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譚黎談我的移民故事

Tan Le: My immigration story

 

Photo of three lions hunting on the Serengeti.

講者:譚黎(Tan Le)

2010年12月演講,2012年2月在TEDxWomen 2011上線

 

翻譯:洪曉慧

編輯:朱學恆

簡繁轉換:洪曉慧

後製:洪曉慧

字幕影片後制:謝旻均

 

影片請按此下載

MAC及手持裝置版本請按此下載

閱讀中文字幕純文字版本

 

關於這場演講

2010年,科技專家譚黎在TEDGlobal講台上示範了一個功能強大的新型界面。但在這場TEDxWomen系列演講中,她訴說了一個非常私人的故事:關於她的家人-母親、祖母和妹妹-逃離越南並開創一個新生活。

 

關於譚黎

譚黎是Emotiv Lifescience共同創始人和總裁,這是一間生物資訊公司,致力於藉由腦電波儀(EEG),確定心理和其他神經系統狀態的生物標誌研究。

 

為什麼要聽她演講

譚黎是Emotiv Lifescience共同創始人和總裁。在此之前,她領導一間致力於開發一種可利用腦波控制數位設備和數位媒體的新型遙控器公司。這是人們長久以來的夢想,不需藉由機械裝置(滑鼠、鍵盤、點擊工具),而讓數位設備直接回應我們的想法。Emotiv公司的EPOC頭戴式裝置,使用16個感測器聆聽整個大腦的活動情形。軟體可「學習」每個使用者大腦的活動模式,例如,當他們想像左轉或跳躍時的情形。

 

譚黎本身就是一個傳奇-她是一位4歲時從越南逃出的難民,16歲進入大學就讀,在她的祖國澳大利亞已成為一位重要的年輕領導者。

 

「我們現在所見的只是冰山一角。我們現在所見的就像是電腦在70年代的潛力一樣。大家都知道未來這將會令人嘆為觀止,能用來做很多事。」

-Nam Do,Emotiv共同創始人

 

譚黎的英語網上資料

Home: visualcv.com/tanttle

Twitter: @tanttle

 

[TED科技‧娛樂‧設計]

已有中譯字幕的TED影片目錄(繁體)(簡體)。請注意繁簡目錄是不一樣的。

 

譚黎談我的移民故事

 

我如何能在10分鐘內說明,關於跨越三代女性間的深刻關連,這些關連的驚人力量如何深植於一位4歲女孩的生命中。她與妹妹緊抱成一團,和她的母親及祖母,30多年前在中國海上的一艘小船中飄盪了五天五夜,這份深植於這位小女孩生命中的關連從未消失過。這位小女孩目前住在舊金山,今天在此講述她的故事。這是個尚未結束的故事,這是一幅尚未完成的拼圖,讓我告訴你們一些構成這幅拼圖的碎片。

 

想像一下第一個碎片:一位將一生奉獻於工作的男人,他是一位詩人,一位劇作家,一位將畢生希望寄託於國家統一和自由的男人,想像他以共產黨員身份進入西貢,面對他一生努力完全白費的事實。文字,他長久以來的朋友,現在嘲笑他。他逃避到沉默中,歷史擊垮了他。他是我的祖父,我從未親眼見過他,但我們的生活比記憶更加深刻,我祖母從未讓我忘記他一生的教訓,我的職責是不允許它白費,我的教訓是學習到,是的,歷史試圖擊垮我們,但我們必須堅持到底。

 

下一塊拼圖是,一艘船在黎明時分,靜靜地駛向大海,我母親Mai,她父親去世時她才18歲,已在父母安排下結婚,生了兩個小女孩。對她來說,生活本身已淬煉成一個任務:帶著家人逃離越南,以及在澳洲展開新生活。對她來說,這件事非成功不可,因此,歷經四年更勝於小說中的冒險後,一艘船駛向大海,偽裝成漁船,所有成年人都知道其中的風險,最大的恐懼是海盜、強姦和死亡。和船上大多數成年人一樣,我母親帶了一小瓶毒藥,如果我們被抓,先是我和妹妹,然後是她和祖母,就會喝下毒藥。

 

我最早的記憶來自那艘船-引擎穩定的轉動聲,船衝破每一道浪的聲音,一望無際的地平線。我不記得那些多次前來,但被我們船上男人虛張聲勢嚇跑的海盜;或引擎故障,六小時無法啟動。但我確實記得馬來西亞海岸外鑽油塔上的燈光,還有那位崩潰死亡的年輕男子;這段旅程對他來說太難以承受。我嚐到的第一個蘋果是鑽油塔上的人給我的,我再也沒嚐過任何蘋果有相同味道。

 

