朱利安·巴恩斯终获布克奖

说朱利安·巴恩斯(Julian Barnes, 1946- )终获本年度曼布克小说奖(Man Booker Prize),是因为此前巴恩斯已经三度进入布克奖评选的短名单。这是他的第四次。这一次终于他如愿以偿了。这次帮助巴恩斯获得该项殊荣的是他的小说《终结感》(The Sense of an Ending)。

  • 巴恩斯已经创作发表了11部小说和大量短篇小说以及其他文章。
  • 1946年出生于莱切斯特,在伦敦城市学习接受教育。
  • 他在牛津大学研究现代语言,1968年毕业。
  • 做过New Statesman的文字编辑;也为“观察家”频道做过电视评论员。
  • 他获得过法国的 Prix Medicis (for Flaubert’s Parrot) 奖和 Prix Femina (for Talking It Over)奖。他是唯一一位获得过这两项奖励的作家

【以下是来自BBC NEWS的报道】

Man Booker Prize won by Julian Barnes on fourth attempt

Julian Barnes has won the Man Booker Prize for his novel The Sense of an Ending, having been shortlisted on three previous occasions.

Barnes – the bookmakers’ favourite – said he was “as much relieved as I am delighted” to win the £50,000 prize.

The judges had been criticised for putting a focus on “readability” in their choice of shortlisted novels.

Chairwoman, ex-MI5 boss Dame Stella Rimington, said the publishing world was like the “KGB at its height”.

Of Barnes’s novel, Dame Stella said “the markings of a classic of English literature”.

She described the novel as “exquisitely written, subtly plotted and reveals new depths with each reading”.

“We thought it was a book that spoke to the humankind in the 21st Century.”

In reference to the row over the literary merit of the books the judges chose, she accused her critics within the publishing world of resembling the Russian security service for their use of “black propaganda, de-stabilisation operations, plots and double agents”.

She said the judges had followed the debate “sometimes with great glee and amusement”.

“We were talking about readability and quality. We were certainly always looking for quality as well,” she said. “That fact it’s been in the headlines is very gratifying.”

And Barnes, in his acceptance speech, said: “I’d like to thank the judges – whom I won’t hear a word against – for their wisdom. And the sponsors for their cheque.”

Thanking the book’s designer, Suzanne Dean, he added: “Those of you who’ve seen my book – whatever you may think of its contents – will probably agree that it is a beautiful object.

“And if the physical book, as we’ve come to call it, is to resist the challenge of the e-book, it has to look like something worth buying and worth keeping.”

The shortest novel of the six finalists, The Sense of an Ending is about childhood friendship and the imperfections of memory.

It is narrated by a middle-aged man, Tony Webster, who reflects on the paths he and his friends have taken as the past catches up with him via a bequeathed diary.

Dame Stella said that although the main character appeared at first to be “rather boring”, he was gradually revealed to be somebody quite different.

The former spy chief added: “One of the things the book does is talk about humankind: none of us really know who we are – we present ourselves in all sorts of ways.”

The other nominees were Carol Birch (Jamrach’s Menagerie); Canadians Patrick deWitt (The Sisters Brothers) and Esi Edugyan (Half Blood Blues); and debut authors Stephen Kelman (Pigeon English) and AD Miller (Snowdrops).

Barnes had been shortlisted for the prize on three previous occasions, but without success.

The London-based author was nominated in 1984 for Flaubert’s Parrot, in 1998 for England, England and in 2005 for Arthur and George.

Dame Stella said the five judges had reached a final, unanimous decision after about half an hour of debate on Tuesday.

“I can tell you there was no blood on the carpet and nobody went off in a huff,” she said.

Her fellow Booker judges were writer and journalist Matthew d’Ancona, author Susan Hill, author and politician Chris Mullin and Gaby Wood of the Daily Telegraph.

Despite the literary row, this year’s shortlist has been the best-selling in Booker history – sales of the shortlisted novels are up 127% on last year.

According to Nielsen BookScan, 98,876 copies were sold in the six weeks after the shortlist was announced.

Snowdrops has sold most, shifting more than 35,000 copies since it was shortlisted. Next is Jamrach’s Menagerie with 19,500 and The Sense of an Ending with 15,000.

