourselves what constitutes failure.

    最終,我們得自行決定是什麼造成失敗。

  • But the world is quite eager to give you a set of criteria if you let it.

    但如果你允許,這世界會迫不及待地提供你一套標準。

  • So I think it fair to say that by any conventional measure, a mere seven years after my graduation day,

    所以我認為公平而言,以任何傳統的衡量方式,在我畢業之後僅僅七年,

  • I had failed on an epic scale.

    我已失敗到無以復加。

  • An exceptionally short-lived marriage had imploded.

    一段異常短暫的婚姻崩解了。

  • And I was jobless, a lone parent, and as poor as it is possible to be in modern Britain without being homeless.

    我無業、是個單親家長,在當代英國可說是窮途潦倒,只差沒有無家可歸。

  • The fears that my parents had had for me, and that I had had for myself had both come to pass.

    我父母對我的擔憂以及我對自己的擔憂,兩者都發生了。

  • And by every usual standard, I was the biggest failure I knew.

    而以每個尋常的標準來說,我是就我所知最大的失敗者。

  • Now, I'm not going to stand here and tell you that failure is fun.

    現在,我不是要站在這告訴你們失敗很有趣。

  • That period of my life was a dark one.

    那段時間是我人生中的黑暗期。

  • And I had no idea that there was going to be what the press has since represented as a kind of fairy tale resolution.

    我也不曉得之後會有如媒體所描述的,某種童話故事般的結局。

  • I had no idea then how far the tunnel extended,

    我當時完全不知道這條隧道還會延伸多遠,

  • and for a long time, any light at the end of it

    而有一段很長的時間,在隧道盡頭的任何光線

  • was a hope rather than a reality.

    都只是希望而非現實。

  • So why do I talk about the benefits of failure?

    所以為什麼我要談論失敗的好處呢?

  • Simply because failure meant a stripping away of the inessential.

    僅僅是因為失敗代表了摒除不必要的事物。

  • I stopped pretending to myself that I was anything other than what I was,

    我不再對自己佯裝我是除了自己以外的其他任何人,

  • and began to direct all my energy into finishing the only work that mattered to me.

    並開始將我所有精力都放在完成對我有意義的唯一事物上。

  • Had I really succeeded at anything else,

    如果我真的在其他事物上成功了,

  • I might never have found the determination

    也許我就永遠不會找到決心,

  • to succeed in the one arena where I believed I truly belonged.

    在我相信我真正歸屬的這個領域中成功。

  • I was set free because my greatest fear had been realized.

    我沒有任何束縛,因為我最大的恐懼已經成真。

  • And I was still alive, and I still had a daughter whom I adored,

    而我仍然活著,而且我還有一個我深愛的女兒,

  • and I had an old typewriter, and a big idea.

    ,我也有一台老舊的打字機和一個遠大的主意。

  • And so rock bottom became the solid foundation on which I rebuilt my life.

    而這樣的谷底成為我重建人生的堅實基礎。

  • You might never fail on the scale I did, but some failure in life is inevitable.

    也許你們永遠不會失敗到如同我這樣的程度,但人生中的有些失敗是無可避免的。

  • It is impossible to live without failing at something,

    要在一生中完全不失敗是不可能的,

  • unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all──in which case you fail by default.

    除非你如此小心謹慎的活著以致於你也許根本沒活過──以這種情況來說,你註定會失敗。

  • Failure gave me an inner security that I had never attained by passing examinations.

    失敗給了我一種我從來無法藉由通過考試獲得的內在安全感。

  • Failure taught me things about myself that I could have learned no other way.

    失敗教導我關於我自己的事情,這是我無法經由其他方法來學習的。

  • I discovered that I had a strong will, and more discipline than I had suspected.

    我發現我有堅強的意志力,以及比自己預想的還更多的紀律。

  • I also found out that I had friends whose value was truly above the price of rubies.

    我也發覺我有價值真的比紅寶石還高的朋友。

  • The knowledge that you have emerged wiser and stronger from setbacks

    你從挫折中顯現出更有智慧且更堅強的認知,

  • means that you are, ever after, secure in your ability to survive.