在難民營待了三個月後,我們抵達墨爾本。下一塊拼圖是關於橫跨三代的四位女性共同塑造一個新生活。我們定居在Footscray,一個工人階級居住的郊區,其中人口由各類移民組成,不同於我毫無所知的中產階級,居住在Footscray郊區的我們沒有絲毫權益。商店門口傳來來自其他各國的氣味,以不連貫的英語交談的人們彼此有一個共同點-他們都是重新開始。

 

我母親在農場工作後,再前往汽車裝配線,每週工作6天,輪兩個班。她想辦法擠出時間學習英語,並獲得資訊科技學位。我們很窮,所有收入都得善加分配,但依然額外擠出英語和數學學費的預算,無論必須犧牲什麼。犧牲的通常是新衣服,我們總是穿二手衣物,兩雙上學穿的長襪用來互相隱藏另一雙的破洞;制服長到腳踝,因為必須穿6年。雖不是經常,但曾遭受過尖刻的嘲諷-「細長眼睛」,還有偶爾出現的塗鴉:「亞洲人,滾回家。」家在何方?我心中有某種東西開始僵硬,然後我的決心逐漸凝聚,一個聲音輕輕地對我說:「一切都會過去的。」

 

我母親、妹妹和我睡在同一張床上,我母親每晚都筋疲力盡,但我們彼此分享一天的生活,聆聽祖母在屋內走動的聲音。我母親飽受噩夢煎熬,全都是關於船上的種種,我的工作是保持清醒,直到她噩夢來襲,然後將她喚醒。她開了一間電腦店,然後繼續進修,成為一位美容師,並開創另一個事業。這些女性帶著她們的故事-關於無法度過人生難關、憤怒而固執的男性,及陷在兩個世界間困惑的孩子。

 

我們尋求補助和資助,建立人生中心。我生活在兩個平行的世界,在其中一個世界裡,我是一位典型的亞洲學生,不斷地自我要求;在另一個世界裡,我陷於不安穩的生活中,因暴力、藥物濫用和孤立而傷痕累累。但這些年來的經歷幫助了我,因為這些,我在就讀法律系的最後一年,被選為當年的澳洲傑出青年。我從一片拼圖被彈射到另一片,它們的邊緣無法拼湊在一起。

 

沒沒無聞的Footscray居民譚黎,現在是難民和社會運動者,譚黎應邀到她從未聽過的場所演講,進入她不曾想像過的家庭。我不懂社交禮儀,不知該如何使用餐具,不知該如何對酒類品頭論足,不知該如何談論任何話題。我想重回一個默默無聞郊區中慣有而舒適的生活,祖母、母親和兩位女兒,如同近20年來一樣結束每天的生活,對彼此訴說她們一天的生活,然後入睡,希望我們三人仍睡在同一張床上。我告訴母親,我無法適應,她提醒我,我現在的年紀就跟她當年登上船時一樣,沒有「做不到」這個選項。「勇往直前,」她說,「但不要成為你不適合的人。」

 

所以我向大眾訴說關於青年失業和教育問題,及邊緣化人群與權利被剝奪者所受到的忽視。我越是坦率直言,人們越是希望我訴說更多。我遇見來自各行各業的人,許多人從事他們喜愛的工作,生活在可能性的邊界。即使我已完成學位,我意識到自己無法從事法律方面的工作,必定還有另一片拼圖尚未完整。我同時意識到,身為局外人還不錯;一位新移民,這個場景中的新來者。不僅是還不錯,而是一件值得感激的事,或許這是一份來自那艘船的禮物。因為身為局內人很容易意味著這個界線的崩潰,很容易意味著接受這個領域的設定。現在我已踏出我的安適區域夠遠,足以瞭解,是的,世界確實已分崩離析,但不是以你害怕的方式。

 

不被允許的可能性受到極大鼓勵,其中存在一種能量,一種固執的樂觀,一種謙卑和大膽的奇怪組合,所以我遵循我的直覺,我召集了一小群人,對他們來說,「不可能做到」這個標籤是一個不可抗拒的挑戰。整整一年,我們一文不名,一天結束時,我會煮一大鍋湯,讓所有人共享。我們每晚努力工作,我們大多數想法都很瘋狂,但也有少數相當傑出,我們勇往直前。在一個旅程之後,我決定搬到美國,再次遵循我的直覺。三個月後,我遷往美國,繼續進行這場冒險。

 

在演講結束前,我想談談我的祖母。她生長於一個以儒學為社會規範的時代,掌權者是當地中國人,幾百年來生活一成不變。她出生後不久,父親去世,母親獨自將她扶養成人。17歲時,她成為一位中國人的第二任妻子,他母親毆打她,她得不到丈夫的支持,她將他告上法庭,引起一陣轟動,並為自己的案件提起控訴。當她贏得這場官司時,引起更大的轟動。(笑聲)(掌聲)「不可能做到」這句話被證明是錯誤的。

