叶圣陶《我和商务印书馆》 -经典散文英译-中英双语赏析

朗读这篇文章

我和商务印书馆

叶圣陶

如果有人问起我的职业,我就告诉他:我当过教员,又当过编辑,当编辑的年月比当教员多得多(1)。现在眼睛坏了,连笔划也分辨不清了,有时候免不了还要改一些短稿,自己没法看,只能听别人念(2)。

做编辑工作是进了商务印书馆才学的。记得第一次校对(3),我把校样读了一遍,不曾对原稿,校样上漏了一大段,我竟没有发现。一位专职校对看出来了,他用红笔在校样上批了几个字退回给我,弄得我很不好意思。我才知道编辑不好当,丝毫马虎不得,必须认认真真一边干一边学。

我进商务是1923年春天,朱经农先生介绍的。朱先生当时在编译所当国文部和史地部的主任。我在国文部,跟顾颉刚兄一同编《新学制中学国文课本》。这套课本的第一册是另外几位编的,其中有周予同兄。我参与了那时候颁发的“新学制中学国文课程标准”的拟订工作。

1927年6月,郑振铎兄去欧洲游历(4),我代他编《小说月报》,跟徐调孚兄合作。商务办了十几种杂志,除了大型的综合性的《东方杂志》人比较多,有十好几位,其余的每种杂志只有四位。《小说月报》除了调孚兄和我,还有两位管杂务的先生。他们偶尔也看看校样,但是不能让人放心。

那时正是大革命之后,时代的激荡当然会在文学的领域里反映出来。那两年里,《小说月报》上出现了许多有新意的作品,也出现了许多新的名字,最惹人注意的是茅盾、巴金和丁玲。当时大家不知道茅盾就是沈雁冰兄。他过去不写小说,只介绍国外的作品和理论。巴金和丁玲两位都不相识,是以后才见面的。

等振铎兄从欧洲回来,休息了一些日子,我就把《小说月报》的工作交回给他,回到国文部编《学生国学丛书》,时间记不太准,总在1929年上半年。到第二年下半年,我又去编《妇女杂志》,跟金仲华兄合作。1931年初,开明书店创办《中学生》杂志,过了不久,夏丏尊先生章锡琛先生要我去帮忙,我就离开了商务。我在商务当编辑一共八个年头。

商务创办于1898年,老板是几位印《圣经》发家的工人;两年以后,维新派的知识分子参加进去,成立了编译所,一个编译、印刷、发行三者联合的文化企业就初具规模了。后来业务逐渐发展,就编译和出版的书籍杂志来说,文史哲理工医音体美,无所不包;有专门的,有通俗的,甚至有特地供家庭妇女和学前儿童阅读的。此外还贩卖国外的书刊、贩卖各种文具和体育器械,还制造仪器标本和教学用品供应各级学校,甚至还摄制影片,包括科教片和故事片。业务方面之广和服务对象之广,现在的任何一家出版社都不能和商务相比。商务的这个特点,现在不大有人说起了(5)。

商务的编译所是知识分子汇集的地方,人员最多的时候有三百多位(6)。早期留美回来的任鸿隽、竺可桢、朱经农、吴致觉诸先生,留日回来的郑贞文、周昌寿、李石岑、何公敢诸先生,都在商务的编译所工作过。稍后创办的几家出版业如中华、世界、大东、开明,骨干大多是从商务出来的;还有许多印刷厂装订厂,情形也大多相同。可以这样说,商务为我国的出版事业,从各方面培养了大批技术力量。

有趣的是1949年10月新中国成立,政务院有个管出版事业的直属机构叫出版总署,胡愈老任署长,周建老和我任副署长,二十多年前在商务编译所共事的老朋友又聚在一起了。后来人民教育出版社成立,我兼任社长。1954年9月,出版总署撤销,这一摊工作并入文化部。胡愈老调到文化部,出版工作仍旧由他主管;我调到教育部,主要还是在人民教育出版社做编辑工作。这一二十年来,老朋友过世的不少,周建老、胡愈老和我还健在。有人说,做出版工作的人就是长寿。

The Commercial Press and I

Ye Shengtao

If I’m asked what profession I’ve been following,I say l’ve been a teacher and editor with a much longer experience in editing than teaching.Now,because of my failing eyesight,I even have difficulty in identifying Chinese characters.Nevertheless occasionally I’m still called upon to revise some short articles.Unable to see the manuscripts well,I have to rely on someone to read them out for me.

