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纽约时报双语(双语外刊):小农户退出舞台,中国的村庄会彻底消失吗?

2018-10-18 19:35| 发布者: admin| 查看: 136| 评论: 0

摘要: 小农户退出舞台,中国的村庄会彻底消失吗?China’s Small Farms Are Fading. The World May Benefit.MICHAEL SCHUMAN2018年10月18日SHANHUI, China — This village doesn’t change quickly. The ebb and flow of ...

小农户退出舞台,中国的村庄会彻底消失吗?

China’s Small Farms Are Fading. The World May Benefit.

MICHAEL SCHUMAN

2018年10月18日

SHANHUI, China — This village doesn’t change quickly. The ebb and flow of the planting and harvesting seasons still govern the lives of its 3,000 residents. Some rise at 3 a.m. to cook homemade tofu, a Shanhui specialty, over a coal-burning stove. Most homes remain topped by traditional Chinese tiled roofs, here crowned by carved dragon’s heads, as is local custom.

中国山会——这个村庄变化不大。3000名居民的生活,仍然由播种和收割季节的循环往复主宰着。有些人在凌晨三点起床,在煤炉上煮自制豆腐,这是一种山会特产。大多数房屋仍然是传统的中国瓦片屋顶,依照当地风俗,在屋脊上雕刻着龙头。

Zheng Nanda worked the fields that surround this village in the northern province of Shanxi for more than four decades, often behind a plow pulled by cows. He is now in his early 70s and too old for such arduous labor. His children long ago left for jobs in the city and have no interest in farming.So Mr. Zheng became an unlikely agent of change. He has rented almost all of his small plot to other farmers, who work it using modern equipment. The $500 a year he earns in rental income helps keep him comfortable in his neatly manicured courtyard home.

这个村庄位于中国北部省份山西,郑南达(音)在村庄四周的田地里已经劳作了40多年,经常是跟在牛后面犁地。他现在已经70多岁,因为太老,不能再做这种艰苦的劳动。他的孩子们对农业没有兴趣,很久以前就离开这里,到城市去找工作。所以郑南达出人意料地成了变革的推动者。他把自己几乎所有的小块土地都租给其他农民,他们使用现代化设备进行工作。他每年收取500美元(约合3400人民币)的租金,让他可以在自家精心打理的庭院中过着舒适的生活。

郑南达(音)在山会已经种了四十多年地,现在71岁了。他把自己的土地租给使用现代化设备的其他农民。

郑南达(音)在山会已经种了四十多年地,现在71岁了。他把自己的土地租给使用现代化设备的其他农民。 GILLES SABRIé FOR THE NEW YORK TIMES

“I won’t want to join my children in the city,” he said. “There is a Chinese saying that ‘fallen leaves return to the roots.’”

“我不想进城去找孩子,”他说。“有一句中国老话说,‘落叶归根’。”

As young people leave for the cities, more small farmers like Mr. Zheng are leasing their land for others to work. That is a monumental shift for a country where small family farms have dominated the rural landscape for centuries.

随着年轻人离开乡村,前往城市,像郑南达这样的小农户开始出租自己的土地,让他人工作。几个世纪以来,小家庭农场一直主导着中国的乡村景观,这是一个巨大的转变。

Other wealthy countries, like the United States, saw farms grow as the rural population shrank. Only relatively recently has that begun to happen in China. In the 1980s, the government broke up the giant communes favored by Mao Zedong and redistributed the rights to farm individual plots to households. Further changes in government policy in the mid-1990s made those land rights secure enough for farmers and others to have the confidence to rent land on a wide scale. China’s agriculture sector is far from being dominated by big commercial farms, as it is in the United States, but the process has begun.

在美国等其他富裕国家,随着农村人口的减少,农场也在增长。中国直到最近才开始发生这种情况。在1980年代,政府解散了毛泽东青睐的大公社,重新把使用农场小块土地的权利分配给家庭。1990年代中期,政府政策的进一步变化使得这些土地权利足够安全,农民和其他人有信心大规模地租用土地。中国的农业部门还远没有像美国那样,由大型商业农场占主导地位,但这个过程已经开始。

It may sound tragic, as a traditional way of life gives way to modernization, much like the disappearance of the small American family farm. But the transformation is good for China and the entire global economy.Bigger farms become more efficient. Those farmers can make more money. And more people are free to move to the city, creating even more consumers for Ford cars, Starbucks cappuccinos and Apple iPhones.

