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读史笔记#23:封侯拜爵的神仙们

封侯拜爵的神仙们
辉格
2016年12月11日

中国民间信仰以其神仙繁多而著称,宋代仅湖州一地的寺观祠庙里供奉的神祗,有史料可查者即有92个,扣除名号重复者,还有50多个,粗略估算,全国各地的神祗数量大约介于乡镇数和村庄数之间,看来古代中国人『积极造神,见神即拜』的名声并非虚浪。

如此多神仙得到敬拜,还要归功于神仙来源的多样化,和大众在神仙制造方式上的创造性;早期神祗来源大致和其他文化相仿,比如司掌某种自然力的自然神,或者被认定为某一族群共同祖先的始祖神,然而自中古以降,一种新型神祗开始大量涌现。

这些新神都是不久前还生活于人世的真实人物,因某种显赫成就或奇特经历而被认为拥有神力;认定神力的入门标准很低——担任过高官,参加过某次战役,遭受过冤屈,或者离奇死亡——总之,任何在大众眼里有点特别的地方(more...)

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封侯拜爵的神仙们 辉格 2016年12月11日 中国民间信仰以其神仙繁多而著称,宋代仅湖州一地的寺观祠庙里供奉的神祗,有史料可查者即有92个,扣除名号重复者,还有50多个,粗略估算,全国各地的神祗数量大约介于乡镇数和村庄数之间,看来古代中国人『积极造神,见神即拜』的名声并非虚浪。 如此多神仙得到敬拜,还要归功于神仙来源的多样化,和大众在神仙制造方式上的创造性;早期神祗来源大致和其他文化相仿,比如司掌某种自然力的自然神,或者被认定为某一族群共同祖先的始祖神,然而自中古以降,一种新型神祗开始大量涌现。 这些新神都是不久前还生活于人世的真实人物,因某种显赫成就或奇特经历而被认为拥有神力;认定神力的入门标准很低——担任过高官,参加过某次战役,遭受过冤屈,或者离奇死亡——总之,任何在大众眼里有点特别的地方都可以让他们获得候选资格,但真正确立其神灵地位的,是『灵验』事迹,即有人在向他祈求佑助时得偿所愿。 在《变迁之神》一书中,人类学家韩森考察了此类神祗的兴起,发现其数量在宋代经历了爆发性增长,而之所以神界能容得下如此规模的神口增长,是因为他们都是地方性的,其神力作用半径不过数十里,各地若想有神可求,就得自己造一个,而同时,造神逻辑本身确保了新神的供给:灵验的随机性意味着总是不断会有旧神失宠,新神崛起。 有趣的是,帝国朝廷对这场民间造神运动颇为热心,从11世纪初起,宋廷便挑选一些信众认可度较高的地方神祗予以官方承认,编入祀典,许多还授予官爵名号,拨给公款用于立碑修庙;一旦某神获得这样的官方地位,地方官便有责任定期组织祭祀敬拜活动,甚至提供财政和劳役支持。 韩森注意到,从1075年起,为地方神仙封授官爵的做法大面积铺开,并在此后成为政府的一项常规职能,其规模甚大,每年封授数十位神仙,每次封授都要经历一个繁杂的流程,涉及尚书省、礼部和太常寺的众多衙门,还有地方政府的两轮灵验性查证,那么,朝廷为何要花费大量行政与财政资源来做这样一件看起来没有实际功效的事情呢? 要理解这一点,我们最好将它和帝国的另一项重要制度——科举——对照着看;表面上,科举只是为帝国选拔官员的(它也确实有这功能),但实际上,它最重要的功能是为全民提供一部开放、全面覆盖且贯通到底的社会上升阶梯,而在此之前,上升通道往往为数十个门阀豪族所垄断,其他人只能凭借战功、偶然的恩宠、内乱造成的重新洗牌等非经常性机会来谋求晋身。 科举的这一功能对赢取精英阶层的广泛效忠从而强化帝国权力起着极为根本的作用,它让人口中最富有、最有才智、最有野心的那些人将其视为实现抱负的好机会,而假如没有这样的机会,他们很可能去支持其他潜在的权力中心,或者以官方所不愿看到的方式施展抱负,因而对帝国权力构成威胁。 科举也是推行官方价值体系和历史叙事的工具,求取功名者心甘情愿接受和传播官方说辞,而一旦取得功名便成为这一体系的既得利益者因而有足够动机去维护它,并将其渗透植入到他们拥有巨大影响力的家族传统和地方文化中。 虽然只有百分之几的成年男性参与科举,取得功名者更少,但无论是巩固还是颠覆帝国权力基础,这都是最有能量的一群人,而且,科举功名带来的权力、财富、士绅特权,甚至仅仅是读写能力,都会将他们置于家族和地方社区的领袖地位,因而笼络他们就笼络了他们所在的家族和地方。 从唐代起,帝国通过封授土司对未归化地区实施羁縻政策,科举与士绅特权的结合,其实就是对政治结构中帝权难以直接通达的部分实施羁縻,通过士绅羁縻家族与地方,类似的,为地方神仙封授官爵,则是对民间信仰与崇拜活动的羁縻。 之所以神仙也需要羁縻,是因为,对于世俗权力,神是个危险的存在,每个神灵名下都可能凝聚起一套价值观,道德规范,行为准则,乃至行动纲领,其中每一样都可能与官方版本相冲突,都有潜力在权力竞争中成为敌方的动员与组织基础,特别是当它们被一个独立的僧侣团体所控制时,就更危险了。 凭借封授制度,朝廷有机会对神祗进行筛选、约束、引导、改造和控制,很明显,他们会竭力排除最危险的那些神,比如有着另一套行为准则的道德神,或一神教中极具动员力的排他性神,或有着现成经典因而其合法性可能被僧侣组织掌握的神,还有附带着行动纲领的弥赛亚,而最合他们胃口的,将是那些不具有全国性动员能力的地方神,以及能够提供现世佑助却又毫无道德要求的功利神,或许并非巧合的是,后两种恰是此后中国最流行的神灵。  
[译文]丹麦童话 vs 美国梦

The Atlantic: Denmark Isn’t Magic
《大西洋月刊》:丹麦并不神奇

作者:DEREK THOMPSON @ 2016-08-02
译者:明珠(@老茄爱天一爱亨亨更爱楚楚)
校对:Drunkplane(@Drunkplane-zny)
来源:The Atlantic, http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2016/08/the-american-dream-isnt-alive-in-denmark/494141/

New research suggests that the American dream isn’t alive in Scandinavia—but generous redistribution of wealth isn’t a terrible consolation prize.

新的研究表明,美国梦在斯堪的纳维亚没市场,但慷慨大方的财富再分配并非糟糕的安慰奖。

Danophilia is alive and well in America. Bernie Sanders and other liberals have lauded Denmark’s social democratic dream state, with its free college tuition, nearly universal pre-K, and plentiful child care.

倒是丹麦迷在美国大受欢迎且很滋(more...)

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The Atlantic: Denmark Isn't Magic 《大西洋月刊》:丹麦并不神奇 作者:DEREK THOMPSON @ 2016-08-02 译者:明珠(@老茄爱天一爱亨亨更爱楚楚) 校对:Drunkplane(@Drunkplane-zny) 来源:The Atlantic, http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2016/08/the-american-dream-isnt-alive-in-denmark/494141/ New research suggests that the American dream isn’t alive in Scandinavia—but generous redistribution of wealth isn’t a terrible consolation prize. 新的研究表明,美国梦在斯堪的纳维亚没市场,但慷慨大方的财富再分配并非糟糕的安慰奖。 Danophilia is alive and well in America. Bernie Sanders and other liberals have lauded Denmark’s social democratic dream state, with its free college tuition, nearly universal pre-K, and plentiful child care. 倒是丹麦迷在美国大受欢迎且很滋润。伯尼·桑德斯和其他自由派盛赞丹麦是社会民主主义的梦想国度,因其免费的大学教育,几乎无所不包的学前教育和对孩童的充分关照。 While Republicans and Democrats both praise the virtues of what economists call “intergenerational mobility”—the chance for a poor young child to become at least a middle-class adult—America doesn’t lead the world in the pursuit of the American Dream. 共和党和民主党都赞美经济学家所谓的“代际流动性”——一个贫穷孩子长大至少成为中产阶级的机会——的优点,而在这一点上,美国并未在对美国梦的追求中身先士卒。 The standard social mobility statistic measures how much each generation's income is determined by its parents' income. By that measure, northern Europe and Scandinavia have the highest social mobility in the advanced world, and Denmark tops the list. 标准的社会流动性统计衡量一代人的收入多大程度上由其父母收入所决定。按照这种衡量方式,欧洲北部和斯堪的纳维亚的社会流动性在发达世界排名最高,其中丹麦名列第一。 But this Danish Dream is a “Scandinavian Fantasy,” according to a new paper by Rasmus Landersø at the Rockwool Foundation Research Unit in Copenhagen and James J. Heckman at the University of Chicago. Low-income Danish kids are not much more likely to earn a middle-class wage than their American counterparts. What’s more, the children of non-college graduates in Denmark are about as unlikely to attend college as their American counterparts. 但是,哥本哈根的Rockwool基金会研究部Rasmus Landersø和芝加哥大学James J. Heckman的一项新研究指出,丹麦梦是一个“斯堪的纳维亚空想”。相较于美国的低收入家庭的孩子,丹麦低收入家庭的孩子不会更有可能挣到中产阶级的工资。甚至相较于美国的情况,丹麦无大学文凭者的孩子上大学的希望同样渺茫。 If that’s true, how does Denmark rank number-one among all rich countries in social mobility? It’s all about what happens after wages: The country’s high taxes on the rich and income transfers to the poor “compress” economic inequality within each generation: When the rungs on the economic ladder are closer together, it’s easier to move a little bit up (or down) over the course of a generation. 如果真是这样,为何丹麦的社会流动性在所有富裕国家排名第一?这都源于工资背后的事:国家把从富人和收入里征收的高额税款转移给穷人的做法,“压缩”了代际之间的经济不平等:当社会上升阶梯的横档靠得更近时,代际之间向上(或下)移动就更容易一点。 “The Scandinavian Fantasy” is a rich, complex paper that is already making waves in the newly popular subject of intergenerational mobility. It makes three major points. “斯堪的纳维亚空想”是一篇丰富而复杂的论文,它推波助澜了代际流动性这一新近的流行主题。论文提出三个主要观点。 The first big idea is that Denmark is not a nation of Horatio Algersens. Its high social mobility is not the result of an economy that is uniquely good at helping poor children earn middle-class salaries. Instead, it is a country much like the U.S., where the children of poor parents who don’t go to college are also unlikely to attend college or earn a high wage. Social mobility in Denmark and the U.S. seem to be remarkably similar when looking exclusively at wages—that is, before including taxes and transfers. 第一个是,丹麦不是Horatio Algersens的国家。其高社会流动性并非来自利于贫穷孩子挣到中产薪水的经济。相反它很像美国,在那里没上大学的穷父母的孩子也不大可能上大学或赚取高薪。只看工资——在不考虑税收和财富转移时——丹麦和美国的社会流动性非常相似。【译注:Horatio Alger,1832年1月13日出生,是19世纪一位多产的美国作家,以少年小说而闻名。阿尔杰小说的风格大多一致,均描述一个贫穷少年如何通过其正直、努力、少许运气以及坚持不懈最终取得成功。历史学家认为,阿尔杰的作品绝不仅局限于其有趣的故事本身,小说中描述的通过自身努力获得成功的主人公,给予了大量当时美国穷人力量、信心及动力,更加刻苦工作换取成功。】 It is only after accounting for Denmark’s high taxes on the rich and large transfers to the poor that its social mobility looks so much better than the U.S.’s. America’s (relatively conservative) economic philosophy is that, with low taxes and little regulation, the market is an open savannah where the most talent will win out. But Denmark’s economic philosophy seems to be that the market is an unfortunate socioeconomic lottery system, and so the country compensates the poor with generous transfers paid by high taxes on the rich. 只有平衡了丹麦对富人征高税收和向穷人大量转移财富的因素以后,其社会流动性看上去比美国好很多。美国(相对保守的)的经济哲学是低税收和少管制,市场如同一片开放的大草原,大多数天才自然脱颖而出。而丹麦的经济理念则是,市场是一个不怎么靠谱的社会经济彩票投注系统,所以需要政府通过多征富人税并以慷慨的转移支付补偿穷人。 The second big idea in the paper is that Denmark’s large investment in public education pays off in higher cognitive skills among low-income children, but not in higher-education mobility—i.e., the odds that a child of a non-college grad will go on to finish college. 论文第二个重要观点是,丹麦公共教育的大量投资,在提高低收入家庭孩子的认知技能方面有所斩获,但未增加高等教育的流动性,比如,非大学毕业生子女完成大学学业的几率并未提高。 Overall, Denmark spends much more than the U.S. on all levels of education. In particular, a much higher share of its poor young children is enrolled in daycare and preschool than the United States. This large public investment in kids seems to increase cognitive skills among poor Danish children compared to their American peers. In international math and reading scores, for example, the poorest quartile in Denmark far outperforms their counterparts in the U.S. 总体而言,丹麦在各级教育上的花费比美国多得多。特别是贫困孩子上幼儿园和学前班的比例远高于美国。比起美国的同龄孩子,丹麦对孩子的大量公共投资提高了贫困儿童的认知能力。以国际数学和阅读考试为例,丹麦的最低四分位数的成绩值远优于美国。 But despite this far greater investment in young children and public colleges, Danish children of high-school graduates are still extremely unlikely to go onto college. Put slightly differently, a tiny share of Denmark’s college graduate population comes from homes where neither parent finished high school. The children of college-grads almost always go to college; the children of non-grads often don’t—even in Denmark. 但是,尽管在儿童和公立大学的投资大了很多,丹麦高中毕业生进入大学的可能性仍然非常低。稍有一点不同,极小一部分丹麦大学毕业生来自父母都没读完高中的家庭。大学生的孩子上大学;没上大学的父母,孩子往往也不上大学——即使在丹麦也是这样。 The third big idea is that Denmark’s welfare policies might reduce its citizens’ incentives to go to college. In the early 1990s, when Denmark raised the minimum age of eligibility for social assistance, college enrollment among Danish twenty somethings fell below its trajectory. Based on this finding, the researchers conclude that welfare policies may reduce college enrollment. Denmark makes it more comfortable to be poor and less lucrative to be rich, so many young people decide to end their education after high school. 第三个重要观点是,丹麦的福利政策可能降低了公民上大学的激励。1990年代初,丹麦提高了获得社会援助资格的最低年龄,大学在二十多岁青年人中的招生数随即跌入下行轨迹。基于这项发现,研究人员得出结论,福利政策会减少高校招生。丹麦让穷人更舒适,富人更无利可图,故而很多年轻人决定高中毕业后不再接受教育。 This final idea may be the most controversial. After all, it’s not clear how to frame this finding. Democrats can say: Despite conservative arguments that a welfare state could destroy poor young people’s ambition, Denmark’s educational mobility is no worse than the U.S. But Republicans can say: Despite liberal arguments that Denmark is so much better than the U.S. at social mobility, its poor kids are no more likely to go to college. “There is something here for the Republicans and for the Democrats,” Heckman told me. 最后这个观点可能最具争议。毕竟,目前还不清楚如何解释这个发现。民主党人可以说:尽管保守派观点认为福利国家可能毁掉贫穷年轻人的雄心壮志,可是丹麦的教育流动性并不比美国差。而共和党人可以说:尽管自由派认为丹麦的社会流动性比美国更好,可是其贫穷孩子们同样不太可能进入大学。“这些就是共和党和民主党的说辞”,Heckman告诉我。 The most significant implication of this paper is not a happy one: Equality of opportunity is a fantasy. It does not exist in the U.S., it does not exist in Denmark, and it probably doesn’t exist anywhere. The children of rich college graduates are far more likely to grow up to become rich college graduates, even in the world's social-democratic fantasyland. That is because, everywhere, parents matter. 本文最有意义的推论并不让人开心:机会平等是一种幻想。它在美国不存在,在丹麦不存在,可能在任何地方都不存在。富有的大学毕业生的孩子更有可能成长为富有的大学毕业生,即使在这世界的社会民主乐园——丹麦也是这样。这是因为,任何地方,父母都很重要。 And it’s probably a good thing that parents matter. For the government to make equality of opportunity its singular and absolute policy goal would probably mean breaking up neighborhoods, forcing arranged marriages, enrolling all children in a unified curriculum, and having them all taught by a mass-produced robot; that would eliminate neighborhood effects, assortative mating, peer effects, curricular differences, and the problem of unequal teaching quality. It is unclear that there is a constituency for this policy, even among the most radical of Bernie bros. 当然,父母很重要可能是件好事。对想要实现机会平等的政府来说,其单一而绝对的政策目标,将可能意味着打破邻里关系,强行安排婚姻,统一所有孩子的学习课程,让大批量生产的机器人教授所有孩子;那样将消除邻里影响、选择性的婚配关系【编注:即人们从与自己地位、收入、教育等方面背景相似的人群中选择配偶的倾向】、同侪效应、课程差异和不同教学质量的问题。不知道是否有选区支持这种政策,即使是最激进的桑德斯支持者。 But just as Denmark’s policy may have its own unintended consequences, the American philosophy of opportunity has its own dark side. For example, high income inequality in the U.S. makes a college degree more valuable in America than in similar countries. This may encourage more poor Americans to enroll in college. 但是,正如丹麦政策有自己意想不到的后果,美国式的自我奋斗争取机会的哲学也有自己的暗面。例如,美国显著的收入不平等使美国大学学位比在同类国家更值钱。这会鼓励更多美国穷人上大学。 For many, college pays off. But the recent rise in college attainment in the U.S. has come at a terrible cost for some. Student debt has exploded, particularly at for-profit colleges serving older, poorer students, the majority of whom drop out with student loans that aren’t dischargeable in bankruptcy. 对于很多人来说,上大学是值得的。但是对于一些人,近期大学费用已经上涨到了糟糕的程度。学生债务激增,特别是上营利性院校的年纪较大的穷学生,他们中的大多数辍学时仍带着就算破产也必须偿还的学生贷款。 So the social siren of American inequality—join the rich! go to college!—lures many first-generation students to put tens of thousands of dollars toward a degree that they never get. If they default on their student loans, they won’t be able to get a loan to buy a house. Which means the housing market is constrained by student debt defaults. Which means other industries that rely on a healthy housing market—furniture, cars, plants, kitchen appliances, apparel—are also affected. 因此,美国社会不公平的刺耳警报——成为富人!考上大学!——诱使许多第一代学生花费上万美元以期获得一张他们得不到的文凭。如果他们拖欠学生贷款,将无法获得贷款买房子。这意味着学生债务违约限制了房地产市场发展。也意味着依赖良好运行的房地产市场的其他工业,如家具、汽车、种植、厨房电器和服装都会受到影响。 Denmark doesn’t have all the answers, and apparently its leaders know it—that’s why they have such a strong public assistance system in the first place. But the U.S. mythology of social mobility is also self-defeating, in ways that are exceptionally American. 丹麦没有给出所有的答案,显然其领导人知道这一点,这就是为什么他们首先建立了一套强有力的公共援助制度。但是,美国社会流动性的神话,以非常美国的方式,也打了自己的脸。 (编辑:辉格@whigzhou) *注:本译文未经原作者授权,本站对原文不持有也不主张任何权利,如果你恰好对原文拥有权益并希望我们移除相关内容,请私信联系,我们会立即作出响应。