    意味從今以後,你擁有生存的能力。

  • You will never truly know yourself or the strength

    你永遠不會真正認識自己或是

  • of your relationships until both have been tested by adversity.

    各種關係的強韌度,直到兩者都經歷過逆境的考驗。

  • Such knowledge is a true gift, for all that it is painfully won,

    這樣的認知是一項真切的禮物,雖然它是經歷如此痛苦才贏得的,

  • and it has been worth more than any qualification I ever earned.

    而且它比我所獲得過的任何一項資格證照都還要有價值。

  • So given a time turner, I would tell my 21-year-old self

    所以如果給我一台時光機,我會告訴21歲的自己,

  • that personal happiness lies in knowing

    個人的快樂在於了解

  • that life is not a checklist of acquisition or achievement.

    人生並不是一張收獲或成就的核對清單。

  • Your qualifications, your CV, are not your life,

    你的資格證照、你的履歷,並不是你的人生,

  • though you will meet many people of my age and older who confuse the two.

    雖然你會遇到許多跟我同年或年長的人將兩者混為一談。

  • Life is difficult and complicated, and beyond anyone's total control.

    人生既艱難且複雜,而且超出任何人的全盤掌控。

  • And the humility to know that will enable you to survive its vicissitudes.

    而了解那一點的那份謙遜將會讓你得以在人生的無常變化中存活下來。

  • Now, you might think that I chose my second theme, the importance

    現在,你們可能會認為我之所以選擇我第二個主題,想像力的

  • of imagination, because of the part it played in rebuilding my life,

    重要性,是因為在我重建人生的過程中它所扮演的重要部分,

  • but that is not wholly so.

    但不全然是這個原因。

  • Though I personally will defend the value of bedtime stories

    雖然我個人會捍衛床邊故事的價值

  • to my last gasp, I have learned to value imagination in a much broader sense.

    直到嚥下我的最後一口氣,我已學會從一個更廣的意義來審視想像力的價值。

  • Imagination is not only the uniquely human capacity

    想像力不僅是人類

  • to envision that which is not, and therefore the fount of all invention and innovation.

    想像不存在事物的獨特能力,也因此是所有發明及創新的源頭。

  • In its arguably most transformative and revelatory capacity,

    想像力可謂最多變且最具啟迪性的能力,

  • it is the power that enables us to empathize with humans whose experiences we have never shared.

    它的力量使我們對未曾共享經驗的人們也能產生共鳴。

  • One of the greatest formative experiences of my life

    我一生中最了不起的生活經驗之一

  • preceded Harry Potter, though it informed much of what I subsequently wrote in those books.

    早於哈利波特,儘管該經驗提供了很多我隨之在那些書中所寫的東西。

  • This revelation came in the form of one of my earliest day jobs.

    這樣的啟示以我最早期白天的工作之一的形式出現。

  • Though I was sloping off to write stories during my lunch hours,

    儘管我常在午餐時間偷溜出來寫故事,

  • I paid the rent in my early 20s by working

    但我在二十出頭時靠著

  • at the African Research Department of Amnesty International's headquarters in London.

    在國際特赦組織倫敦總部的非洲研究部門的工作來支付我的房租。

  • There in my little office, I read hastily-scribbled letters

    我在那小小的辦公室中,讀著倉促潦草書寫、

  • smuggled out of totalitarian regimes by men and women

    由冒著被關風險的男男女女

  • who were risking imprisonment to inform the outside world of what was happening to them.

    從極權主義政權偷渡出來的信件,這些信件讓外界明白他們正遭遇些什麼事情。

  • I saw photographs of those who had disappeared

    我看到渺無音訊的失蹤者

  • without trace, sent to Amnesty by their desperate families and friends.

    的照片,由他們絕望的親友寄給特赦組織。

  • I read the testimony of torture victims and saw pictures of their injuries.