 

當我在雪梨一間飯店裡淋浴時,她去世了,在600英哩遠的墨爾本。我透過浴簾,看見她站在另一側,我知道她是來道別的,我母親幾分鐘後來電告知此事。幾天後,我們前往一間Footscray的佛教寺廟,坐在她的靈柩旁,對她訴說大家的故事,向她保證,我們仍與她同在。午夜時,一位和尚前來告訴我們,他得將靈柩闔上。母親要我們觸摸她的手,她問那位和尚,「為什麼她的手如此溫暖,身體其餘部份卻如此冰冷?」「因為你們從早上起一直握著,」他說,「你們捨不得放手。」

 

如果說我們家有一個力量泉源,它流貫於女性之間,讓我們成為現在的我們,以及生活所塑造的我們。現在我們可以看到,本來也許會進入我們生命的男性,將會使我們遭受挫折,讓我們輕易被擊敗。現在,我希望擁有自己的孩子,我想到關於那艘船的種種。誰會希望自己有這種經歷?然而,我害怕特權,害怕安逸,害怕權益。我是否能給予他們生命中一艘船,勇敢地衝破每一道浪,聆聽引擎平穩的聲響,眺望廣闊的地平線,但無法保證任何事?我不知道。但如果我能給予他們,而依然能看見他們安然度過一切,我會這麼做。

 

(掌聲)

 

Trevor Neilson:還有,譚的母親今天在現場,在第四或第五排座位上。

 

(掌聲)

 

以下為系統擷取之英文原文

About this Talk

In 2010, technologist Tan Le took the TEDGlobal stage to demo a powerful new interface. But now, at TEDxWomen, she tells a very personal story: the story of her family -- mother, grandmother and sister -- fleeing Vietnam and building a new life.

About the Speaker

Tan Le is the founder & CEO of Emotiv Lifescience, a bioinformatics company that's working on identifying biomarkers for mental and other neurological conditions using electroencephalography (EEG). Full bio »

Transcript

How can I speak in 10 minutes about the bonds of women over three generations, about how the astonishing strength of those bonds took hold in the life of a four-year-old girl huddled with her young sister, her mother and her grandmother for five days and nights in a small boat in the China Sea more than 30 years ago, bonds that took hold in the life of that small girl and never let go -- that small girl now living in San Francisco and speaking to you today? This is not a finished story. It is a jigsaw puzzle still being put together. Let me tell you about some of the pieces.

Imagine the first piece: a man burning his life's work. He is a poet, a playwright, a man whose whole life had been balanced on the single hope of his country's unity and freedom. Imagine him as the communists enter Saigon, confronting the fact that his life had been a complete waste. Words, for so long his friends, now mocked him. He retreated into silence. He died broken by history. He is my grandfather. I never knew him in real life. But our lives are much more than our memories. My grandmother never let me forget his life. My duty was not to allow it to have been in vain, and my lesson was to learn that, yes, history tried to crush us, but we endured.

The next piece of the jigsaw is of a boat in the early dawn slipping silently out to sea. My mother, Mai, was 18 when her father died -- already in an arranged marriage, already with two small girls. For her, life had distilled itself into one task: the escape of her family and a new life in Australia. It was inconceivable to her that she would not succeed. So after a four-year saga that defies fiction, a boat slipped out to sea disguised as a fishing vessel. All the adults knew the risks. The greatest fear was of pirates, rape and death. Like most adults on the boat, my mother carried a small bottle of poison. If we were captured, first my sister and I, then she and my grandmother would drink.

My first memories are from the boat -- the steady beat of the engine, the bow dipping into each wave, the vast and empty horizon. I don't remember the pirates who came many times, but were bluffed by the bravado of the men on our boat, or the engine dying and failing to start for six hours. But I do remember the lights on the oil rig off the Malaysian coast and the young man who collapsed and died, the journey's end too much for him, and the first apple I tasted, given to me by the men on the rig. No apple has ever tasted the same.

After three months in a refugee camp, we landed in Melbourne. And the next piece of the jigsaw is about four women across three generations shaping a new life together. We settled in Footscray, a working-class suburb whose demographic is layers of immigrants. Unlike the settled middle-class suburbs, whose existence I was oblivious of, there was no sense of entitlement in Footscray. The smells from shop doors were from the rest of the world. And the snippets of halting English were exchanged between people who had one thing in common, they were starting again.