——海德沙龙·翻译组,致力于将英文世界的好文章搬进中文世界——

[译文]聪明人不需要那么多朋友?

Why smart people are better off with fewer friends
为什么聪明人最好少交朋友

作者:Christopher Ingraham @ 2016-03-18
翻译:小聂(@PuppetMaster)
校对:小册子(@昵称被抢的小册子)
来源:The Washington Post,https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2016/03/18/why-smart-people-are-better-off-with-fewer-friends/

Hell might actually be other people — at least if you’re really smart.

他人没准还真是地狱——至少对一个真正聪明的人来说是这样的。

That’s the implication of fascinating new research published last month in the British Journal of Psychology. Evolutionary psychologists Satoshi Kanazawa of the London School of Economics and Norman Li of Singapore Management University dig in to the question of what makes a life well-lived. While traditionally the domain of priests, philosophers and novelists, in recent years survey researchers, economists, biologists and scientists have been tackling that question.

这是上个月在《英国心理学杂志》发表的一篇有趣的新研究中说的。两位进化心理学家,伦敦政治经济学院的Satoshi Kanazawa和新加坡管理大学的Norman Li,对于如何活出幸福人生进行了深入的研究。这个传统上被神父、哲学家和小说家把控的议题,近年来却被问卷调查者、经济学家、生物学家和科学家所关注。

Kanazawa and Li theorize that the hunter-gatherer lifestyles of our ancient ancestors form the foundation for what make us happy now. “Situations and circumstances that would have increased our ancestors’ life satisfaction in the ancestral environment may still increase our life satisfaction today,” they write.

Kanazawa和Li提出的理论是,我们祖先的狩猎采集生活方式决定了我们感受幸福的底层机制。他们认为,“在原始环境中能够使我们祖先得到满足的情境,或许在今天仍然可以提升我们的满足感。”

They use what they call “the savanna theory of happiness” to explain two main findings from an analysis of a large national survey (15,000 respondents) of adults aged 18 to 28.

他们使用了这个所谓的“关于幸福的热带草原理论”来解释两个主要的研究发现,被研究对象是一项涵盖了15,000个18到28岁成年人的大型全国调查。

First, they find that people who live in more densely populated areas tend to report less satisfaction with their life overall. “The higher the population density of the immediate environment, the less happy” the survey respondents said they were. Second, they find that the more social in(more...)

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Why smart people are better off with fewer friends 为什么聪明人最好少交朋友 作者:Christopher Ingraham @ 2016-03-18 翻译:小聂(@PuppetMaster) 校对:小册子(@昵称被抢的小册子) 来源:The Washington Post,https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2016/03/18/why-smart-people-are-better-off-with-fewer-friends/ Hell might actually be other people — at least if you're really smart. 他人没准还真是地狱——至少对一个真正聪明的人来说是这样的。 That's the implication of fascinating new research published last month in the British Journal of Psychology. Evolutionary psychologists Satoshi Kanazawa of the London School of Economics and Norman Li of Singapore Management University dig in to the question of what makes a life well-lived. While traditionally the domain of priests, philosophers and novelists, in recent years survey researchers, economists, biologists and scientists have been tackling that question. 这是上个月在《英国心理学杂志》发表的一篇有趣的新研究中说的。两位进化心理学家,伦敦政治经济学院的Satoshi Kanazawa和新加坡管理大学的Norman Li,对于如何活出幸福人生进行了深入的研究。这个传统上被神父、哲学家和小说家把控的议题,近年来却被问卷调查者、经济学家、生物学家和科学家所关注。 Kanazawa and Li theorize that the hunter-gatherer lifestyles of our ancient ancestors form the foundation for what make us happy now. "Situations and circumstances that would have increased our ancestors’ life satisfaction in the ancestral environment may still increase our life satisfaction today," they write. Kanazawa和Li提出的理论是,我们祖先的狩猎采集生活方式决定了我们感受幸福的底层机制。他们认为,“在原始环境中能够使我们祖先得到满足的情境,或许在今天仍然可以提升我们的满足感。” They use what they call "the savanna theory of happiness" to explain two main findings from an analysis of a large national survey (15,000 respondents) of adults aged 18 to 28. 他们使用了这个所谓的“关于幸福的热带草原理论”来解释两个主要的研究发现,被研究对象是一项涵盖了15,000个18到28岁成年人的大型全国调查。 First, they find that people who live in more densely populated areas tend to report less satisfaction with their life overall. "The higher the population density of the immediate environment, the less happy" the survey respondents said they were. Second, they find that the more social interactions with close friends a person has, the greater their self-reported happiness. 第一个发现是,在高人口密度地区生活的人们对他们的生活总体上更缺乏满足感。被调查者回应说“周围人口密度越大,就越感觉不幸福”。第二个发现是,和亲密朋友的更多交往伴随着更多的幸福感。 But there was one big exception. For more intelligent people, these correlations were diminished or even reversed. 但是有一个明显的例外,对于高智商人群,上述相关性会变弱,甚至反转。 "The effect of population density on life satisfaction was therefore more than twice as large for low-IQ individuals than for high-IQ individuals," they found. And "more intelligent individuals were actually less satisfied with life if they socialized with their friends more frequently." “所以,对于低智商人群来说,人口密度对于生活满足度的影响会比对于高智商人群大一倍以上”他们还发现,“高智商人群的生活满意度甚至会因为和朋友交往过多而下降。” Let me repeat that last one: When smart people spend more time with their friends, it makes them less happy. 容我重复一下后一个发现:如果聪明人在与朋友交往上花更多的时间,他们反倒会感觉不开心。 Now, the broad contours of both findings are largely uncontroversial. A large body of previous research, for instance, has outlined what some have called an "urban-rural happiness gradient." Kanazawa and Li explain: "Residents of rural areas and small towns are happier than those in suburbs, who in turn are happier than those in small central cities, who in turn are happier than those in large central cities." 现在,两个研究发现的粗线条概要大体是无争议的。例如,曾有一大批研究项目概括出被有些人称为“市区-郊区幸福梯度”的东西。Kanazawa和Li解释说:“乡村和小镇的居民比近郊居民更幸福,后者又比生活在小型中心城市的居民幸福,而小型中心城市的居民又比生活在大城市的人幸福。” imrs Why would high population density cause a person to be less happy? There's a whole body of sociological research addressing this question. But for the most visceral demonstration of the effect, simply take a 45-minute ride on a crowded rush-hour Red Line train and tell me how you feel afterward. 为什么高人口密度会使一个人不开心呢?现在已有大量的社会学研究瞄准了这个问题。但是如果要最感同身受地体现这种影响,莫过于在高峰期搭乘45分钟的拥挤地铁,然后告诉我你的心情如何。 Kanazawa and Li's second finding is a little more interesting. It's no surprise that friend and family connections are generally seen as a foundational component of happiness and well-being. But why would this relationship get turned on its head for really smart people? Kanazawa和Li的第二个发现则更有意思一些。毫无疑问,亲情和友情往往是构成个人生活幸福快乐的基础之一。但是为什么对于聪明人来说,这种关系会被反过来呢? I posed this question to Carol Graham, a Brookings Institution researcher who studies the economics of happiness. "The findings in here suggest (and it is no surprise) that those with more intelligence and the capacity to use it ... are less likely to spend so much time socializing because they are focused on some other longer term objective," she said. 我就此问题请教了在布鲁金斯学会研究幸福经济学的Carol Graham。“这个发现(毫不奇怪地)表明具有高智商并且能将其驾驭自如的人……较不愿意将大量时间花费在与人交往上面,因为他们专注于其他更长期的目标,”她解释道。 Think of the really smart people you know. They may include a doctor trying to cure cancer or a writer working on the great American novel or a human rights lawyer working to protect the most vulnerable people in society. To the extent that frequent social interaction detracts from the pursuit of these goals, it may negatively affect their overall satisfaction with life. 想想你认识的真正聪明人。他们也许是一个试图治愈癌症的医生,一个想要写出一部杰出的美国小说的作者,或是一个关注保护社会弱势群体的人权律师。如果社交活动过于频繁,以至妨碍他们追求这些远大目标,就会降低他们整体的生活满意度。 But Kanazawa and Li's savanna theory of happiness offers a different explanation. The idea starts with the premise that the human brain evolved to meet the demands of our ancestral environment on the African savanna, where the population density was akin to what you'd find today in, say, rural Alaska (less than one person per square kilometer). Take a brain evolved for that environment, plop it into today's Manhattan (population density: 27,685 people per square kilometer), and you can see how you'd get some evolutionary friction. 但是Kanazawa和Li的热带草原幸福理论提供了一个不一样的解释。该理论始于一个前提,即人类大脑进化是为了适应我们祖先在非洲大草原上的生存环境。在这种环境下的人口密度近似于如今的阿拉斯加荒野(每平方公里不到一人)。从这种环境下进化出的大脑,被丢进当今的曼哈顿(人口密度每平方公里27,685人),这种进化上的摩擦可想而知。 Similarly with friendship: "Our ancestors lived as hunter–gatherers in small bands of about 150 individuals," Kanazawa and Li explain. "In such settings, having frequent contact with lifelong friends and allies was likely necessary for survival and reproduction for both sexes." We remain social creatures today, a reflection of that early reliance on tight-knit social groups. 对友情来说也近似:“我们祖先作为狩猎采集者,生活在一个个约为150人的小集体里,”Kanazawa和Li解释说。“在这样的环境中,和终生朋友以及盟友的频繁接触对于生存和繁衍 很可能是必要的,无论是男性还是女性。”我们至今仍是社会性的物种,这反映了我们早期对于被社会关系纽带紧密编织起来的小集体的依赖。 The typical human life has changed rapidly since then — back on the savanna we didn't have cars or iPhones or processed food or "Celebrity Apprentice" — and it's quite possible that our biology hasn't been able to evolve fast enough to keep up. As such, there may be a "mismatch" between what our brains and bodies are designed for, and the world most of us live in now. 从那时起,人类生活有了极大改变——在热带草原时期我们可没有汽车、iPhone、加工食品或是“明星学徒”【译注:电视真人秀节目】——而我们生理特性的进化极可能赶不上这些改变。因此,在我们的身心设定与我们生存的世界之间,可能会存在着“错配”。 To sum it all up: You've heard of the paleo-diet. But are you ready for paleo-happiness? 简而言之,你知道有旧石器食谱,但是你想不想试试旧石器幸福感? There's a twist, though, at least as Kanazawa and Li see it. Smarter people may be better equipped to deal with the new (at least from an evolutionary perspective) challenges present-day life throws at us. "More intelligent individuals, who possess higher levels of general intelligence and thus greater ability to solve evolutionarily novel problems, may face less difficulty in comprehending and dealing with evolutionarily novel entities and situations," they write. 但是剧情到这里有个反转,至少Kanazawa和Li这么觉得。聪明人可能更擅长处理现代生活中的新(至少从进化的观点看)挑战。“那些更有智慧,更具有高等的通用智能从而可以更好的解决新进化问题的个体,可能会较易于理解和应对进化上的新实体或是新问题,”他们写道。 If you're smarter and more able to adapt to things, you may have an easier time reconciling your evolutionary predispositions with the modern world. So living in a high-population area may have a smaller effect on your overall well-being — that's what Kanazawa and Li found in their survey analysis. Similarly, smarter people may be better-equipped to jettison that whole hunter-gatherer social network — especially if they're pursuing some loftier ambition. 如果你更聪明,并且更有能力适应环境,你应能更容易处理好先天进化不足和现代社会生活的错配。所以住在高人口密度地区可能对你的总体生活舒适程度影响很小——这就是Kanazawa和Li的调查研究发现。同样的,聪明人更有能力能力人更有可能完全放应对进化上的新实体或是情景说有些人称为“市中舍弃那套狩猎采集式的社交网络——特别是当他们有远大目标的时候。 It's important to remember that this is an argument Kanazawa and Li are proposing and that it's not settled science. "Paleo-" theories — the idea that our bodies are best adapted to the environment of our earliest ancestors — have come under fire in recent years, especially as food companies and some researchers over-hyped the alleged benefits of the paleo-diet fad. 值得注意的是,这只是Kanazawa和Li提出的论点,绝非科学定论。以“旧石器”开头的理论——基于我们的身体仍与我们最早期的祖先所处环境相适应之假设——在近年来饱受争议,特别是由于食品公司和某些学者过于推崇当下流行的旧石器食谱所带来的可能好处。 Kanazawa and Li's main findings about population density, social interaction and happiness are relatively uncontroversial. But Brookings's Carol Graham says one potential flaw in their research is that it defines happiness in terms of self-reported life satisfaction ("How satisfied are you with your life as a whole?"), and doesn't consider experienced well-being ("How many times did you laugh yesterday? How many times were you angry?" etc.). Survey researchers know that these two types of questions can lead to very different assessments of well-being. Kanazawa和Li对于人口密度,社会交往以及幸福感的主要观点相对来说并没有太大的争议。但是布鲁金斯学会的Carol Graham认为他们的研究有个潜在的缺陷,即用受访者自我报告的生活满意程度来定义幸福(“整体上来说,你对自己的生活满意么?”),而不考虑受访者关于舒适生活的实际体验(“你昨天笑了几次?生气了几次?”等等)。问卷调查者都知道这两类问题对于幸福生活的衡量可以得出完全不同的结果。 For their part, Kanazawa and Li maintain that that distinction doesn't matter too much for their savanna theory. "Even though our empirical analyses ... used a measure of global life satisfaction, the savanna theory of happiness is not committed to any particular definition and is compatible with any reasonable conception of happiness, subjective well-being, and life satisfaction," they write. Kanazawa和Li则认为这一区别对他们的热带草原理论影响不大。“虽然我们的实证研究……使用了总体的生活满意度,关于幸福的热带草原理论并不局限于任何一种定义,并且适用于任何对于幸福、主观幸福感和生活满意度的合理的概念化处理,”他们写道。 Kanazawa himself is no stranger to controversy. In 2011 he wrote a blog post for Psychology Today entitled "Why Are Black Women Less Physically Attractive Than Other Women?" The post ignited a firestorm of criticism and was swiftly taken down. Kanazawa本人也经常处于争议之中。2011年他给《今日心理学》写了一篇名为“为什么黑人女性在生理上不如其他女性具有吸引力?”的博客文章。该文引发了猛烈的批评,并且被迅速撤下了。 His current research on well-being is not likely to generate as much criticism as that blog post. But the evolutionary perspective on happiness and intelligence is likely to prompt some heated discussion in the field. 他现在关于幸福的研究不大可能引发类似的抨击。但从进化角度解读幸福和智力很可能会在该领域引发一些热烈的讨论。 In an email, Kanazawa said that his approach to understanding happiness is fundamentally different than the arguments about, say, the benefits of a paleo-diet. "Blindly introducing our ancestors’ diet when we do not have other aspects of the ancestral life seems like a dangerous and nonsensical prescription to me," he said. 在一封电子邮件里, Kanazawa认为他理解幸福的方式和关于比如说旧石器食谱的好处的论证有着本质的区别。“盲目的引入我们祖先的食谱,而不考虑到我们生活的其他方面与祖先有异,在我看来是危险且毫无道理的,”他说。 "I only explain nature; I do not tell people what to do or not to do," he added. “我只是解释自然现象;我并不是告诉人们去做什么或是不做什么,”他补充道。 (编辑:辉格@whigzhou) *注:本译文未经原作者授权,本站对原文不持有也不主张任何权利,如果你恰好对原文拥有权益并希望我们移除相关内容,请私信联系,我们会立即作出响应。

