目前分類:讀書筆記 (25)

瀏覽方式: 標題列表 簡短摘要

 

Siddhartha is a 1922 novelette by Hermann Hesse, a German-Swiss poet and novelist awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1946. It explores the spiritual quest of an Indian young man named Siddhartha during the time of the Gautama Buddha. Lyrical and philosophical, the book was influential during the 1960s as it rediscovered Oriental wisdom as an antidote to mechanistic civilization. In a certain sense, Siddhartha is a reflection of Hesse’s yearning for deliverance from the bondage of individuality. However, this keen searching doesn’t always meet with positive response in academia. The objections include Hess as an unintellectual guru, or Siddhartha as a false portrayal of Buddhism combined with Western individualism.

holly 發表在 痞客邦 PIXNET 留言(0) 人氣()

 

「sisyphus stone」的圖片搜尋結果

 

 

 

Sisyphus Myth Redefined: Richard Taylor’s “The Meaning of Life”

 

Introduction

The ancient myth of Sisyphus is a paradigm of a meaningless life featuring pointlessness and futility. However, Richard Taylor gives this myth a twist, interpreting it from a new angle. He argues that Sisyphus’ life can have meaning on the condition that he has a “strange and irrational impulse “to roll stones, however bizarre this impulse may be. Also, if the stones rolling back from the mountaintop can be used to build a beautiful temple, then, Sisyphus’ labor doesn’t come to nothing. Like the glimmering light in the darkness of human existence, Taylor’s viewpoints provide an existentialist leap for those suffering from the meaninglessness of their life.

holly 發表在 痞客邦 PIXNET 留言(0) 人氣()

It's a story about a quiet, queenly woman who never looked away, a tale to tear the heart of a mother, daughter and  the Blacks with slave ancestors.

Here are the fragments of the sad song by Tony Morrison:

 A man was nothing but a man. They encouraged you to put some of your weight in their hands and soon as you felt how light and lovely that was, they studied your scars and tribulations, after which they did what he had done: ran her children out and tore up the house.

 

The best thing was to love just a little bit; everything, just a little bit, so when they broke its back, or shoved it in a croaker sack, maybe you’d have a little love left over for the next one.

holly 發表在 痞客邦 PIXNET 留言(0) 人氣()

It’s so much easier to choose to love the things that you have. And you have so much, instead of always yearning for what you’re missing - - - or what it is that you’re imagining you are missing.

(Meryle Streep in One True Thing)

One True Thing, a 1988 American film, explores the subtlety of family relationship. The one true thing refers to the devoted mother who lights up her family’s life at the cost of her health. It’s touching because the three major roles reflect part of us, as a father, mother or kids. This article will examine three aspects of family relationship: father/daughter, mother/daughter, and husband/wife

holly 發表在 痞客邦 PIXNET 留言(1) 人氣()

 

James Thurber, (1894-1961), was an American writer best known for his humorous stories. As a celebrated wit, Thurber highlighted the comic frustrations and eccentricities of ordinary people in his works.

The following essay is about the ways to sustain a happy marriage. Although its tone is hilarious, it reveals the naked truth of marriage characterized by the twists and turns of confrontation and conciliation. The ten rules, nothing less than the manifesto of Thurber’s idiosyncrasies, are intended to amuse rather than preach.

First of all, he mentions the motive for this writing is the fight between a couple in his neighborhood:

The idea just came to me one day, when I watched a couple in an apartment across the court from mine, gesturing and banging tables and throwing objects d’art at each other. I couldn’t hear what they were saying, but it was obvious, as the shot-put followed the hammer throw, that he and/or she (as the lawyers would put it) had deeply offended her and/or him.

