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Part 1 Chapter 44
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MASLOVA'S VIEW OF LIFE.

Before the first interview, Nekhludoff thought that when she saw him and knew of his intention to serve her, Katusha would be pleased and touched, and would be Katusha again; but, to his horror, he found that Katusha existed no more, and there was Maslova in her place. This astonished and horrified1 him.

What astonished him most was that Katusha was not ashamed of her position--not the position of a prisoner (she was ashamed of that), but her position as a prostitute. She seemed satisfied, even proud of it. And, yet, how could it be otherwise? Everybody, in order to be able to act, has to consider his occupation important and good. Therefore, in whatever position a person is, he is certain to form such a view of the life of men in general which will make his occupation seem important and good.

It is usually imagined that a thief, a murderer, a spy, a prostitute, acknowledging his or her profession as evil, is ashamed of it. But the contrary is true. People whom fate and their sin-mistakes have placed in a certain position, however false that position may be, form a view of life in general which makes their position seem good and admissible. In order to keep up their view of life, these people instinctively2 keep to the circle of those people who share their views of life and their own place in it. This surprises us, where the persons concerned are thieves, bragging3 about their dexterity4, prostitutes vaunting their depravity, or murderers boasting of their cruelty. This surprises us only because the circle, the atmosphere in which these people live, is limited, and we are outside it. But can we not observe the same phenomenon when the rich boast of their wealth, i.e., robbery; the commanders in the army pride themselves on victories, i.e., murder; and those in high places vaunt their power, i.e., violence? We do not see the perversion5 in the views of life held by these people, only because the circle formed by them is more extensive, and we ourselves are moving inside of it.

And in this manner Maslova had formed her views of life and of her own position. She was a prostitute condemned6 to Siberia, and yet she had a conception of life which made it possible for her to be satisfied with herself, and even to pride herself on her position before others.

According to this conception, the highest good for all men without exception--old, young, schoolboys, generals, educated and uneducated, was connected with the relation of the sexes; therefore, all men, even when they pretended to be occupied with other things, in reality took this view. She was an attractive woman, and therefore she was an important and necessary person. The whole of her former and present life was a confirmation7 of the correctness of this conception.

With such a view of life, she was by no means the lowest, but a very important person. And Maslova prized this view of life more than anything; she could not but prize it, for, if she lost the importance that such a view of life gave her among men, she would lose the meaning of her life. And, in order not to lose the meaning of her life, she instinctively clung to the set that looked at life in the same way as she did. Feeling that Nekhludoff wanted to lead her out into another world, she resisted him, foreseeing that she would have to lose her place in life, with the self-possession and self-respect it gave her. For this reason she drove from her the recollections of her early youth and her first relations with Nekhludoff. These recollections did not correspond with her present conception of the world, and were therefore quite rubbed out of her mind, or, rather, lay somewhere buried and untouched, closed up and plastered over so that they should not escape, as when bees, in order to protect the result of their labour, will sometimes plaster a nest of worms. Therefore, the present Nekhludoff was not the man she had once loved with a pure love, but only a rich gentleman whom she could, and must, make use of, and with whom she could only have the same relations as with men in general.

"No, I could not tell her the chief thing," thought Nekhludoff, moving towards the front doors with the rest of the people. "I did not tell her that I would marry her; I did not tell her so, but I will," he thought.

The two warders at the door let out the visitors, counting them again, and touching8 each one with their hands, so that no extra person should go out, and none remain within. The slap on his shoulder did not offend Nekhludoff this time; he did not even notice it.

第一次重逢的时候,聂赫留朵夫以为卡秋莎见到他,知道他要为她出力并且感到悔恨,一定会高兴,一定会感动,一定又会恢复原来那个卡秋莎的面目。他万万没有料到,原来的那个卡秋莎已经不存在了,只剩下了一个现在的玛丝洛娃。

这使他感到又惊奇又恐惧。

使他感到惊奇的,主要是玛丝洛娃不仅不以自己的身分为耻(不是指她囚犯的身分,当囚犯她是感到羞耻的,而是指她妓女的身分),似乎还觉得心满意足,甚至引以为荣。不过话也得说回来,一个人处在这样的地位,也就非如此不可。不论什么人,倘若要活动,必须自信他的活动是重要的,有益的。因此,一个人,不论地位怎样,他对人生必须具有这样的观点,使他觉得他的活动是重要的,有益的。

通常人们总以为小偷、凶手、间谍、妓女会承认自己的职业卑贱,会感到羞耻。其实正好相反。凡是由命运安排或者自己造了孽而堕落的人,不论他们的地位多么卑贱,他们对人生往往抱着这样的观点,仿佛他们的地位是正当的,高尚的。为了保持这样的观点,他们总是本能地依附那些肯定他们对人生和所处地位的看法的人。但要是小偷夸耀他们的伎俩,妓女夸耀她们的淫荡,凶手夸耀他们的残忍,我们就会感到惊奇。我们之所以会感到惊奇,无非因为这些人的生活圈子狭小,生活习气特殊,而我们却是局外人。不过,要是富翁夸耀他们的财富,也就是他们的巧取豪夺,军事长官夸耀他们的胜利,也就是他们的血腥屠杀,统治者夸耀他们的威力,也就是他们的强暴残忍,还不都是同一回事?我们看不出这些人歪曲了生活概念,看不出他们为了替自己的地位辩护而颠倒善恶,这无非因为他们的圈子比较大,人数比较多,而且我们自己也是这个圈子里的人。