    我讀著遭受折磨的受害者的證詞,並看了他們負傷的照片。

  • I opened handwritten, eyewitness accounts of summary trials and executions, of kidnappings and rapes.

    我拆開手寫的目擊敘述,內容寫著對綁架案和強暴案做出沒有陪審的審判和處決。

  • Many of my co-workers were ex-political prisoners,

    我的許多同事都是前政治犯,

  • people who had been displaced from their homes

    他們都曾經被迫離開家園

  • or fled into exile because they had the temerity to speak against their governments.

    或逃難流亡,因為他們都有與其政府唱反調的蠻勇。

  • Visitors to our offices included those who had come to give information, or to try

    我們辦公室參訪的人包含那些曾經前來給予資訊的人,或是試著

  • and find out what had happened to those who they had left behind.

    查明曾被他們拋下的人發生了什麼事的人。

  • I shall never forget the African torture victim,

    我永遠不會忘記那位非籍受虐的受害者,

  • a young man no older than I was at the time, who

    一位年紀沒比當時的我還大的年輕人,

  • had become mentally ill after all he had endured in his homeland.

    他在自己的家鄉承受了一切之後,已經患上了精神疾病。

  • He trembled uncontrollably as he spoke into a video camera

    當在攝影機前談到他身上曾遭受的殘忍暴行時,

  • about the brutality inflicted upon him.

    他無法克制地顫抖。

  • He was a foot taller than I was, and seemed as fragile as a child.

    他比我高一呎,看起來卻像孩子般的脆弱。

  • I was given the job of escorting him back to the underground station afterwards,

    之後我被賦予護送他回到地鐵車站的工作,

  • and this man, whose life had been shattered by cruelty,

    這個一生被暴行給摧殘了的男人

  • took my hand with exquisite courtesy and wished me future happiness.

    彬彬有禮地握住我的手,並祝福我未來幸福快樂。

  • And as long as I live, I shall remember

    而只要我還活著,我會記得

  • walking along an empty corridor and suddenly

    有一次走在空蕩蕩的走道上,突然從一扇緊閉的門後

  • hearing, from behind a closed door, a scream of pain and horror such as I have never heard since.

    聽見一聲像是我從未聽見過的痛苦且恐怖的尖叫聲。

  • The door opened, and the researcher poked out her head

    那扇門開了,研究人員探出她的頭,

  • and told me to run and make a hot drink for the young man sitting with her.

    告訴我趕快跑去幫坐在她身旁的年輕男子倒一杯熱飲。

  • She had just had to give him the news

    她剛剛才不得不告知他,

  • that in retaliation for his outspokenness against his country's

    為了報復他反抗他國家政權的大膽直言,

  • regime, his mother had been seized and executed.

    他的母親已經被抓走並處決了。

  • Every day of my working week in my early 20s

    在我20出頭的每個工作的日子裡,

  • I was reminded how incredibly fortunate

    我都在被提醒自己是何其幸運,

  • I was, to live in a country with a democratically-elected government,

    能在一個有著民選政府的國家中生活,

  • where legal representation and a public trial were the rights of everyone.

    法律代理和公開審判在這裡是每個人的權利。

  • Every day, I saw more evidence about the evils humankind

    每一天,我看到更多證據,都是關於人類為了獲得或維持權力

  • will inflict on their fellow humans, to gain or maintain power.

    而在同胞身上所施加的惡行。

  • I began to have nightmares, literal nightmares,

    我開始做惡夢,真正的惡夢,

  • about some of the things I saw, heard, and read.

    有關於我看到、聽到或讀到的某些事情。

  • And yet I also learned more about human goodness

    然而,在國際特赦組織裡,我也知悉了

  • at Amnesty International than I had ever known before.

    更多我前所未聞的人類善行。

  • Amnesty mobilizes thousands of people

    國際特赦組織動員數千名

  • who have never been tortured or imprisoned for their beliefs

    未曾因其信仰而遭虐待或入獄的人們,

  • to act on behalf of those who have.