It was not until I entered The Commercial Press that I learned how to go about editorial work.I remember how I bungled the job when I did proofreading for the first time.It happened that I read the proof sheet without checking it against the original text.Consequently I missed out a whole paragraph in proof.A full-time proofreader discovered it and sent the proof back to me with a comment scribbled in red ink about my mistake.I felt deeply embarrassed.I then realized that it was no easy job to be an editor and that I had to be very careful and train on the job earnestly.

I entered The Commercial Press in the spring of 1923 on the recommendation of Zhu Jingnong,who was then in charge of the Chinese as well as History and Geography Section under the Editing and Translating Department.At the Chinese Section where I belonged I co-compiled with Gu Xiegang New Chinese Textbook for Middle Schools.Its first volume was jointly compiled by several other editors,among them Zhou Yutong.I took part in drafting guidelines for compiling the textbook.

In June 1927,when Zheng Zhenduo[1] was on leave touring Europe,I acted on his behalf as editor of the magazine Fiction Monthly,with Xu Diaofu as my collaborator.The Commercial Press then published more than ten different periodicals,of which the biggest was Eastern Magazine,a comprehensive publication with a staff of more than ten.The other magazines were each run by a staff of only four.In addition to Xu and me,Fiction Monthly had on its staff two men in charge of sundry matters.Occasionally they also did some proofreading,but we didn’t have enough confidence in them.

It was the post-Great Revolution[2] days when the stirring times found expression in literature.For two consecutive years,there appeared in Fiction Monthly a great many works full of new ideas and also a great many new names,of which the most conspicuous were Mao Dun[3],Ba Jin[4] and Ding Ling[5].People at that time did not know that Mao Dun was the pseudonym for Shen Yanbing.He had up to then written no fiction,but articles introducing foreign literary works and theories.I was not acquainted with Mao Dun and Ding Ling.I met them later.

After Zheng Zhenduo had taken a short rest upon his return from Europe,I gave him back my duties at Fiction Monthly and resumed my work at the Chinese Department,this time compiling Chinese National Culture Series for Students.I’m not able to recall the exact date,but I’m sure it was in the first half of 1929.In the second half of the next year,I co-edited Women’s Magazine with Jin Zhonghua.Early in 1931,soon after Kaiming Bookstore started its publication of the magazine Middle School Students,Xia Mianzun and Zhang Xichen asked me to help them with editing the new magazine.So I quit The Commercial Press after being with it for eight years.

When The Commercial Press was established in 1898,its proprietors were some ex-workers who had become rich by printing The Bible.Two years later,when the Editing and Translating Department was set up with the participation of reformist intellectuals,a cultural enterprise with the triple function of editing and translating,printing and publishing began to take shape.As its business developed gradually,books and periodicals edited,translated and published by it covered all fields,such as literature,history,philosophy,science,engineering,medicine,music,physical culture,fine arts,etc.Some were specialized and some intended for general readership or specifically for housewives and pre-school children.It also sold foreign books and periodicals,and various stationery and sports requisites.It also manufactured instruments,specimens and teaching aids for schools.It even produced films,including popular science and feature films.None of the present-day publishing houses can compare with it in the scope of business and number of customers.Yet people today seldom mention its outstanding features.

The Editing and Translating Department of The Commercial Press boasted a galaxy of talent,sometimes topping 300.Scholars who came to work there at different times included returned students from the US like Ren Hongjuan,Zhu Kezhen,Zhu Jingnong,Wu Zhijue,etc.and those from Japan like Zheng Zhenwen,Zhou Changshou,Li Shicen,He Gonggan,etc.The core members of the later-established publishing houses,such as Zhonghua,Shijie,Dadong and Kaiming,were mostly former employees of The Commercial Press.The same was true of many printing houses and bookbinderies.It can be fitly concluded that The Commercial Press has trained a huge army of technical personnel for China’s publishing industry.