——海德沙龙·翻译组,致力于将英文世界的好文章搬进中文世界——

往坏里带

【2016-08-20】

@whigzhou: 对比两组数据挺有意思,左图美国黑人比例最高的前10个城市(city),从84%到56%不等,右图黑人比例最高的前10个都市区(metropolis),从48%到31%,左图蓝色数字是对应都市区的黑人比例,很明显,在这些城市,白人中产者基本上放弃了内城,这个趋势估计还会延续下去,最终产生一批黑人城市。

@whigzhou: 这些城市的共同特点是犯罪率极高,1/3-1/2的成年黑人男性被关在牢里,民主党长期垄断权力,福利计划一个接一个,政府开支和税率不断上涨,公立学校一团糟,大片街区沦为废墟,官僚机构腐败透顶……

@whigzhou: 这是内城/郊区的分化,类似的分化也发生在城(more...)

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【2016-08-20】 @whigzhou: 对比两组数据挺有意思,左图美国黑人比例最高的前10个城市(city),从84%到56%不等,右图黑人比例最高的前10个都市区(metropolis),从48%到31%,左图蓝色数字是对应都市区的黑人比例,很明显,在这些城市,白人中产者基本上放弃了内城,这个趋势估计还会延续下去,最终产生一批黑人城市。 @whigzhou: 这些城市的共同特点是犯罪率极高,1/3-1/2的成年黑人男性被关在牢里,民主党长期垄断权力,福利计划一个接一个,政府开支和税率不断上涨,公立学校一团糟,大片街区沦为废墟,官僚机构腐败透顶…… @whigzhou: 这是内城/郊区的分化,类似的分化也发生在城市之间,未来也会发生在州与州之间。 @whigzhou: 有些城市通过土地管制、建筑管制和分区规划把房价抬的极高,也起到了挤出贫穷黑人的效果,过去二十年湾区的黑人比例就在下降 @whigzhou: 相对于现代文明生活,黑人确实有些弱点,但要是没有民主党过去半个世纪不遗余力地残害,也不至于落得这个地步 @whigzhou: 残害政策从两个方向同时下手:压制他们人性中所有积极向善的倾向,纵容娇惯他们所有坏的那些方面:用最低工资法剥夺工作机会,用福利救济削弱工作激励和家庭责任,用禁毒法施饵下套,用平权法强化种族身份,总统和司法部长赤膊上阵煽动种族对立……所有你能想到的把他们往坏里带的办法,全用上了 @路人萨维:辉总的意思是太傻了政策形同残害,还是故意的? @whigzhou: 一开始应该不是故意的,毕竟谁都没有这样的远见,只是民主党惯于玩族裔政治而已,但那么多年过去,效果这么明显,再变本加利的坚持玩,就有点故意了 @whigzhou: 动员少数群体,强化族裔身份,玩族裔政治和裙带政治,是民主党的看家本领,看看坦慕尼协会的历史就很清楚 @whigzhou: 有人可能对60年代民主党180度大转身感到困惑,其实一点不奇怪,他们的族裔/身份政治把戏是一贯的,改变的只是选择哪些族裔/身份群体建立票仓 @whigzhou: 所以无论站在哪一边,他们决不能让黑人这个身份标签消失 @whigzhou: 对黑人来说,不幸的是,他们被挑中时,正是福利主义大跃进之际,结果就被坑惨了 @whigzhou: 当然黑人自身的弱点也起了作用,自律性、延迟满足、责任心方面,比起有着数千年文明历史的民族都差一些,因而福利主义和娇惯政策负面激励效果也更显著 @沉思之后:黑人自身的问题才是主因吧。即便没有民主党的政策,全世界哪个黑人主导的国家或地区繁荣了呢?反之,北欧以及荷兰福利主义和娇惯政策也不少,但是黑人少,也还在持续繁荣中 @whigzhou: 可是平权运动之前美国黑人的状况要好很多啊,非洲人自己未能建立好国家,不等于他们不能作为少数群体在已经建立的好国家中获得良好发展 @SenatusPopulusqueRomanus: 日耳曼人没有数千年文明史,埃及、巴比伦文明史最长。 @whigzhou: 日耳曼人的文明化进程少说也有一千五百年了吧 @whigzhou: 文明化不是全部(在何种文明中被文明化也很重要),但很关键,所有中东来源的移民群体中,波斯裔表现最好,不是没缘由的  
[译文]彩票会改变中奖者命运吗?

The Lottery
彩票

作者:Gregory Cochran @ 2015-04-22
译者:babyface_claire(@许你疯不许你傻)
校对:沈沉(@沈沉-Henrysheen)
来源:West Hunter,https://westhunt.wordpress.com/2015/04/22/the-lottery/

Lotteries can be useful natural experiments; we can use them to test the accuracy of standard sociological theories, in which rich people buy their kids extra smarts, bigger brains, better health, etc.

彩票可以视为一种有用的自然实验。我们可以用它们来检测标准社会学理论的准确度。这些理论认为,富人能给他们的孩子买到额外的智慧、更大的大脑和更健康的身体,等等。

David Cesarini, who I met at that Ch(more...)

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The Lottery 彩票 作者:Gregory Cochran @ 2015-04-22 译者:babyface_claire(@许你疯不许你傻) 校对:沈沉(@沈沉-Henrysheen) 来源:West Hunter,https://westhunt.wordpress.com/2015/04/22/the-lottery/ Lotteries can be useful natural experiments; we can use them to test the accuracy of standard sociological theories, in which rich people buy their kids extra smarts, bigger brains, better health, etc. 彩票可以视为一种有用的自然实验。我们可以用它们来检测标准社会学理论的准确度。这些理论认为,富人能给他们的孩子买到额外的智慧、更大的大脑和更健康的身体,等等。 David Cesarini, who I met at that Chicago meeting, has looked at the effect of winning the lottery in Sweden. He found that the “effects of parental wealth on infant health, drug consumption, scholastic performance and cognitive and non-cognitive skills can be bounded to a tight interval around zero.” 在芝加哥那次会议上我遇到了David Cesarini。他研究了在瑞典中彩票的影响。他发现,“父母的财富对婴儿健康、药品消费、学业表现,以及认知和非认知技能的影响,仅在一个几乎为零的小区间内。” As I once mentioned, there was an important land lottery in Georgia in 1832. The winners received an 160-acre farm. But by 1880, their descendants were no more literate, their occupational status no higher. The families in the top 2/3rds of income managed to hang on to some of their windfall, but lower-income families did not. 我曾经提到过,1832年在佐治亚州有过一次重要的土地抽彩。中奖者们得到了160英亩的农场。但是到1880年,(和未中奖者相比),他们后代的教育水平并不更高,他们的职业地位也不更好。收入在前2/3的家庭设法保住了他们的一些意外之财,而低收入的家庭则没能如此。 This remind of a story by Gerald Kersh, “Whatever Happened to Corporal Cuckoo?” – About a medieval soldier who stumbled into immortality. Someone asks him (in 1945) – why hadn’t he saved his pay?  With compound interest, yaddaa yadda. 这让我想起Gerald Kersh写的一个故事,“Cuckoo下士怎么了?”——讲的是一个无意间获得了永生的中世纪士兵的故事。有人问他(在1945年),为什么不把工资存下来呢?有复利,等等等等。 “Why didn’t I save my pay? Because I’m what I am, you mug! Hell, once upon a time, if I’d stayed away from cards, I could’ve bought Manhattan Island for less than what I lost to a Dutchman called Bruncker drawing ace-high for English guineas!  Save my pay! If it wasn’t one thing it was another. I lay off liquor. Okay. So if it’s not liquor, it’s a woman. I lay off women. Okay. Then it’s cards or dice. I always meant to save my pay; but I never had it in me to save my pay!  Doctor Paré’s stuff fixed me–and when I say it fixed me, I mean, it fixed me, just like I was, and am, and always will be. ” “为什么我没有存下工资? 因为我就是我,你个傻瓜!见鬼,曾几何时,如果我离开了牌局,把和人玩‘A大’赌几尼时输给那个叫Bruncker的荷兰佬的钱省下来,那可是买下曼哈顿岛还有余。存钱!不是这事就是那事。我戒掉了酒。好吧,如果不是酒,那便是女人。我戒掉了女人。好吧,接着就是牌或者骰子。我总是想要存钱,但是我从来就不是存工资的人! Paré医生的药治好了我——当我说它治好了我,我的意思是,它装配好了我,就像我过去,现在,永远都是的那样。” Low leverage of wealth on your children’s traits is something that exists in a particular society, with a particular kind of technology. Back in medieval times, a windfall could have kept your kids alive in a famine, and that certainly had a long-term positive effect on their cognitive skills.  Dead men take no tests. The most effective medical interventions today are cheap – everyone in Sweden and the US already has them – but there are places where those interventions are not universally available. Some families in Mozambique can afford artemisin, some can’t – this must make a difference. 财富对儿童性格的低影响存在于拥有特定技术的特定社会。回到中世纪时代,一笔意外之财可以让你的小孩在饥荒中存活,这必然就会对他们的认知技能有长期的正面影响。死人不能参加测试。当今最有效的医疗干预措施是便宜的——在瑞典和美国人人都已经拥有了——然而还有些地方,这些干预并不是普遍可得的。莫桑比克的一些家庭可以负担得起青蒿素『译注:一种有效的抗疟疾药物』,另一些则负担不起——这肯定会有重大影响。 Suppose we had a method of dramatically improving a kid’s genetic potential for intelligence and success, one that cost five million dollars a pop: then wealth could influence the next generation in ways that it can’t today. In other words, Cesarani’s conclusions are correct for Sweden-now (but not for Sweden in 1700), probably correct for the US today, but maybe not true tomorrow. 假设我们有一种特效药可以显著提高孩子在智力和成就方面的遗传潜力,五百万美元一针;那么财富将可以以现在不能的方式影响下一代。换句话说,Cesarani的结论对今天的瑞典来说是正确的(但不是1700年的瑞典),可能对今天的美国也是对的,但未来却不一定正确。 It is not just wealth that has a small effect on your kid’s potential: playing Mozart doesn’t help either. Other than locking away the ball-peen hammers, it’s hard to think of any known approach that does have much effect – although we don’t know everything, and maybe there are undiscovered effective approaches (other than genetic engineering). For example, iodine supplements have a good effect in areas that are iodine-deficient. We now know (since 2014) that bromine is an essential trace element – maybe people in some parts of the world would benefit from bromine supplementation. 不仅仅是财富对小孩的潜能影响甚微:练习莫扎特也没有什么帮助。除了锁起圆头锤【编注:意思大概是可以防止孩子把自己的脑袋敲破】,很难想象任何已知的方法会有很大的影响——虽然我们不知道所有的事情,或许有未被发现的有效方法(除基因工程以外)。比如,碘补充剂对碘缺乏地区有很好的效果。现在(2014年之后)我们知道,溴也是一种必要的微量元素——或许在这个世界的一些地方人们会受益于溴补充。 What about the social interventions that people are advocating, like Pre-K?  Since shared family effects (family environment surely matters more than some external social program) are small by adulthood, I think they’re unlikely to have any lasting effect.  We might also note that the track record isn’t exactly encouraging. If there was a known and feasible way of boosting academic performance, you’d think that those teachers in Atlanta would have tried it. Sure beats prison. 人们提倡的社会干预怎么样呢,比如学前教育?由于共享家庭的影响(家庭环境肯定比一些外部社会项目更重要)到成年时已经很小,我认为他们不太可能会有持久的影响。我们可能也已注意到这方面的跟踪研究并不那么令人鼓舞。如果有一个已知且可行的方法来提高学习成绩,我想那些亚特兰大的教师们大概已经试过了。当然,肯定比监狱强多了。 Maybe there’s an effective approach using fmri and biofeedback – wouldn’t hurt to take a look.  But even if it did work, it might simply boost everyone equally, and obviously nobody gives a shit about that. 或许有一个有效的方法使用功能性磁共振成像(fmri)和生物反馈——看一看无妨。但是即便可以,它可能只是平等的提高每个人,但显然没有人在乎这一点。 (编辑:辉格@whigzhou) *注:本译文未经原作者授权,本站对原文不持有也不主张任何权利,如果你恰好对原文拥有权益并希望我们移除相关内容,请私信联系,我们会立即作出响应。

——海德沙龙·翻译组,致力于将英文世界的好文章搬进中文世界——

[译文]重新审视六度分隔理论

How small is the world, really?
世界何其小,真的吗?

