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污名与禁忌不再:当欧洲人开始戴上口罩

Mask-Wearing, Common in Asia, Spreads in the West
污名与禁忌不再:当欧洲人开始戴上口罩

PARIS — Until a few weeks ago, Asian tourists were the only mask wearers in Paris, eliciting puzzlement or suspicion from French locals or even hostility as the coronavirus began sweeping across Europe.

巴黎——直到几周前,巴黎还只有亚洲游客戴口罩,随着新冠病毒开始席卷欧洲,这引起了法国当地人的困惑、怀疑,甚至敌意。

Four days into a national lockdown to stem the outbreak, the French government spokeswoman, Sibeth Ndiaye, warned that face masks were so unfamiliar that wearing them was too difficult technically and could even be “counterproductive.” Even Thursday morning, when asked whether she wore a mask or made her children wear one, she said, “Oh, no, not at all.”

为控制疫情而举国封锁四天后,法国政府发言人茜贝特·恩迪亚耶(Sibeth Ndiaye)警告,人们对口罩太不熟悉,从技术上说,戴口罩难度太大,甚至可能会“适得其反”。甚至在周四上午,当被问及她有没有戴口罩,或者有没有让孩子戴口罩时,她还说,“哦,没有,根本没有。”

This taboo is falling fast, not only in France but across Western countries, after mounting cries from experts who say the practice is effective in curbing the coronavirus pandemic.

口罩禁忌正在迅速消失,不仅是在法国,在西方各国都是如此,因为越来越多的专家表示,这种做法在控制新冠病毒大流行方面是有效的。
 

3月,全国封闭之前,巴黎卢浮宫外。

The shift for Western nations is profound and has had to overcome not merely the logistical challenges of securing enough masks, which are significant enough, but also a deep cultural resistance and even stigma associated with mask-wearing, which some Western leaders described flatly as “alien.”

对西方国家来说,这种转变意义深远,不仅需要克服后勤挑战,确保足够的口罩供应(这个挑战已经够大了),还需要克服一种根深蒂固的文化阻力,甚至是与戴口罩有关的污名——一些西方领导人直接把戴口罩的人说成“异类”。

Seemingly, it won’t be for much longer. After discouraging people from wearing face masks, France, like the United States, has begun urging its citizens to wear basic or homemade ones outside. And some parts of Europe are moving faster than the United States by requiring masks instead of simply recommending their use.

看起来,这种情况不会持续太久。法国和美国一样,先是劝阻人们不要戴口罩,现在开始敦促本国民众在室外戴普通的或是自制的口罩。欧洲一些地区比美国动作更快,他们不是简单地建议戴口罩,而是要求人们戴上口罩。

This week, Austria moved to become the fourth European nation to require masks in public, after the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Turkey.

本周,奥地利成为继捷克、斯洛伐克和土耳其之后,第四个要求在公共场合戴口罩的欧洲国家。

On Wednesday, Sceaux, a small city just south of Paris, became the first municipality in France to require masks in public. Violators will face a fine of 38 euros, or $41. The southern city of Nice announced that it would make masks mandatory next week, and the Paris mayor said Tuesday that 2 million reusable cloth masks would be distributed there.

本周三,位于巴黎南部的小城索镇(Sceaux)成为法国第一个要求在公共场合佩戴口罩的城市。违反者将面临38欧元(合41美元)的罚款。法国南部城市尼斯宣布,将在下周强制人们使用口罩。巴黎市长周二表示,将在该市分发200万个可重复使用的布口罩。

Italian officials in Lombardy, the most stricken region in the world’s hardest-hit nation, made mask-wearing outside mandatory Sunday.

意大利是世界上疫情最严重的国家,而伦巴第是意大利疫情最严重的地区,周日,该市强制要求人们在户外佩戴口罩。

In France, a strong belief that the French would culturally reject the practice — and confidence that masks could be imported quickly if needed — has contributed to a desperate shortage. In the past decade, France’s formidable national stockpile of masks shrank from 1.7 billion to 150 million at the outset of the current pandemic.