Barnes’s book has sold more than 27,500 copies since it was published in early August.

At 150 pages, it is not the shortest book to win the Booker. That record is held by Penelope Fitzgerald’s 132-page Offshore which won in 1979.

Commenting on the winner, Jonathan Ruppin, of Foyles, said: “As a writer characterised by immense intelligence and imagination, it would have been remarkable if Barnes had never won the Booker.

“This is definitely one that splits opinion, with some finding it subtly powerful and others frustratingly underdeveloped, but great writers rarely please everyone.”

本年度竞逐布克奖短名单出炉

本年度布克奖(Man Booker Prize)短名单公布。英国作家朱利安·巴恩斯(Julian Barnes)凭借其小说《终结感》(The Sense of an Ending)第四次入围。另外的5位入围者分别为史蒂芬·凯尔曼(Stephen Kelman),艾迪·米勒( AD Miller),卡罗尔·帕奇(Carol Birch),帕特里克·德维特(Patrick deWitt)和埃斯·埃杜基(Esi Edugy)。

【以下是来自BBC的相关报道

Bookies’ favourite Julian Barnes is among six authors featured on this year’s Man Booker Prize shortlist.

It is the fourth time Barnes has been shortlisted for the Booker

Bookmaker William Hill has put Barnes at 6-4 to win for his novel The Sense of an Ending.

Stephen Kelman, AD Miller, Carol Birch, Patrick deWitt and Esi Edugyan have also made it onto the shortlist.

The winner of the £50,000 annual prize – won last year by Howard Jacobson’s The Finkler Question – will be announced on 18 October.

Ladbrokes also named Barnes as favourite to win at 13-8 and made Birch second favourite at 7/2, as did William Hill.

Alan Hollinghurst, whose novel The Stranger’s Child had been second favourite to win, did not make the shortlist.

“Inevitably it was hard to whittle down the longlist to six titles,” said former MI5 chief Dame Stella Rimington, chair of this year’s judging panel.

“We were sorry to lose some great books. But, when push came to shove, we quickly agreed that these six very different titles were the best.”

Writer and journalist Matthew d’Ancona, author Susan Hill, author and politician Chris Mullin and Gaby Wood of the Telegraph are her fellow jurors.

Barnes has been shortlisted for the prize on three previous occasions, without success.

The 65-year-old was nominated in 1984 for Flaubert’s Parrot, in 1998 for England, England and in 2005 for Arthur and George.

This year’s shortlist contains two debut novelists – Miller and Kelman – as well as two women – Edugyan and Birch, who made the longlist for Turn Again Home in 2003.

Two of the authors are Canadian – Edugyan and deWitt – while the other four are British. Four of the novels are from independent publishers.

Kelman’s debut novel tells the story of an 11-year-old who, with his mother and sister, moves from Ghana to a rough London estate.

Booker judge Chris Mullin read 138 books before his panel whittled down the shortlist

Pigeon English follows him and a friend as they investigate the murder of a local boy who has been knifed to death.

Miller’s thriller Snowdrops, which reveals the dark underbelly of Moscow, was inspired by his time spent living in Russia.

Barnes’s novel has a middle-aged man reflecting on the paths he and his childhood friends have taken as the past catches up with him.

Edugyan’s Half-Blood Blues begins in 1930s Berlin with a jazz musician going missing as the Nazis take over the streets.

The Sisters Brothers, deWitt’s second novel, is set against the backdrop of the 1850s Californian gold rush and is believed to be the first Western novel to feature on the shortlist.

Birch’s novel, Jamrach’s Menagerie, derives from a real-life incident – the sinking of the whale-ship Essex in 1820.

The competition is only open to those from the British Commonwealth and Ireland.

