編者的話

:::

2010 / 1月

文‧李光真



最近看到一篇文章,一個17歲男孩覺得課本裡的歷史故事都很虛偽,明明做了蠢事,還自以為大義凜然,又引來後世一大堆文人吹捧,真的很扯。

男孩舉的例子是明朝大儒方孝儒,因痛惡燕王朱棣(即明成祖)篡位,堅拒為朱棣起草即位詔書,燕王以「詔不草,滅汝九族!」相逼時,他回以「莫說九族,十族何妨!」結果不僅自己被凌遲腰斬、親族被誅戮,連門生朋友也無一倖免,成為中國歷史上唯一被「誅十族」的,總共誅殺了873人。

這個故事誠然封建──為了忠君、為了反抗不義,獻出生命在所不惜。但方孝儒真的「蠢」嗎?什麼事情又是聰明的?做「四朝宰相」以維持政局安定是聰明的嗎?開門迎敵、敬謹相待以保存全城百姓是聰明的嗎?如果大家都很「聰明」,又有誰願意拋頭顱灑熱血掀起革命,讓後世的我們得以享有再也不必擔心「一言賈禍」的幸福呢?

這類的爭議向來難以釐清,每個民族、時代的價值觀都不同,每個人只能依自己浸淫的價值觀行事;不能堅守那種價值觀,或是服膺另類價值觀的人(譬如在忠義節烈的教誨下與敵謀和),就要付出被唾罵的代價。

無論如何,年輕孩子以不同於課本的角度看事情,還是值得欣喜的。畢竟台灣承平開放已久,傳統可受質疑也可以棄之不理,「大是大非」也基本解決或者不再構成困擾,孩子們左顧右盼,除了顧好自己的生活,生命中大概再也沒有什麼大命題需要戰戰兢兢捨身維護了。

這一期的光華封面故事「青年公民運動」,也因而沒有早年「五四」的大論述(也沒有後來傳統崩毀、左派當道的遺憾),也沒有承繼「228」、「美麗島」或是中國大陸「天安門事件」的悲壯激昂。

年輕世代講學運,爭的是集會遊行不受限,講婦運,爭的是育嬰托兒福利,講工運,爭的是加班費是否發足,最多人關注的,反倒是動物權和生態保護。這也正符合這個時代,議題越走越「細瑣化」、「個人化」甚至「非人化」的特質。

這並不是學運或社運的弱化,而是時代不同,應對的方法也不同。令人無奈的是,儘管經過前人奮戰,政治與經濟的大環境壓迫減輕了,但「個人」的調適卻似乎變差了。社會版上,這麼多人情殺女友、無業在家的兒孫毆母弒親,討債公司逼死人,精神抑鬱、身心失調……,生存不難生活難,這個社會的不快樂似乎更甚以往。

這是為什麼呢?難道人類就是很難「心安」,沒有外在的大風車要對抗了,就開始互鬥,甚至自己和自己過不去?這已經不是傳統理念倡議式的「社會運動」可以照顧到的,而新一代的孩子走向人群、走向個案、走向更細緻化的關懷,或許是一個好的方向。只是,他們一旦進入社會、踏入生活泥淖後,要如何長保純真與朝氣,就是另一個難題了。

這期還有一篇是講台灣國民美術的推手劉秀美,她強調「藝術可以使人快樂,更可以使人強壯」,她是真真實實從生活的荊棘中開出花朵,帶動了許多人,也算是一種很棒的社會運動。

社會的進步是無止盡的,許多人正多管齊下默默努力中,除了藉這些報導向他們致敬,也祝大家都能在生活中尋找出積極的動力,新的年度一切美好!

相關文章

近期文章

EN

[Editor's Note] A Different Adolescence, a Different Movement

Laura Li /tr. by Scott Williams


I recently read an article about a 17-year-old boy who thought the stories in his history texts were pure made-up nonsense that eulogized stupidities committed under the pretense of righteousness.

The example the boy cited was that of the Ming-Dynasty moralist Fang Xiaoru, who refused to write a document commemorating the Emperor Zhu Di's accession. When Zhu Di (the Yongle Emperor) told Fang to write it or face the extermination of nine generations of his family, Fang is said to have replied, "Never mind nine, exterminate 10!" As a result, the emperor executed not only Fang and his family members, but also his students and friends. The emperor ultimately killed 873 people in the only "extermination of the 10 agnates" in Chinese history.

The story is truly feudal-Fang sacrificed his life and those of others in his refusal to condone Zhu Di's seizure of the throne. But was Fang "stupid" to do so? What is "smart?" Is it smart to serve four different emperors as prime minister in an attempt to stabilize the political situation? Is it smart to open the gates to enemies and treat them with respect to preserve the lives of ordinary citizens?

Given that values vary with ethnic group and time period, it is very difficult to make definitive statements about them. All individuals can do is act in accordance with the values in which they have been immersed. Those who fail to adhere to the values of their place and time, or who act from different premises-for example, by working with an enemy in times that stress ardent loyalty-are typically reviled.

We should nonetheless celebrate this child's ability to disagree with his textbook. After all, Taiwan has enjoyed many years of peace and liberalization. We are free to question or even reject our traditions. We've basically resolved the big questions of right and wrong, or turned them into non-issues. And while our children will still need to take care of themselves, they are unlikely to be called upon to lay down their lives in the name of a cause.

The youth movement that is the subject of this month's cover story lacks a treatise like that of the May Fourth Movement (as well as that movement's regrets). Neither is it associated with the kind of tragic events that characterized the February 28 Incident, the Formosa Incident, or the Tian'anmen protests.

The younger generation's student movement is a struggle to lift restrictions on free assembly; its women's movement is a struggle for social-welfare benefits for infants and toddlers; its workers' movement, a fight for adequate overtime pay; and its most widespread concern reserved for animal rights and environmental protection. This suggests that the major issues of the day have become more specialized and limited, more personal, and oriented towards even non-human subjects.

It isn't that student and social movements have weakened, it's that the times have changed. What's frustrating is that even as previous generations have lightened our political and economic yokes, we as individuals have become less adaptable. Nowadays, the newspapers are filled with stories on young people killing their girlfriends, unemployed children who live at home beating or killing their parents, debt collection companies hounding people to death, depression and psychological imbalances.... While survival isn't that hard, life apparently is. As a society, we seem unhappier than ever.

But, why? Are human beings just incapable of enjoying peace of mind? Do we turn on one another when there's nothing external to battle? Can we not get along with ourselves? These issues are beyond the scope of traditional social movements, and perhaps it's just as well that the younger generation is concerned with smaller questions. But entry into the working world and life's turbid waters will soon challenge their innocence and enthusiasm.

The current issue also features a report on Liu Siu-mei, the founder of Taiwan's Civilian Arts Movement. Liu argues that "art has the power to make people happy and strong" and has, through her inspirational work, succeeded in making flowers bloom among life's thorns.

Social progress never stops. While we pay our respects to those who keep us moving forward, we would also like to express the hope that our readers find in their own lives the means to be proactive and that they enjoy a wonderful new year!

X 使用【台灣光華雜誌】APP!
更快速更方便!