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  • I am a writer.

    翻訳: Ai Kamimoto 校正: Yasushi Aoki

  • Writing books is my profession but it's more than that, of course.

    私は作家ですが―

  • It is also my great lifelong love and fascination.

    書くことは 仕事以上のものです

  • And I don't expect that that's ever going to change.

    ずっと 情熱を注いできたし―

  • But, that said, something kind of peculiar has happened recently

    今後もそれは 変わりません

  • in my life and in my career,

    と言いつつ 最近変わった体験をしました

  • which has caused me to have to recalibrate my whole relationship with this work.

    公私にわたって…

  • And the peculiar thing is that I recently wrote this book,

    仕事への姿勢を 考え直すことになりました

  • this memoir called "Eat, Pray, Love"

    最近 回顧録を書き上げました 題名は―

  • which, decidedly unlike any of my previous books,

    "食べ祈り愛する(Eat, Pray, Love)"

  • went out in the world for some reason, and became this big,

    明らかに 今までの作品と違います

  • mega-sensation, international bestseller thing.

    どういうわけか 各国語に翻訳され―

  • The result of which is that everywhere I go now,

    話題を呼び 世界的ベストセラーになりました

  • people treat me like I'm doomed.

    その結果として 今ではどこでも―

  • Seriously -- doomed, doomed!

    運が尽きたヒト扱いされます

  • Like they come up to me now all worried and they say,

    本当に "もう終り" なんです

  • "Aren't you afraid -- aren't you afraid you're never going to be able to top that?

    みんな 心配顔でこう言います

  • Aren't you afraid you're going to keep writing for your whole life

    "あれを越えられなかったらと 不安では?"

  • and you're never again going to create a book

    "不安にはならない? "

  • that anybody in the world cares about at all,

    "一生書き続けようと―"

  • ever again?"

    "注目される本が書けないって"

  • So that's reassuring, you know.

    "もう 二度と"

  • But it would be worse, except for that I happen to remember

    まあ 勇気づけられますこと

  • that over 20 years ago, when I first started telling people -- when I was a teenager --

    もっとヒドい経験もあります

  • that I wanted to be a writer,

    20年以上前 10代の頃 言ったのです

  • I was met with this same kind of, sort of fear-based reaction.

    作家になりたい と

  • And people would say, "Aren't you afraid you're never going to have any success?

    人々は今と同じ 不安顔でした

  • Aren't you afraid the humiliation of rejection will kill you?

    "成功しなかったら?"

  • Aren't you afraid that you're going to work your whole life at this craft

    "拒否される屈辱に耐えられる?"

  • and nothing's ever going to come of it

    "一生 書き続けて―"

  • and you're going to die on a scrap heap of broken dreams

    "何も完成しなくて―"

  • with your mouth filled with bitter ash of failure?"

    "口は 失敗の苦汁に満たされ―"

  • (Laughter)

    "破れた夢の山なす残骸の上で のたれ死んでも?"

  • Like that, you know.

    (会場 笑)

  • The answer -- the short answer to all those questions is, "Yes."

    そんな感じでした

  • Yes, I'm afraid of all those things.

    これらの答えは 端的には"イエス" です

  • And I always have been.

    もちろん不安です

  • And I'm afraid of many many more things besides

    常に不安です

  • that people can't even guess at.

    怖いものは山ほどあります

  • Like seaweed, and other things that are scary.

    他人が分らないものも…

  • But, when it comes to writing

    海藻など ゾッとします

  • the thing that I've been sort of thinking about lately, and wondering about lately, is why?

    でも執筆に関しては―

  • You know, is it rational?

    最近 ずっと考え続けています

  • Is it logical that anybody should be expected

    理にかなってるか と

  • to be afraid of the work that they feel they were put on this Earth to do.

    天職だと思うことを―

  • You know, and what is it specifically about creative ventures

    恐れるのが当然と みなされるのが?

  • that seems to make us really nervous about each other's mental health

    クリエイティブの世界が 他と違うのは―

  • in a way that other careers kind of don't do, you know?