Witnessing the exciting battle, Thurber began brooding on the subject of marriage. Here come the ten unique rules for the maintenance of a happy marriage:

holly 發表在 痞客邦 PIXNET 留言(0) 人氣()

Introduction:

Life of Pi「少年P的奇幻漂流」是李安導演的最新3D作品,預定11月在台灣上映。本文要探討的是原著小說中的主題,如封面所寫:一位擁有三種信仰的印度男孩,一隻450磅重的孟加拉虎,一場船難,一艘救生艇,以及太平洋。乍看之下,它是海上版的魯賓遜漂流記,或浩劫重生之類的電影,一個人獨自存活於災難之後,靠著毅力、智慧及信仰,度過重重難關重回人世。相較於魯賓遜在荒島耕種,自力謀生並對抗野人,少年Pi在太平洋上只靠救生艇維生,再加一隻老虎的威脅,情勢更是艱難。兩者在孤立的環境中都有一個主要同伴,不管是人是虎,這充分說明人無法完全孤立而存活。馴服者與被馴服者的關係是主與僕,兩者間尊卑之意識型態在魯賓遜中被合理化,但在Pi中卻另有深刻的反省。儘管劇情的發展結構一致------船難發生,主角存活,勇敢對抗惡劣環境,最終得救,但我試著以佛家的思想角度來讀少年Pi, 卻有另外一番體悟。

holly 發表在 痞客邦 PIXNET 留言(0) 人氣()

繼「正義」一書後,Michael Sandel教授再度出擊,在「錢所不能買的東西」(What Money Can’t Buy) 這本書裡,直指金錢入侵民主社會各種領域後,對思想行為所造成的衝擊。

延續前書的論點,作者認為市場邏輯(market logic)已滲入社會各個層面,幾乎無所不在。這種邏輯根據自由派(libertarian)經濟思想而來,強調個人有權利自由買賣所擁有的東西;在買賣雙方達成交易後,兩方各得其利,有效率地讓物品得到適當的歸屬,發揮最大的用處。簡單來講,支持市場邏輯的兩個主要觀點是個人自由(individual freedom)和功利思想(utilitarian)。而反對市場邏輯也正好由此兩點下手。自由非真自由,而功利思想最終將腐蝕腐事物本質。歸納起來,反市場邏輯的主要論點,一是公平(fairness),二是腐化(corruption)。公平者反駁個人自由之論,強調買賣雙方若在經濟不平等的條件下交易,賣方往往因經濟拮据,在不得已的情況下出賣擁有物。在被迫、利誘下做出的抉擇,不是真正的自由交易。另外,腐化之論在破除功利思想的迷思。容或金錢的買賣可以有效率的分配物品,但物品不見得就能適得其所,反而本質會被汙染,內在價值也隨之腐敗。整本書用市場邏輯和反市場邏輯的兩種論調,反覆檢驗社會發生的實際案例,逐一剖析市場價值的弊端,提醒我們建立正確的價值觀,共造美好的民主社會。以下簡要陳述書上所提及的案例,並引用這兩種思考角度來分析批判。

holly 發表在 痞客邦 PIXNET 留言(1) 人氣()

Prologue

With the countdown of the 2012 Olympic and Paralympics Games in London, England will attract the attention of the whole world this summer. In the eyes of a foreigner, England is featured by a cloudy sky, foggy towns, and red phone booths. The British mentality is notorious for its snobbery, hypocrisy, xenophobia and insularity. From the perspective of a perspicacious writer, George Orwell, we see something subtle and intriguing about the British culture. Let me summarize what Orwell highlights as the distinctive British flavor in the article, “England Your England”:

holly 發表在 痞客邦 PIXNET 留言(0) 人氣()

At first glance, the myth of Persephone and Demeter is to explain the four seasons featured by varied landscape. On second thought, it implies a delicate female relationship denied by the patriarchal society---a lesbian desire for the union of two females, body and soul. The “return to the mother” is not the excessive attachment of mother and daughter; instead, it reveals the power of generation and transformation.

holly 發表在 痞客邦 PIXNET 留言(0) 人氣()

Prologue

Flowers, candle lights, fragrance, feast---Yea, it’s Valentine’s Day. To its sacredness, people grow numb. To its overtone to sex, people grow ecstatic. Katherine Anne Porter’s essay, “The Necessary Enemy” tolls a warning sound to those passionate, naive, and gullible young maids! The following is its excerpt:

Summary: 愛與憎是生命的底蘊,兩者互相激盪交融,共存於生命中。人性之惡讓愛無法真正落實,卻讓憎不斷生起。有愛必有憎,似乎是人無法逃脫之宿命。憎由愛起,和愛的關係亦敵亦友。婚姻洽是滋養這兩種情緒的最佳溫床。

holly 發表在 痞客邦 PIXNET 留言(0) 人氣()

