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Jennifer’s Photo Stories (16) 曾錚的圖片故事(16)

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“Self-criticism” of 800 Words 八百字的檢討書

 
This photo was taken when I was about 14 years old, in junior middle school. When I look back at the three not very eventful years of my junior middle school from 1978 to 1981, there was only one thing that affected me deeply.
這張照片是我初中時照的,當時14歲左右吧。初中三年似乎沒有太多值得回憶的。只有一件事對我影響至深。
As I have shared in my article “Banned Books Mean Everything”(http://zhengzeng97.blogspot.com/2017/05/banned-books-mean-everything.html), I had always been hungry for books ever since my childhood. When I was in junior middle school, although my best friend and main “supplier” of “out-of-class” reading materials had left, I somehow still managed to get books to read through other channels (Where there is a will, there is a way). 
正如我在《莊稼地裏的「祕密通道」》(http://zhengzeng97.blogspot.com/2017/05/banned-books-mean-everything.html)這篇文章中所說,我從小就是個書迷。進入初中以後,雖然爲我提供課外讀物的好朋友離開了,但我還是總能變著法子找來一些書看,正所謂「有志者,事競成」。
One day in our so-called “self-study class”, I was reading a picture-story book about Yue Fei (1103—1142) , a great Chinese military general in Song dynasty. He was described as a national hero in the book. But I remembered that our history teacher had told us that Yue Fei couldn’t be called a national hero because he had suppressed peasant uprisings. So I whispered my doubts with a classmate.
有一天我們上「自習課」時,我在看一本關於岳飛的連環畫故事畫。書中說岳飛是著名的民族英雄。我就想起我們歷史老師說,因爲岳飛鎮壓過農民起義,所以不能算作民族英雄。我覺得這本書怎麼跟老師講的不一樣呢?於是小聲跟身邊的同學嘀咕。
Unfortunately enough, my whispering was caught by the students who were on duty to patrol the school to check how disciplined every class was. In the “self-study class”, everyone was supposed to study or do their school work quietly. So my reading a non-textbook and my whispering were all regarded as misconduct. As a result, the score of our class was 0.5 or 1 point lower than usual.
不幸的是,由學生「糾察隊」組成的紀律「巡視」小組當時正好巡邏到我們教室外。「自習課」上既不許看課外書,也不許說話。我兩條一起犯了,於是我們班的紀律分被扣。
When our class teacher, who happened to be our history teacher too, learned about this, and especially about the fact that I was questioning what she taught us about Yue Fei, she became so furious that she ordered me to write a “self-criticism” statement no less than 800 words and then read it out in front of the entire class.
我們班主任聽說此事後,表示非常憤怒。她剛好也是我們的歷史老師,聽到我居然在質疑她講課的內容,更加惱羞成怒,命令我寫一份800字的檢討書,還要當著全班同學念出來。
This shocked not only me, but also all my classmates. Until then I had always been a role model and a “three good student”, who had always been the No. 1 student in every single exam; and who had always been winning the highest level award of every category.  If ever I went to the stage, it was always to receive awards, either for myself, or on behalf of our class or even our school. If ever my name was mentioned, it was either praise or asking others to learn from me. I had never been criticized or scolded in school whatsoever. 
對我來說,這無異於五雷轟頂一般。要知道,在此之前,我一直是學生的楷模,年年都當「三好學生」,每次大小考試都是第一名,各種榮譽全是我的,各種讚頌不絕於耳,從來沒受過任何批評或指責。
So, for me, it felt like the world had suddenly been turned upside down. I begged my mother, who was also a teacher at the same school, to transfer me to another class to avoid this humiliation. But she refused, saying that if I fell, I should just get up and face my difficulties instead of running away.
我求母親給我轉一個班,我們的數學老師是另一個班的班主任,她非常喜歡我,表示很願意讓我轉到她的班裏去。可我母親說,在哪裏跌倒,就在哪裏爬起來,不能當逃兵。我必須自己把這個難關應付過去。
I was left with no other choices but to “face” this problem.  I guess during the Great Culture Revolution in China, the public denunciation meetings (also known as “struggle sessions”) were so common that everybody had already become “accustomed” to this kind of public humiliation culture. But for me, as a timid girl of only 14 years old, the pressure was as heavy as a giant mountain. 