作者:Duncan Watts @ 2016-02-10
译者:龟海海
校对:辉格(@whigzhou)
来源:七分钟阅读,https://medium.com/@duncanjwatts/how-small-is-the-world-really-736fa21808ba

Last week’s finding by a team of data scientists at Facebook that everyone in the social network is connected by an average of 3.5 “intermediaries” has renewed interest in the longstanding “Six Degrees of Separation” hypothesis: that everyone in the world is connected by some short chain of acquaintances.

上周,一个脸书数据分析专家小组发现,社交网络中的每个人都可经由平均3.5个“媒介好友”而联系起来,这一发现刷新了之前长期流行的“六度分隔”理论,即世上任何两人皆可通过某条较短的熟人链条连接起来。

Not surprisingly, the attention has focused on the plausible assertion that online social networks like Facebook have made the world smaller: that whatused to be six degrees is now almost half that. But really what it has revealed is how little we understand this intriguing phenomenon and what it might mean for our world.

无出意外,人们的注意力被吸引到了一个看似可能的判断上:像脸书这样的社交网络让世界变得更小:以前的六度现在一半就足够。但它真正揭示的是,对此令人神迷的现象和它对我们世界的意义何在,我们的理解何等浅薄。

This “small world” hypothesis, as it is known in sociology, has been percolating in popular culture for a long time. Almost a century ago the Hungarian poet Frigyes Karinthy wrote a short story called “Chain Links” in which he claimed he could reach anyone in the world, whether a Nobel Prize winner or a worker in a Ford auto factory, through a series of no more than five intermediaries.

在社会学领域内,大家都已了解,这个“小小世界”假说久已渗透进我们的文化之中。早在一个世纪前,匈牙利诗人Frigyes Karinthy就写了一则题为“链接”的小故事,文中他声称可以通过一系列不超过5个的“媒介”,联络到世界上任何人,无论是诺奖得主,或是一名福特工厂的工人。

Subsequently, writers like Jane Jacobs, John Guare, and Malcolm Gladwell have periodically reinvigorated the idea with their own colorful characters and fantastical speculations about who really runs the world.

此后,像Jane Jacobs, John Guare, and Malcolm Gladwell等等作家时不时的通过他们自己书中丰富的人物重塑了这一假说,并天马行空的猜测究竟是谁在真正掌控这个世界。

But arguably no one has had more impact on the question of how small the world is than Stanley Milgram, a Harvard psychologist who in the 1960s conducted an ingenious experiment to test it (Milgram is even more famous for another experiment of his, on obedience to authority, but that’s for another day).

但是,毋庸置疑,没有人对此“小小世界”问题的影(more...)

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How small is the world, really? 世界何其小,真的吗? 作者:Duncan Watts @ 2016-02-10 译者:龟海海 校对:辉格(@whigzhou) 来源:七分钟阅读,https://medium.com/@duncanjwatts/how-small-is-the-world-really-736fa21808ba Last week’s finding by a team of data scientists at Facebook that everyone in the social network is connected by an average of 3.5 “intermediaries” has renewed interest in the longstanding “Six Degrees of Separation” hypothesis: that everyone in the world is connected by some short chain of acquaintances. 上周,一个脸书数据分析专家小组发现,社交网络中的每个人都可经由平均3.5个“媒介好友”而联系起来,这一发现刷新了之前长期流行的“六度分隔”理论,即世上任何两人皆可通过某条较短的熟人链条连接起来。 Not surprisingly, the attention has focused on the plausible assertion that online social networks like Facebook have made the world smaller: that whatused to be six degrees is now almost half that. But really what it has revealed is how little we understand this intriguing phenomenon and what it might mean for our world. 无出意外,人们的注意力被吸引到了一个看似可能的判断上:像脸书这样的社交网络让世界变得更小:以前的六度现在一半就足够。但它真正揭示的是,对此令人神迷的现象和它对我们世界的意义何在,我们的理解何等浅薄。 This “small world” hypothesis, as it is known in sociology, has been percolating in popular culture for a long time. Almost a century ago the Hungarian poet Frigyes Karinthy wrote a short story called “Chain Links” in which he claimed he could reach anyone in the world, whether a Nobel Prize winner or a worker in a Ford auto factory, through a series of no more than five intermediaries. 在社会学领域内,大家都已了解,这个“小小世界”假说久已渗透进我们的文化之中。早在一个世纪前,匈牙利诗人Frigyes Karinthy就写了一则题为“链接”的小故事,文中他声称可以通过一系列不超过5个的“媒介”,联络到世界上任何人,无论是诺奖得主,或是一名福特工厂的工人。 Subsequently, writers like Jane Jacobs, John Guare, and Malcolm Gladwell have periodically reinvigorated the idea with their own colorful characters and fantastical speculations about who really runs the world. 此后,像Jane Jacobs, John Guare, and Malcolm Gladwell等等作家时不时的通过他们自己书中丰富的人物重塑了这一假说,并天马行空的猜测究竟是谁在真正掌控这个世界。 But arguably no one has had more impact on the question of how small the world is than Stanley Milgram, a Harvard psychologist who in the 1960s conducted an ingenious experiment to test it (Milgram is even more famous for another experiment of his, on obedience to authority, but that’s for another day). 但是,毋庸置疑,没有人对此“小小世界”问题的影响超过1960年代任教于哈佛大学的心理学家史丹利·米尔格拉姆,他进行了一个原创试验来测试此理论(米尔格拉姆其实有另一个更加有名的试验,“权力服从研究”,这个我们改天再谈)。 In brief, Milgram chose a single person, an acquaintance of his who was a stockbroker living in Sharon Mass, just outside of Boston, to be the “target” of the experiment. In addition he chose roughly 300 others — 100 from Boston itself and the other 200 from Omaha Nebraska, which Milgram figured was about as far away from Boston, socially and geographically, as one could get within the US. 简言之,米尔格拉姆选择他的一位朋友作为其实验的“靶标”,他是一位股票经纪人,住在波士顿城外的Sharon Mass。另外,他还另外选择了约300名实验对象——其中100名来自波士顿,其他200名来自内布拉斯加的奥马哈市,米尔格拉姆认为,就美国境内而言,奥马哈无论在社会关系上还是在地理上,都距离波士顿足够远。 Milgram then sent these 300 subjects special packets containing a good deal of information about the target — his name, address, occupation, etc. — and also instructions that they were to try to get the packet to him. But there was a catch: they could only send the packet to him if they knew him personally, meaning on a first-name basis. 随后,米尔格拉姆为这300名实验对象送出了特殊的包裹,其中包涵他这名股票经纪人(靶标)的许多信息——他的名字,地址,职业,等等——以及一些让他们试着将包裹寄给他的提示。但是,这儿有个坑:他们只能在个人直接认识他的情况下才能寄出包裹。 In the overwhelmingly likely event that that they did not, they were instead to send to someone they did know on a first name basis and who was closer to the target than they were themselves. These new participants would then get the same packet with the same instructions, and the process would repeat until — hopefully — some of the packets reached the target. 而实际上,在绝大部分情况下,他们不满足这一条件,所以只能将包裹寄给某位他们直接认识并且和靶标的关系距离更近一层的人。而这个收到包裹的新参与者,得到的是同样的包裹和提示,这一过程会一直持续循环下去,直到——幸运的话——有些包裹能顺利到达“靶标”。 Milgram’s question then was: for successfully delivered packets, how long would the chains be? Curiously, before he ran the experiment Milgram asked lots of people to guess the answer. Many assumed it wasn’t possible while others figured it would take hundreds of steps. So when Milgram found that not only did 64 packets, roughly one fifth of the initial sample, reached the target, but that the average length of the successful chains was just 6, he knew it would surprise many people. 米尔格拉姆接下来的问题是:如果包裹递送成功,那么这些链条有多长呢?有趣的是,在米尔格拉姆进行此实验之前就让很多人猜过答案。一些人表示根本不可能送达目标,另一些则认为至少得通过成百上千个步骤。所以,当米尔格拉姆得知不仅64个包裹(占初始样本的五分之一)到达了靶标,而且这些成功链条的平均长度仅仅为6。他知道这会让许多人咋舌。 In many ways, it still does. Although the phrase “Six Degrees of Separation” has become a cliché, when pressed many people still find it difficult to imagine how they could really reach anyone — not just someone like them or someone near to them, but anyone at all in the whole world — in something like six steps. 从许多方面看,这仍然令人惊奇。虽说“六度分隔”已经成了陈词滥调,但这一结果发布之后,许多人仍难以相信自己仅仅只需六步即可链接到世界上的任何人——不仅是自己一个圈子的人,或是周边的人,而是整个世界的任何人。 Understandably then, the Facebook result also attracted some resistance: “Facebook is an unrepresentative sample of the population;” “Facebook friends aren’t real friends” and so on. But although these critiques may have merit, they miss the point. In reality, the 3.5 number is simply incomparable to Milgram’s 6 for three reasons. 所以不难理解,脸书的研究结果发布后吸引了许多反对声音:“脸书是个不具代表性的人口样本;”“脸书的朋友并非真朋友”等等。虽说这些批评也许有可取之处,但是他们没抓住要点。实际上,这个3.5不能和米尔格拉姆的“六度”直接对比,理由有三: First, the number 3.5 counts intermediaries not degrees of separation. If I am “one degree” from someone I know them directly; there are zero intermediaries between me and them. Likewise, there is one intermediary between me and my “two degree” neighbors, and so on. 首先,3.5这个数字计算的是“媒介”的数量,而不是分隔度数。如果我是某人的“一度”友邻,我就直接认识此人;我和他们间没有“媒介”。类似的,我和我的“二度”友邻之间存在一个“媒介”,以此类推。 In general, therefore, an average of 3.5 intermediaries corresponds to 4.5 degrees of separation, which is almost exactly what Facebook itself found when it performed a similar exercise a few years ago. Conversely, Milgram’s six degrees result corresponds to five intermediaries, which is actually the number he reported in his original paper with Jeffery Travers. So already the difference is one less than it appears. 因此,平均3.5个“媒介”对应的是“4.5度分隔”,这和几年前脸书自己通过类似实验得出的发现几乎相同。反之,米尔格拉姆的“六度”所对应的是5个“媒介”——其实他和Jeffery Travers发表的文章中所用的正是这个数字。所以上述差异比表面看起来就已经少了1 。 Second, though, Milgram’s experiment was a subtly but importantly different test than the one run by Facebook. Whereas the latter measured the length of the shortest possible path between two people — by exhaustively searching every link in the underlying Facebook graph — the former is simply the shortest path that ordinary people could find given very limited information about the underlying social network. 第二,虽然米尔格拉姆的试验很巧妙,但是,和脸书做的这个测试有重要差异。后者度量的是两个人之间的最短可能路径的长度——通过穷举搜索脸书关系图上的每条链接,而前者则是普通人基于其所掌握的极为有限的社会关系信息而能够找到的路径长度。 There are, in other words, two versions of the small-world hypothesis — the “topological” version, which refers only to underlying network structure, and the “algorithmic” version, which refers to the ability of people to search this underlying structure. 换言之,其实“小世界假说”有两个版本:“拓扑版”,它度量的是社会关系网络结构,和“算法版”,它度量的则是人们在此网络中进行搜索的能力。 From these definitions, it follows that algorithmic (search) paths cannot be shorter than topological paths and are almost certainly longer. Saying that the world has gotten smaller because the shortest topological path length is 4.5 not 6 therefore makes no sense — because the equivalent number would have been smaller in Milgram’s day as well. 从这些定义得出,“算法版”(搜索)路径不可能短于“拓扑版”。仅仅因为最短拓扑路径的长度是4.5而非6就说世界变小了,这么说毫无意义——因为米尔格拉姆时代的相应数字同样小于6。 Finally, the number 6 is also in some respects too small. As has been pointed out many times since Milgram’s experiment, only about 20% of the letters made it to their target. More importantly, these letters were almost certainly on shorter paths than the ones that didn’t make it, meaning that estimates of path length that don’t take into account the missing data are almost certainly biased downwards. 最后,从某些角度看,数字6也太小了。因为自从米尔格拉姆试验后就被很多人指出,仅有20%的信封送到了靶标。更重要的是,这些信所通过的途径几乎肯定短于那些没有到达靶标的,这就意味着那些投递失败的长链条在估算链条长度时没有被计算在内,这肯定会造成向下偏差。 Fortunately it is possible to correct for this bias using standard statistical methods. In a 2009 paper my colleagues and I performed exactly this analysis both on Milgram’s original data and also on our data from a similar — but much larger — experiment that we had conducted ourselves in 2003. 有幸的是,我们可以通过标准的统计算法来更正这一偏差。在2009年的一篇论文中我和我的同事们对米尔格拉姆的原始数据和我们自己在2003年做的一个大得多的类似试验的数据进行了恰如上面所述的分析。 Remarkably we found that after the correction, both experiments yielded similar results: the median shortest path was 7, meaning that 50% of chains should complete in 7 or fewer steps while the other 50% would be longer. Many people find this result surprising because it seems so clear that the world has gotten smaller in the last 50 years. 我们惊喜的发现,在矫正了数据后,两个试验得出相似的结果:最短链条的中位值是7,即50%的链条会7步或少于7步时完成,而另外50%则会更长。许多人觉得这个结果不思议,因为过去50年世界变得更小了这个事实看起来如此明白无误。 Yet this apparent stability is exactly what one would predict from my early theoretical work with Steven Strogatz back in the late 1990’s. In a nutshell what we showed is that it is easy to turn a “large” world into a “small” one, just by adding a small fraction of random, long-range links, reminiscent of Mark Granovetter’s famous “weak ties.” 但这一明显的稳定性正是我和Steven Strogatz在1990年代后期的理论研究中预见到的。简言之,我们要证明的是,只需要在“大”世界中加入一小部分随机的“长范围”链接,就可以把世界变“小”,这让人联想起马克·格兰诺维特著名的“弱关系”理论。 The flip side of our result, however, is that once the world has already gotten small — as it was already by the 1960's — it is extremely hard to make it smaller. Obviously Facebook did not exist in 2003 so possibly since then something has indeed changed. But I suspect that the difference will be small. 实际上,这一结果反过来说就是,一旦世界变小之后——其实它在60年代已经变小了——想要把它变得更小就极为困难。很明显,脸书2003年并不存在,所以有可能某些东西真的已经改变了。但是我估计这个变化是微小的。 Why does any of this matter? There are three reasons. First, the two versions of the small-world hypothesis — topological and algorithmic — are relevant to different social processes. The spread of a sexually transmitted disease along networks of sexual relations, for example, does not require that participants have any awareness of the disease, or intention to spread it; thus for an individual to be at risk of acquiring an infection, he or she need only be connected in the topological sense to existing infectives. 何以见得这些差异是要紧的呢?理由有三:第一,两个版本的“小世界假说”——拓扑版和算法版——关乎不同的社会过程。例如,就像性病通过两性关系而传播,这并不需要参与者意识到疾病的存在或者拥有传播它的意图,而仅需要他或她在拓扑上链接到既有的感染者即可。 On the contrary, individuals attempting to “network” — in order to locate some resources like a new job or a service provider — must actively traverse chains of referrals, and thus must be connected in the algorithmic sense. Depending on the application of interest, therefore, either the topological or algorithmic distance between individuals may be more relevant — or possibly both together. 相反,若是个人想要“建立链接”寻找资源,比如找工作,寻找服务商,则必须积极的遍历中间人链条,因而必须在算法上建立链接。所以,根据实际应用中的关注重点,有些情况下个体之间的拓扑距离更切题,有时则算法距离更切题,或者两者同时切题。 Second, whereas the topological hypothesis has been shown to apply essentially universally, to networks of all kinds, the algorithmic hypothesis is largely (although not exclusively) concerned with social networks in which human agents make decisions about how to direct messages. 第二,拓扑版小世界假说已经表明普遍适用于所有类型的网络结构,而算法版假说则大致上量(虽然不完全)适用于社交网络,在这些网络中,人类主体就如何引导信息流向做出决定。 And third, whereas the topological version is supported by an overwhelming volume of empirical evidence — hundreds of studies, if not thousands — have found that nodes in even the very largest known networks are connected by short paths, the practical difficulty of running “small-world” experiments of the sort that Milgram conducted in the 1960s has meant that much less is known about the algorithmic version. 第三,鉴于“拓扑版”得到了压倒性数量的经验证据——来自数百甚至数千项研究——支持这些证据表明,即使在最大的关系网中,节点之间也可通过较短路径相连接,进行像米尔格拉姆在1960年代所做的那种“小世界效应”试验的实际困难意味着,我们对“算法版”的情况其实所知不多。 On this last point, for example, our 2009 analysis also found evidence that some of the longer paths could be much longer than the median, adding weight to the skeptics’ claims that in spite of the small-world phenomenon, some people remain socially isolated. 有关最后这一点,(例如)我们2009年的分析同样发现了证据表明,一些长路径可以远远长于中位值,这为那些怀疑者的主张提供了依据:即使存在小世界现象,总有些人在社会关系上是保持孤立的。 Given the importance of social networks in determining life outcomes, it would be extremely interesting and useful to understand better who these people are and why they are isolated. Is it something to do with their underlying networks or is it that their search strategies are somehow less effective? 考虑到社会关系网在决定生活质量上的重要性,研究并理解这些孤立者是谁,为何变得孤立,将是件极为有趣且有用的事情。这跟他们的下层关系网有关?【编注:此处underlying networks应是指亲戚、邻里等个人被预先给定的被动关系,相对于个人主动寻求建立的社会关系】还是他们的搜索策略不够有效? Could it be, as my coauthors and I speculated many years ago, some kind of self-fulfilling prophecy, in which the perception of social isolation discourages one from searching one’s network, and that the resulting lack of success reinforces the original perception of isolation? 有没有可能,正如多年前我和我的共同作者所推测的那样,是某种自我实现的预言?即,对社会孤立的感知,使得个人不愿意搜索自己的关系网,由此导致的关系建立失败进而强化了对孤立的最初感知? Answering these questions would require new experiments that are only now just becoming possible. But the answers would not only be of academic interest — they could also potentially help many people access currently inaccessible reserves of “social capital” thereby improving their lives. Far from being settled, the small-world problem still has much to teach us about the world, and ourselves. 要回答这些问题需要更新的试验,而此类实验直到最近才变得可行。但是,这些问题的答案不仅仅是满足学术兴趣——它们同样可能帮助很多人得以访问目前对他们来说还不可触及的“社会资本”储备,从而来改善他们的生活。 小世界问题还远未解决,在未来,它仍将为我们带来有关这个世界以及我们自身的诸多教益。 Duncan Watts is a principal researcher at Microsoft and author of Six Degrees: The Science of a Connected Age (WW Norton, 2003). 邓肯·J·瓦茨是微软首席研究员和《六度分隔理论》作者 (编辑:辉格@whigzhou) *注:本译文未经原作者授权,本站对原文不持有也不主张任何权利,如果你恰好对原文拥有权益并希望我们移除相关内容,请私信联系,我们会立即作出响应。

