6/30/08

饥饿的女儿,青灯,八九点钟的太阳

去燕京图书馆初探的成果是借回来了《八九点钟的太阳》(Morning Sun),北岛的《青灯》还有虹影的《饥饿的女儿》。周末看完了。


纪录片里出现了很多听说过没听说过的人物。黄永玉一如既往地有范,“挨打也要有挨打的样子,”拿着烟斗出一回神。李锐的眼神非常清亮,谈吐间有一种韧劲。我看着每个革命年代北京大院里成长起来的人,觉得他们之间其实那么像。比如李锐的女儿,就很神似我的Li Jian老师。

宋彬彬出现了,疲惫的声音,说,我没有打过人,那些都是谎言,跟我做人的原则完全不相符。徐友渔出现了,回忆七十年代末毛的死去让他想起牛虻目送红衣主教离开的场景,如父如神明的存在就这样灰飞烟灭。遇罗克的弟弟遇罗文出现了。这个人比他哥哥生的俊秀灵动,会回忆当年如何追求女孩。遇罗克本人从照片上看更像个严肃的书呆子。

从《青灯》里看到很多任可之前告诉过我的伯克利系统学术八卦,后悔这次去Davis没有打听北岛的行踪。看到北岛写伯克利南门的“Happy-O-Happy”老爷爷,忽然觉得这个到处去第三世界国家朗诵诗歌,跟各国诗人称兄道弟的人显得亲切起来。然后,觉得“革命”这个话题非常需要仔细思考。

两本书

上了一个星期日语了,原来自学的那点还可以对付。班上不到二十个人,好多都是高中生和本科生,青春的活力啊挡也挡不住。忽然想到,似乎五个研究生全都是华人——两个台湾姐姐,一个南师大的美女姐姐,一个我,一个MIT的CS男生。好吧,我们都是出于学术目的来的哟。

记一下夹杂看的几本书。
Ruth Rogaski Hygienic Modernity:Meanings of Health and Disease in Treaty-Port China。讲“卫生”这一概念在中国现代化进程中的演变,选天津为例。

喜欢她很多观点,比如西医这一概念在十九二十世纪之交发生剧烈变化,那时候人们看到的西医还远不是今天这两个字所指的意思。另外,日本在整个东亚现代化进程中的重要性。能够把福柯的理论有判别地应用到东亚国家如何实现“卫生”现代化,不像后殖民主义史家对现代西方医疗体系中的power structure那种本能的厌恶,实属难得。

遗憾的是虽然封面是类似爱国卫生运动的宣传画,却仅留了一章给49年后的社会主义改造。此书从晚清开始讲起,精华部分在二十世纪初八国领馆分治天津和抗战期间日本长期占领时期,对社会主义革命和阶级斗争话语系统中“卫生”和疾病的位置,并没有非常深入的讨论。不知道有没有人做过这方面的东西。Rugaski指出,公共卫生体系的扩大使城市精英逐渐把自己与进步、现代化、卫生等新概念联系在一起,而疏离了代表着落后、愚昧、“不卫生”的农村(义和团的形象)。那么,1949年后,中共政权下对“卫生现代化”的继续建设,在何种程度上加深了这分歧,又在何种情形下试图消解城乡鸿沟?这对我们理解赤脚医生、农村三级卫生制度、爱国卫生运动、甚至龙须沟的故事,有什么样的启发?

今天又顺着翻看了William JohnstonThe Modern Epidemic: A History of Tuberculosis in Japan.文笔和气度均不如Hygienic Modernity, 难怪反响平平。感觉Johnston没有把国家的概念拆解清楚。如果能把二十世纪初日本政府对内对外的政策理念分析得更加context-specific,会更好。如果有地域之间的比较,就更好。总觉得,写医学史公共卫生史的目的,不应该都在epidemics本身。如Cholera Years其实说的是十九世纪中期美国内战前后的社会巨变,Hygienic Modernity想说的其实是所谓的“半殖民地半封建”社会到底是怎么一回事。如果我将来做再靠近一些的时期,大概会想问所谓的“新民主主义革命”和“社会主义革命”究竟是怎么一回事。所以结论是,提出好的问题很重要。

6/15/08

梁其姿《施善与教化》

研究晚明-清前期-清中后期江南的地方慈善组织。very concrete social history, with reference to some 1,500 县志...

A good point to make is that there'd always been gap between the state and the society prior to late 19th century, without the "modern" instruments that makes authoritarian regimes possible. The idea that so-called "oriental despotism" somehow suffocated creativity of every social sphere simply does not make any sense. Rather we find the central imperial state rather weak. There certainly were places and organizations controlled neither by the state nor by the private sector alone; said Liang. We're not that surprised to find Rowe's Hankow, or Mary Rankin's Zhejiang, where a lot of such activities were proved to be going on.

So a more interesting question is to ask why, and in what ways, did the various conservative philanthropic organizations gradually transformed into antagonizing forces to state control, compared to the old question whether China had "civil society" or any kind of "public sphere" prior to the 19th century. It is worth pondering--- from which point did the notion that the state should take philanthropy as a means to minimize economic/social risks of its citizens first penetrated, or not yet, the Chinese version of modernity.

It is thus linked to the study of medicine and science in late 19th-early 20th century China. Both provided indispensible means (and even ends, esp. in the case of medicine and the cultural authority possessed by modern sciences) for the vital transformation at that time. What a messy yet intriguing period for historians!

6/1/08

又摘抄名言警句了

不应该浅尝辄止。可是实在忍不住要抄下来!

Max Weber Politics as a vocation

  • Whoever wants to engage in politics at all, and especially in politics as a vocation, has to realize these ethical paradoxes. He must know that he is responsible for what may become of himself under the impact of these paradoxes. I repeat, he lets himself in for the diabolic forces lurking in all violence.

  • Everything that is striven for through political action operating with violent means and following an ethic of responsibility endangers the 'salvation of the soul.'

  • Age is not decisive; what is decisive is the trained relentlessness in viewing the realities of life, and the ability to face such realities and to measure up to them inwardly.

  • Certainly all historical experience confirms the truth --that man would not have attained the possible unless time and again he had reached out for the impossible.