在法国,很多人坚信人们会从文化上抵制这种做法,并且相信必要时可以迅速进口口罩,这样的想法导致了口罩严重短缺。在过去十年,法国口罩的国家储备从惊人的17亿个减少到这个大流行病开始时的1.5亿个。

The debate over the simple face mask has sometimes evolved into a larger discussion over the role of the individual in society, pitting the West’s individualism against Asia’s collectivism.

有关口罩本身的讨论,有时演变成关于个人在社会中的角色的更大讨论,将西方的个人主义与亚洲的集体主义对立起来。

President Donald Trump appeared to embody that ambivalence when, even as he announced that the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention now endorsed widespread mask-wearing, he said he would not wear one himself.

特朗普总统宣布美国疾控中心现在支持广泛佩戴口罩时,却表示自己不会戴口罩,似乎就体现了这种矛盾心态。

Frédéric Keck, a French anthropologist specializing in pandemics, said that, in the West, mask-wearing was seen through an individual’s perspective.

专门研究流行病的法国人类学家弗雷德里克·凯克(Frédéric Keck)说,在西方,人们以个人主义角度看待戴口罩的问题。

“‘There’s a virus outside, so I wear a mask only to protect myself,’ ” Keck said, “whereas collective reasoning, in Asian societies, is to say, ‘I wear a mask to protect others.’ ”

“‘外面有病毒,所以我戴口罩只是为了保护自己,’”凯克说,“而在亚洲社会,集体主义理性说,‘我戴口罩是为了保护别人。’”

The difference in mindset is a crucial one given the nature of all but the highest-grade masks: Masks are believed to have some effectiveness at protecting the wearer, especially in crowded spaces, but are most effective at reducing the risks that the virus will be spread through coughing or talking.

这种心态上的差异至关重要,因为除了最高防护级别的口罩外,其他所有口罩都具有同样的性质:人们认为,口罩在保护佩戴者方面具有一定效果,尤其是在拥挤的空间里,但它在降低病毒通过咳嗽或说话传播的风险方面,效果才是最好的。

The French government initially said that the vast majority of people need not wear face masks because they didn’t guarantee the wearer protection. In Asia, and in a few European nations, the logic has been fundamentally different: If all individuals wear masks, the society will be protected.

法国政府最初表示,绝大多数人不需要戴口罩,因为它们并不能保证佩戴者的安全。而亚洲和几个欧洲国家的逻辑从根本上是不同的:如果所有人都戴上口罩,社会就会得到保护。

On Monday, Austria made masks mandatory in supermarkets and drugstores, and riders of public transportation will also be required to wear them next week. Chancellor Sebastian Kurz said that the change would require a “big adjustment” because “masks are alien to our culture.”

周一,奥地利在超市和药店强制实施口罩令,下周起乘坐公共交通工具的乘客也必须佩戴口罩。总理塞巴斯蒂安·库尔茨(Sebastian Kurz)表示,这一变化是一个“重大适应过程”,因为“在我们的文化里,口罩是陌生的东西”。

But masks were also alien to Asia until it was struck by the severe acute respiratory syndrome pandemic in 2003.

然而,直到2003年SARS之前,口罩对于亚洲也是陌生的。

In Japan, after people got used to masks, they continued to wear them against seasonal allergies or to protect one another from germs. Unlike in other Asian nations, where many wear masks against air pollution, mask-wearing became widespread despite the absence of immediate threats.

在日本,当人们习惯了戴口罩后,会继续用它防御季节性过敏或保护彼此免受细菌侵害。与其他亚洲国家的人戴口罩抵挡空气污染不同,尽管没有面临直接威胁,在日本戴口罩仍是很常见的事情。

Mask-wearing has become such a part of daily life that it now plays a role in maintaining an overall feeling of being “reassured” in Japanese society, said Yukiko Iida, an expert on masks at the Environmental Control Center, an environmental consulting company based in Tokyo.

