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2009-05-07 19:58:45|  分类: 默认分类 |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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PB: Let's end with some discussion of your new book, Identity and Violence. I'd like you to relate it tothis raging debate that's going on, both in Europe and the United States,on multiculturalism. In Europe, it's ragingbecause they're discussing what to do about the radical Muslims in their midst.But it's come up in this country as well.


AS: The new book is reallyconcerned with the importance of the recognition that we have many differentidentities, and that violence is often cultivated and fomented in the world -political violence in particular - by denying all identities other than one,one belligerent identity. You're suddenly told you are a Hutu, and Hutus hateTutsis. And you are a Hutu exclusively. You are not a Rwandan, not an African,not a human being - identities that Tutsis also have. It's by cultivating onesingle bellicose identity that violence is often fostered. I saw that as achild. You were probably a little too young, but you might have watched alittle bit of the aftermath of that, of how the Hindu-Muslim identity suddenlytook over from the broader identity as Indian and human being, or neighbor. Thebook is really about the evil of the illusion of a single identity. Thesubtitle of the new book is The Illusion of Destiny - the idea that somehow you have one pre-determinedidentity and that determines what you can do and how you should live. But, infact, it's up to us to determine what relative importance to attach to ourdifferent affiliations. The Rwandan could say that he is a Rwandan and aKigalian and an African and a human being, just as he can also say, - "Iam a Hutu."


Not only do terrorists, but also those who want to reducethe prevalence of terrorism, often fall for the same trap. A Muslim person hasmany identities. A Muslim person may have an Islamic identity. This can be veryimportant if they are religious. But they may also have an identity as amathematician, identity as a squash player or cricket player, identity as aconservative or a liberal or a radical in politics. Bangladeshseparated from Pakistannot on grounds of religion but on grounds of language, literature, culture, andpolitics, secular politics. But increasingly the battle is engaged by saying, -"Yes, the only way of thinking of a Muslim is in terms of Islamicidentity," and then to claim, as Prime Minister Tony Blair does, thatIslam is a - "religion of peace." That is just as much of anovergeneralization as the terrorists' statement that Islam is a religion thatrequires you to kill those who are opposed to Islam. There have been Muslimrulers who behaved just as the terrorists suggest. Sultan Mahmoud of Gazni, whoraided Indiaa number of times and looted and destroyed temples, killed a lot of people, wascertainly a Muslim. But so was Akbar, immensely tolerant, whose codification, Ibelieve, of minority rights and the need for public discussion had a verystrong inspiring effect in the construction of Indian secularism, evendemocracy insofar as democracy is seen as a government by discussion. Both ofthem were Muslims. They shared a religion but not politics, nor their civicbeliefs.

不仅仅是恐怖主义者,就是那些想降低恐怖主义程度的人们,也会常常掉进这样的陷阱之中。穆斯林人,拥有许多身份。一个穆斯林,可以拥有伊斯兰的身份。如果他们是宗教信徒,这就是很重要的。但是,他们还拥有其他的身份:数学家、壁球运动员(板球运动员)、政治上的保守主义者(自由主义者或激进主义者)。孟加拉国从巴基斯坦分裂出来,不是因为宗教,而是因为语言、文学、文化、政治、世俗政治。但是,日益地,这个争战,有了说法:“是,穆斯林的惟一思想方法,就是它们的伊斯兰身份”,然后,就像英国前首相托尼·布莱尔一样,说:“伊斯兰是一个和平的宗教。”这就像恐怖主义者说“伊斯兰是一个要你去杀反对者”的说法,都是一种过度普遍化的做法。历史是有穆斯森统治者像恐怖主义者说的那样。GazniSultan Mahmoud,抢掠了印度很长时间,劫掠和摧毁寺庙,还杀死了很多人,他当然是一个穆斯林。但是,Akbar也是穆斯林啊,他很坚忍,我相信,他对少数人的权利和公开辩论的法律化,对于建立印度世俗主义甚至是民主,有很大作用。他的民主,与现在的“公开辩论政府”的民主,也是差不多的。他们两位都是穆斯林。他们拥有着同一种宗教,但是,却不是政治,却不是民众信仰。

The term - "moderate Muslim" is a similarconfusion. You're trying to capture in one word the moderateness of politicsand moderateness of religion. But, in fact, you could be a very stronglyreligious Muslim and yet very moderate in politics. At the time when MahatmaGandhi and Muhammad Ali Jinnah were debating, Gandhi was very keen on keepingreligion out of political divisions. But he was deeply religious. Jinnah wasvery keen that religion - Islam, Hinduism, etc. - be brought into politics. Buthe was not a particularly good Muslim. He ate pork, he drank whiskey, and soon.

有一个用词:“温和的穆斯林”,也是同样的模糊不清。你试图在一个词里,把握政治的温和宗教的温和。但是,实际上,你可是一个具有很强宗教信仰的穆斯林,同时还是一个政治上很温和的穆斯林。同时,当甘地和Muhammad Ali Jinnah辩论的时候,甘地很热烈地希望让宗教放在政治派别之外。但是,他又是一个深刻的宗教徒。Jinnah热心地想把宗教(伊斯兰,印度教,等)都放到政治里来。但是,他不是一个特别好的穆斯林。他吃猪肉,也喝酒,等等。

The tragedy is that it's not only those who instigateviolence, but also those trying to fight that violence, who get imprisoned bythat impoverished idea that we have one principal, unchosen identity over whichwe have no command. The need for choice and responsibility, along with clarityof ideas, deserves greater recognition. It can even help to build peace.


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