玛丝洛娃就是这样看待她的生活和她在世界上的地位的。她是个妓女,被判处服苦役,然而她也有她的世界观,而且凭这种世界观她能自我欣赏,甚至自命不凡。

这个世界观就是:凡是男人,不论年老年轻,不论是中学生还是将军,受过教育的还是没有受过教育的,无一例外,个个认为同富有魅力的女人性交就是人生最大的乐事。因此,凡是男人,表面上都装作在为别的事忙碌,其实都一味渴望着这件事。她是一个富有魅力的女人,可以满足,也可以不满足他们的这种欲望,因此她是一个重要的不可缺少的人物。

她过去的生活和现在的生活全都证实这种观点是正确的。

在这十年中间,不论在什么地方,她都看见,一切男人,从聂赫留朵夫和上了年纪的警察局长开始,到谨慎小心的监狱看守为止,个个都需要她。至于那些不需要她的男人,她没有看到,对他们也不加注意。因此,照她看来,茫茫尘世无非是好色之徒聚居的渊蔽,他们从四面八方窥伺她,不择手段——欺骗、暴力、金钱、诡计——去占有她。

玛丝洛娃就是这样看待人生的。从这样的人生观出发,她不仅不是一个卑贱的人,而且是一个很重要的人。玛丝洛娃把这样的人生观看得高于一切。她不能不珍重它,因为一旦抛弃这样的人生观,她就会丧失生活在人间的意义。为了不丧失自己的生活意义,她本能地依附于具有同样人生观的人。她发觉聂赫留朵夫要把她拉到另一个世界里去,就加以抵制,因为预见到在那个世界里她将丧失这样的生活地位,从而也就丧失自信心和自尊心。也就因为这个缘故,她竭力避免回忆年轻时的事和她同聂赫留朵夫最初的关系。那些往事的回忆同她现在的世界观格格不入,因此已从她的记忆里抹掉,或者说原封不动地深埋在记忆里,而且封存得那么严密,就象蜜蜂把一窝螟虫(幼虫)封起来,免得它们糟蹋蜜蜂的全部劳动成果一样。因此,现在的聂赫留朵夫对她来说已不是她一度以纯洁的爱情爱过的人,而只是一个阔老爷。她可以而且应该利用他,她和他只能维持她和一切男人那样的关系。

“嗯,我没有能把主要的话说出来,”聂赫留朵夫跟人群一起往出口处走去时想。“我没有告诉她我要同她结婚。尽管没有说,但我会这样做的。”

门口的两个看守又用手逐个拍着探监的人,点着数,免得多放一个人出去,或者把一个人留在牢里。这一次他们拍聂赫留朵夫的背,聂赫留朵夫不仅没有生气,而且简直没有注意到。


点击收听单词发音收听单词发音  

1 horrified 8rUzZU     
a.(表现出)恐惧的
参考例句:
  • The whole country was horrified by the killings. 全国都对这些凶杀案感到大为震惊。
  • We were horrified at the conditions prevailing in local prisons. 地方监狱的普遍状况让我们震惊。
2 instinctively 2qezD2     
adv.本能地
参考例句:
  • As he leaned towards her she instinctively recoiled. 他向她靠近,她本能地往后缩。 来自《简明英汉词典》
  • He knew instinctively where he would find her. 他本能地知道在哪儿能找到她。 来自《简明英汉词典》
3 bragging 4a422247fd139463c12f66057bbcffdf     
v.自夸,吹嘘( brag的现在分词 );大话
参考例句:
  • He's always bragging about his prowess as a cricketer. 他总是吹嘘自己板球水平高超。 来自辞典例句
  • Now you're bragging, darling. You know you don't need to brag. 这就是夸口,亲爱的。你明知道你不必吹。 来自辞典例句
4 dexterity hlXzs     
n.(手的)灵巧,灵活
参考例句:
  • You need manual dexterity to be good at video games.玩好电子游戏手要灵巧。
  • I'm your inferior in manual dexterity.论手巧,我不如你。
5 perversion s3tzJ     
n.曲解;堕落;反常
参考例句:
  • In its most general sense,corruption means the perversion or abandonment.就其最一般的意义上说,舞弊就是堕落,就是背离准则。
  • Her account was a perversion of the truth.她所讲的歪曲了事实。
6 condemned condemned     
adj. 被责难的, 被宣告有罪的 动词condemn的过去式和过去分词
参考例句:
  • He condemned the hypocrisy of those politicians who do one thing and say another. 他谴责了那些说一套做一套的政客的虚伪。
  • The policy has been condemned as a regressive step. 这项政策被认为是一种倒退而受到谴责。
7 confirmation ZYMya     
n.证实,确认,批准
参考例句:
  • We are waiting for confirmation of the news.我们正在等待证实那个消息。
  • We need confirmation in writing before we can send your order out.给你们发送订购的货物之前,我们需要书面确认。
8 touching sg6zQ9     
adj.动人的,使人感伤的
参考例句:
  • It was a touching sight.这是一幅动人的景象。
  • His letter was touching.他的信很感人。


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