    精神を気遣われる ということ

  • Like my dad, for example, was a chemical engineer

    他の職業では あまりないでしょう?

  • and I don't recall once in his 40 years of chemical engineering

    父は 化学技術者でした

  • anybody asking him if he was afraid to be a chemical engineer, you know?

    私の記憶では 40年勤めた間に―

  • It didn't -- that chemical engineering block John, how's it going?

    仕事が不安か と訊いた人はいません

  • It just didn't come up like that, you know?

    "最近 化学技術スランプは大丈夫?"

  • But to be fair, chemical engineers as a group

    ありえないでしょう?

  • haven't really earned a reputation over the centuries

    もっとも 化学技術者のほうは―

  • for being alcoholic manic-depressives.

    何世紀も 風評とは無縁です

  • (Laughter)

    "躁うつの飲んだくれ" という風評とは…

  • We writers, we kind of do have that reputation,

    (会場 笑)

  • and not just writers, but creative people across all genres,

    作家には つきものです

  • it seems, have this reputation for being enormously mentally unstable.

    いえ 全クリエイティブ業界で…

  • And all you have to do is look at the very grim death count

    精神不安定で 知られているし―

  • in the 20th century alone, of really magnificent creative minds

    無残な死者の数を見ても 明らかです

  • who died young and often at their own hands, you know?

    20世紀だけで 偉大な創作者たちが―

  • And even the ones who didn't literally commit suicide

    どれだけ 早世し自殺しているか

  • seem to be really undone by their gifts, you know.

    実際の自殺でなく―

  • Norman Mailer, just before he died, last interview, he said

    自分の才能に殺された人もいます

  • "Every one of my books has killed me a little more."

    ノーマン メイラーは生前 言いました

  • An extraordinary statement to make about your life's work, you know.

    "作品が ジワジワと私を殺す"

  • But we don't even blink when we hear somebody say this

    ライフワークに対し 尋常ではない考え方ですが―

  • because we've heard that kind of stuff for so long

    誰も驚かないでしょう

  • and somehow we've completely internalized and accepted collectively

    長年 聞き慣れた話ですから

  • this notion that creativity and suffering are somehow inherently linked

    当然のことと 捉えられています

  • and that artistry, in the end, will always ultimately lead to anguish.

    創造に苦悩はつきものであり―

  • And the question that I want to ask everybody here today

    芸術性は 必ず最終的に苦痛をもたらすと…

  • is are you guys all cool with that idea?

    今日の提起は ここです

  • Are you comfortable with that --

    これで いいと思います?

  • because you look at it even from an inch away and, you know --

    変だと思いません?

  • I'm not at all comfortable with that assumption.

    よく考えてみても…?

  • I think it's odious.

    私には 引っかかります

  • And I also think it's dangerous,

    忌まわしいし―

  • and I don't want to see it perpetuated into the next century.

    危険な発想でしょう

  • I think it's better if we encourage our great creative minds to live.

    次世紀に残してほしくない

  • And I definitely know that, in my case -- in my situation --

    むしろ生き続けるよう 励ますべきでは?

  • it would be very dangerous for me to start sort of leaking down that dark path

    自分の状況から見ても 分かります

  • of assumption, particularly given the circumstance

    あの暗い前提を 受け入れるのは―

  • that I'm in right now in my career.

    危険でしょう ことに私の―

  • Which is -- you know, like check it out,

    今の状況を 考えるなら…

  • I'm pretty young, I'm only about 40 years old.

    つまり… この通り―

  • I still have maybe another four decades of work left in me.

    まだ若く 40そこそこ

  • And it's exceedingly likely that anything I write from this point forward

    仕事も あと40年続けるかもしれない

  • is going to be judged by the world as the work that came after

    今から先 書き上げるものは間違いなく―

  • the freakish success of my last book, right?

    この前出版した本と 比較されるんです

  • I should just put it bluntly, because we're all sort of friends here now --

    信じられないぐらい売れたあの本と…

  • it's exceedingly likely that my greatest success is behind me.