——海德沙龙·翻译组,致力于将英文世界的好文章搬进中文世界——

[译文]战争如何推动社会合作

《超级社会:人类是如何在一万年来的战争中被塑造成地球上最伟大的合作者的》书评
Review of “Ultrasociety: How 10,000 Years of War Made Humans the Greatest Cooperators on Earth”

作者:Cameron K. Murray @ 2016-2-2
译者:Veidt(@Veidt)
校对:小聂(@PuppetMaster)
来源:The Evolution Institute,https://evolution-institute.org/article/review-of-ultra-society-how-10000-years-of-war-made-humans-the-greatest-cooperators-on-earth/

Professor Turchin’s new book Ultrasociety identifies the causal mechanisms hidden in the twists and turns of human civilisation by quantifying the rise and fall of empires. The book translates some of Turchin’s academic work on cliodynamics, making it accessible to the interested lay reader.

Turchin教授在他的新书《超级社会》中,通过对帝国兴衰的量化分析,来辨识出隐藏于曲折跌宕的人类文明史中的决定性机制。这本书深入浅出地阐述了Turchin教授在历史动力学领域的一些学术成果,让那些对此感兴趣的普通读者也能领会其中的奥妙。

What is cliodynamics? My best translation is that it is the scientific study of history that seeks to use quantification to test, eliminate and open new competing hypotheses about the evolution of human civilisation.

什么是历史动力学?我能给出的最佳定义是:这是一种研究历史的科学方法,它试图通过量化的方法去检验,排除和发掘关于人类文明演化的诸多相互竞争的假说。

Turchin draws the reader in with a puzzle. What social and psychological mechanisms give people the ability to contribute towards such enormous cooperative endeavours, like building the international space station? Turchin estimates that the total quantity of hours of human work and toil dedicated by the global workforce involved in the mammoth cooperative task of building the space station is around three-million people-years, or over 26 billion work hours.

Turchin教授提出了一个难题以吸引读者的兴趣:是哪些社会和心理机制让人们拥有了大规模协作的能力,完成了诸如建设国际空间站这样的宏伟目标呢?他估计全球劳动力投入在协作建设国际空间站这个庞大任务上的总人类工时大约是300万人年,也就是超过260亿工时。

The obvious next question is how this compares with the other great cooperative feats of history, like the 400,000 people-years required to build the Great Pyramid of Giza, or the 100,000 people years to build the Coliseum in Rome, and whether these long run patterns signal an increase in humanity’s ability to cooperate at a vast scale.

下一个容易想到的问题就是,这相比于人类历史上其它依靠协作完成的伟大工程又如何呢,例如需要花费40万人年修建的吉萨大金字塔,还有需要花费10万人年修建的罗马大竞技场,以及以上这些长期以来反复再现的模式,是否显示了人类在大规模协作能力上(more...)

