永远站在鸡蛋这一边(节选) Always on the Side of the Egg
Good evening. I have come to Jerusalem today as a novelist, which is to say as a professional 1)spinner of lies.
Today, however, I have no intention of lying. I will try to be as honest as I can. There are only a few days in the year when I do not engage in telling lies, and today happens to be one of them.
So let me tell you the truth. In Japan a fair number of people advised me not to come here to accept the Jerusalem Prize. Some even warned me they would 2)instigate a 3)boycott of my books if I came. The reason for this, of course, was the fierce fighting that was raging in Gaza.
Finally, however, after careful consideration, I made up my mind to come here. One reason for my decision was that all too many people advised me not to do it. It’s in my nature, you might say, as a novelist. Novelists are a special breed. They cannot 4)genuinely trust anything they have not seen with their own eyes or touched with their own hands.
And that is why I am here. I chose to come here rather than stay away. I chose to see for myself rather than not to see. I chose to speak to you rather than to say nothing.
Please do allow me to deliver a message, one very personal message. It is something that I always keep in mind while I am writing fiction. I have never gone so far as to write it on a piece of paper and paste it to the wall: rather, it is carved into the wall of my mind, and it goes something like this:
“Between a high, solid wall and an egg that breaks against it, I will always stand on the side of the egg.”
1) spinner [5spInE] n. 纺纱工；（故事等的）编造者
2) instigate [5InstI^eIt] v. 鼓动
3) boycott [5bCIkEt] v. 联合抵制，杯葛
4) genuinely [5dVenjJInlI] ad. 真诚地
Think of it this way. Each of us is, more or less, an egg. Each of us is a unique, irreplaceable soul enclosed in a fragile shell. This is true of me, and it is true of each of you. And each of us, to a greater or lesser degree, is confronting a high, solid wall. The wall has a name: it is “The System.” The System is supposed to protect us, but sometimes it takes on a life of its own, and then it begins to kill us and cause us to kill others—coldly, efficiently, systematically.
I have only one reason to write novels, and that is to bring the dignity of the individual soul to the surface and shine a light upon it. The purpose of a story is to sound an alarm, to keep a light 5)trained on The System in order to prevent it from 6)tangling our souls in its web and demeaning them. I truly believe it is the novelist’s job to keep trying to clarify the uniqueness of each individual soul by writing stories—stories of life and death, stories of love, stories that make people cry and quake with fear and shake with laughter. This is why we go on, day after day,7)concocting fictions with utter seriousness.
I have only one thing I hope to convey to you today. We are all human beings, individuals 8)transcending nationality and race and religion, and we are all fragile eggs faced with a solid wall called The System. To all appearances, we have no hope of winning. The wall is too high, too strong—and too cold. If we have any hope of victory at all, it will have to come from our believing in the utter uniqueness and irreplaceability of our own and others’ souls and from our believing in the warmth we gain by joining souls together.
5) train [treIn] v. 对准（常与on, upon搭配）
6) tangle [5tAN^l] v. 使混乱
7) concoct [kEn5kɒkt] v. 编造
8) transcend [trAn5send] v. 超越
Jerusalem Prize for Literature耶路撒冷文学奖
In Japan they prefer the realistic style. They like answers and conclusions, but my stories have none. I want to leave them wide open to every possibility. I think my readers understand that openness.
If you only read the books that everyone else is reading, you can only think what everyone else is thinking.
Memories are what warm you up from the inside. But they’re also what tear you apart.
—Kafka on the Shore(《海边的卡夫卡》)
But who can say what’s best? That’s why you need to grab whatever chance you have of happiness where you find it, and not worry about other people too much. My experience tells me that we get no more than two or three such chances in a life time, and if we let them go, we regret it for the rest of our lives.