    ここだけの話 率直に言うと―

  • Oh, so Jesus, what a thought!

    今後 代表作を書ける見込みは低いんです

  • You know that's the kind of thought that could lead a person

    ああ なんてこと!

  • to start drinking gin at nine o'clock in the morning

    こんな風に考えて 人は―

  • and I don't want to go there.

    朝9時からジンを飲むようになるんです

  • (Laughter)

    それは ごめんです

  • I would prefer to keep doing this work that I love.

    (会場 笑)

  • And so, the question becomes, how?

    好きな仕事を続けたい

  • And so, it seems to me, upon a lot of reflection,

    そこで考えます "どうやって?"

  • that the way that I have to work now, in order to continue writing,

    振り返って じっくり考えました

  • is that I have to create some sort of protective psychological construct, right?

    書き続けるために なすべきことは―

  • I have to, sort of find some way to have a safe distance

    心理的に守れるものを作ることだろう と

  • between me, as I am writing, and my very natural anxiety

    安全な距離を 保てるようになること

  • about what the reaction to that writing is going to be, from now on.

    作家としての私と 未来の作品の評価を―

  • And, as I've been looking over the last year for models for how to do that

    心配する私の間に…

  • I've been sort of looking across time,

    昨年中 手本を探し続けました

  • and I've been trying to find other societies

    歴史も さかのぼり―

  • to see if they might have had better and saner ideas than we have

    様々な社会も 探りました

  • about how to help creative people, sort of manage

    より良く まっとうな見解はないかと

  • the inherent emotional risks of creativity.

    創作者を助け 創作につきものの―

  • And that search has led me to ancient Greece and ancient Rome.

    精神的リスクを管理できないか…

  • So stay with me, because it does circle around and back.

    古代ギリシャとローマにありました

  • But, ancient Greece and ancient Rome --

    ついて来て下さい じき戻りますから

  • people did not happen to believe that creativity

    古代のギリシャとローマでは―

  • came from human beings back then, OK?

    信じられていませんでした

  • People believed that creativity was this divine attendant spirit

    人間に創造性が備わっているとは…

  • that came to human beings from some distant and unknowable source,

    創造性は 人に付き添う精霊で―

  • for distant and unknowable reasons.

    遠く未知のところから来たのです

  • The Greeks famously called these divine attendant spirits of creativity, daemons.

    人間の理解を超えた動機から…

  • Socrates, famously, believed that he had a daemon

    古代ギリシャ人は 精霊を"ダイモン"と呼びました

  • who spoke wisdom to him from afar.

    ソクラテスは ダイモンがついていると信じていた

  • The Romans had the same idea,

    遠くから叡智を語ってきたと…

  • but they called that sort of disembodied creative spirit a genius.

    ローマ人も同様でしたが―

  • Which is great, because the Romans did not actually think

    肉体のない創造の霊を"ジーニアス" と呼びました

  • that a genius was a particularly clever individual.

    彼らは "ジーニアス(天才)" を―

  • They believed that a genius was this, sort of magical divine entity,

    能力の秀でた個人とは 考えなかった

  • who was believed to literally live in the walls

    あの精霊のことだと 考えていました

  • of an artist's studio, kind of like Dobby the house elf,

    アトリエの壁の中に生き―

  • and who would come out and sort of invisibly assist the artist with their work

    ハリーポッターの妖精ドビーのように…

  • and would shape the outcome of that work.

    創作活動をこっそり手伝い―

  • So brilliant -- there it is, right there that distance that I'm talking about --

    作品を形作るんです

  • that psychological construct to protect you from the results of your work.

    素晴らしい! 先ほど話した"距離"が存在します

  • And everyone knew that this is how it functioned, right?

    作品の評価から 心理的に守られるものが…

  • So the ancient artist was protected from certain things,

    そういうものだと 人々は信じていました

  • like, for example, too much narcissism, right?

    古代のアーティストは 守られていたのです

  • If your work was brilliant you couldn't take all the credit for it,

    たとえば 過剰な自惚れから

  • everybody knew that you had this disembodied genius who had helped you.

