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标题:A Hundred-Year of Vicissitudes

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本文于 2015-12-08 09:42 提交 | 评分:20 | 已有 1264 人浏览

A Hundred-Year of Vicissitudes


Opening to the foreign trade—Shanghai, a metropolis is afterwards a splendid magic.


Shanghai, the oriental port soaked into westerners’ heads the impression of prosperity and amicability, was then among the initial patch of Chinese cities to open the commercial port under the force of warships. After 1840 the British Army entered Shanghai and opened it as a treaty port in 1843. Many other countries pursuing industrial raw materials and dumping superfluous goods set up concessions in Shanghai. From then on, mingled with prosperity and dilemma, harmony and conflict, Shanghai set afoot in taking the lead to undergo the dramatized vicissitudes of a hundred years.


As a trading port, Shanghai became an “Adventurer’s Paradise” and countries from afar set up enterprises in industries of shipping, banking, printing, pharmacy, architecture and public utilities Sprang up like mushrooms. With prosperous water transportation and flourishing commerce, Shanghai soon leaped from a mere gigantic water port to an economic center of multifunction within several decades, becoming “the leading trading port of China”. From the late 19th century to the early 20th century, the abrupt rising of the dominated manufacturing industry drove forcefully the affiliated advancements of finance, real estate, business and trade, not only maintaining its status as a regional financial and commercial centre, but furnishing itself with qualifications to be the world-class cosmopolitan city. Following the development of commerce and industry, foreign banks were seeking access to Shanghai in succession, not to be outdone by Chinese banks. Up to the 1930s, Shanghai jumped to the largest financial center in the Far East, went by the name “New York of the east”, with the Jiangxi Road spotted banks of a maximum being branded as “Wall Street of China”. At that time, Shanghai has been ranked the first in the fast east and the fifth cosmopolitan city worldwide respectively.


With the opening to the outside and provisions of foreign settlements, the westerners brought here as well the experience for Municipal Construction. A series of construction of public facilities deviated from the conventions such as road, transport, communications, firefighting, lighting, medical care, education and environmental sanitation were successively broken ground, unfolding Shanghai a gradual unearthed brand-new look, which is made remarkable in the well-known bridge building movement at the Beginning of the Millennium. In a split second, the new bridges treaded close on another as such, Waibaidu Bridge, Zhapu road Bridge, Sichuan road Bridge, Zhejiang road Bridge, Hengfeng road Bridge, Sanguangtang Bridge and Zhenbeilu Bridge travel as far as the east to the west, setting off a new upsurge of construction in bridge building across the Suzhou Creek, revealing immortal articles and laying a solid foundation for Shanghai urban construction as well as economic and social development.


The early 20th century saw dozens of masterworks sprouted out of Shanghai urban construction. Take the Bund for instance, a rich collection of buildings and structures of various architectural styles of the west was standing elect along the riverside boulevard stretching over 1.5 kilometers, assembling a picturesque 17 European styles of classical architectures embracing that of the U.K., Russia, Germany, Austria, etc., reputed as “International Fair of Architectures”. They are both symbol of Old Shanghai and major landmark of New Shanghai.


Foreign nationals flooded in as the rapid expansion of all-round commercial activities, meanwhile, modern western lifestyles, culture and entertainment were thereafter brought forth as boasted in the establishment of mission press, translation agency, academy; the issue of newspapers and pictorials; the founding of neoteric schools; the building of library and museum and the introduction of entertainments like film, horse race, party and ball, exerting a profound influence over the entire society and rendering Shanghai into “an open commercial center”. The folk art then thereby underwent great changes in the wake of the occupation of occidental civilization. In the early 20th century Shanghai, the masses in gorgeously dressed and richly ornamented, with diversified fashions of diets and high-end sociality platform for those distinguished, was praised as “the oriental Paris”; as the cradle of Chinese film-making industry, Shanghai harbors countless pop stars, first-class film artists with all its unprecedented glitz and glamour, was termed “the oriental Hollywood”; in addition, it still was the core of Chinese Modern Literature—a galaxy of renowned figures resplendently shining over the circle; Shanghai last but not the least also enjoyed the art focus and publishing center…

Through the ablution and evolution of hundred years, Shanghai then gorgeous yet variegated, blooming but dazzling mixed with the finest and the worst, poverty and extravagance, heaven and hell, imbued with fascination and glamour, was matched the nickname “the devil’s den”.