作家众论塞林格【ZT】

【mabokov按】以下全文转载《中华读书报》 2010年2月3日第四版慷慨撰写的一篇纪念塞林格的文章。其中引用了英美众位作家的言论。

有人“认父”,有人“弑父”

慷慨

JD·塞林格活到91岁,1月27日在新罕布什尔州科尼什镇家中平静去世。

关于他的生平和著作,各路媒体报道已如汪洋,除详略有不同,基本一律。

杰罗姆·大卫·塞林格,1919年1月1日生于纽约。学历:福吉谷军校(相当于中专)。出书:小长篇《麦田里的守望者》,1951年美国首版,1963年中国内部发行,1983年中译首版;中短篇集《九故事》、《弗兰妮与祖伊》和《抬高房梁,木匠们:西摩小传》。隐居:1965年后不再发表作品,同时拒绝公开露面。

英语文坛及媒体连日缅怀,作家多谢塞翁作品给予自己的文学恩泽,报刊更关注其隐修历程,基调是致敬加传奇。

或许英美两国的大报在报道时最大的不同,在于塞翁照片的选用。美报头版一般只刊用“合法的”塞林格中青年半侧像,大小多在两栏宽以内,而英国最著名的两张严肃大报——《泰晤士报》和《卫报》却在头版以半版篇幅,印出1988年拍得的同一张狗仔照片,摄影者显然藏在车内,塞林格正面对镜头,愤怒地捶击车窗。那一年,塞林格只有69岁,看上去至少要再加十岁。

照片拍摄时,他正与太太出来遛弯。事实上,半个世纪以来,一直有书迷和记者前往探访,而科镇千余居民志愿为邻人挡驾。外人在镇上现身,一如鬼子进村,即便不被乡民劝返,亦问不出塞家细节。

早些年有位幸运儿的成功经历,当属凤毛。美国全国公共电台(NPR)日前播出了一段采访,受访者乃今年67岁的吉姆·克拉夫切克。 1960年代末,他尚为塞林格的青年书迷,曾前往科尼什寻访偶像。他先到镇上的全功能房——邮局兼杂货店打探。“你永远也见不到他,”店员说,即便是货郎也没这个福分,他们只能把东西放在门外,然后拿个信封走人。

算克拉夫切克命好,有个退休老师给他指了路:出镇入林,沿土路穿山越岭,终于抵达他从某本塞林格传记中识得的作家房前。塞太太正站在露台上,小伙子遂上前求见。

“他要说的,都在书里说了。”塞太太答,然后呯的一声关上了门。小伙子正待离去,门复开,塞太太重回露台:“他和我离婚了。他住路对面。”

克拉夫切克终于敲响了塞林格的房门。房中人应了一声,却撂下小伙子眼巴巴站在门外。天公此时不作美——实则作美,突然间雷声大作,骤雨突至。房中人道:“你最好进来。”

小伙子走进厨房,见到作家本人。他没请他坐下,亦未上茶。两人聊了一会,谈到《麦田》,克拉夫切克问:“你想过它会这么受欢迎吗?”作家答:“真是场噩梦。”

年轻人心里头装着许多典型的书迷问题,却不曾开口。“我不想成为他写的那种伪君子。”克拉夫切克告诉NPR,于是他只和伟大的塞林格握了握手。“这是个没人见过的人。没人能见到他。可我就在他厨房里。我那会想的是,‘伙计,这是有生以来最棒的远足。’”

摘引几天来英美多位知名作家对塞林格及其文学遗产的评价如下:

■查尔斯·麦克格拉斯/《纽约时报》:

人们一度认为JD·塞林格将成为二战之后美国最重要的作家,但他抛弃了成功与奉承,成为文坛的嘉宝,以无意著名而著名。

《麦田》出版于1951年,开篇首句与马克·吐温遥相呼应,以其无礼和傲慢令美国文学耳目一新:“你要是真想听我讲,你想要知道的第一件事可能是我在什么地方出生,我倒楣的童年是怎样度过,我父母在生我之前干些什么,以及诸如此类的大卫· 科波菲尔式废话,可我老实告诉你,我无意告诉你这一切。”(译文据施咸荣译本)

尽管并非所有人深以为然,尤其是老师和图书馆长们,但《麦田》几乎立刻成了畅销书,其叙述者和主人公霍尔顿·考菲尔德,刚被预科学校开除的少年,则成为哈克贝利·芬以来美国文学最著名的出走者。