    どんなに立派な作品でも 自分だけの功績ではない

  • If your work bombed, not entirely your fault, you know?

    霊が助けたと 知られていたからです

  • Everyone knew your genius was kind of lame.

    失敗しても 自分だけのせいじゃない

  • And this is how people thought about creativity in the West for a really long time.

    "ジーニアス" が ダメだったんです

  • And then the Renaissance came and everything changed,

    この考えは 長らく西洋に浸透していましたが―

  • and we had this big idea, and the big idea was

    ルネッサンスが全てを変えました

  • let's put the individual human being at the center of the universe

    とてつもない考えが現れた

  • above all gods and mysteries, and there's no more room

    世界の中心に 人間を置こうではないかと

  • for mystical creatures who take dictation from the divine.

    全ての神と神秘の上に…

  • And it's the beginning of rational humanism,

    神の言葉を伝える謎の生き物は 消えた…

  • and people started to believe that creativity

    合理的人文主義の 誕生です

  • came completely from the self of the individual.

    人々も信じ始めました

  • And for the first time in history,

    創造性は 個人の内から現れるのだと

  • you start to hear people referring to this or that artist as being a genius

    史上初めて―

  • rather than having a genius.

    芸術家が "ジーニアス" と呼ばれるようになりました

  • And I got to tell you, I think that was a huge error.

    "ジーニアス" が側にいるのではない

  • You know, I think that allowing somebody, one mere person

    これは大きな間違いですよ

  • to believe that he or she is like, the vessel

    たった一人の人間を―

  • you know, like the font and the essence and the source

    男でも女でも 一人の人を―

  • of all divine, creative, unknowable, eternal mystery

    神聖で創造的な謎の―

  • is just a smidge too much responsibility to put on one fragile, human psyche.

    本質で源だと 信じさせるなんて

  • It's like asking somebody to swallow the sun.

    繊細な人間の心には 少し重荷では?

  • It just completely warps and distorts egos,

    太陽を飲めと 言うようなものです

  • and it creates all these unmanageable expectations about performance.

    歪んだエゴでしょう

  • And I think the pressure of that

    それが 作品への過剰な期待を作り―

  • has been killing off our artists for the last 500 years.

    その期待へのプレッシャーが―

  • And, if this is true

    過去500年 芸術家たちを殺してきたんです

  • and I think it is true,

    もしこれが事実なら―

  • the question becomes, what now?

    事実だと思いますが―

  • Can we do this differently?

    問題は 今後です

  • Maybe go back to some more ancient understanding

    他に道は ないでしょうか?

  • about the relationship between humans and the creative mystery.

    創造性の謎と 上手に付き合うには―

  • Maybe not.

    昔の考え方に ならえばいい?

  • Maybe we can't just erase 500 years of rational humanistic thought

    恐らく無理でしょう

  • in one 18 minute speech.

    500年に及ぶ 合理的人文思想を消すのは…

  • And there's probably people in this audience

    18分のスピーチでは ね

  • who would raise really legitimate scientific suspicions

    恐らく この会場にも―

  • about the notion of, basically fairies

    科学的な正当性を 疑う人がいるでしょう

  • who follow people around rubbing fairy juice on their projects and stuff.

    妖精というアイデアに…

  • I'm not, probably, going to bring you all along with me on this.

    彼らが 作品に甘い蜜をかけるなんて?

  • But the question that I kind of want to pose is --

    深入りは しませんが―

  • you know, why not?

    提起したいのは ここです

  • Why not think about it this way?

    "いいじゃない?"

  • Because it makes as much sense as anything else I have ever heard

    "何がいけない?" と

  • in terms of explaining the utter maddening capriciousness

    今まで聞いたどの話より 納得いきます

  • of the creative process.

    創作過程の 意味不明な気まぐれが―

  • A process which, as anybody who has ever tried to make something --

    説明できます

  • which is to say basically, everyone here ---

    何か創ろうとした人なら分かる―

  • knows does not always behave rationally.

