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Chinese Indonesians in Taiwan struggle with language and identity to find acceptance

台湾的印尼华人在语言和身份上努力寻求认同

Fed up of being viewed as alien,or fearing violence,ethnic Chinese have been leaving Indonesia for Taiwan for decades,but struggle when they arrive

由于厌倦了被视为外国人,或者害怕暴力,华人几十年来一直在离开印尼去台湾,但到了台湾后仍在挣扎。

Because many can’t speak Mandarin,or speak it badly,and are unfamiliar with Chinese traditions,islanders don’t consider them Chinese even after years there

因为许多人不会说普通话,或者说得不好,而且不熟悉中国传统,所以即使在那里呆了多年,岛民也不认为他们是中国人。



A Chinese Indonesian man offers incense as he prays at a temple in Jakarta’s Chinatown.Many who leave Indonesia for Taiwan struggle with their Chinese identity,and often still feel Indonesian.Photo:AFP

一名印尼华人在雅加达唐人街的一座寺庙祈祷时上香。许多离开印尼去台湾的人,都在为自己的中国身份而奋斗,但也经常感觉自己是印尼人。照片:法新社



“In the eyes of Taiwanese people,no matter how good your Mandarin is,perhaps until you reach the level of an academic,you are still seen as an outsider,”he says.

他说:“在台湾人看来,无论你的普通话有多好,也许在你达到学术水平之前,你仍然被视为局外人。”



Chinese Indonesian families take part in a dragon dance to mark Lunar New Year in Medan,Indonesia.Photo:AFP

印尼华人家庭在印尼棉兰参加庆祝农历新年的舞龙表演。图片:法新社

Chandra’s experience would sound familiar to many Indonesian Chinese living in Taiwan,but the reasons for his disorientation run deeper than most expat“fish out of water”stories.

钱德拉的经历对许多在台湾生活的印尼华人来说是耳熟能详的,但他身份迷惘的原因相比大多数外国人的格格不入而言,故事更加的复杂。

When Indonesia’s second president,Suharto,seized power in 1966 it marked the beginning of the New Order–a regime under which Indonesia’s Chinese were forced to assimilate into native Indonesian society.The Chinese-language press was shut down,Chinese secondary schools were closed and ethnic Chinese organisations were banned.Importing publications in Chinese was forbidden,and the teaching of Chinese also outlawed.

1966年,当印尼第二任总统苏哈托掌权时,它标志着新秩序的开始。在新秩序下,印尼华人被迫融入印尼本土的印尼人中。中文出版社被关闭,中文学校被关闭,华人少数民族组织被禁止。禁止进口中文出版物,禁止教授中文。
(苏哈托( Haji Mohammad Suharto,1921年6月8日—2008年1月27日),印度尼西亚共和国第二任总统、军事强者、种族主义者、屠夫。在1967年至1998年间任总统,为印尼带来了经济增长,贫穷人口减少,人民生活水平大幅提高。他建立了强大的中央集权政府,透过高压手段打压政治异己来维护稳定。苏哈托家族的资产总值达150亿美元,任陆军战略后备部队司令期间,在全国策动反共大清洗,大批共产党员被杀,许多华人被当作共产党员处决。学界分析,“930”事件死亡人数约50万人,至少有30万华人在“930”事件丧生。2008年1月28日,联合国反腐败大会第二次缔约国大会在印度尼西亚召开。2008年1月27日,印尼前总统、高居世界银行“贪污腐败富翁榜”榜首的苏哈托在印尼因多器官衰竭去世,终年86岁。)



Darwin Chandra left Indonesia in 2000 to study international trade at university in Taiwan.Photo:Randy Mulyanto

达尔文·钱德拉于2000年离开印度尼西亚,到台湾的大学学习国际贸易。图片:Randy Mulyanto

This,Chandra says,left Chinese Indonesians feeling disconnected from their roots.Now 37 and a radio announcer for Radio Taiwan International’s Indonesian-language service in Taipei,he regards his identity as paradoxical.“When I am in Taiwan,I am considered a foreigner.But when I go back to Indonesia,I am also considered a foreigner,”he says.

钱德拉说,这(苏哈托时代)导致了印尼华人发现与他们自己的根脱节。现年37岁的他是台湾国际电台驻台北印尼语电台的播音员,他认为他的身份是矛盾的。“当我在台湾的时候,我被认为是外国人。但当我回到印度尼西亚时,我也被认为是外国人。“他说。

Siew-Min Sai,a Taipei-based historian and editor of the 2012 book Chinese Indonesians Reassessed:History,Religion and Belonging,says the Suharto regime was explicitly anti-Chinese.“The thrust of New Order assimilation policy was to discipline and punish Chinese Indonesians,”Sai says.“Their Chineseness had already been predefined as not native,hence alien,to Indonesia.”

