Jump to content
Chinese-forums.com
  • Sign Up
Learn Chinese in China

  • Why you should look around

    Since 2003, Chinese-forums.com has been helping people learn Chinese faster and get to China sooner. Our members can recommend beginner textbooks, help you out with obscure classical vocabulary, and tell you where to get the best street food in Xi'an. And we're friendly about it too. 

    Have a look at what's going on, or search for something specific. We hope you'll join us. 
Fred0

付出的努力和代价

Recommended Posts

Fred0

I am reading an essay about the Eileen Chang novel The Golden Cangue (金锁记). The author is discussing the motivation of the main character Cao Qiqiao (曹七巧), who in her youth as the daughter of a shop-keeper, agreed to marry the crippled second son of a mandarin family, the Jiangs (姜家). Here the author is suggesting that Cao Qiqiao, acting on her own motivation, married the crippled man as a means to increase her social status by marrying into a family which was above her social class. Advancing her social status was what she saw as the goal of her life when she was at that youthful age, and for this she was willing to marry a cripple.

 

曹七巧嫁到姜家高攀到一个门不当户不对的家庭,主动走近一个残疾的身体,这是她年轻时候为了自己想要的生活付出的努力和代价。

 

My difficulty is with the grammar of the last clause. As I read it, it says: In the time of her youth (他年轻时候) in order the have (为了) the life that she wanted (自己想要的生活), she was willing to become physically intimate with a cripple (主动走近一个残疾的身体),as the price she would have to pay. The problem with this reading is that I can't see what 付出的努力和代价 means. It seems to be saying "pay great effort and price" which doesn't make sense to me.  So, I suspect my whole reading is wrong and that I am not seeing the correct grammatical structure. Please help!

  • Good question! 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Site Sponsors:
Pleco for iPhone / Android iPhone & Android Chinese dictionary: camera & hand- writing input, flashcards, audio.
Study Chinese in Kunming 1-1 classes, qualified teachers and unique teaching methods in the Spring City.
Learn Chinese Characters Learn 2289 Chinese Characters in 90 Days with a Unique Flash Card System.
Hacking Chinese Tips and strategies for how to learn Chinese more efficiently
Popup Chinese Translator Understand Chinese inside any Windows application, website or PDF.
Chinese Grammar Wiki All Chinese grammar, organised by level, all in one place.

Jim

I don't think you're far wrong, reads to me as saying to have the life she wants she has to work at it (presumably making a marriage she's not really keen on work) and pays a price (in the perceived sacrifice of having a disabled husband etc.). The 努力 does seem a bit superfluous to me but it is after all imparting some slightly different information to 代价.

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
陳德聰

Relative clause/attributive parsing again:

 

这是 [ 她年轻时候 [ 为了自己想要的生活 ] 付出的 ] 努力和代价

 

Where “這” is the entirety of the sentence preceeding. Including 嫁到姜家高攀到ABC and 走近XYZ. 高攀 is the 努力 and 走近 is the 代價, regardless of how cynical that is. Keep in mind that 付出努力 is to “expend” effort, not to “pay” effort. It just so happens that this word is the same word that can be used with 代價, which would be to “pay a price.”

  • Helpful 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Lu

What 楼上 says.

 

The core of the sentence is: 这是她付出的努力和代价。

When did she 付出 this 努力和代价 ? (她)年轻时候

What did she 付出 this  努力和代价 for? 为了自己想要的生活

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Fred0

Yes, this is a big help. She expended great effort and paid a great price to get what in her youth she thought she wanted. Thanks very much.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Fred0

在一个低气压的时代,水土特别不相宜的地方,谁也不存在什么幻象,

In this low-spritied age, especially with the natural world an usuitable place, who still holds any illusions,

期待文艺园地里有奇花异卉探出头来。

(or goes on) expecting in the garden of art and literature to discover a strange and rare plant to rescue us (from our spiritually depressed condition).

然而天下比较重要一些的事故,往往在你冷不防的时候出现。

However,  a few rather important exceptional events in this world, more often than not appear when you least expect them.

史学家或社会学家,会用逻辑来证明,偶发的事故实在是酝酿已久的结果。

Historians and sociologists are able to use logic to prove that the occurrence of these exceptional events are actually the result of  long processes of  brewing (ripening) for them to come to fruition.

但没有这种分析头脑的大众,总觉得世界上真有魔术棒似的东西在指挥着,每件新事故都像从天而降,教人无论悲喜都有些措手不及。

But most people are not aware of this type of analyisis. They think there really is in this world  a “magic wand” sort of thing running the show; every new fortuitous event is like it fell from the sky, to cause people regardless whether they are sad or happy about it, to be caught off guard.

迅雨(傅雷):《论张爱玲的小说》)

This is a quotation in a literary essay that I have spent the last two days trying to understand. I have made some progress but I need to check my understanding of several things.

1. 事故 is defined in MDBG as “accident.” This obviously doesn’t fit in this context and I could find no alternative meaning. I think he must be meaning this in a metaphorical sense, as fortuituous circumstances, or exceptional events. Is that correct?

2. I have taken 低气压 “low air pressure” also as a metaphor for “depressed” or “low-spirited,” playing on the use of 气 in descriptions of emotional states.

3. In the last sentence does 无论悲喜 refer to 人 or to 事故? What does it mean?

4. I question my overall understanding of the sense of the quotation. Am I understanding the ideas correctly?

  • Good question! 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Jim

For 1., 事故 has only relatively recently been mostly used in the narrow sense of accident: http://www.zdic.net/c/b/14a/323442.htm "原泛指事情,现在指意外的损失或灾祸" originally events in a broad sense. 

