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建国60周年流行词中英对照

发布:englishfan    时间:2009-09-30 14:41:57     浏览:2538次

从“知青”(educated youth)、“铁饭碗”(iron rice bowl)到“包二奶”(keeping a mistress),再到今天我们常说的“囧”,60年来的风风雨雨尽数包含在这些流行词汇中。在建国60周年到来之际,让我们一起来盘点60年来国内流行的口头语, 一起回顾伟大祖国过去60年来的点点滴滴……

建国60周年流行词回顾

20世纪50年代 1950s

好好学习,天天向上 study hard and move forward every day

Mao Zedong wrote to honor an 8-year-old boy, Chen Yongkang, who helped police catch a spy in Suzhou, in 1951. Mao asked all kids to study hard to do a better job for the country. Banners with this slogan could be seen in almost every classroom.

年轻人经常戏谑地说Good good study, day day up。它和"Long time no see"(好久不见)一样逐渐成为部分老外能明白的中式英语。但这样的直译只是博君一笑的特例。

粮票 food coupon

This allowed people to get certain food supplies under the planned economy. Low agricultural production meant insufficient food supplies and a quota system and the coupons were a means of distribution. The quota system lasted to the early 1990s. The tickets are now the stuff of collectors.

那时是国家统一定价(uniform pricing system), 后来经济发展了,市场上出现了国家供应粮之外的市场定价粮,通常高于国家牌价,叫做“议价粮”,可以解释为food that's outside the quota system(配额制,定额分配制), which has a higher price。

20世纪60年代 1960s

毛主席语录 quotations from Chairman Mao

建国60周年流行词回顾

Practically everyone has heard of the Little Red Book. This collection of quotations from Mao Zedong's speeches and writings was published from 1964 until about 1976. The title Little Red Book was coined by Westerners because of the red cover and pocket-book size.

当年为了翻译《毛主席语录》,国家动用了强大的专家力量,因此据说英文版“红宝书”是学习翻译的好教材。

红卫兵 Red Guard

In primary schools, Little Red Guards replaced the Young Pioneers. The "Gang of Four" used Red Guards to challenge authority. They were a key cause of social disorder, but their reign ended in 1978.

红卫兵的主要手段是贴“大字报”(wall posters using large Chinese characters as a means of protest or propaganda),以及全国“大串联”(red guards took public transportation for free across the country to exchange revolutionary ideas)。

20世纪70年代 1970s

知青 educated youth

60年代中期到70年代末,约1700万城市中学毕业生响应毛主席的号召来到农村。他们被告诫要尊敬农民,向农民学习。到了1979年,大多数知青返回城市。

From the mid 1960s to the late 1970s, about 17 million urban middle school grads answered Mao's call and flocked to the countryside. They were encouraged to pay respect to and learn from the peasants. By 1979, most educated youth were heading back to the cities.

走后门 pull string 

It originated under the planned economy when people used connections to get goods from the back door of a state-owned shop. This string-pulling reached a sort of climax in the late 1970s when the "educated youth" tried everything possible to get back to the cities.

pull strings来源于木偶戏,引申为幕后操纵,或利用关系进行幕后操纵。相关表达“拉关系”可翻译成make social connections to gain favors.

老外 laowai

The term was coined in the late 1970s as many foreigners came to China after the country's reform and opening up. At first it carried a teasing tone. But now it's more of a friendly nickname.

像大山这种在中国居住、工作或学习时间较久,精通中国文化的外国人常被称作an old China hand(中国通)。

建国60周年流行词回顾

20世纪80年代 1980s

铁饭碗 iron rice bowl

A secure, lifetime job assigned by the government. By the 1980s, with the new market economy, there was a competitive model of employment. And the cherished iron rice bowl was gone after more than 30 years.

英语中,表示一份工作稳定通常用safe, stable或者reliable来形容。

三好学生 all-round good student

Literally, "thrice-good", given to students who were virtuous, talented, and good at PE; first used in the 1950s by Mao to encourage young people to keep fit, study well, and work hard.

“三好”指的是德、智、体三方面,而英语中的 straight A student指的是每门功课都得A的学生。所以两者并不完全对等。“三好学生”也不能翻成 three-goods student,因为goody-goody是指那种在老师面前挣表现的“好”学生。

倒爷 profiteering 

For the market economy, a dual-pricing system was tried in 1979. The price of certain goods was fixed and they were distributed instead of sold. If a factory exceeded its quota, it could sell the surplus at a higher price. People close to government or factory officials got the low-priced goods and sold them at a higher price. This profiteering was outlawed in 1987.

官倒,是指官员利用职权进行倒买倒卖谋利,可译为official profiteering。

待业青年 youth waiting for job 

The unemployed young people of the 1980s, after the government stopped assigning jobs to middle school grads, at state-owned enterprises or government offices. Some unemployed youth could "inherit" a post from a retired parent. Others tried small businesses.

英语中称“待业”为between jobs。现在有些年轻人毕业后take a gap year,四处旅游或学习更多技能后再来找工作。

20世纪90年代 1990s

炒股 speculate in stock

Investing in the stock market was the order of the day in the late 1990s after the Shanghai and Shenzhen exchanges opened. Chinese used a word from cooking, "chao" (stir-fry), to describe the unstable nature of the trading, which involved keeping the shares moving (buying and selling) to keep it hot.

“炒”后来被广泛用于口语,炒房、炒楼都可以用speculate。

包二奶 keeping a mistress

Originally, Cantonese for a married man with a long-term extramarital affair, where he kept a woman by giving her money, a car, or a flat. This became more common in the late 1990s when people got rich enough to afford such costs.

包二奶的男人叫sugar daddy,“傍大款”就是 find a sugar daddy。“包养”:pay for a mistress 。“被包养”: financially dependent on a man who's having an affair with her。

2000年 2000s

小康 well-off

This refers to a standard of living that's considered relatively comfortable. It's originally from Confucius and was used by Deng for the reforms by the end of the 1980s. A well-off society would not only solve the clothing and food problems, but would also push the standard of living to a higher level, culturally and intellectually.

well-off是指具备充足的物质条件,可以过上惬意舒适的生活。按照该定义,如果说一个人well off,他就应该有自己的房子和汽车,衣食住行游,样样不用愁。

建国60周年流行词回顾

囧 sunk

This uncommon character means "brightness" in its classical sense. Around 2008, netizens brought it back to life as a perfect emoticon for online chatting. It has a look of disappointment, so it's gained a new meaning: embarrassment or awkwardness. It is also used in spoken language as an adjective. Sometimes it's used in conjunction with "orz", as "囧rz", to represent a person on hands and knees, a symbol of despair or failure.

英文当中有一些常用的词组或用法,可以表达“囧”,比如 turn red in the face,从字面意思就可看出是因为尴尬,害羞而脸红;或I just died,意思是 I was so embarrassed I really wanted to"die"。


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