听起来可能有些伤感,因为传统的生活方式被现代化取代,就像美国小型家庭农场的消失一样。但这种转变对中国和整个全球经济都有利。大农场变得更有效率。农民可以赚更多钱。更多的人可以自由地搬到城市,为福特汽车、星巴克卡布奇诺和苹果iPhone创造更多消费者。

山会村民在一个卖食品的小推车上买东西。

山会村民在一个卖食品的小推车上买东西。 GILLES SABRIé FOR THE NEW YORK TIMES

“If everybody farmed, then everybody wouldn’t have that much land,” said Zheng Yunshou, a 51-year-old Shanhui farmer. “But if one household out of 10 does all the farming, then they can make enough for themselves, and the other nine can also make enough by working elsewhere.”Mr. Zheng has already accepted that he may be the final farmer in his family. His plot of less than three acres is too small to generate sufficient income, so he spends half his time loading coal and iron ore at a local steel mill to earn extra cash.

“如果所有人都种地,那个人就不会有那么多地,”51岁的山会农民郑云寿说。“但是,如果十家人里有一家把所有地都种了,他们就能为自给自足,其他九家也可以到其他地方工作赚钱。”郑云寿已经接受了他可能是家中最后一个农民的现实。他的地不足三英亩,实在太小,赚不到足够的钱,所以他花一半的时间在当地一家钢铁厂装运煤和铁矿石,赚取额外收入。

郑成功,27岁,他的父母通过租用当地政府和其他弃耕村民的土地,积累了超过160英亩的土地。

郑成功,27岁,他的父母通过租用当地政府和其他弃耕村民的土地,积累了超过160英亩的土地。 GILLES SABRIé FOR THE NEW YORK TIMES

His son still lives at home, but he prefers his job operating an excavator at construction sites to toiling at his father’s cornfield. Mr. Zheng’s daughter has left for a far-off city, where she “does something with computers,” he said.

他的儿子仍住在家里,但是和在父亲的玉米地上劳作相比,他更喜欢在建筑工地操作挖掘机这份工作。郑云寿的女儿去了一个遥远的城市,在那里,她“用电脑做事”,他说。

“I’m not sad about it,” he added. “The farm will not be sufficient to support my son.”

“我不觉得难过,”他补充道。“种地养不起我儿子。”

As these small farmers bow out, Zheng Chenggong, 27, is taking their place. (As in many rural villages in China, residents of Shanhui share a handful of surnames.) Twenty years ago, his father tilled a small plot of about two acres. Since then, Mr. Zheng and his parents have amassed more than 160 acres by renting plots from the local government and other villagers who have given up.

当这些小农户退出舞台之际,27岁的郑成功(音)正在取代他们的位置。(和中国许多农村一样,山会的很多人是同姓的。)20年前,他父亲耕种着一块约两英亩的小地块。从那以后,郑成功和父母通过租用当地政府和其他弃耕村民的土地,积累了超过160英亩的土地。

The result is a thriving business cultivating corn and carrots. Mr. Zheng invested in planters, pesticide sprayers and other equipment, including a new, shiny red harvester, parked in a lot behind his modest home. Piles of corn are stored in a warehouse next door. During autumn, he employs over 100 people from about 10 villages to harvest his carrots.By farming on such scale, Mr. Zheng can make money smaller farmers can only dream about — roughly $80,000 a year. Much of it is reinvested in more land and equipment.

其结果是玉米和胡萝卜的生意兴隆。郑成功投资了播种机、农药喷洒机和其他设备,包括一台漂亮的全新红色收割机,停在他简朴的家后面一块地上。成堆的玉米存放在隔壁的仓库里。在秋季,他雇用了来自大约10个村庄的100多人来收获胡萝卜。通过这种规模的耕种,郑可以赚取小农户做梦也想不到的钱——每年大约8万美元。其中大部分用于对更多的土地和设备进行再投资。

59岁的张绵环在他的院子里,旁边放着等待晾干的玉米。

59岁的张绵环在他的院子里,旁边放着等待晾干的玉米。 GILLES SABRIé FOR THE NEW YORK TIMES

“In 10 years’ time, a lot of land will be rented to big farmers like me,” Mr. Zheng said.

“10年之内,很多土地会被租给我这样的大农户,”郑成功说。

That opportunity has drawn others. Over the past 10 years, Zhang Mianhuan, 59, has increased the size of his farm 10 times, to more than 30 acres, on which he grows corn and sorghum. On his old, small plot, he pocketed a measly $300 a year — barely enough to get by. Now, he earns about $9,000.

这样的机会也吸引了其他人。过去10年里,59岁的张绵环(音)将他的农场规模增加了10倍,达到30多英亩,种植玉米和高粱。在他过去那块小小的土地上,他每年只能赚300美元——几乎难以维生。现在,他的年收入约为9000美元。

“Farmers think, ‘The more land the better,’” Mr. Zhang said. “It means more income.”The seismic shifts in rural China could threaten community spirit. One afternoon in Shanhui, the farmers congregated in a central square, chatting under the shade cast by awnings and a traditional wooden pavilion. A few hours earlier, many had celebrated the wedding of a young local woman, feasting on roast lamb, fried chicken and local tofu, and toasting one another with plastic cups filled with baijiu, a favorite, sinus-clearing alcohol. (Typically, the bride will leave the village to join her new husband in a nearby town.)