2. I think you're there or thereabouts with the link between meteorological and metaphysical depressions.

3. My first reaction was that it the people, regardless of whether or not they are delighted or dismayed by the event but looking closer I couldn't swear to that hand on heart. Still think that's the sense.

 

Overall think you've got the gist.

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Lu

但没有这种分析头脑的大众 Most people don't have a head for this kind of analysis, ie most people can't analyse like historians or sociologists can, and thus to them it seems events happen very suddenly.

I think you got the gist just fine.

  • Thanks 1
  • Helpful 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Jim

Yes, strictly speaking that clause is modifying 大众 so a more literal rendering would be:

 

但没有这种分析头脑的大众,总觉得世界上真有魔术棒似的东西在指挥着

Yet the broad mass of people who lack that sort of analytical mind always feel that there is something akin to a magic wand directing [the affairs of] the world (and so each new event that occurs seems to have just dropped from the skies...)

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Fred0

Thanks to both of you, and thanks for the reference to 汉典 website. That looks like a good reference. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Fred0

Lu Xun's Diary of a Madman published originally in New Youth magazine is considered by modern literary history to be the first short story written in the vernacular.

 

《新青年》是一份旨在宣扬新文化塑造新青年的杂志,现代文学史上的第一篇白话短篇小说在这个杂志上发表,可见新文学和新青年、启蒙运动挥之不去的血缘关系。

 

[ "New Youth" was a magazine devoted to the proclamation of the New Culture (movement) and the creation of a new youth. By the publication of modern literary history's first short story in this magazine, can't we see that the New Culture and New Youth,  the enlightenment movement wave, as all part of the same social movement.]

 

My question is about 之不去?I am taking it to mean  "isn't it so?" in a rhetorical sense. Is that correct?

 

Also, I am interpreting 血缘关系 as a description of the relationship  between these movements. They are all of the same blood. The other interpretation is to interpret 血缘关系 as "common blood is what matters." Then 之不去means to say that these movements are not part of the traditional Confucian understanding of society as based on filial piety. What is the correct way to understand this sentence?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
陳德聰

揮之不去 is a phrase that means un-shake-off-able.

 

血緣關係 here is a metaphor/personification. How can movements be blood related? People are blood related. It does not carry “is what matters” as an interpretation.

 

2 hours ago, Fred0 said:

新文学和新青年、启蒙运动挥之不去的血缘关

 

可見 [ 新文學和新青年、啟蒙運動(的) [ 揮之不去的 ] 血緣關係 ]

  • Helpful 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Fred0

生长于都市的张爱玲可贵的市民素质使得她看待世界的眼光一直是商业的,都市的,物质的眼光是她看待和理解这个世界的第一视角。

 

Having grown up in a city, Eileen Chang can be praised that her  city-dwellers basic essence makes her regard the world  straight-forwardly as a world of business. The city, seen as materialistic, as she sees and understands it, is her first (fundamental, primary?) perspective on the world.

 

1. What does 可贵 mean in the context of this sentence?

 

2. What is 都市的 doing all alone separated by commas from what comes before or after. I am taking it as the topic of the clause which follows. Is that correct?

 

3.使得她看待世界的眼光一直是商业的 seems to say “makes her regard the world (de) to regard as always is a business one.” What’s the right way to read this?

 

4. How should 第一 be understood- first perspective in the temporal sense as her earliest perspective, or phychologically as her initial perspective, or philosophically as her fundamental perspective?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Jim

市民 in this sort of context is used to mean bourgeois (same derivation if you think about it), so her 市民素质 is something like her 'bourgeois sensibilities'.  可贵 has its usual meaning of commendable etc AFAICT but slight change of tack in the phrase as this usually praiseworthy sensibility (which allowed her to capture early 20th century urban life) also somewhat narrows her worldview so that it considers things from a commercial and metropolitan POV - the 都市的 goes with the preceding 商业的 as the ways she views the world. Punctuation might be a touch ambiguous but the parallelism helps link the two. The link then is between a bourgeois sensibility and a commercial (ETA and urban) view of the world.

'First' as in first and foremost she views and interprets the world through a materialist lens, i.e. before any spiritual or emotional considerations etc.

 

ETA Overall I think the idea is that the outlook that allowed Zhang Ailing to write some of the first 'modern' Chinese literature also in certain ways limited her perspective.

  • Helpful 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Fred0

Thanks, this is very helpful. I understand POV (point of view) and somehow AFAICT came to me (as far as I can see), but ETA elludes me. Can you expand that on for me? Thanks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Jim

Sorry, thought it was common. Stands for 'edited to add' so you can see what I've revised.

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Fred0

Would you accept this way of parsing this sentenc?

 

生长于都市的,张爱玲可贵的市民素质使得她看待世界的,(她的)眼光一直是商业的,都市的,物质的眼光,(也)是她看待和理解这个世界的,(她)第一视角。

 

Having grown up in a city, Eileen Chang’s commendable urban sensibilities determined her world view.  Her vision is from a commercial, bourgeois, and materialistic perspective,  and is, as her way of looking at and understanding this world, (her) first and formost point of view.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Jim

I wouldn't, mainly because you've combined the materialist view with the preceding where really it's a reiteration and slight twist on that.

 

生长于都市的张爱玲可贵的市民素质使得她看待世界的眼光一直是商业的,都市的,物质的眼光是她看待和理解这个世界的第一视角。

The commendable bourgeois sensibilities of city-bred Zhang Ailing meant the way she looked at the world was always commercial and metropolitan; the primary perspective from which she viewed and interpreted the world was a materialist way of looking at things.

 

The second half there is sort of a repetition but not entirely, there is some different information.

  • Helpful 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and select your username and password later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Click here to reply. Select text to quote.

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...