许多评论家更欣赏《九故事》,它出版于1953年,对菲利普·罗斯、约翰·厄普代克和哈洛德·布罗德基等作家的成长影响巨大。书中的短篇小说之所以引人注目,在于其敏锐的社会观察、堪称完美的对话,以及对短篇小说传统结构——开始、进展和结束的老结构——之残余的彻底破坏,代之以情感的结构,故事因此可以建立在细小的情绪变化或反讽的基础上。厄普代克说,他欣赏“它们那种开放的禅宗风格,不会戛然而止的进程”。

■朱利安·巴恩斯/《观察家报》:

“你要是没看过《汤姆·莎耶历险记》那本小说,你就不会知道我是个什么样的家伙;不过,那并没有多大关系。”马克·吐温《哈克贝利·芬历险记》的开场白说的真,听得清,尽显作者之自信。在这种与读者直接、简洁、口语话的沟通中,美国小说家一向强过英国同行。《麦田里的守望者》开场(更长些,被引用也更多)一如吐温般诱人,仿佛成竹在胸。塞林格的死刺激了人们对其生平点滴经久不衰的胃口,书迷则小声嗔怪;兼及貌似严肃的花边新闻,事关其人生轨迹、艺术“发展”(抑或缺失)和未出版手稿的谜团。所有这一切,在塞林格死去之时,都与他写的一本堪称完美的杰作相关,它似乎可以长盛不衰,除非那种纠结的阶段,即所谓青春期,从人类文明中消失。

■里克·穆迪/全国公共电台:

论及马克·吐温的遗产,海明威有句名言:“我们全都出自哈克·芬的胯下。”对当代作家们而言,也可以同样表述为出自霍尔顿·考菲尔德胯下,此人乃塞林格《麦田里的守望者》的主人公。如果现在感受不到霍尔顿和塞林格的广泛影响,他就不可能是个美国作家。要想感知这一点,最便捷之道在于塞林格对声音的理解,霍尔顿·考菲尔德那种放纵的、口语化的、有人味儿的声音,以非常个人化的第一人称发出,堪称此后众多美国文学的模本。你可以在《灯红酒绿》(杰伊·麦金纳尼,1984)听到这声音;你可以在《小于零》(布雷特·伊斯顿·埃利斯,1985)听到它;你甚至可以在《我所谓的生活》这样的电视节目中听到它。

若要我说,我和所有当代美国作家一样,也是从塞林格胯下出来的,我也觉得自己很有些敬佩他的沉默,一如我敬佩他那些已发表作品的巨大成就。如今他过世了,这沉默便更形完美。

■克里斯托弗·希金斯/《泰晤士报》:

关于塞林格的成就,最让我吃惊的是,他在书中几近无形。从一开篇,大卫·科波菲尔的名字就与“废话”相连,我感到自己读的就是霍尔顿·考菲尔德的作品。

读着书中那令人印象深刻、雅俗兼备的英语,那些渴望、早熟的忧伤,以及对性生活的摸索(哈克和汤姆从未被迫面对那事儿),它明显就是一个少年的作品,我几乎完全不曾留意其作者的身份。可和密西西比河上的男童在一起,你永远不会忘记自己正在读马克·吐温的书。

■马丁·艾米斯/《泰晤士报》:

我小时候和长大以后都读过他,那会儿我十几岁,后来是二十多岁。就像有人点着了火把,照亮了你的思想·……我认为他的声音非常纯粹。没人像他那样。[艾米斯承认,他近年来没再读过塞林格。]过去人们常说,就对作家第一本小说的影响而言,《麦田里的守望者》超过了其他任何作品,但它从未对他们的第二本书带来启发。

■罗伯特·麦克鲁姆/《卫报》:

令我感兴趣的是塞林格的战时经历。简而言之,1942年他以步兵入伍,D日登陆犹他滩,在法国且战且行,亲历突出部战役,且为解放纳粹集中营的先头部队一员。换言之,相较许多老兵,他的二战经历只多不少。

固以为战争回忆录写不出真实的战争。所幸有位1944年重夺欧洲的亲历者:著名文学评论家保罗·福塞尔(Paul Fussell),其经典之作《战时》(Wartime)的最后阐述,足以说明霍尔顿令人难忘的叙述所由何来。