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《超级社会:人类是如何在一万年来的战争中被塑造成地球上最伟大的合作者的》书评 Review of "Ultrasociety: How 10,000 Years of War Made Humans the Greatest Cooperators on Earth" 作者:Cameron K. Murray @ 2016-2-2 译者:Veidt(@Veidt) 校对:小聂(@PuppetMaster) 来源:The Evolution Institute,https://evolution-institute.org/article/review-of-ultra-society-how-10000-years-of-war-made-humans-the-greatest-cooperators-on-earth/ Professor Turchin’s new book Ultrasociety identifies the causal mechanisms hidden in the twists and turns of human civilisation by quantifying the rise and fall of empires. The book translates some of Turchin’s academic work on cliodynamics, making it accessible to the interested lay reader. Turchin教授在他的新书《超级社会》中,通过对帝国兴衰的量化分析,来辨识出隐藏于曲折跌宕的人类文明史中的决定性机制。这本书深入浅出地阐述了Turchin教授在历史动力学领域的一些学术成果,让那些对此感兴趣的普通读者也能领会其中的奥妙。 What is cliodynamics? My best translation is that it is the scientific study of history that seeks to use quantification to test, eliminate and open new competing hypotheses about the evolution of human civilisation. 什么是历史动力学?我能给出的最佳定义是:这是一种研究历史的科学方法,它试图通过量化的方法去检验,排除和发掘关于人类文明演化的诸多相互竞争的假说。 Turchin draws the reader in with a puzzle. What social and psychological mechanisms give people the ability to contribute towards such enormous cooperative endeavours, like building the international space station? Turchin estimates that the total quantity of hours of human work and toil dedicated by the global workforce involved in the mammoth cooperative task of building the space station is around three-million people-years, or over 26 billion work hours. Turchin教授提出了一个难题以吸引读者的兴趣:是哪些社会和心理机制让人们拥有了大规模协作的能力,完成了诸如建设国际空间站这样的宏伟目标呢?他估计全球劳动力投入在协作建设国际空间站这个庞大任务上的总人类工时大约是300万人年,也就是超过260亿工时。 The obvious next question is how this compares with the other great cooperative feats of history, like the 400,000 people-years required to build the Great Pyramid of Giza, or the 100,000 people years to build the Coliseum in Rome, and whether these long run patterns signal an increase in humanity’s ability to cooperate at a vast scale. 下一个容易想到的问题就是,这相比于人类历史上其它依靠协作完成的伟大工程又如何呢,例如需要花费40万人年修建的吉萨大金字塔,还有需要花费10万人年修建的罗马大竞技场,以及以上这些长期以来反复再现的模式,是否显示了人类在大规模协作能力上的进步呢? As an economist my bias is to see human actions in terms of self-interest, competition and conflict, where through the invisible hand the interaction of self-interested individuals can lead to productive outcomes. But like the fish who is blind to the vast ocean of water they live in, I realised I was blind to the ocean of cooperation that was the back-drop to my focus on self-interest and competition. 作为一个经济学家,我倾向于通过自利、竞争和冲突的视角来看待人类行为,在这些视角之下,自利个体之间能够通过“看不见的手”达致有效率的经济产出。但就像大海里一条对于自己所生存的广阔水域一无所知的鱼一样,我意识我对于合作行为这片广阔的大海实际上几乎一无所知,而这是我所关注的自利和竞争的基础。 In “Ultrasociety” Turchin provides a way to see and measure cooperation – to quantify its existence on a massive scale. Once you are able to see the great ocean of cooperation that dominates human society, it leads you to interesting and challenging lines of scientific inquiry. The puzzling question is then how a world dominated by ultra social human cooperation can also frequently succumb to large scale war and conflict? 在《超级社会》一书中,Turchin教授提供了一种看待并衡量合作的方式——在大尺度上将它的存在进行量化。当你能够看清合作这片统治着人类社会的汪洋大海,它就会将你的引向有趣而又富有挑战性的科学探索。之后的一个问题就是:为什么一个充盈着超大型社会合作的人类世界还会经常屈就于大规模的战争和冲突? Turchin’s answer, and one of the big ideas in the book, is that war between social groups is the mechanism by which cooperative behaviour develops “within groups”. It is a fundamental evolutionary process happening between societies at a large scale. He elevates war as a selection mechanism for cooperation, and values it above many of the technological factors like domestication of plants and the advent of agriculture. Turchin对这个问题的答案,同时也是本书的主要观点之一,是认为社会群体之间的战争是合作行为在群体内部发展的机制。它是一种基础性进化过程,发生于在各社会之间的大尺度上。他提升了战争在历史进程中的地位,将其视为对合作行为的一种选择机制,并且将其价值置于许多技术性因素之上,例如植物的驯化和农业的出现。 Turchin debunks many standard stories that “explain” the path to civilisation and eliminates glaring inconsistencies in the archaeological record. The naive view that the invention of agriculture “…set the ball rolling, and the entire history of civilisation followed from that” is a satisfying common story. But it seems a stretch to claim that the small scale practice of seasonally collecting and planting seeds nearby small permanent settlements, leads directly to the large-scale institutions observed in ancient civilisations. Turchin推翻了许多自称能够“解释”通向文明路径的标准叙事,认为它们忽视了自身与显而易见的考古学事实之间的重大矛盾。有一种天真的观点认为,农业的发明“……让雪球滚动了起来,而整个文明的历史则随之展开”,这是一种令很多人满意的常见叙事。但是,认为小规模永久定居点附近季节性的收集和播种行为可以直接导致古代文明中所呈现的一些大规模社会制度,这似乎有点太过牵强了。 The “agricultural snowball” story is also hampered by the fact that early agricultural societies had “a markedly negative effect on human health” as the poorer nutrition compared to hunter gatherers lead to smaller stature, higher sickness and the spread of pathogens through the high density settlements. Yet agriculture did spread and ultimately outcompeted nomadic hunter-gather societies. 早期的农业社会“对人类的健康水平产生了显著的负面影响”这一事实也削弱了“农业的雪球”这一叙事的说服力,相比于狩猎-采集社会,农业社会更差的营养水平导致了更小的体形,更多疾病,以及高密度的聚居区内病原体的传播。尽管如此,农业社会的确在之后得到了扩张并最终超过了游动性的狩猎-采集社会。 I have long been hesitant about “just so” explanations of social institutions based on historic physical and technological conditions that turn simple correlations into plausible causal mechanisms. Turchin provides the evidence that although all early large scale civilisations had agriculture, it was not the agriculture alone that directly caused large scale civilisation. 这种对于社会制度“原来如此”解释【编注:『原来如此故事』又称特例假设(ad hoc hypothesis),是一种为某一解释设置无法或难以验证的特殊条件,从而消除或降低该解释之可证伪性的做法。】,立足于物质和技术方面的历史条件,把简单的相关性当成了煞有其事的因果关系,我因此而一直对此抱有怀疑态度。Turchin教授提供了证据以显示虽然所有早期的大型文明都拥有农业,但并不是农业这一单一因素直接导致了大型文明的出现。 I felt foolish to have not recognised the array of “just so” stories in the study of history before Turchin pointed them out. In my field of economics, the existence of money is still explained in the textbooks as arising automatically once someone in human prehistory realised that some kind of currency made commerce easier than trying to directly trade a quarter of a cow for three baskets of vegetables. 对于没能在Turchin教授指出之前认出这些“原来如此”故事,我感到自己有点傻。在我所研究的经济学领域中,货币的存在仍然在教科书中被解释为在史前时代的某个时刻有当人意识到某种形式的通货比直接使用四分之一头牛去交换三筐蔬菜变得更加容易的时候自动产生的。 Yet many alternative social arrangements also solve the physical problem of a “double coincidence of wants”. We need look no further than current tribal societies that do not have or desire money despite their specialisation into many roles. They have instead resolved their double coincidence of wants dilemma through various other rituals, hierarchies, and institutions. 然而,许多其他的社会安排也同样解决了“双方需求的巧合匹配”这个实际问题。我们只需要看看一些现存的部落社会,虽然这些社会中已经出现了众多专业化的分工角色,但他们至今既没有货币,也看不出对货币有任何需求。取而代之的是,这些部落社会通过多种仪式,层级结构和社会制度的安排解决了“双方需求的巧合匹配”这一困境。 Turchin, through his cliodynamics research agenda, aims to rid the historical study of civilisation from these “just so” explanations. In the aim of scientific progress this research agenda uses quantifiable historical data to pit multi-level selection theory and its various components against many others, and in doing so eliminate bad theories and open up new avenues of inquiry. Most chapters of the books contain references to this emerging field of research which themselves are intriguing and enlightening. Turchin教授希望通过他的历史动力学使文明史的研究摆脱这些“原来如此”解释。为了推进研究的科学化进程,他的研究里使用了可量化的历史数据让多层次选择理论以及它的不同组成部分与众多其它的理论进行竞争,通过这种做法排除那些较差的理论并为之后的研究打开新方向。书中的大多数章节都包含了对这一蓬勃发展的研究领域的描述,而这本身已经足够有趣和富有启发性了。 Turchin argues that human societies, tribes, and groups, did not simply take a linear path from small hunter-gatherers tribes to large-scale civilisations. It was the competition through conquest and war between societies that lead to those with more effective weaponry and military organisations arising from greater internal cooperation, to survive at the expense of others. Turchin认为,人类社会,部落和群体并不是简单地通过一条线性的道路从小规模的狩猎-采集部落发展为大型文明的。不同社会之间在相互征服和战争中所展开的竞争,使得那些通过更好的内部合作发展出了更高效的武器和军事组织的社会生存了下来,而代价则是其对手的消亡。 The following excerpt summarises: 以下引文对此作了总结: “Here’s how I think these peaceful, stable societies came about. As war created large states, empires, and nation-states, societies evolved measures to suppress internal conflict and violence. Reduced internal violence is the obverse of increased cooperation. “我认为这些和平而稳定的社会是以这样的方式诞生的。随着战争创造出大型的城邦,帝国和民族国家,社会也演化出了一些压制自身内部的冲突和暴力的机制。内部暴力行为减少的另一面是更多的内部合作。 “Surprising as it may seem, the trend towards greater peace was already noticeable during the Ancient and Medieval historical eras, long before the Enlightenment of the 18th century. Of course, wars between empires dwarfed intertribal conflicts in scale. Huge armies fought increasingly bloody battles, and the numbers of casualties mounted. “也许看起来让人吃惊,但向更加和平的状态演化的趋势,实际上在古代和中世纪这些历史时期中就已经显而易见了,这要远远早于18世纪的启蒙运动。当然,帝国之间的战争在规模上让部落间冲突相形见绌。大型军队间战争的血腥程度持续上升,而战争中的伤亡人数也随之水涨船高。 “But the key point is that these wars moved away from imperial centers, towards the frontiers. More and more people—those living far from frontiers where battles were fought—never experienced conflict, and could enjoy relative prosperity. “但关键在于这些战争不再发生于帝国的中心区域,而被移到了前线。越来越多的人——那些生活在远离战争发生的前线地区的人——从来没有经历过冲突,他们享受到了相对的繁荣。 “There is no contradiction between larger armies and larger butcher’s bills from warfare, on the one hand, and on the other, a greater part of the population enjoying peace. What is important from the point of view of quality of life is not how many people, in total, are killed, but what the chances are that I (or you, or someone you care about) will be killed. In other words, the important statistic is the risk of violent death for each person.” “一方面,军队规模更大,战争的死亡人数更高,而另一方面,总人口中更大比例的人群却能够享受和平,这两点并不冲突。从生活质量的角度来看,重要的并不是总体上有多少人在战争中被杀死,而是作为社会中的个体,我(或者是你,或者是你所关心的人)有多大的可能被杀死。换句话说,对每个人而言,更重要的统计量是死于暴力的风险大小。” The power of this view is in the way the apparent contradiction of how war leads to peace becomes obvious once understood through an evolutionary lens. It changed my mental model of history from a series of inevitable linear events, to one of a branching tree of evolutionary paths, complete with many dead-ends of failed civilisations and their cultures, with many more merging and growing from conquest. 这一观点的强大之处在于,“战争是如何导向和平的?”这一看似矛盾的问题一旦通过进化的视角来理解,其中的逻辑就显而易见了。它将我理解历史的心智模型从一系列不可避免的线性事件的串联转变为一棵包含多种进化路径的分叉树,这棵树的许多分支都终结于失败的文明及其文化,但更多的分支则是通过征服合并在一起并继续成长的文明。 In short, I have shifted away from the popular but incorrect view of evolution as linear and subject only to environmental stresses rather than intra-species conflict. The left panel of the below image epitomises this popular confusion that I ignorantly held in the context of the study of history. 简而言之,我已经摒弃了那种流行却是错误的以线性视角看待文明演化的方式,该方式认为它仅仅受到外部环境的压力影响而不理会种群内部冲突的作用。下图左边的部分代表了之前的我出于无知而在历史研究中所采用的这种带有很强迷惑性的流行视角。 A more correct view of biological evolution is in the right panel, complete with mixing of genes and extinctions. It is more subtle and complex view, but provides a more useful story of the path of history, the dying out of civilisations and merging of cultures as a result of inter-group warfare. 而下图中右边的部分则代表了一种更加准确的看待生物进化的视角,进化是在众多基因的混合与消亡中完成的。这是一种更加精细也更加复杂的视角,但它提供了一种对历史路径更加有用的叙事,文明的消亡和文化的合并实际上是族群间战争的结果。 Screen-Shot-2016-02-02-at-3.47.06-pm Even more interesting is that when there is little external warfare and competition, the successful groups find it difficult to curtail infighting amongst sub-groups within their society, and their lack of internal cooperation begins to make them vulnerable to attack from outsiders. In Turchin’s own words, from Chapter 2: 更有趣的是,当来自外部的战争和竞争压力较小时,那些成功的族群会发现控制自身内部小群体间的明争暗斗变得更困难了,而缺乏内部合作将会让这些曾经成功的族群在面对外来者的攻击时变得脆弱。用Turchin在书中第二章的话来说就是: “Here’s how war serves to weed out societies that “go bad.” When discipline, imposed by the need to survive conflict, gets relaxed, societies lose their ability to cooperate. A reactionary catchphrase of the 1970s used to go, “what this generation needs is a war,” a deplorable sentiment but one that in terms of cultural evolution might sometimes have a germ of cold logic. “战争是以这样的方式淘汰掉那些“衰朽腐败”的社会的。当因生存压力而施加的纪律开始变得松弛的时候,社会就失去了合作的能力。1970年代曾经有一句反动标语,“这代人需要经历一场战争,”虽然这句话里满是可悲的情绪,但从文明进化的角度上说,也许其中的确包含着一些冷冰冰的真知灼见。 At any rate, there is a pattern that we see recurring throughout history, when a successful empire expands its borders so far that it becomes the biggest kid on the block. When survival is no longer at stake, selfish elites and other special interest groups capture the political agenda. The spirit that “we are all in the same boat” disappears and is replaced by a “winner take all” mentality. As the elites enrich themselves, the rest of the population is increasingly impoverished. Rampant inequality of wealth further corrodes cooperation. 无论如何,我们都能看到历史中不断重演的一种模式,当一个成功的帝国将自己的疆域扩展得如此之广以至于它成了“街区里的孩子王”,当生存的压力已不再迫在眉睫,那些自私的精英和其它一些特定的利益集团就会夺取帝国的政治议程。“大家同处一条船”的精神消失了,取而代之的是“赢者通吃”的心态。随着精英们发家致富,其它人则持续地变得更加贫困。肆无忌惮的贫富不均进一步腐蚀了合作的基础。 Beyond a certain point a formerly great empire becomes so dysfunctional that smaller, more cohesive neighbors begin tearing it apart. Eventually the capacity for cooperation declines to such a low level that barbarians can strike at the very heart of the empire without encountering significant resistance. 在超过一个临界点之后,一个曾经的伟大帝国就会变得机能失调,以至于它的那些更小但更具凝聚力的邻居们开始将它分裂。最终帝国内部的合作能力降到了一个太低的水平,以至于外来的野蛮人可以在几乎遇不上任何值得一提的抵抗的条件下直捣帝国的心脏。 But barbarians at the gate are not the real cause of imperial collapse. They are a consequence of the failure to sustain social cooperation. As the British historian Arnold Toynbee said, great civilisations are not murdered – they die by suicide.” 但那些“门口的野蛮人”并不是帝国崩溃的原因。他们的入侵只是帝国没能维持内部社会合作的结果。正如英国历史学家阿诺德·汤因比所言,伟大的文明从来不会被谋杀——他们全都死于自杀。” I have explored this process of disintegration of groups into competing clans in small scale in experiments before. Yet I failed to see the link to the large scale selection processes occurring even at such large scales at the nation-state. The talk of sclerosis and the death of large scale cooperation made me recall the chart below on the growth of partisan policy in the US which shows the striking decline in cross-party cooperation on legislative changes. 我之前曾经用小规模实验的方式研究过族群瓦解为多个相互竞争的部落的情况。但我并没有意识到,即使在民族国家这么大的尺度上,也有类似的选择过程发生。书中关于社会固化和大规模合作的消亡的讨论,让我联想起了下面这幅关于美国党派政策演化的图中所显示出在立法变更上的党际合作水平的显著下降。 Each node in the visual is a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from 1949–2012, with Republicans in red and Democrats in blue. Edges are drawn between members who agree on legislative decisions more often than expected by chance, and the nodes are spaced out in a way so that those with more edges connecting them are closer together. The clustering therefore visualises who is cooperating with who in terms of developing legislation. 图中每个节点都代表美国在1949-2012年间的一位众议院议员,红色代表共和党人,而蓝色则代表民主党人。如果两位议员在立法决策上达成一致的频率高于由随机概率所预期的水平,那么他们所对应的节点之间就会被一条线连接,节点在图中的排列方式使得那些相互之间有更多连接的议员靠得更近。这样图中的聚类就从视觉上反映出了哪些议员在推进立法上相互合作。 Without the external threats to the nation as a whole after WWII, and later the Cold War, the ability to maintain a cohesive national whole in political terms appears to have broken down into partisan scrambling. No longer can we see a cooperative whole, but instead competing fairly arbitrary tribes of blues and reds. 在第二次世界大战和随后的冷战结束后,来自外部的对于美国作为一个整体的威胁都不复存在了,而从政治角度上看,似乎维系一个有凝聚力的国家整体的能力也随之分崩离析,取而代之的则是喋喋不休的党派纷争。在图中我们不再能看到一个富有合作性的整体,而是一些分别由红点和蓝点组成的武断分隔的竞争部落。 journal.pone.0123507.g002 I was left in a state of deep reflection after reading the book. Many other big ideas are woven through it to make you reconsider the popular but overly simplistic stories we tell ourselves to explain historical events. From the long term Z-shaped arc of quantifiable violence in human civilisation, to the role of horses, long range weaponry and population size in the success of inter-group warfare, and finally to the rise of God-kings and oppressive hierarchies. 在读完这本书后,我陷入了深刻的反思。本书中还贯穿了许多其它重要想法,它们会让你重新思考我们在解释历史事件时所常用的那些流行但过分简化的叙事。从人类文明中以可量化方式衡量的暴力水平在长期中所呈现出的Z型曲线,到马、远程武器和人口规模在族群间战争中所发挥的作用,以及最后君神合一政体和统治阶级的崛起。 Even Turchin’s incidental detours explore rather significant questions, such as in Chapter 4 when he clarifies a point about culture in human societies with the off-handed comment “Incidentally, why do we have culture? ” 即使是Turchin教授在书中偶然从主线上岔出的一些分支也讨论了相当重要的问题,例如在第四章中澄清关于人类社会中文化的作用的一个观点时,他随性地评论道“顺便问一句,为什么人类会拥有文化?”。 The same lesson applies in economics. Firms in highly competitive markets constantly face threats to their existence, leading to a type of destructive creation that ensures that surviving firms are internally highly cohesive and cooperative; economically efficient. 同样的道理也适用于经济学领域。高度竞争市场中的企业经常会面临威胁到自身生存的问题,这导致了一种毁灭性的创造过程以保证最终生存下来的企业在内部都具有极强的凝聚力和合作能力,我们称之为经济效率。 Yet the process of competition is highly inefficient in economic terms as only very slightly different production facilities are duplicated by competitors. For me the trade-off is rather radical just to think about. That the gains to internal cohesion require a cost of an external threat or else large-scale groups will be undermined by the interests of sub-groups within them. 然而从经济角度上说,竞争本身是非常低效的,因为众多互相竞争的对手所复制的生产设备之间的差别其实非常小。对我来说,其中的利弊权衡已经是一个相当深刻的问题了。即获得内部凝聚力所带来的收益需要以面对外部威胁为代价,否则大规模的群体将会被内部众多小团体的利益慢慢腐蚀。 Like any books that cover grand ideas about human civilisation there are probably some finer details to squabble about. I certainly don’t have the expertise to do so. Instead I want to share some of the thoughts that occupied my mind after reading Ultrasociety. These thoughts and comments should sufficiently signal the compelling nature of the discussions and ideas of the book. 与任何涉及关于人类文明的宏大观点的著作一样,书中几乎肯定会有一些值得争论的细节。我显然不具备足够的专业水平来这么做。但我希望与各位分享在读完《超级社会》这本书之后一直占据我脑海的一些想法。这些想法和评论应该足够说明这部大作的引人入胜之处以及其中的一些主题。 First, if sustained group cooperation relies on external competition, is there value in creating fictitious interstellar enemies to sustain better global cooperation? I’m thinking here of the film The Village, where the elders invented an outside enemy to sustain internal peace. The idea of creating an enemy for solidarity is popular, and even gets a run in the economics comics. 首先,如果持续的群体合作依赖于外部竞争,那么创造一些假想中的外星敌人是否对于维持更好的全球合作具有价值呢?这让我想起了一部名为《神秘村》的电影,在这部电影中,老人们创造出了一个外部敌人来维持村子内部的和平。为了维持团结而创造出一个敌人的想法现在很流行,即使在一些经济学漫画中也能看到它的影子。 Or perhaps the major modern religions fulfil this type of role so well that they can’t be displaced[1]? And surely it is the moral thing to do to promote human cooperation on an even larger scale without actual conflict and violence, if that indeed is possible. 或者也许主要的现代宗教已经扮演了这一角色而因此变得无可取代[1]? 毫无疑问,在不引发实际的冲突和暴力的前提下推进更大规模的人类合作在道德上是无可厚非的,如果这真的可能的话。 Second, and following directly on from the first, the use of the term morality is widely used with its common meaning as conforming to the cooperative norms of a group. Yet I can’t shake the nagging feeling that, like Darwin’s work on evolution, the idea that war with outsiders promotes peace is ripe to be corrupted for political gain because it can be so easily argued to be a ‘natural’ or ‘moral’ position. 第二,紧跟第一点的思路,现在人们对于“道德”的惯常理解与维持社会的合作规范是一致的。然而我还是无法摆脱一种令人不安的感觉,正如达尔文在进化论上的贡献一样,认为与外来者的战争能够推进内部和平这一观点很容易被政治利益所利用,因为它很容易被说成是一种“自然的”或是“道德的”立场。 Third, how are these great feats of cooperation realised in practice? Is there a common recipe that can be adopted into 21st public policy? There is a brief mention of how tribes and groups ‘tag’ each other with signals of group membership as one way to create cooperation in the following passage from Chapter 10. 第三,这些宏大的合作是如何在实践中实现的?对于21世纪的公共政策而言,存在一种通用的实践模式吗?书中第十章的以下段落简要地提到了部落和群体是如何用“标签”来标识彼此群体身份的方式来创造合作的。 “An important evolutionary breakthrough was the capacity to tag cooperating groups with symbolic markers such as language and dialect, styles of clothing and ornamentation (including tattoos), and behavioral characteristics—for example, participation in collective rituals. Symbolically-tagged cooperative groups, or tribes and nations, allowed us to increase the scale of cooperation beyond the circle of people personally known to us. Of course, the downside of increasing cooperation within a tribe or a nation was greater intensity of conflict with other tribes and nations.” “一个进化上的重大突破就是人们通过诸如语言和方言,衣着和装饰(包括纹身)的风格,以及行为特征——举例来说,对于集体仪式的参与——这些符号化的标记来为与自己合作的群体贴上标签的能力。通过符号化标签来标记与自己合作的群体,或者部落和国家,让我们能够在熟人小圈子之外扩大合作的规模。当然,在部落或国家内部增进合作的负面效应是与其它部落和国家之间冲突强度的加剧。” But like many of the minor points in the book, this single paragraph opens, then closes, a massively interesting puzzle about how humans actually organise into tribes at all levels. While as outsiders we easily observe tags, or the signals and rituals of a cultural group, as insiders we often overlook the amount of resources devoted to these tagging rituals. 但与书中其它一些次要观点一样,书中的这个段落首先提出了一个重要而有趣的难题,也就是人类是如何在实际中被组织为各种层次的“部落”的,并在之后回答了这个问题。作为外人,我们很容易观察到一个文化群体的标签,或者信号和仪式,但作为群体内部的人,我们却通常会忽视投入到这些标记仪式上的大量资源。 The whole fashion industry is almost exclusively about signalling social status, religious, sporting, or gender loyalties. People don’t buy cars just for transport; otherwise there would be little demand for more than a few different models. 整个时尚产业的存在几乎就是为了标识人们的社会地位,宗教信仰,体育爱好或性别取向。人们买车的目的并不仅仅是为了交通,否则除了有限的几种不同车型之外,不会有多少对其它车型的需求。 Instead we buy into marketing messages about how purchasing different types of cars tag us with different traits in the minds of others. At a national sale with have flags, anthems, national colours, sports teams and more that promote a sense of belonging. 但实际上人们买车也是在购买一种营销符号——通过对不同车型的选择而为自己贴上标签——你开的车显示出你是什么样的人。而国家则通过国旗,国歌,国家的代表性颜色,各种体育项目的国家队以及诸如此类的东西来让人们产生认同感。 While I’ve always considered much of our conspicuous consumption to be wasteful, in the same way that the devotion of military resources often appears wasteful on the surface, a picture is emerging of the amazing gains from these types of tagging behaviours and rituals in terms of promoting high levels of cooperation. While not the direct focus of the book, I think more details on this part of the evolutionary view of cooperation and conflict would have been valuable. 虽然我之前一直认为大多数炫耀性消费都很浪费,正如我们投入在军事上的资源通常从表面上看来都很浪费一样,但一幅由这类“贴标签”的行为和仪式通过在更高层次上提升合作水平而带来巨大收益的图景正在我的脑海中浮现。虽然这并不是本书直接关注的内容,但我认为,就有关合作和冲突的进化观点的这一侧面挖掘更多细节将是非常有价值的。 Fourth, what role does the massive advance in long-range weaponry since the dawn of the nuclear age mean for inter-group warfare? Turchin explains vividly how technology that allows for killing enemy combatants from a distance was a recipe for success in most warfare; starting with our evolved physical ability to accurately throwing rocks and spears, to the invention of bows and arrows, to the use of horses to mobilise armies over great distances. In the age of intercontinental missiles, drones, and nuclear weapons, how does the function of long-range of weaponry play out when the whole world can be anyone’s target? 第四,自从核武时代以来,远程武器技术的巨大进步将在群体间战争中扮演怎样的角色?Turchin教授在书中生动地描述了为什么那些能够在远程杀死敌军战士的技术在大多数战争中都是制胜的法宝,从早期人类演化出的准确投掷石块和长矛的能力,到弓和箭的发明,到使用马匹来让军队获得远程的机动性。在这个洲际导弹,无人机和核武器的时代,当整个世界都可以成为任何人的打击目标,远程武器又将如何发挥其作用? Fifth, if the cooperative effort required to wage large scale war is a major part of the causal story of the history of civilisation, how significant is the legacy of previous wars in the current economic landscape? I have in mind the major industries of modern society, such as passenger airlines arising from industrial investment in aerial warfare, and the digital age legacy of military investment in remote communications. 第五,如果合作的努力是为大规模战争服务的这一因果叙事的确占据了大部分的文明史,那么之前的战争所留下的遗产在当今经济版图中又有着怎样的重要性?我所能想到的现代社会的一些重要产业,例如客运航空业,就是从对空中战争的产业投资中崛起的,而当今的数码时代也起源于军工行业对远程通信技术的投资。 Most major industrial firms of the modern age were intricately involved as military suppliers or were privatised former military organisations. Many modern cities only exist because of the strategic benefits of their local military bases, while public major works such as highway and rail systems, ports and airports, were products of military strategy more than peaceful economic investment. 现代大多数主要工业企业都曾经以各种复杂的方式扮演过军队供应商的角色,或者本身就是由之前的军工组织私有化而来。许多现代城市存在的原因就是处于当地的军事基地所带来的战略性优势,而高速公路,铁路系统,港口和机场这类重大的基础设施则更多都是军事战略的产物,而非和平时期经济投资的产物。 And, surprisingly to me, the cooperative legacy of previous wars is not simply technological, but also institutional; from the organisational structures of firms, to the welfare state, to international treaties on money and trade. The employer-worker relationship looks a lot like the soldier-army relationship, requiring induction, uniforms, codes of conduct, and hierarchal rule. 让我感到意外的是,之前的战争所带来的合作遗产并不仅仅存在于技术方面,它同样存在于组织制度中,从现代公司的组织结构,到福利国家,到国际货币和贸易条约。雇主和工人的关系看起来很像军队与士兵的关系,两者都要求正式入职程序,统一制服,行为准则以及层级化管理。 Modern provisions of the welfare state, including housing, health services and cash payments, were often originally created for returned soldiers following wars. It is no leap to suggest that our international monetary system, and the various international organisations and treaties that accompany it, is the direct result of resolutions in the shadow of the WWII. And perhaps the apparent breakdown of the social equality nurtured by post-war institutions observed since the late 1970s in many western countries is merely there result of the absence of external threats which breed infighting and abuses of power. 当代福利国家提供的各种供应品,包括住房,医疗服务和现金支付,最初通常都是在战后提供给退役士兵的。当今的国际货币体系以及与之配套的各种国际组织和条约,都是在第二次世界大战的阴影之下所达成的一系列决议的直接后果,这并不是什么新鲜的观点。而也许从1970年代晚期开始,许多西方国家中由战后建立的机构所导致的社会平等局面的崩塌,也仅仅是因为外部威胁的缺失为它们提供了内部斗争和权力滥用的温床。 As you can see, “Ultrasociety” will leave you pondering many big questions you may never have thought to ask before. I certainly see the world differently now. And that, to me, is the sign of a profound and insightful work. 正如你所看到的,《超级社会》这本书将会让你去深思一些之前不曾想到过的大问题。在读完这本书后,我眼中的世界变得明显不同了。对我来说,这意味着我读到了一部意义深远而富有洞见的大作。 尾注: Turchin cites Ara Norenzayan’s book Big Gods: How Religion Transformed Cooperation and Conflict when explaining the role of religion in large scale cooperation, and I recommend reading it as well. 在解释宗教在大规模合作中所扮演的角色时,Turchin引用了Ara Norenzayan的著作《大神:宗教是如何改变合作与冲突的》一书中的内容,我也推荐读者阅读这本书。 (编辑:辉格@whigzhou) *注:本译文未经原作者授权,本站对原文不持有也不主张任何权利,如果你恰好对原文拥有权益并希望我们移除相关内容,请私信联系,我们会立即作出响应。