Interestingly enough,when the General Administration of Publication was established following the birth of New China to take charge of publication directly under the Government Administration Council,Hu Yuzhi[6] was appointed as its director and Zhou Jianren[7] and I as its deputy directors.So the three old friends who had been colleagues over 20 years before at the Editing and Translating Department of The Commercial Press met again.Later,I became concurrently director of the People’s Education Publishing House.In September 1954,when the General Administration of Publication was dissolved,Hu Yuzhi was transferred to the Ministry of Culture to take charge of publication,and I was transferred to the Ministry of Education while still doing editing at the People’s Education Publishing House.During the past 20 years or so,many old friends have passed away.Zhou,Hu and I,however,are still living and enjoy good health.It is said that people in the publishing trade live longer.

[1] Zheng Zhenduo (1898-1958),native of Changle,Fujian Province,well-known writer,literary critic,literary historian and archeologist.

[2] The Great Revolution refers to the First Revolutionary Civil War in China (1924-1927),waged against the imperialists and the Northern warlords.

[3] Mao Dun (1896-1981),born in Tongxiang,Zhejiang Province,distinguished literary critic,novelist and short-story writer noted for his commitment to realism.

[4] Ba Jin (1924-2005),born in Chengdu,Sichuan Province,one of China’s most acclaimed novelists of the past century.He studied in France from 1927 to 1929.

[5] Ding Ling (1904-1986),born in Linli,Hunan Province,one of China’s most popular female writers of the past century.

[6] Hu Yuzhi (1896-1986),native of Shangyu,Zhejiang Province,well-known publisher and social activist.He entered the Editing and Translating Department of The Commercial Press as a trainee in 1914 and became chief editor of Eastern Magazine after the May 4th Movement of 1919.

[7] Zhou Jianren (1888-1984),native of Shaoxing,Zhejiang Province,well-known biologist and social activist.He was a younger brother of the great writer Lu Xun.

《我和商务印书馆》是叶圣陶(1894—1988)写于1982年的一篇散文,刊于《商务印书馆建馆八十五周年特刊》。作者谈自己的编辑生涯,平平实实,温和亲切,涉及事业、友谊、工作态度等方面,无不出于自己的深切感受,读来耐人寻味。

注释

(1)“我当过教员,又当过编辑,当编辑的年月比当教员多得多”未直译为I’ve been a teacher and editor,but I’ve spent more time editing than teaching。今译I’ve been a teacher and editor with a much longer experience in editing than teaching,变复合句为简单句,较简练,其中a much longer experience代替much more time,意思相同。

(2)“只能听别人念”意即“只得靠别人朗读给我听”,故译I have to rely on someone to read them out for me,其中to read out是成语,作“朗读”解。

(3)“记得第一次校对”未译为I remember how I did proofreading for the first time,而译I remember how I bungled the job when I did proofreading for the first time,其中I bungled the job(把工作搞糟)是译文中的增益成分,用以配合上下文的需要。

(4)“郑振铎兄去欧洲游历”译为Zheng Zhenduo was on leave touring Europe,也可译为Zheng Zhenduo was absent in Europe on a tour或Zheng Zhenduo was on his European tour。

(5)“商务的这个特点,现在不大有人说起了”译为Yet people today seldom mention its outstanding features,也可不妨译为Yet people today seem to have forgotten its outstanding features,取其深层内涵。

(6)“商务的编译所是知识分子汇集的地方,人员最多的时候有三百多位”可有几种译法:

The Editing and Translating Department of The Commercial Press was staffed by a large number of intellectuals,sometimes reaching the peak of 300.

The Editing and Translating Department of The Commercial Press had a large number of scholars in its employ,sometimes as many as 300.

The Editing and Translating Department of The Commercial Press boasted a galaxy of talent,sometimes topping 300.

现采用第三种译法,其中boasted表示“拥有”的同时,还有“自豪”的含义;a galaxy of talent表示“人才济济”的同时,还突出人才“出色”、“杰出”的意思。又talent也可改用复数talents; topping意同exceeding。

未经允许不得转载:帕布莉卡 » 叶圣陶《我和商务印书馆》 -经典散文英译-中英双语赏析

赞 (0)