也許,剛剛經過了「文革」的成年人們,已經很習慣於各種批鬥會和批鬥文化了。可是,對於只有14歲、天性非常內向、害羞,同時臉皮又特別特別薄、特別特別怕被人說的我來講,當時真的覺得天都塌下來了。
The first difficulty was: How could I write a self-criticism statement as long as 800 words? Up to then, the longest essay we had ever been required to write was only 500 words. Never anything of 800 words! Usually other students’ “self-criticism” statements were only a few sentences, saying something like “I was wrong to do such and such; and I will correct myself in the future.” And that was it. 
我度過了好多個不眠之夜,也湊不夠800字的檢討書。到那時爲止,我們所寫過的最長的記敘文才500字,從沒寫過800字的「長篇鉅著」!
I struggled very hard to come up with 800 words to criticize myself; but failed miserably.  After many sleepless nights, I finally ended up copying many long, long paragraphs from the “Selected Works of Mao Zedong” to serve as the “theoretical guide” to craft enough in-depth reasons about why my behavior was so wrong, as well as to express my resolution to correct myself at a “high” and “revolutionary” enough level. 
在被逼得都快要吐血之後,我終於找到解決方案:我找來一本《毛澤東選集》,大段大段地抄「毛主席語錄」,以「深刻」批評檢討自己的過失,並將改正錯誤的決心上升到「毛主席教導我們說」的「高度」。
When it was time for me to read my “self-criticism”, I instinctively chose to read at the top of my lungs, contrary to all my “predecessors”, whose voices were usually so low that nobody could actually hear them. Because of this, sometimes they had to repeat the process.
輪到我上臺讀檢討書時,我本能地選擇了用最大的音量,作最順暢的朗讀。之前偶爾也有「壞學生」讀過檢討書,他們的聲音都小得像蚊子叫一樣,根本聽不清。有時老師會叫他們「返工」。
I guess that was why I was reading so loudly: I didn’t want to give the teacher any excuse to ask me to do it again. The atmosphere was very strange and embarrassing. For one, every student was embarrassed to see their role model having to go through this. Secondly, never had anyone read the “self-criticism” so shamelessly loudly, as if I were reading a “self-ode” instead of something humiliating.
當我用無比宏亮的聲音「聲情並茂」地讀著「史上最長」檢討書時,教室裏的氣氛非常詭異尷尬。一來,學校裏多年來的「標兵」、「楷模」上臺做檢討一事太不尋常;二來,從來沒有哪個學生用這麼「毫無羞恥」、「毫無懼色」的語氣、聲調跟表情朗讀本應讓人感到羞恥的檢討書。
After I finished reading the longest ever “self-criticism” in the history of our class, and with the loudest ever voice, the entire classroom fell into dead silence. Everyone was at a loss as to how to absorb and handle the very unusual occurrence.
After a very long pause, our teacher finally broke the silence and asked, “Did everybody hear her clearly?”
我念完後,教室裏陷入死一般的沉寂。人人都不知應該做出何種反應才算是「合時宜」。
許久之後,老師終於打破沉默問:「大家聽清楚了嗎?」
Dead silence again. Nobody dared to say “yes”; nobody dared to say “no”. In the end, the teacher had to let me go, but very, very disappointed. She had obviously expected something different.
又是一陣死一般的沉默。沒人敢說聽清了,也沒人敢說沒聽清。老師無奈,只好讓我下去了。
She soon claimed that she had been so upset by me that she had become ill. She lied in bed and refused to teach us any more. My mother had to go to her home many times to apologize and to cook Chinese herb medicine for her.
不久後,老師就宣稱她被我氣病了,躺在牀上起不來,當然也就不來給我們上課了。我母親到她家去給她道歉無數次,並小心翼翼地伺候她,給她熬中藥。
Contrary to what happened to her, I looked perfectly fine, at least on the surface. Maybe nobody had ever noticed any changes in me. I was only a little bit less quiet, less mild; and a little bit more “active” and talkative . I also laughed a little bit more; and sometimes more loudly and exaggeratedly.
我呢?表現得完全正常,甚至變得更加外向、更加活躍活潑,更加愛笑了,有時會笑得很大聲、很誇張。
Only I myself knew how deeply I was hurt and humiliated. But I was just too proud to let anyone find out. I even changed my personality subconsciously so that nobody would ever know what was really going on in my mind and heart. 
沒有人知道,這一切,只是要強的我在拼命地掩飾。我不想讓人知道,這件事對我的傷害有多大。
So, I guess that was a piece of “post-Cultural Revolution” I experienced as a 14 year old.
現在想來,這就算我所經歷的一次小小的「後文革」 批鬥吧。
 
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