“到底是什么,”福塞尔写道,“驱使前线官兵对战争不断进行口头颠覆和蔑视?不仅仅是危险、恐惧、厌倦、无常、孤独和清苦,更是深信那些乐观的宣传和修饰一直在大大歪曲他们的经历,令其难以为人所知。”对官兵而言,后方总部里的那些伪君子一直在将战争“净化和迪斯尼化”。他们知道自己的武器装备劣于德军,而且除了原子弹之外,盟军一无所长,即便美国自我标榜为世界头号工业强国,亦于事无补。福塞尔写道:“前线官兵以歌曲、段子和愠怒的蔑视,表达幻灭和嘲讽,因为他们知道,后方对这些事一无所知。”

这种“愠怒的蔑视”与霍尔顿·考菲尔德相比,哪一个表达的更清晰,更强烈呢?《麦田里的守望者》是关于战后青少年的第一部、也是最重要的一部作品,但我认为,从某种程度上说,这一广为人知的独特声音形成于1944-45年间的欧洲战场。

■杰伊·帕里尼/《卫报》:

像我那一代几乎所有人一样,我手捧塞林格长大。我记得15岁那年,我妈提醒我不该读一本叫《麦田里的守望者》的书。不可能有比这更好的推荐了;我和大多数美国少年一样,贪婪地、晕乎乎地读它,为不服管教的霍尔顿·考菲尔德欣悦不已……20 世纪60年代末,我上大学后(再)读此书,发现它仍然引人。我看出了前一两次阅读时错失的一切。此时的我强烈感受到了霍尔顿的极不成熟,他也的确如此。他对周遭一切始终如一的(并非恭维)的判断近乎苛刻,但60年代末就是不停做出判断、发现世界与理想之差距的时代。霍尔顿有点像早期的嬉皮:厌恶伪善,追求个性独立的年轻人。

1975年,我在达特茅斯学院找到头一份工作,搬到新罕布什尔,很快就有个同事神秘兮兮地告诉我,塞林格就住在附近,在科尼什。他当时经常来达特茅斯学院的贝克图书馆,读书,看杂志,有几次我也看见他本人在桌边读书。他一般在深夜过来,呆在图书馆的地下室。有一次在我办公室外面的走廊里,他从我身边一掠而过,看上去又瘦削又孤僻。大家都知道他不想有人打扰,所以我也从未放胆与他搭话。

他至今犹在眼前,将老未老的样子,在夜里躬身于某本杂志,显得那么古怪。我希望他现在所居之地能多些快乐。

■米奇·艾鲍姆/《底特律自由新闻》:

有人告诉我塞林格去世的消息时,我开玩笑地问:“他们怎么知道的?”

这是个黑色幽默,略带些无礼。可我意在赞美。塞林格对保卫隐私的热情甚至高过写作,他直到91岁,都想方设法在这两个领域双双死去。

没错,小朋友们:此人是真的不想出名。

塞林格写了一本人们谈论至今的书,一本胜于他其他几部作品的书。它叫《麦田里的守望者》。你也许在青春期读过它。

如果你现在70多岁,你也许是主动读的,作为成人仪式,它告诉你青春的愤怒与骚动。

如果你现在30、40或50多岁,那你大概是上高中时读的,作为课业。

如果你20岁上下,你也许已经在语文课上学过它了,抑或下载了此书,看看那些吹捧到底是怎么一回事……

书里有句话,是霍尔顿·考菲尔德说的。他说:“人们总是为错误的东西喝彩。”

塞林格想让人们为正确的东西喝彩,为他的小说,而非他的私生活、所做的采访或是根据其作品改编的电影。我因此敬佩他。每次看见巴黎丝·希尔顿的新闻,或是《美国偶像》的选秀,我都更加敬佩他。

■布雷特·伊斯顿·埃利斯/Twitter:

Yeah!!感谢上帝他终于死了。我他妈一直在等这一天。今晚开Party!!!

不得不注:这是一句很讨厌的、不合时宜的评语。埃利斯1964年生于纽约,乃美国小说家,以1985年出版的《小于零》和1991年的《美国精神病》最为知名。鉴于里克·穆迪在前面特别提及塞林格对《小于零》的影响,我们简直可以认为,埃利斯先生表现出了很强的“弑父”情结。)