位于东京的环境咨询公司环境控制中心(Environmental Control Center)的口罩专家饭田幸子(Yukiko Iida)说,戴口罩已经成为大家日常生活中的一部分,现在它在维持日本社会总体的“安心”感觉中发挥着作用。

“When you put on a mask, you’re not inconveniencing others when you cough,” Iida said. “You’re showing others that you’re abiding by social etiquette, and so people feel reassured.”

“戴上口罩,咳嗽起来不会给其他人带来不便,”饭田说。“你在向别人表明你是遵守社交礼仪的,这样人们就会放心。”

The debate over masks has focused on the divide between the West and Asia. But even inside the West, sharp differences have emerged.

关于口罩的辩论聚焦在西方和亚洲之间的文化鸿沟上。但是即使是西方国家之间,也出现了尖锐的分歧。

On March 18, the Czech Republic became the first nation in Europe to make mask-wearing mandatory, followed by Slovakia on March 25. Though neither was used to it, people across both countries mobilized by sewing masks at home, often giving them away to doctors, nurses and shop assistants or leaving them on their doors or gates to offer to passersby.

3月18日,捷克成为欧洲第一个强制要求戴口罩的国家,随后是3月25日的斯洛伐克。尽管这两个国家都没有戴口罩的习惯,但两国民众都在家动手缝制口罩,而且还经常把口罩送给医生、护士和售货员,或者将口罩放在门口供路人使用。

Slovakia and the Czech Republic were quicker to embrace face masks, experts said, in part because of their communist legacy’s emphasis on collectivism.

专家说,斯洛伐克和捷克能比较迅速地接受口罩,部分原因是他们有着强调集体主义的共产主义遗产。

“People simply learned to be obedient in critical moments,” said Michal Vasecka, a sociologist at the Bratislava Policy Institute.

布拉迪斯拉发政策研究所(Bratislava Policy Institute)的社会学家米哈尔·瓦薛兹卡(Michal Vasecka)说:“人们学会了在关键时刻服从。”

By contrast, in France, where a sense of individualism is stronger, even government officials were long pessimistic about the adoption of mask-wearing against potential epidemics. In fact, so ingrained was the cultural resistance to masks that, as a security measure, France became in 2011 the first European nation to ban the public covering of the face, including with the Muslim veil.

相比之下,在个人主义意识更强的法国,即使是政府官员,一直以来也对戴口罩防御潜在流行病持悲观态度。实际上,法国对口罩的文化抵抗是如此根深蒂固,以至于在2011年成为第一个出于安全考虑禁止在公共场合遮面——包括穆斯林面纱——的欧洲国家。

A 2010 report by the French Senate, the upper house of Parliament, noted that the practice had been met with “cultural reluctance that has proved insurmountable in the short term.” It added, “More than an act of individual or altruistic protection, wearing a mask is seen as stigmatizing.”

法国参议院在2010年的一份报告中指出,遮面的做法遭遇了“短期内无法克服的文化阻力”。它还说:“戴口罩更多被视为污名,而非个人或利他的保护做法。”

Jean-François Mattéi, a former health minister and the current president of France’s National Academy of Medicine, said that because of the cultural reluctance and budgetary problems, maintaining the national stockpile might have been pushed down the list of government priorities.

前卫生部长、法国国家医学科学院(National Academy of Medicine)现任主席让-弗朗索瓦·马太(Jean-François Mattéi)表示,由于文化上的阻力和预算问题,维持口罩的国家储备不再是政府的优先事项。

Though the French government has yet to make masks mandatory, powerful groups, like the Academy of Medicine, have recommended that they be.

尽管法国政府尚未强制规定戴口罩,但像医学科学院这样的强大组织还是建议必须戴口罩。

Mattéi said that wearing masks during epidemics was likely to “become the norm” in Western countries after the end of the pandemic, adding, “I’m convinced that pretty soon everyone in a family will have their two or three reusable face masks.”

马太说,这次疫情结束后,流行病期间戴口罩很可能在西方国家成为“常态”,他还说:“我坚信,每个家庭成员很快就会常备两到三个可重复使用的口罩。”
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