    つまり皆さん ご存知のあの―

  • And, in fact, can sometimes feel downright paranormal.

    非合理な過程です

  • I had this encounter recently where I met the extraordinary American poet Ruth Stone,

    ときに超常現象とさえ感じられる…

  • who's now in her 90s, but she's been a poet her entire life

    最近 非凡な詩人 ルース ストーンに会いました

  • and she told me that when she was growing up in rural Virginia,

    90を超えても現役の詩人です

  • she would be out working in the fields,

    彼女はバージニアの田舎で育ち―

  • and she said she would feel and hear a poem

    畑仕事をしていた時に―

  • coming at her from over the landscape.

    詩の到来を 感じたそうです

  • And she said it was like a thunderous train of air.

    大地の彼方から やってくるのを…

  • And it would come barreling down at her over the landscape.

    ものすごい一群の風のようなものが―

  • And she felt it coming, because it would shake the earth under her feet.

    大地を越えて突進してくるのを―

  • She knew that she had only one thing to do at that point,

    地面の振動を感じて 察したそうです

  • and that was to, in her words, "run like hell."

    なすべきことは ただ一つ

  • And she would run like hell to the house

    "がむしゃらに走る" こと

  • and she would be getting chased by this poem,

    がむしゃらに家へ走り―

  • and the whole deal was that she had to get to a piece of paper and a pencil

    詩に追われながら―

  • fast enough so that when it thundered through her, she could collect it

    素早く 紙と鉛筆を手に取り―

  • and grab it on the page.

    詩が 身体を通り抜ける時に―

  • And other times she wouldn't be fast enough,

    つかまえ 書き留める

  • so she'd be running and running and running, and she wouldn't get to the house

    間に合わない時もありました

  • and the poem would barrel through her and she would miss it

    走って走って… 間に合わず―

  • and she said it would continue on across the landscape,

    身体から素早く 抜けてしまった

  • looking, as she put it "for another poet."

    彼女によると "恐らくそのまま―

  • And then there were these times --

    次の詩人を探しに行った" と

  • this is the piece I never forgot --

    別の機会には―

  • she said that there were moments where she would almost miss it, right?

    これは秀逸ですが―

  • So, she's running to the house and she's looking for the paper

    逃がしそうな時が ありました

  • and the poem passes through her,

    必死で走り 紙を探し―

  • and she grabs a pencil just as it's going through her,

    詩が身体を通り―

  • and then she said, it was like she would reach out with her other hand

    抜けようとした瞬間 鉛筆をつかみ―

  • and she would catch it.

    もう一方の手を伸ばし―

  • She would catch the poem by its tail,

    捕まえたそうです

  • and she would pull it backwards into her body

    詩の 尻尾をつかみ―

  • as she was transcribing on the page.

    身体の中に 尻尾の方から取り込み―

  • And in these instances, the poem would come up on the page perfect and intact

    書き写していったんです

  • but backwards, from the last word to the first.

    詩は完璧に出来ましたが―

  • (Laughter)

    全て 逆さまでした

  • So when I heard that I was like -- that's uncanny,

    (会場 笑)

  • that's exactly what my creative process is like.

    それを聞いて思ったんです "まさか"と

  • (Laughter)

    私のやり方とソックリだったので

  • That's not all what my creative process is -- I'm not the pipeline!

    (会場 笑)

  • I'm a mule, and the way that I have to work

    身体を通る部分じゃないですよ!

  • is that I have to get up at the same time every day,

    私は頑固なので 仕事は―

  • and sweat and labor and barrel through it really awkwardly.

    毎朝 同じ時間に起き―

  • But even I, in my mulishness,

    苦心してコツコツ書いています

  • even I have brushed up against that thing, at times.

    そんな私でも―

  • And I would imagine that a lot of you have too.

    出合う瞬間があります

  • You know, even I have had work or ideas come through me from a source

    皆さんも経験あるでしょう

  • that I honestly cannot identify.

    アイデアが降りてくるんです

  • And what is that thing?

    どこからともなく