——海德沙龙·翻译组,致力于将英文世界的好文章搬进中文世界——

总会起作用

【2016-08-10】

@海德沙龙 《噩梦般的底特律教育系统》 底特律自70年代以来就在持续衰败,居民不断逃离,工厂和住宅区一个个沦为废墟,犯罪率攀至榜首,随之一起沦落的还有它的公立教育系统,学生大量流失,出勤率、毕业率和学习成绩快速下降,然而这些学校的开支却并未减少,它正在从一个教育机构变成教师救济所…

@whigzhou: 选择机制总会起作用,问题是在哪个层次上起作用,假如你阻止自由市场在个体和企业层次上起选择作(more...)

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【2016-08-10】 @海德沙龙 《噩梦般的底特律教育系统》 底特律自70年代以来就在持续衰败,居民不断逃离,工厂和住宅区一个个沦为废墟,犯罪率攀至榜首,随之一起沦落的还有它的公立教育系统,学生大量流失,出勤率、毕业率和学习成绩快速下降,然而这些学校的开支却并未减少,它正在从一个教育机构变成教师救济所… @whigzhou: 选择机制总会起作用,问题是在哪个层次上起作用,假如你阻止自由市场在个体和企业层次上起选择作用,那么其他选择机制便会在产业、组织、城市、地区、国家等层次上起作用。  
[译文]北欧的顶层为何坐得那么安稳

北欧的1%比美国的1%待遇更好
Scandinavia treats its 1% even better than the US

作者:Allison Schrager @ 2016-05-13
译者:Luis Rightcon(@Rightcon)
校对:沈沉(@你在何地-sxy)
来源:Quartz,http://qz.com/528594/scandinavia-treats-its-1-even-better-than-the-us/

Young voters in America are growing skeptical of their country’s brand of capitalism. Their enthusiasm for Bernie Sanders suggests they crave something different, a romanticized version of Nordic socialism, with its generous welfare state and high tax rates.

美国的年轻选民们正在逐渐对他们国家的资本主义招牌产生怀疑。他们对民主党总统候选人Bernie Sanders的热情暗示了他们渴求某种不同的东西,一种浪漫化的、慷慨大方的北欧式社会主义高税率福利国家。

It is true that Nordic countries have a more equal distribution of wealth and income. They also have 标签: | |

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北欧的1%比美国的1%待遇更好 Scandinavia treats its 1% even better than the US 作者:Allison Schrager @ 2016-05-13 译者:Luis Rightcon(@Rightcon) 校对:沈沉(@你在何地-sxy) 来源:Quartz,http://qz.com/528594/scandinavia-treats-its-1-even-better-than-the-us/ Young voters in America are growing skeptical of their country’s brand of capitalism. Their enthusiasm for Bernie Sanders suggests they crave something different, a romanticized version of Nordic socialism, with its generous welfare state and high tax rates. 美国的年轻选民们正在逐渐对他们国家的资本主义招牌产生怀疑。他们对民主党总统候选人Bernie Sanders的热情暗示了他们渴求某种不同的东西,一种浪漫化的、慷慨大方的北欧式社会主义高税率福利国家。 It is true that Nordic countries have a more equal distribution of wealth and income. They also have more economic mobility than the US. But what we admire about Nordic countries frays when you dig into their wealthiest 1%. 北欧国家确实有着更平均的财富和收入分配。他们在经济流动性方面也比美国表现得更好。但是当我们深入了解北欧国家的那1%最富有的人群时,我们的上述赞誉便可能遭到严重动摇。 Economists Simon Halphen, Wojciech Kopczuk, and Claus Thustrup Kreiner studied wealth among Danes(pdf). They observed that the extraordinary mobility found at lower levels disappears once you get into the very top of the wealth distribution. 三位经济学家Simon Halphen,Wojciech Kopczuk和Claus Thustrup研究了丹麦人的财富。他们观察到,丹麦较富及以下阶层中能看到的那种极高的经济流动性,在财富金字塔的最高层是不存在的。 If you are born into a family in the top 1% of wealth, odds are pretty good, you’ll end up there too. They estimate having parents in the 1% makes you 18 times more likely to be in the top 1% yourself; the odds double if your grandparents and parents were also in the 1%. 如果你出生在前1%的最富裕家庭,那么你就很可能一直留在这一阶层直到离世。他们估计,如果你的父母属于最富1%,那你进入最富1%的可能性就会增加18倍;如果你的祖父母和父母都属于最富1%,那么这一可能性会再增加一倍。 Studies also find that if a man’s father was not in the 0.1% he can forget about reaching the 0.1% in Sweden. The very wealthy ranks in Sweden tend to be dominated by the same family dynasties each generation. 研究还发现,对于一个普通瑞典人来说,如果他父亲不在财富积累的前0.1%,那么他自己也就别想着进入这0.1%的群体了。瑞典的财富排行榜往往被同样的豪族世家一代代把持着。 Nordic tax policy protects the wealthiest 1% by placing very high taxes on income and, by American standards, modest taxes on large inheritances. The high income taxes make it harder for a successful Scandinavian entrepreneur to earn his way into the top 1%. The low inheritance taxes make it relatively easy to pass on large estates. In America, income taxes are lower, and estate taxes higher on wealthy fortunes are higher. 北欧的税收政策保护最富有的1%人群,这体现在所得税极高,而大额遗产税与美国标准相比则要轻些。高所得税把斯堪迪纳维亚的成功企业家们拦在了1%的大门外。相对较低的遗产税给巨额遗产继承提供了方便。相较之下,美国的所得税较轻,而越富裕的人群所面对的遗产税也越高。 Tax policy may make it harder for rich Americans to maintain a spot in the top 1% generation after generation. It is hard to make a simple comparison between Nordic countries because American tax returns don’t include wealth holdings until people die and taxes are paid on their estates. But there is some evidence the richest Americans are more likely to be self-made entrepreneurs rather than members of family dynasties. 这样的税收政策可能使得富有的美国人难以一代代保持住财富最顶端1%的位置。但我们很难将北欧国家同美国简单地做比较,因为美国的纳税申报表是直到纳税人离世后征收遗产税时才会将持有财富计入征收。不过有一些证据表明最富有的美国人更多是白手起家的企业家,而不是富豪世家的成员。 A study by Kopczuk and Lena Edlund looked at estate tax data and observed that there are fewer women in the top 0.01% than in the 1960s. They argue that this is evidence of more self-made people cracking the 0.01% because heirs are equally likely to be male or female, but successful entrepreneurs tend to be male. Kopczuk和Lena Edlund所做的一项针对遗产税数据的研究显示,现在(美国的)财富顶端0.01%的人群中女性比例比1960年代时更少了。他们认为这是许多白手起家的人们挤进0.01%财富榜的表现,因为财富继承人总是男女均衡的,而成功的(白手起家)企业家则往往是男性。 The turnover in America’s top 0.01% comes from some combination of new entrepreneurs accumulating more wealth than established wealthy families, multiple heirs dividing fortunes, and estate taxes eroding family fortunes (though Kopczuk cautions there’s a lot of tax evasion when it comes to inheritances). 美国财富顶端的0.01%的流动是多重因素作用的结果,包括新晋企业家财富积累速度比老牌富豪家族更快、多个继承人分割财富和遗产税对于家族财富的侵蚀等(虽然Kopczuk告诫称美国的遗产税方面有相当程度的漏税逃税情况)。 Since most of the population lives outside the 1%, the mobility among the poor and middle class in Scandinavia is enviable and probably more important. But if you think the biggest threat to the economy is wealth concentration among the 1% being limited to a few powerful families, Scandinavia is not the utopia people make it out to be. 由于绝大多数人群与1%无关,北欧地区的贫穷和中产阶层的高流动性确实值得羡慕,或许也更为重要。但是如果你认为经济发展所面临的最大威胁是财富金字塔的顶层被极少数世家豪族霸占,那么北欧国家着实不是人们期盼的乌托邦。 (编辑:辉格@whigzhou) *注:本译文未经原作者授权,本站对原文不持有也不主张任何权利,如果你恰好对原文拥有权益并希望我们移除相关内容,请私信联系,我们会立即作出响应。

——海德沙龙·翻译组,致力于将英文世界的好文章搬进中文世界——

[译文]弗格森的一半黑人男青年不见了

Half Of Ferguson’s Young African-American Men Are Missing
弗格森的半数非洲裔年轻男子不见了

作者:Adam Ozimek @ 2015-03-18
译者:bear
校对:沈沉(@你在何地-sxy)
来源:Forbes,http://www.forbes.com/sites/modeledbehavior/2015/03/18/half-of-fergusons-young-african-american-men-are-missing/

Michael Brown’s tragic death, violent protests including the shootings of police officers, a Justice Department investigation describing a pattern and practice of disc(more...)