However, the 100-year of vicissitudes was on the other hand an intertexture of humiliation and sorrow as well as extermination and contention. From The Swords Society Revolt to the movement opposing goods from Russia and the U.S., the Revolution of 1911 to the May 4th Movement, Massacre of May 30th Movement to the Song Hu battles, the Founding of the Communist Party of China to the liberation of Shanghai, rising against oppression or enslavement and herein the spirit of striving for freedom and eudemonia prevalent over this city has never faded. Shanghai was brimming with abundant incredible wonders and illustrious heroes, rousing the deaf and awakening the unhearing, all of which enabled the everlasting spiritual monument. Today’s 76, 78 Xing Ye Road (original 106, 108 Wang Zhi Road) is nevertheless reverberated with voices uttered by leaders out of the First National People”s Congress bucking for national salvation and emancipation nationwide; at 7, Xiangshan Road (original 29, Moliai Road), the ideal, love and affection that Madam Song Qingling pursued after withal impresses us profoundly; socialist writers at the Duo Lun Road as Lu Xun , Mao Dun , Guo Moruo, Nien Cheng and writers of Democratic Left Alliance  represented as Ding Ling, Rou Shi and alike with firm and unyielding character imbued with national spirit and free will lead to greater social progress.

We shall never yield the unshakable memory of bitterness over a century, or the universal fraternity embraced by the city. During the World War Two, it was Shanghai that welcomed Jewish refugees with a total of 25,000 with open arms, outnumbering the sum total of Canada, Australia, Singapore, India and South Africa. Some of the Jews reckoned Shanghai as their second hometown, after having undergone the vicissitudes of a 70-year history, still are mindful of such a grandeur boundless friendship of universal fraternity.


If the civilization of Shanghai with rapidity is attributed to western warships and merchants, then we Chinese shall be praised for the unswerving and perseverant endeavor upon the urban construction, whether suffering humiliation and contention or chaos and confusion. The construction of oriental port in Shanghai was found sustenance in Mr. Sun Yat-sen’s voiceless desire to be a world power, whereas the implementation of “Greater Shanghai Schema” bore the unrealized dreams of Nanjing Provisional Government, hitherto however, the remains of which such as the Green Tile Building of Shanghai University of Sport (originally Shanghai Special Municipal Buildings), Jiangwan Stadium of Shanghai (originally Shanghai Stadium), Shanghai Tongji Middle School Library (originally Shanghai Library), Shanghai Medical Imaging Center (originally Shanghai Museum) or so none the less lost us in fantasy and wild. At present, the implementation of establishing International Commercial Center and a hub of traffic center finalized the completion of Mr. Sun Yat-sen’s dreams.


Spanning the 100-year of vicissitudes, Shanghai is bound to ushering a brand-new epoch, where every wish, aspiration and pride shall find its finest interpretation.


A century under radical transformation


Shanghai, the metropolis with high degree of centralized State-Owned Enterprises serving as the economic lifelines for the New China for a considerable period of time to come. As the “eldest son” of People’s Republic of China, Shanghai assured the state revenue, furnishing various household supplies nationwide.


On Feb. 28th, 1972, Sino-US joint communiqué was released globally, which hereby witness an international environment to promote the resurgence and prosperity of China.


The Third Plenary Session of the 11th Central Committee of the C.P.C. held in December 1978 commenced in China the overall action of “setting things right”, at the same time drawing back the prelude of reform and opening-up, with which a new chapter was opened in the development of human society.


Much that remains to be done shouldered unshakably upon the present generations for implementing the revitalization of our great nation.