“农民觉得,‘地越多越好’,”张绵环说。“地多收入就多。”中国农村的巨大变化可能会威胁到社区精神。一天下午在山会,农民们聚集在一个中央广场,在遮阳篷和传统木制凉亭的遮阴下聊天。几小时前,许多人来庆祝当地一名女青年的婚礼,他们享用了烤羊肉、炸鸡和当地豆腐,用塑料杯子装着白酒,互相敬酒,这是一种辛辣的烈酒,非常受欢迎。(通常情况下,新娘将离开村庄,住到附近城镇的丈夫家里。)

The changes separate families. Zheng Chengsheng, 66, had to stop farming two years ago after he was badly injured in a motorbike accident. Now he rents out his family plot, allowing him to support himself and his wife. His three children all work in cities. His daughters make it back to Shanhui only during the Chinese New Year holiday, while his son lives in a nearby town.“I would prefer my son to come back. Then he can be by my side,” he said. “My wife and I are concerned that we’ll be by ourselves when we’re older. It is a common worry here.”

这些变化让家人分离。两年前,66岁的郑诚盛(音)在一起摩托车事故中受重伤后,不得不停止耕作。现在他出租自己的家庭土地来养活自己和妻子。他的三个孩子都在城市工作。两个女儿只在中国农历新年假期回到山会,儿子住在附近的一个城镇里。“我想让我儿子回来。这样他就能陪在我身边,“他说。“我老婆和我都担心,等我们更老的时候,我们要靠自己。这里这种担忧很普遍。”

在山会,男人们带着酒水来参加婚宴。

在山会,男人们带着酒水来参加婚宴。 GILLES SABRIé FOR THE NEW YORK TIMES

In some villages, farms are getting larger and the population is dwindling at an even faster pace than in Shanhui. But that does not necessarily mean China’s village will completely die out. China’s population is so large that hundreds of millions of people will most likely remain in the countryside even as cities swell. That means many areas of China may not develop the sort of supersize industrial farming common to places like America’s Midwest.

在一些村庄,农场变得越来越大,人口减少的速度甚至比山会还要快。但这并不一定意味着中国的村庄将完全消失。中国人口如此之多,即使城市在膨胀,仍可能有数亿人留在农村。这意味着中国的许多地区可能不会发展那种在美国中西部常见的超大型工业化农业。

“China’s situation is completely different and cannot follow the U.S. model,” said Li Ping, a senior attorney at Landesa, a nongovernmental organization that helps secure land rights for the world’s poor. “Village size will be somewhat shrunk, but the village will still be there.”

“中国的情况完全不同,不能按照美国模式来,“农村发展研究所(Landesa)高级律师李平说。农村发展研究所是一个帮助世界上的穷人守护土地权利的非政府组织。“村庄的规模可能多多少少会缩小,但村庄仍将存在。”

The residents of Shanhui think so, too. Though they assume the population will shrink, they remain convinced the village will become wealthier.“Everything will just get better,” said Zheng Nanda, the retired farmer, a typical sentiment shared by the villagers. “We don’t need to worry about anything.”

山会的居民也这么想。尽管他们认为人口会减少,但他们仍然相信村庄会变得更富裕。“一切都会更好的,“退休了的农民郑南达(音)说,这是村民们的典型看法。“我们没什么可担心的。”

许多人来庆祝当地一位年轻女子的婚礼,他们享用了烤羊肉、炸鸡和当地豆腐,用塑料杯子装着白酒,互相敬酒。

许多人来庆祝当地一位年轻女子的婚礼,他们享用了烤羊肉、炸鸡和当地豆腐,用塑料杯子装着白酒,互相敬酒。 GILLES SABRIé FOR THE NEW YORK TIMES

Whatever the future holds for Shanhui, many villagers feel little nostalgia for their poorer past.

不管山会的未来如何,很多村民对他们更为贫穷的过去没有什么留恋之情。

As the sun sets and the air cools, Wang Yulin, 61, tends to his fresh corn seedlings in a field on Shanhui’s outskirts, as he has done for decades. But with his three children off working in cities, he realizes that one day, he will probably have to give up his farm.

夕阳西下,空气渐凉,61岁的王玉林(音)像过去几十年一样,在山会郊外的一块地里照料他的新鲜玉米幼苗。但他三个孩子都在城里工作,他知道有一天,他或许将不得不放弃他的农场。

He greets the prospect with a shrug. “You can’t make much money farming,” he said.

面对这样的前景,他耸了耸肩。“种地赚不了多少钱,“他说。

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