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Half Of Ferguson's Young African-American Men Are Missing 弗格森的半数非洲裔年轻男子不见了 作者:Adam Ozimek @ 2015-03-18 译者:bear 校对:沈沉(@你在何地-sxy) 来源:Forbes,http://www.forbes.com/sites/modeledbehavior/2015/03/18/half-of-fergusons-young-african-american-men-are-missing/ Michael Brown’s tragic death, violent protests including the shootings of police officers, a Justice Department investigation describing a pattern and practice of discrimination in the Ferguson police department, and the resignation of six city officials, including the police chief, have focused attention on racial divisions in this St. Louis suburb.  The Justice Department investigation alleges that the lack of diversity in the Ferguson police department, only 4 of 54 commissioned officers are African American compared to 67% of the town’s population, undermines the community’s trust of law enforcement. 圣路易斯郡郊区小镇弗格森的种族分裂近来一直极受关注,起因包括一系列事件:麦克·布朗悲剧性的死亡,暴力示威、包括对警察的枪击,司法部调查认为弗格森警察局存在歧视惯例和行为,包括警长在内的6名市政官员辞职。司法部的调查结果声称,全社区对执法的信任度受损,是由于弗格森警察局内缺乏种族多样性:54名现任警官中仅有四名非洲裔美国人,而该镇67%的人口是非洲裔。 An important but unreported indicator of Ferguson’s dilemma is that half of young African American men are missing from the community.  According to the U.S. Census Bureau, while there are 1,182 African American women between the ages of 25 and 34 living in Ferguson, there are only 577 African American men in this age group.  In other words there are more than two young black women for each young black man in Ferguson.  The problem of missing black men extends to other age groups.  More than 40% of black men in both the 20 to 24 and 35 to 54 age groups in Ferguson are missing. 关于弗格森困境,一个重要但未被报道的指标是,这一社区中有一半的黑人年轻男性消失无踪了。根据美国人口统计局的数据,有1182名25至34岁的黑人女性生活在弗格森,但同年龄段的黑人男性只有557名。换句话说,弗格森的黑人年轻人中,每名男性都对应着2名以上女性。黑人男性缺席的问题也出现在别的年龄段。20岁至24岁段和35岁至54岁段都有超过40%的黑人男性不见了。 It is worth noting that there are approximately equal numbers of African American boys and girls, under the age of 20, in Ferguson (2,332 boys and 2,341 girls).  What has happened to young African American men in Ferguson?  There are several possibilities.  First, the Census counts only the civilian population, and excludes individuals serving in the Armed Forces.  Second, tragically, some of these young men have already died.  Third, Census figures do not include individuals who are incarcerated at the time of the survey.  Finally, the Census Bureau may undercount homeless men, men who are marginally attached to the community, and men who are primarily engaged in criminal behavior. 值得注意的是,黑人男孩和女孩的数量几乎是相等的,在20岁以下年龄段,弗格森有2332名黑人男孩和2341名黑人女孩。弗格森的年轻黑人男性到底去哪了?有几种可能。第一,统计局的数据仅仅包括了平民,不包括军中服役的。第二,十分悲惨,其中一些年轻男性已经死了。第三,人口统计数据没有包括调查时正在服刑的人员。最后,人口统计局低估了流浪汉的数量,这些男性生活在社会边缘,大多数都涉及犯罪活动。 While the problem of missing African American men is especially severe in Ferguson, young black men are absent from most U.S. cities.  In the neighboring cities of East St. Louis, IL and St. Louis, about 38% and 24% of African American men age 25 to 34 are absent from their communities, respectively.  On average, about 18 percent of young African American men are absent from large cities.  (This calculation is based on the combined population of 33 cities with the largest African American populations, home to about one quarter of African Americans in the U.S.)  In contrast, outside of large cities only about 4% of young black men are absent from their communities.  The challenges posed by an absence of black men in Ferguson are problems faced primarily by larger cities. 尽管黑人男性缺席问题在弗格森特别严重,但在大多数美国城市中,年轻黑人男性消失无踪的情况都存在。在伊利诺斯州的东圣路易斯市和圣路易斯市两个临近城市中,社区里分别大约有38%和24%的25至34岁黑人男性消失了。平均而言,大城市中大约有18%的年轻黑人男性缺席。(这个结果是根据33个黑人人口最多的城市计算出来的,覆盖了大约美国四分之一的非洲裔人口)作为对比,在大城市之外,只有4%的年轻黑人男性不在其社区之内。弗格森这种因年轻黑人男性缺席而造成的挑战,主要是较大城市面临的问题。 Outside of large cities the absence of young African American men is explained by gender differences in mortality rates and military service.  Almost two percent of African Americans between the ages of 25 and 34 are in the active military, and about 85% are men, so military service can explain a two percent shortfall in the civilian black male population. 除开大城市以外,其他地方的年轻黑人男性缺席现象可以用死亡率和军队服役上的性别差异来解释。25至34岁的美国黑人中,有大约2%在军中服役,其中约85%是男性,所以军队服役状况能够解释2%的男性黑人平民的数量差额。 Vital Statistics data indicate that about 96% of African American men will survive to the age of 30 compared to 98% of women.  Shorter life expectancies can explain why an additional two percent of young African American men are missing.  After adjustments for gender differences in mortality rates and military service, 14% of African American men age 25 to 34 are missing from our largest cities, and 47% are missing from Ferguson. 人口动态统计数据显示,大约有96%的美国黑人男性能活到30岁,而女性则有98%。男性相对更短的预期寿命可以再解释两个百分点的年轻黑人男性缺席现象。基于死亡率和军中服役状况上的性别差异进行调整后,我国大城市中有14%的25至34岁的黑人男性缺席,而弗格森则达47%。 Incarceration is the primary reason why young black men are missing from our largest cities.  According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics about 9.4% of African American men age 25 to 34 are incarcerated, compared to 0.6% of African American women.  However, an incredibly high incarceration rate would be necessary to account for all of Ferguson’s missing young black men.  Ferguson’s challenge is likely the result of a combination of problems including incarceration, criminal behavior, homelessness and substance abuse. 服刑是我国大城市中年轻黑人男性缺席的主要原因。根据司法统计局的数据,大约9.4%的25至34岁美国黑人男性正在服刑,而黑人女性则只有0.6%。然而,只有高到令人难以置信的服刑率,才能够解释弗格森年轻黑人男性缺席的总量。弗格森面临的挑战可能是一系列麻烦综合导致的结果,包括服刑、犯罪行为、无家可归和滥用药物。 It will be difficult for Ferguson to prosper economically as long as half of young black men are absent from the community.  According to Census data 60% of households with children in Ferguson are headed by women and 48% of these female-headed households are below the poverty line. 只要社区中始终有一半的年轻黑人男性不见踪影,弗格森的经济发展就会很困难。根据人口统计数据,在弗格森,60%的有孩子家庭由妇女当家,而这些由妇女当家的家庭中又有48%生活在贫困线以下。 Although the Justice Department views the racial disparity among Ferguson’s police officers as a potential cause of racial unrest in the community, the dearth of black police officers is also a consequence of the socioeconomic problems facing Ferguson’s African American community.  While there have been important changes in the past few decades, law enforcement is an occupation disproportionately represented by younger men.  According to the Census Bureau over 85% of police officers in the U.S. are men and only 13% are age 55 and above. 尽管司法部认为弗格森警察构成中的种族不平衡是该社区内种族矛盾的潜在原因之一,但黑人警察不足也是弗格森的黑人社区所面临的社会经济问题的结果。尽管在过去几十年有一些重大的改变,但执法行业依旧不成比例地由年轻男性主导。根据人口统计局,超过85%的美国警察是男性,只有13%是55岁以上的。 As Ferguson strives to achieve greater racial diversity in its police force, one of the first problems civic leaders will face is a shortage of young African American men from Ferguson who can fill positions in the police department.  Many of the socioeconomic problems that have caused these young men to be absent from their community will also make it difficult, if not impossible, for these men to pursue a career in law enforcement. 弗格森正在努力强化其警力配置中的种族多样性,但是,市政领导人将要面临的一个头等难题是:弗格森没有足够的年轻黑人男性来充任警察局的岗位。导致这些年轻人在各自社区中缺席的社会经济问题,同样也会使这些男性很难去从事执法行业,如果不是不可能的话。 (编辑:辉格@whigzhou) *注:本译文未经原作者授权,本站对原文不持有也不主张任何权利,如果你恰好对原文拥有权益并希望我们移除相关内容,请私信联系,我们会立即作出响应。

——海德沙龙·翻译组,致力于将英文世界的好文章搬进中文世界——

追求幸福

【2016-07-13】

1)影响幸福感主要因素是相对社会地位及地位之近期变动,可以几个指标衡量:社会阶梯的级数(N),个体所能感知到的级数(M),个体处于哪一级(P),最近之升降(C),

2)处于各级的人口比例是不均匀的,至少从中位阶梯(即,站在该级上的人,其地位不低于一半人口)往上,数量呈指数下降,

3)社会大型化和复杂化将增加总的级数N,

4)密集居住、高流动性、发达媒体,将增加个体所能感知到的级数M,

5)增加M会让一些人(X)感觉自己相对地位下降了,同时让另一些人(Y)感觉自己相对地位上升了,因为(2),(more...)

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【2016-07-13】 1)影响幸福感主要因素是相对社会地位及地位之近期变动,可以几个指标衡量:社会阶梯的级数(N),个体所能感知到的级数(M),个体处于哪一级(P),最近之升降(C), 2)处于各级的人口比例是不均匀的,至少从中位阶梯(即,站在该级上的人,其地位不低于一半人口)往上,数量呈指数下降, 3)社会大型化和复杂化将增加总的级数N, 4)密集居住、高流动性、发达媒体,将增加个体所能感知到的级数M, 5)增加M会让一些人(X)感觉自己相对地位下降了,同时让另一些人(Y)感觉自己相对地位上升了,因为(2),X的比例远高于Y,所以增加M总是拉低社会总的幸福感水平, 6)城市化、大众媒体和网络社交都会提高M 7)高等教育也会提高个体的M值 8)传统社会的结构较为扁平,同等规模的N值小于现代社会 9)传统社会绝大多数人生活中小社会,城市规模也较小,社会视野和社交范围皆较小,故同等经济条件下M值更小 10)以上大概可以解释,为何当收入提高到某个水平之后,增加收入不再能提高幸福感 11)以上还可得出几个推断:同等经济条件下,都市人比小城市人幸福感低,博士生比高中生幸福感低,用微信的比不用微信的幸福感低…… 12)我认为『追求幸福』毫无意义  
靠彩票发达

【2016-05-24】

@whigzhou: 自由市场制度下,财产的初始分配根本不重要,整个宾夕法尼亚的土地起初全归小威廉·潘恩一人所有,这一事实对该州后来的社会结构有多大影响?彩票发明那么多年了,每年都有人中亿万大奖,你听说过哪个显贵家族是靠祖上中彩票发达的?

@whigzhou: 在《儿子照样升起》第15章里,Clark举了两项有关意外横财是否影响家庭长期命运的研究,结论都是:完全没有统计上可观察的正面影响。其中(more...)

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【2016-05-24】 @whigzhou: 自由市场制度下,财产的初始分配根本不重要,整个宾夕法尼亚的土地起初全归小威廉·潘恩一人所有,这一事实对该州后来的社会结构有多大影响?彩票发明那么多年了,每年都有人中亿万大奖,你听说过哪个显贵家族是靠祖上中彩票发达的? @whigzhou: 在《儿子照样升起》第15章里,Clark举了两项有关意外横财是否影响家庭长期命运的研究,结论都是:完全没有统计上可观察的正面影响。其中一项是佐治亚州切诺基县1830年代的土地抽签,中签者获得的土地按当前币值约值15万美元,但这些人的孙辈数量不比别人多,生活状况也不更好(反而略差些)。  
达尔萨斯

【2016-05-23】

1)达尔萨斯主义者(Darthusian)和古典自由主义者的根本区别在于:不许诺一个共同富裕普遍康乐的前景,并认为那注定是个虚假的许诺,

2)尽管我们相信(也乐意称颂)自由市场可以最大限度的拓展合作共赢的领域,也承认(统计上)自由社会的最穷困阶层也比非自由社会的普通人状况更好,但不会否认自由竞争终究会有失败者,自由化甚至可能在绝对水平上恶化一些人的处境,

3)马尔萨斯法则为这一判断提供了兜底保证,尽管不是唯一理由,

4)达尔文的启示在于,这完全不是(more...)

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【2016-05-23】 1)达尔萨斯主义者(Darthusian)和古典自由主义者的根本区别在于:不许诺一个共同富裕普遍康乐的前景,并认为那注定是个虚假的许诺, 2)尽管我们相信(也乐意称颂)自由市场可以最大限度的拓展合作共赢的领域,也承认(统计上)自由社会的最穷困阶层也比非自由社会的普通人状况更好,但不会否认自由竞争终究会有失败者,自由化甚至可能在绝对水平上恶化一些人的处境, 3)马尔萨斯法则为这一判断提供了兜底保证,尽管不是唯一理由, 4)达尔文的启示在于,这完全不是坏事,而是文明进步的动力,试图消除它的努力将摧毁文明赖以繁荣的基础, 5)只有认清这一点才能将自由主义建立在真实而牢靠的基础上,而虚假承诺终究会被现实所揭穿, 6)这也是为何许诺共同康乐的强共同体难以长久维系,除非它能通过周期性重组摆脱一部分成员, 7)或者像罗马那样有着永无止境的拓殖边疆让他得以向其贫穷公民许诺美好前程, 8)对达尔萨斯主义者,自由的伦理基础不是帕累托效率,而是契约合意:我们同意这样的竞争规则,无论结果是谁赢——通俗的说,就是愿赌服输,  
边疆消失

【2016-05-18】

1)美国向来是个平民社会,阶层分化度低,中产比例高,

2)长久以来,这也是其文化与政治特性的基础,这一点在战后繁荣期尤为显著,

3)但并没有什么原理确保他永远会这样,这更可能只是一种阶段性特征,而原因在于:
A)移民不断涌入使其人口结构非常新,
B)移民筛选机制,
C)边疆直到一百多年前才消失,

4)一旦边疆消失,人口结构稳定下来,在常规的社会选择/分化机制持续作用下,古老社会中所常见的那种阶层结构便会重新浮现,

5)所以Charles Murray(比如在(more...)

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【2016-05-18】 1)美国向来是个平民社会,阶层分化度低,中产比例高, 2)长久以来,这也是其文化与政治特性的基础,这一点在战后繁荣期尤为显著, 3)但并没有什么原理确保他永远会这样,这更可能只是一种阶段性特征,而原因在于: A)移民不断涌入使其人口结构非常新, B)移民筛选机制, C)边疆直到一百多年前才消失, 4)一旦边疆消失,人口结构稳定下来,在常规的社会选择/分化机制持续作用下,古老社会中所常见的那种阶层结构便会重新浮现, 5)所以[[Charles Murray]](比如在[[Coming Apart]]里)所担忧的那种情况,其实在长期注定会是常态, 6)问题是,美国政治立基于平民化的时间或许太久了,当它消失时,前景难料,  
无形屏障

【2016-05-08】

@whigzhou: 现代邮政兴起之前,收信方付费是西欧私人通信中的普遍做法,有趣的是,这一惯例也是上流社会在他们和其他人之间建立无形屏障的一种手段,如果你不够有钱,就不敢混进他们的社交圈,因为连收信都收不起,在19世纪初的荷兰,一封信的收件费大约7stuivers(1stuiver=1/20盾),差不多是中下阶层一顿饭钱。

@whigzhou: 所以,若发信人预付了邮费,等于是在告诉收信人:(more...)

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7131
【2016-05-08】 @whigzhou: 现代邮政兴起之前,收信方付费是西欧私人通信中的普遍做法,有趣的是,这一惯例也是上流社会在他们和其他人之间建立无形屏障的一种手段,如果你不够有钱,就不敢混进他们的社交圈,因为连收信都收不起,在19世纪初的荷兰,一封信的收件费大约7stuivers(1[[stuiver]]=1/20盾),差不多是中下阶层一顿饭钱。 @whigzhou: 所以,若发信人预付了邮费,等于是在告诉收信人:我知道你没钱,所以替你把邮费付了。而假如收信人自认为是圈内peer,便会将此视为严重羞辱,所以当荷兰国家邮政最初推行邮票制度时,遭到很多人抵制。