The special economic zone in coastal areas  centered in Guangdong province as a Pioneer in Opening and Development by Virtue of Its overwhelming geographical superiority adjacent to Hong Kong and Macau, unleashing inhibited productivity with a remarkable turbulent currents of the reform and open up era swept even across the whole society.


However, at the initial stage of reform and open up, Shanghai was actually a fullback sustaining the transformation of elsewhere across the nation—undertaking tremendous responsibilities, biting the bullet and of noble character yet shouldering heavy burden and stepping forward in solitude as the years turn.


Even so, Shanghai has never ceased the pace edging forward.

Economically, Shanghai Baoshan General Iron and Steel Works located at the mouth of the Yangtze River and Shanghai Petrochemical Complex at Huangzhou Bay as if two wings highlighting in the glaring economic takeoffs.


Concerning the urban construction, two major phases should be noted, with the initial phase enhancing the scale of urban dwelling construction system, rebuilding 16 passenger stations of the Shanghai port, expanding 4 sewage treatment plants; the latter phase from 1985 seeing a rapid development and completion of projects of great variety—Shanghai Railway Station, Hangzhou Dual Railway, expansion of departure lounge of Hongqiao Airport, shipping dock  like Bao Shan and Guan Gang, highways like Shanghai-Jiading and Xin-Song, East Yan An Road Tunnel, Concrete Pavement Widening and Renovation of the main street in the downtown areas and diversion work for irrigation of Upper Reach of Huangpu River. Maintenance for Steel Structure of Bridges over the Huangpu River, sewage treatment project and subway engineering are successively coming one after another—the polishing of the appearance of a city and Investment Environment were gradually taking shape.


Culturally, Shanghai cultural circle holds high the great banner of Shanghai School. Members of this school were themselves educated literati who had come to question their very status and the purpose of art, and had anticipated the impending modernization of Chinese society. In an era of rapid social change, works from the Shanghai School were widely innovative and diverse, and often contained thoughtful yet subtle social commentary. Artworks such as short fiction Scar, the drama In the Silence, the novel  Oh, People  and Through the Year, the film Legend of Tianyun Mountain,  Love on Lushan Mountain, Reminiscences in the South of City and Lotus Town exerted once an intense persistent effect upon society as a whole.


Educationally, as the official enrollment of universities launched in October 1977, learning rush extended immediately over all Shanghai, witnessed especially readers lining up in position for purchasing along bookstores big or small at Sichuan Road, Huaihai Road and Nanjing Road. Too long a queue, Xinhua Bookstore at the west road of Nanjing once in a while was compelled to deal with in advance. An overpowering need for knowledge formed in society a blast concern with books. Nowhere else can be comparable with Shanghai in the dedication and enthusiasm devoted to education, thus provided the base for the successful cultivation of talents to further juggling for revitalizing our nation.

Though as early as 1978 Shanghai was setting afoot to unveil the prelude of discussion upon strategy for economic development, due to its increasing importance both strategically and economically, decision levels of China contemplated again and again through argumentation, preparations and investigations of quantity before playing our trump card, never ever did the related agencies cease the comparison and exploration among schemes of distinction.


It was not until the late 1980s, did Shanghai count down to the active preparations for reformation commencing on full scale. Reams of substantial works were devoted whether culturally or economically, strategic bet or urban planning, with its focus well into the R&D program in the Pudong district.

At the initial stage of reform and open up, Shanghai as the largest city of China, was questing for truth while trudging in the arduous journey, standing erect on the hillside constantly accumulating strength so as to surpass itself.


Having been reported 8 times by The Times and elected four times “holds the record”—Comrade Deng Xiaoping, the paramount designer of Chinese Reform and Open up had ever been there with Shanghai people during the Spring Festival for 7 consecutive years, giving mature consideration to all aspects of a question, he made the decision to play this trump to the world with conviction and determination—”you must seize the tail of the 20th century, the last golden opportunity!”


It is the final opportunity not only for the development of Shanghai, but the immortal chance to revitalize our great nation!


Shanghai is ready to make a splash!


