SF百科図鑑 キプリングAS Easy As ABC


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2003.7.29


7月29日

悪体調の原因をいろいろ検討したあげく、睡眠不足という結論にたどり着いた。毎晩、夜中の3時過ぎまで受賞作読み&単語調べ&ページ作成に熱中し、朝は朝で6時20分セットの英語ドラマのCDで目覚め、またもやページ作成を楽しむ。趣味と勉学を兼ねるので意識はしないが、平均睡眠時間が3時間程度では肉体の限界を超えているのかも。もう少しで受賞作読みが終わるので、そのあとはマイペースでできる。もう少しの辛抱だ。がんがれ。

ウィリアムス「パパの世界」8点
2002年度ネビュラ賞中編賞受賞作もやはりVRもの。ちょっとイーガンぽい、バックアップ保存された人間精神のアイデンティティの話。結局癌で倒れた息子の精神を保存をした父親自身が、病に倒れ自らをバックアップ、VRの世界へ──というか自らがヴァーチャルな存在になってしまうわけだ。主観では実在してるともいえるけど。このオチは読めるというか、ひねりが足りなくもあるが、前半から真相究明の中盤までの流れは読ませるので、8点。英語は凄く平易で私には珍しくあまり単語を調べずにほとんど支障なく読めた。

キップリングのASEasyAsABCのほうは難しい。朝きいているドラマCDと併せて読んでもよく分からない。古い作品のせいばかりでなく、相性かも。


7月30日

ASEasyAsABC、読み終わったが難しくて全然分からなかった。何かディストピアものらしいんだけど、シカゴ住民が蜂起した理由が全然分からん。インターネットで解説を検索。

"As Easy as ABC": Rudyard Kipling on Coercive Collectivism

Rudyard Kipling's "As Easy as ABC" (1912) is, as far as I know, hisonlysciencefiction story.* The story is set in the year 2065, and theworld'sonlygovernment is the Aerial Board of Control. "TheA.B.C.,thatsemi-elected,semi-nominated body of a few score persons, controlsthe Planet.Transportationis Civilization, our motto runs. Theoretically, we dowhat weplease, so longas we do not interfere with the traffic and all itimplies."

Among the worst offenses in this Utopian civilization is"crowd-makingandinvasion of privacy." This meant that the lives and activitiesof"self-owningmen and women" "should be submitted for decision at any time...toanybody whohappened to be passing by or residing in a certain radius, andthateverybodyshould forthwith abandon his concerns to settle the matter,firstbycrowd-making, next by talking to the crowds made, and lastlybydescribingcrosses on pieces of paper, which rubbish should later becountedwith certainmystic ceremonies and oaths. Out of this amazing play...wouldautomaticallyarise a higher, nobler, and kinder world, ... based onthesanctity of theCrowd and the villainy of the single person."

This is the position of the Coercive Collectivist, whetherFascist,Communist,Socialist, Nazi, or even Bill Clinton Democrat- "a higher,nobler,and kinderworld based on the sanctity of the Crowd and the villainy ofthesingleperson."

The story refers to the bad old days in which coercive collectivismwasthesource of war and a myriad of social problems. The people of2065stillremember MacDonough's Song, which describes the days ofcoercivecollectivism-and what was finally done about it- but they rarely reciteitbecause they donot like the memories. Since the story was published in1912(more than 75years ago), I am assuming that MacDonough's Song is in thepublicdomain, andit is worth displaying:

MacDonough's Song
by Rudyard Kipling

Whether the State can loose and bindハ In Heaven as well as on EarthIf it be wiser to kill Mankindハ Before or after the birth-These are matters of high concernハ Where State-kept schoolmen are;But Holy State (we have lived to learn)ハ Endeth in Holy War.Whether the People be led by the Lord.ハ Or lured by the loudest throat:If it be quicker to die by the swordハ Or cheaper to die by the vote-These are things we have dealt with once,ハ (And they will not rise from their grave)For Holy People, however it runs,ハ Endeth in wholly SlaveWhatsoever, for any cause,ハ Seeketh to take or give,Power above or beyond the Laws,ハ Suffer it not to live!Holy State or Holy King-ハ Or Holy People's Will-Have no truck with the senseless thing.ハ Order the guns and kill!ハハハハハ Saying- after- me:ハOnce there was The People- Terror gave it birth;Once there was The People and it made a Hell of Earth.Earth arose and crushed it. Listen, O ye slain!Once there was The People- it shall never be again!* a note refers to "With the Night Mail," which also refers to the Aerial Board of Control


いっちゃんわきゃりゃりゅん。あとで読みむす。


7月31日

あう、英文タタミイワシ。読む気がしない。?
何にせよ、設定に無理があるよな>ABC。リアリティがねえよ。わかんない負け惜しみだけどさ。読んでわかんないんだから、ラジオドラマ聴いてもわかるわけなかった。ま、頭が暑くてウニになってるせいもあると思うけどさ。
暑くて(略)。サイテー。
今日で7月終わり。ふう疲れた。何か睡眠不足の月だった。早くネビュラ賞読み終われば苦しみも消える。頑張れ。