The real strength of essays is the writers’ idiosyncrasy about life, especially with the tone featured by light-hearted irony and informality. Here are the exemplar essays by Virginia Woolf, a formidable feminist whose novels used to entangle me in the time labyrinth and whose fictional characters bewildered me with their stream of consciousness. Yet, I came to appreciate her insight on life through the two essays illustrated below. She is powerful in criticizing a famous courtesan in the Regency period, and also, reflecting on life and death.

holly 發表在 痞客邦 PIXNET 留言(2) 人氣()

年輕的時候讀「金鎖記」,看見的曹七巧不過是個豪門怨婦,讓積壓過久的怨懟與瞋恨給扭曲變了形的一個瘋子。年長的時候再審視她,看見的就不只於此。怨婦的背後有著嚴肅的婚姻、親子、及階級議題。

「金鎖記」讓我們看見古今中外,構成幸福婚姻的必要條件是尊敬。你必須對伴侶心存敬意,沒有尊敬為基礎的婚姻,必不圓滿。曹七巧視她軟骨病的丈夫如一團爛肉,面對一個須要被照顧、終日與床為伍,軟趴趴沒有生氣的肉體,她只有鄙視與憎恨,敬意無從生起。儘管他家有的是金山銀山,還是無法改變爛肉的事實。現今社會中的豪門婚姻,成功的例子不多,癥結在哪裡? 缺乏對伴侶的尊敬。豪門婚姻的型態多半是坐擁金銀財寶、身分地位的男方,迎娶略遜一籌的美嬌娘。美女對金錢的尊敬,往往多於對男人的品格與學識的崇拜。男人對女人身體的膜拜,又往往多於對她靈魂的渴求。所以豪門的婚姻如同名人的婚姻無法持久,因為兩方對彼此的靈魂都沒有充足的敬意。珍˙奧斯丁名作「傲慢與偏見」也點出此真理。作者以全知全能的觀點,解析女主角的父親和母親這段同床異夢的婚姻關係。Mr.Bennet喜歡閱讀,是典型的鄉下仕紳;Mrs. Bennet 喜歡串門子嚼舌根,十足的三姑六婆。到底年輕時是個充滿活力的美人,讓Mr. Bentley一時意亂情迷而娶了她,日後卻因深刻的了解而鄙視輕忽她的存在,不時以譏諷的言詞,取笑她那冥頑不靈且無文化涵養的枯槁心靈。這樣的婚姻橋段大家都該心領神會吧? 幸福婚姻無它,尊敬而已!

holly 發表在 痞客邦 PIXNET 留言(0) 人氣()

images

 

如果你可以永生不死,你要嗎?這是Tuck Everlasting(改拍電影名為「真愛無盡」)所探討的主題。這本由 Natalie Babbitt在1975年所撰寫的小說,一般被歸類為奇幻兒童文學。它描述一道神祕的泉水,如何讓Tuck全家人得永生,卻也讓他們受盡折磨。世人都想長生不死,大家都害怕死亡。它似乎是人的大敵,摧毀生命,像強風吹熄蠟燭般,讓人無法抵禦,萬般無奈卻也只能忿忿不平的就範。但作者卻提出深刻動人的見解,娓娓道來為何永生是一種詛咒而非幸福。她讓父親Tuck,向得知泉水秘密的小女孩Winnie解釋生命的意義在於變化與成長。永生就像卡在河灣的小船,動彈不得,無法參與世間的循環變化。身體永遠停駐在某個年齡,就不能經歷不同年齡的感知,生命也就無法成長蛻變,雖生猶死可說是Tuck家人的寫照。