The development and opening of the Pudong Area of Shanghai served as a prelude to a magnificent paean as a whole, offering Shanghai the chance to rocket as spotlights in the world arena overnight. Throughout the freeway of Reform and open up, Shanghai hit the world like a thunder bolt so fast that soon became the locomotive of the national economy.


Everything went as an unparalleled feat!


During the first-round public infrastructure, 25 billion Yuan was issued for the constructions of energy, communications, transport and environmental protection alike 10-key projects; investments on the second-round public infrastructure total 59.5 billion Yuan, symbolized by the constructions of airport, information port and deepwater harbor; during the Tenth Five-Year Plan, greater availability of capitals were poured into the construction, with a total sum of 100 billion Yuan—the scale and heroic style of construction in Pudong district astonished home and abroad.


A tall vertical antenna with a height of 110 meters and 4,500,000-ton weight was hoisted squarely over the 350-meter-high Oriented Pearl TV Tower in one shot—from the split second, making which a new landmark of Shanghai, towering by alongside the Huangpu River and fixing her smiling gaze on the incessant changes in this cosmopolitan city.


Supertall skyscrapers and projects like Pudong International Airport, Pudong Infoport terminal Project, the Waigaoqiao New Port Zone, Jin Mao Tower  and International Conference Centre came into being constantly; Lujiazui, originally a forest of slum-dwellers and cultivated-lands was seen undergone a sudden leap from rags to riches, turning into the world-class CBD merely in a while comparable to Manhattan of New York, as quoted, “While the sound of backwash remains along the Huangpu River, the New Pudong boasts its beauty as handsome as paint.” Pudong thereafter swiftly turned into better home and garden pairing off economy and society wing to wing, harmonizing the relationships between human and nature, thus an ideal place for investments in and out.


Despite efforts to promote Pudong, Puxi remains the cultural and entertainment center of Shanghai. As the saying goes, “once a great hawk spreads its wings, it shall skyrocket steadily up the ranks.” The erectors of Shanghai swept away all obstacles in a ruggedly tough manner, opening up anticlimactic milestones in the urban construction again and again.


The construction of Yangshan Deepwater Project consists of Planning and Construction of Yangshan Deepwater Port, Donghai Bridge and riverfront landscape.


Road construction with the Inner Ring Road, Middle Ring Road, and Outer Ring Road as its prominent.


The project of cross-river bridges featured by Yangpu Bridge, Nanpu Bridge, Xupu Bridge, Fengpu Bridge and Lupu Bridge together with Yangtze bridge-cum-tunnels constituted by cross-river tunnels like East Yan An Road Tunnel, Outer Ring cross-river project, Dalian Road tunnel project and the Fuxingdonglu roadway tunnel.


17 lines of Railways were added to agenda, reaching a total of 202 kilometers, about to rank the first worldwide.


Further still, major projects as Hongqiao terminal, Bund reformation project, reconstruction of old area and Regulation of Suzhou Creek were also under deliberation…It is the most noteworthy surging historical picture showered to date after Shanghai entered its era, creating monumental architectural creation regarded with awe all over the world.


To this day, Shanghai has set numerous records and won top accolades in fields of abundance—launching the first stock exchange, issuing the first share, establishing the first shipping exchange, founding the first futures exchange and conducting the first re-employment service center…


Shanghai beholds itself the breadth of vision, opening the door to immigrations in and out, including an influx of talents among foreign nationals and overseas returnees to the city. Postured with excellent tolerance, it is penetrating into “new Shanghainese” a gorgeous cast and spirit.


All those facts verified Shanghai’s efforts spared upon today’s unrestrained prosperity and assumption of a new aspect—its unique city culture demonstrated in the eyes of the world a converge landscape of the east and the west—a metropolis between Tradition and Modernity, the east and west; a cosmopolitan city with an eclectic mixture, recreation and evolution of occidental civilization and oriental civilization.


The Oriental Pearl of resplendence witnessed a fanciful miracle upon naissance of Shanghai—the epic achieving startling sensation while surging forward with great momentum.

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