    代表那些受難者做出行動。

  • The power of human empathy, leading to collective action,

    人類同理心的力量,造就了集體行動,

  • saves lives, and frees prisoners.

    拯救生命及釋放被囚禁的人。

  • Ordinary people whose personal well-being and security are assured,

    那些福祉及安全受到保障的平凡人,

  • join together in huge numbers to save people they do not know, and will never meet.

    集結成群來拯救他們不認識、也永遠不會見到的人們。

  • My small participation in that process

    我在那過程中的小小參與

  • was one of the most humbling and inspiring experiences of my life.

    是我人生最令自己感到謙卑也最發人深省的體驗之一。

  • Unlike any other creature on this planet,

    與這星球上的其他生物不同的是,

  • human beings can learn and understand

    人類就算不曾經歷過,

  • without having experienced.

    也能學習和理解。

  • They can think themselves into other people's places.

    他們能夠設身處地替他人著想。

  • Of course, this is a power, like my brand of fictional magic, that is morally neutral.

    當然,這是一種力量,就像羅琳式的虛構魔法一樣,它在道德上是中立的。

  • One might use such an ability to manipulate, or control,

    人也許會用這種能力來操縱或控制,

  • just as much as to understand or sympathize.

    就如同用它來理解或同情他人一樣。

  • And many prefer not to exercise their imaginations at all.

    許多人寧可完全不運用他們的想像力。

  • They choose to remain comfortably within the bounds

    他們選擇舒服地留在自身經驗

  • of their own experience, never troubling to wonder

    的侷限裡,從不費心去想

  • how it would feel to have been born other than they are.

    如果他們生來並非如此將會是什麼感覺。

  • They can refuse to hear screams or peer inside cages.

    他們可以拒絕聆聽尖叫聲或凝視牢籠裡的狀況。

  • They can close their minds and hearts

    他們可以對任何不會親身體會到的苦難

  • to any suffering that does not touch them personally;

    關上思緒和心房;

  • they can refuse to know.

    他們可以拒絕去了解。

  • I might be tempted to envy people who can live that way,

    我也許會受到引誘而去忌妒那些可以如此過活的人們,

  • except that I do not think they have any fewer nightmares than I do.

    只是我並不認為他們所做的惡夢會比我少。

  • Choosing to live in narrow spaces leads

    選擇在窄小的空間中過活

  • to a form of mental agoraphobia, and that brings its own terrors.

    會導致一種心理上的恐曠症,而那也會引發自身的恐懼。

  • I think the willfully unimaginative see more monsters.

    我認為那些故意不去想像的人會看到更多怪物。

  • They are often more afraid.

    他們通常更害怕。

  • What is more, those who choose not to empathize enable real monsters.

    此外,那些選擇不同情他人的人們令那些真正的怪物得以橫行。

  • For without ever committing an act of outright evil ourselves,

    因為雖然我們自己未曾犯下直接的惡行,

  • we collude with it through our own apathy.

    但透過自身的冷漠,我們與邪惡共謀。

  • One of the many things I learned at the end of that Classics corridor

    我十八歲時,在古典文學的走廊的盡頭裡探索,

  • down which I ventured at the age of 18, in search of something

    尋找著一些我當時無法解釋的事物,

  • I could not then define was this, written

    學到的諸多事情之一是這個,

  • by the Greek author Plutarch:

    由希臘作家普魯塔克所寫的:

  • "What we achieve inwardly will change outer reality."

    「我們內在所成就的,將改變外在的現實。」

  • That is an astonishing statement and yet proven 1,000 times

    那是個很驚人的說法,然而在我們生命中,

  • every day of our lives.

    它每天都被證實了上千次。

  • It expresses, in part, our inescapable connection

    某種程度而言,它表達著我們與外在世界

  • with the outside world, the fact that we touch other people's lives simply

    不可避免的連結,事實就是我們光是存在,

  • by existing.

    便會觸及他人的人生。

  • But how much more are you, Harvard graduates of 2008, likely

    但哈佛2008年的畢業生們,你們又是多麼更可能地