【中英文】解读西方的非主流文化 Hipster’s dilemma 

9/10/2020 11:05:41 PM  发表于15天前

They can be seen more frequently than ever before on college campuses, wearing flannel and thick-rimmed glasses while listening to indie music. One might find them playing unusual musical instruments, shopping at second-hand stores or expressing themselves in other unique ways.
在大学校园里,有这样一群人变得越来越多——他们穿法兰绒衣服,戴厚框眼镜,听独立音乐。可能他们喜欢玩一些冷门乐器,喜欢去二手店购物,或是以特立独行的方式来表达自我。

They call themselves hipsters. Being “hip” used to mean following the latest fashion. But gradually the word has evolved into a synonym for “cool”, “edgy” and “quirky”.
他们自称“潮人”。“潮”一度意味着紧跟潮流步伐。但是渐渐地,这个词已发展成“酷”、“前卫”以及“另类”的同义词了。

Hipsters value independent thinking, progressive politics, an appreciation of creativity and intelligence. Hipsters take pains and pride in not being mainstream. However, their culture has become quite trendy. This irony is central to their culture and offers an interesting paradox.
“潮人”看重独立思考,信奉政治革新,崇拜创新与智慧。对于“潮人”来说,成为“非主流”是件痛并快乐着的事情。然而,他们的文化已成为一种时尚。这一令人啼笑皆非的局面对于他们文化却有着至关重要的意义,因而形成了一个有趣的自相矛盾的现象。

“I do take things in the mainstream with a grain of salt,” says Ben Polson, a college student at Brown University in the US. Polson describes himself as a hipster and says he often questions what determines popularity, especially regarding music.
“我对主流文化持保留意见。”就读于美国布朗大学的本•波尔森表示。他自称“潮人”,并表示自己经常质疑是什么左右着流行趋势,尤其是在音乐方面。

When lesser-known bands become popular they often lose their former fan base in exchange for a new one. There is a famous hipster cliché that goes: I used to like that band before it got popular.
当一个小众乐队走红时,他们常常会失去先前的粉丝阵营,而换来新的一批簇拥者。“潮人”们有句著名的老话儿是这样说的:我曾喜欢过那支乐队,在它还没有走红之前。

According to Polson, bands’ music changes when they go mainstream. They become “less experimental, doing things just to save popularity and fans. The original elements that we were drawn to slowly dwindle for the sake of popularity.”
波尔森表示,乐队在走向主流后,音乐发生了变化。他们会变得“缺乏实验精神,做事只是为了留住粉丝和人气。为保持人气,过去吸引我们的那种原创元素会慢慢减少。”

Many young adults have started to view hipsters’ outlook as cool and are adopting their counterculture mindset themselves. This has led to specialized brands, stores and music for the hipster niche. Ironically, some such stores, including clothing labels Urban Outfitters and American Apparel, have gained mainstream popularity. This has seemingly diluted the anti-mainstream culture.
许多年轻人开始觉得“潮人”的外形很酷,并自发接受他们的反主流文化心态。这产生了一批“潮人”专属的小众品牌、商店以及音乐。然而出乎意料的是,包括服装品牌Urban Outfitters和American Apparel在内的一些商店都受到了主流文化的欢迎。似乎这也冲淡了反主流文化。

“A lot of people that are self-defined hipsters aren’t really hipsters, they’re just trying to conform to the non-conformist to seem cooler,” says Amanda Leopold, a college student from Oberlin College, US. Although Leopold has many unconventional tastes and seems quite individualist, she refuses to classify herself as a hipster.
就读于美国欧柏林学院的阿曼达•利奥波德认为:“许多自称‘潮人’的人其实名不副实。他们只是试图通过追随那些非主流人士,来让自己看起来更酷。”尽管利奥波德的品味独树一帜,似乎是个十足的个人主义者,但她并不认为自己是个“潮人”。

There is a conflict among hipsters about the very definition of the label. To some, to be a hipster is to be free from cultural constraints. To others, it means wearing a certain style and listening to a specific genre of music. The former constantly strives for uniqueness, while the latter strives not to be mainstream.
对于自身的定义,“潮人”族中间也存在争论。对于一些人而言,成为“潮人”意味着摆脱文化的束缚。对于其他人来说,这意味着要穿上特定款式的服装,听特定类型的音乐。前者一直努力争取独特性,后者则努力成为非主流。


And yet, the movement is gaining mainstream popularity. “It’s kind of the trend these days; everyone wants to be hip so no one’s hip,” laments Leopold. “There have been hipsters since the seventies, it’s only become popular recently.”
然而,这种趋势正在主流群体中普及。利奥波德对此感到遗憾:“这是当下的一种潮流,每个人都想‘潮’,所以每个人都不‘潮’。自70年代以来,‘潮人’便不断涌现出来,只是最近才大行其道而已。”

Hipsters reject materialism and mock mainstream culture. But are they really beyond material comforts? Do they have any ideas of their own if they despise mainstream so much?
“潮人”抗拒物质主义,嘲笑主流文化。然而他们真的超越了物质享受吗?如果他们如此鄙视主流文化,那他们对自身又有什么看法呢?


Christy Wampole, an associate professor of literature at Princeton University, US, is not so sure. She says the hipster is a contradiction in himself and an easy target of mockery. Writing in The New York Times, Wampole paints a less appreciative picture of a typical hipster:
美国普林斯顿大学文学系副教授克里斯蒂•维姆珀对此并不确定。她认为,“潮人”本身就是个矛盾体,因此很容易成为嘲笑的对象。维姆珀在写给《纽约时报》的文章中,将典型的“潮人”描绘成一种并不受外界赞赏的形象。

“The hipster is a scholar of social forms, a student of cool. He studies relentlessly, foraging for what has yet to be found by the mainstream. He is a walking citation; his clothes refer to much more than themselves. He tries to negotiate the age-old problem of individuality, not with concepts, but with material things.”
“‘潮人’是研究社会形态的知识分子,是酷炫的学生。他孜孜不倦地学习,搜寻那些主流文化还未发现的角落。他是一个鲜活的例证,衣着并能体现他们的全部说明。他不是用概念,而是用实实在在的东西试图探索由来已久的个性化问题。”



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