作者認為生命像個輪子,不停的轉動著。人從出生、成長、到死亡都是輪轉的一部份,不能隨意去除。少掉了任何一部份,生命就不完整。 生命也像流水,永遠不會停駐在某處。孔子也說過,「逝者如斯,不捨晝夜。」從出生的那一刻開始,生命就不停的流動,如一彎河水,流經地表,最後回歸大海。海水經太陽照射後,蒸發凝聚成雲,雲變成雨,雨下到地面又變成河水。大自然如此循環不息,人也應該像大自然,生生滅滅,不停的蛻變。死亡的另一面就是新生。海水蒸發成雲,不代表生命的結束,代表的是生命的昇華與轉化。死亡讓生命發揮最大的潛能,沒有死亡就沒有光采的生命。

holly 發表在 痞客邦 PIXNET 留言(0) 人氣()

carsonmccullersballadofsadcafe

美國南方的小說,自福克納(William Faulkner)以來,一直充斥著畸零人的孤寂感。”Novel of grotesque” 自成一種文類,不下於希臘的古典悲劇,讀完後令人不勝唏噓,悲憫(pity)及畏懼(fear)之情油然生起。悲憫的是主角性格上的乖戾偏執,是因成長環境所造成,非自己能作主。畏懼的是人的力量如此渺小,在大環境的箝制下,無可脫逃。20、30年代美國南方的保守社會,禁錮了無數孤獨疏離的人。Carson McCullers所寫的短篇小說,The Ballad of the Sad Café,(1975年中文版譯成小酒館的悲歌)探討的主題是畸零人的愛,這樣的愛如此蒼涼,深夜展讀,痛徹心扉。沒有經歷失去摯愛之人,無法體會故事主角Miss Amelia的孤寂。以下列舉小說中之經典句,以闡釋作者對愛/被愛,及生命的看法:

holly 發表在 痞客邦 PIXNET 留言(0) 人氣()

羅蘭巴特(Roland Barthes),二十世紀法國思想家,以符號/結構的觀點批判社會現象,深具影響力。本文整理其代表作「艾菲爾鐵塔及其它迷思」 (The Eiffel Tower and Other Mythologies)中的精彩論點,以茲反省時下的文化相貌。

holly 發表在 痞客邦 PIXNET 留言(0) 人氣()

 

I. Introduction

Roland Barthes (1915–1980) was a French literary theorist, philosopher, critic, and semiotician. His study of signs, known as semiotics, is inspiring in subverting the dominant bourgeois culture. He dissects the implied meaning of cultural signs by analyzing a signifier and its related signified. For example, a picture of a full, dark bottle is a signifier that relates to a specific signified: a fermented, alcoholic beverage. However, the bourgeoisie relate it to a new signified: the idea of healthy, robust, relaxing experience. His insight on various cultural phenomena reveals the manipulation of the dominant class, highlighting the ideology working behind the surface meaning. In A Lover’s Discourse: Fragments, his aim is not so much to debunk the bourgeois hegemony as to reveal the illusion of love. Devoid of sentimentality, this book is a fragmented meditation of an unrequited lover. The predominant theme is that the lover, I, can never truly find the beloved, You, for love itself is doomed to be a fabrication of mass culture and therefore a desire beyond one’s control.

holly 發表在 痞客邦 PIXNET 留言(0) 人氣()

clip_image002

  

「享受吧,一個人的旅行」(Eat, Pay, Love),作者(Eliazath Gilbert)以第一人稱的角度,娓娓道來她的自我追尋。副標題(OneWoman’s Search for Everything across Italy, India and Indonesia)揭示這是一個女人的故事,她的追尋橫跨了義大利、印度及巴里島。故事的主角Lisa在三十幾歲出頭時,就已擁有時下美國女性該擁有的一切,包括有成就的丈夫、鄉村別墅、以及成功的事業,然而她卻感受不到滿足與喜悅,反而因困惑與驚恐而被受煎熬。故事從這裏開展,接下來就描繪她如何放下世人所欣羨的成功表象,轉而去追尋自己真正想要的東西。她用一年的時間,到三個不同的國家旅行,體察三種不同的文化,也發掘出最真實的自我。她在義大利體驗愉悅(pleasure), 在印度發掘虔誠(devotion), 最後在巴里島找到世俗享樂(wordly enjoyment)及靈性超越(divine transcendence)兩者間的平衡。