My mother worked on farms, then on a car assembly line, working six days, double shifts. Somehow she found time to study English and gain IT qualifications. We were poor. All the dollars were allocated and extra tuition in English and mathematics was budgeted for regardless of what missed out, which was usually new clothes; they were always secondhand. Two pairs of stockings for school, each to hide the holes in the other. A school uniform down to the ankles, because it had to last for six years. And there were rare but searing chants of "slit-eye" and the occasional graffiti: "Asian, go home." Go home to where? Something stiffened inside me. There was a gathering of resolve and a quiet voice saying, "I will bypass you."

My mother, my sister and I slept in the same bed. My mother was exhausted each night, but we told one another about our day and listened to the movements of my grandmother around the house. My mother suffered from nightmares all about the boat. And my job was to stay awake until her nightmares came so I could wake her. She opened a computer store then studied to be a beautician and opened another business. And the women came with their stories about men who could not make the transition, angry and inflexible, and troubled children caught between two worlds.

Grants and sponsors were sought. Centers were established. I lived in parallel worlds. In one, I was the classic Asian student, relentless in the demands that I made on myself. In the other, I was enmeshed in lives that were precarious, tragically scarred by violence, drug abuse and isolation. But so many over the years were helped. And for that work, when I was a final year law student, I was chosen as the young Australian of the year. And I was catapulted from one piece of the jigsaw to another, and their edges didn't fit.

Tan Le, anonymous Footscray resident, was now Tan Le, refugee and social activist, invited to speak in venues she had never heard of and into homes whose existence she could never have imagined. I didn't know the protocols. I didn't know how to use the cutlery. I didn't know how to talk about wine. I didn't know how to talk about anything. I wanted to retreat to the routines and comfort of life in an unsung suburb -- a grandmother, a mother and two daughters ending each day as they had for almost 20 years, telling one another the story of their day and falling asleep, the three of us still in the same bed. I told my mother I couldn't do it. She reminded me that I was now the same age she had been when we boarded the boat. No had never been an option. "Just do it," she said, "and don't be what you're not."

So I spoke out on youth unemployment and education and the neglect of the marginalized and the disenfranchised. And the more candidly I spoke, the more I was asked to speak. I met people from all walks of life, so many of them doing the thing they loved, living on the frontiers of possibility. And even though I finished my degree, I realized I could not settle into a career in law. There had to be another piece of the jigsaw. And I realized at the same time that it is okay to be an outsider, a recent arrival, new on the scene -- and not just okay, but something to be thankful for, perhaps a gift from the boat. Because being an insider can so easily mean collapsing the horizons, can so easily mean accepting the presumptions of your province. I have stepped outside my comfort zone enough now to know that, yes, the world does fall apart, but not in the way that you fear.

Possibilities that would not have been allowed were outrageously encouraged. There was an energy there, an implacable optimism, a strange mixture of humility and daring. So I followed my hunches. I gathered around me a small team of people for whom the label "It can't be done" was an irresistible challenge. For a year we were penniless. At the end of each day, I made a huge pot of soup which we all shared. We worked well into each night. Most of our ideas were crazy, but a few were brilliant, and we broke through. I made the decision to move to the U.S. after only one trip. My hunches again. Three months later I had relocated, and the adventure has continued.

Before I close though, let me tell you about my grandmother. She grew up at a time when Confucianism was the social norm and the local Mandarin was the person who mattered. Life hadn't changed for centuries. Her father died soon after she was born. Her mother raised her alone. At 17 she became the second wife of a Mandarin whose mother beat her. With no support from her husband, she caused a sensation by taking him to court and prosecuting her own case, and a far greater sensation when she won. (Laughter) (Applause) "It can't be done" was shown to be wrong.

I was taking a shower in a hotel room in Sydney the moment she died 600 miles away in Melbourne. I looked through the shower screen and saw her standing on the other side. I knew she had come to say goodbye. My mother phoned minutes later. A few days later, we went to a Buddhist temple in Footscray and sat around her casket. We told her stories and assured her that we were still with her. At midnight the monk came and told us he had to close the casket. My mother asked us to feel her hand. She asked the monk, "Why is it that her hand is so warm and the rest of her is so cold?" "Because you have been holding it since this morning," he said. "You have not let it go."

If there is a sinew in our family, it runs through the women. Given who we were and how life had shaped us, we can now see that the men who might have come into our lives would have thwarted us. Defeat would have come too easily. Now I would like to have my own children, and I wonder about the boat. Who could ever wish it on their own? Yet I am afraid of privilege, of ease, of entitlement. Can I give them a bow in their lives, dipping bravely into each wave, the unperturbed and steady beat of the engine, the vast horizon that guarantees nothing? I don't know. But if I could give it and still see them safely through, I would.

(Applause)

Trevor Neilson: And also, Tan's mother is here today in the fourth or fifth row.

(Applause)
 


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