以西方文學的類別來區分,本書可視為是一本成長小說(Bildungsroman),主角從匱乏到富足,從中學習人生的寶貴經驗(from rags to riches)。此中的匱乏,可以是實際的物質或金錢,亦可以是心靈的枯竭。故事開始於主角的一無所有,必須赤手空拳面對世間的挑戰,但經由勇氣與智慧,或得到貴人的相助,最後終能享有成功的果實。此文類的代表作有狄更斯的大衛考伯菲爾,伯朗特的簡愛等。Lisa從離婚的一無所有,到最後在巴里島找到真愛的過程,就是一部成長小說的典範。用「三」這個數字,代表的是平衡、和諧與禪定。東方的佛教徒或瑜伽行者,在修行時手上的念珠有108顆。108這個數字是三位數,總合加起來是9,亦是三的平方數。西方基督教有三位一體(Holy Trinity)的說法,意思為聖父、聖子及聖靈,可見三所代表的吉祥意涵。作者將她的追尋分成三部分,以呼應它在宗教上的神聖意涵。Lisa在三個不同的文化中,看見潛藏於本性中的渴求,也釋放了真實的自我。透過三種文化的洗禮,她得到了真正的平靜和喜悅,這正是宗教的最終意義----讓世人離苦得樂。

holly 發表在 痞客邦 PIXNET 留言(0) 人氣()

     Some readers accuse Amy Chua’s Chinese way of parenting as child abuse while some identify with it. What’s the essential part of Chinese parenting that raises such controversy? To begin with, the demand for excellence imposes great pressure on children, which has a lot to do with the Chinese conception of success. To prepare kids for future success is the grave responsibility of Chinese parents. As Amy claims, “nothing is fun until you are good at it.” The only way to gain fun for everything is through tenacious practice, without which you can never achieve anything significant and therefore you cannot possibly have fun from it. She asserts the value of rote repetition: “Tenacious practice, practice, practice is crucial for excellence” Through rote learning, kids will have a good command of such skills as math, piano or ballet. Only when they get praise or admiraiton can they feel satisfied and confident. And it is the very confidence that makes the once boring activity fun.

holly 發表在 痞客邦 PIXNET 留言(0) 人氣()

Conversations with God (與神對話) by Neale Donald Walsch is a morale booster meant to encourage the wretched people struck hard by fate. It may well be called a modern version of the Book of Job. Job is a God-fearing and righteous man, just as Neale is an ordinary, law-abiding guy. Yet, both are afflicted with misery for no reason --- the one suddenly deprived of all the possessions and cursing in dust and ashes, while the latter breaking his neck in a car accident, losing his job and becoming a  homeless bum struggling to stay alive. Both have consoling friends to help them weather through the difficulty. But Job's are beguiling, God-blaspheming ones while Neale's are kind-hearted ones who help him survive the harsh living condition. Both stories deal with a complete loser full of anger and bitterness toward God. Both have the theme of redemption embodied through the repentace for human ignorance. Through God's enlightening words, both characters are awakened from their dark world and regain their life.

holly 發表在 痞客邦 PIXNET 留言(0) 人氣()

 

     二十世紀中葉的歐陸,有一群後結構主義(post-structuralist)的思想家,沸沸揚揚地撻伐理性主義的主體觀(subjectivity)。他們解構單一(single)、自主(autonomous) 的身分認同,強調一切主體皆是由文化霸權(cultural hegemony)所建構出來的,沒有人能逃離社會文化的論述(discourse)框架。所以我們的主體不是一種固定而不變的存在(fixed entity);相反地,它隨著時空、隨著內在的潛意識力量而變動。種族、性別的自我認同就是最好的例證。一個生在現代的文明社會,和生在古希臘社會的男人或女人,對自我的認知、價值觀就會不同。所以我們所謂的主體,其實只是對某種論述的臣服而已。我們感應某種論述的召喚(hail),進而在不知不覺中了接受了這個主體的位置(position),而後在這個位置上,和處於別的位置的人,進行權力與意志的爭鬥,這就是一般人的生命相貌。叔本華(Schopenhauer, 1788-1860) 在【意志和表象的世界】一書中,對此有精彩的論述: :「意志自身在本質上是沒有一切目的,一切止境的,它是一個無盡的追求。」所以後結構主義的主體觀,基本上延續了叔本華的看法,強調人只是意志的表現現象;而此意志又受制於不同時空下的不同論述。由此我們得到的真知灼見就是,人從生下來的那一刻開始,就是不自由的,無法自主的。

holly 發表在 痞客邦 PIXNET 留言(0) 人氣()

1 2
找更多相關文章與討論