2012年出版的《重新认识印尼华人:历史、宗教和归属》一书的作者——台北历史学家Siew Min Sai说,“苏哈托政权显然是反华的。新秩序同化政策的主旨是惩罚和惩罚印尼华人,”Sai说,“对印尼来说,他们的中国性已经被预先定义为不是本地化的,而是外来的。)



“When I arrived I felt ashamed:I’m ethnic Chinese and my family is Chinese,but I couldn’t speak Chinese,”she says.“I also didn’t know much about Chinese traditions.I felt detached from my identity.”

“当我到达台湾时,我感到羞愧:我是华裔,我的家人是华人,但我不会说中文,”她说。“我对中国传统也不太了解。我觉得我与自己的身份格格不入。”




Indonesian protesters shout slogans during a protest this month outside the Election Supervisory Board building following the announcement incumbent Indonesian President Joko Widodo had been re-elected.Photo:EPA

印尼抗议者本月在选举监督委员会大楼外抗议时高喊口号,印尼现任总统佐科·维多多当选连任。图片:EPA

Nevertheless her heritage motivated Timmerman to learn Mandarin“It’s just one of the ways in which I can reconnect with my erased identity,”she says.

尽管如此,蒂默曼的传统促使了她学习普通话,“这只是我重新找回被抹去身份的一种方式,”她说。

Hoon Chang Yau,author of Chinese Identity in Post-Suharto Indonesia:Culture,Politics and Media,published in 2008,says some of the legacies of Suharto’s policy are still deeply embedded in the psyche of Indonesians.These include racial stereotypes and the“subconscious native/non-native division that is still largely embedded in society”.

2008年出版的《后苏哈托时代的印尼华人身份:文化、政治和媒体》一书的作者胡长耀(Hoon Chang Yau)说,苏哈托的一些政治遗产仍然深深地植根于印尼人的心灵中。这些遗产包括种族刻板印象和“仍大量植根于社会中的本土化潜意识/非本土化的分裂”。

“Even though the official classification of‘native’and‘non-native’has been annulled,such differentiation still continues in various areas…however,these are slowly changing,as the Chinese are now more actively participating in politics and in exercising their citizenship rights.”

“尽管官方对‘本地人’和‘非本地人’的分类已被废除,但在各行各业各个领域,这种差别仍然存在。但随着华人越来越积极地参与政治和行使公民权利,这些都在慢慢地发生变化。”

“Even though Suharto and the New Order government are long gone,Sai says,the effects of the assimilation policy are still being felt today.

他说:“虽然苏哈托和他的新秩序政府早已成为过去,但同化政策的影响,至今仍能感受到。



“The KMT was isolated politically at that time,”Chiou says.“They had to gain the support of overseas Chinese to strengthen their legitimacy.”

他说:“国民党当时在政治上是孤立的。”“他们必须得到海外华人的支持,才能加强他们的合法性。”



Iman Yang moved to Taiwan to study Western literature in 1974.Photo:Randy Mulyanto

杨依曼1974年移居台湾学习西方文学。图片:Randy Mulyanto

It was a policy that benefited Iman Yang when she moved to Taiwan to study Western literature in 1974.

这项政策让在1974年移居台湾学习西方文学时的杨依曼受益。

“When I first arrived,everything felt so different because I was from Malang,a small city[in East Java],”Yang says.“Taiwan seemed so modern.New buildings and toll roads were going up everywhere.And it was so much safer than Indonesia.”

杨说:“当我第一次来的时候,一切都很不一样,因为我来自马朗,一个小城市(在东爪哇)。”台湾看起来很现代。到处都有新的建筑物和收费公路。而且它比印度尼西亚安全得多。

But her upbringing left her with some key disadvantages.Yang grew up the youngest of 12 children,and at home the family spoke the Hakka dialect.She was still in primary school when,in 1965,Suharto loyalists ordered Chinese schools to close and banned the teaching of Chinese.

但她的成长过程给她带来了一些关键的不利因素。杨依曼在家里是12个孩子中最小的一个,在家里,家里人都说客家话。1965年,苏哈托的拥护者命令中文学校关闭并禁止汉语教学时,杨依曼还在小学上学。



Yang says that for seven years she spoke only Indonesian and Javanese.

杨说,之后七年,她只会讲印尼语和爪哇语。



(译注:苏加诺(Bung Sukarno),1901年6月6日出生于东爪哇苏腊巴亚(泗水)的土著贵族家庭,土木工程师学位,印度尼西亚国父。
苏加诺致力于民族独立斗争,历任印度尼西亚民族政治联盟主席,印度尼西亚党主席,印度尼西亚共和国总统等职务,被称为“印尼国父。一贯主张执行反帝反殖的不结盟外交政策,促进亚非人民的团结合作。1965年“印尼九·三〇事件”后总统权力被军人集团剥夺。1967年3月被撤销总统职权并遭软禁。1970年6月21日,苏加诺在雅加达病逝,享年69岁。)

“Some of the older generation of Chinese Indonesians are trying to recover the Chinese cultural and linguistic heritage that was lost during the New Order regime,”he says.“But the younger generation are a lot more global in their identity,especially in urban areas;their Chineseness is very cosmopolitan,and very different from the older generation.”

他说:“一些老一辈的印尼华人正试图恢复在新秩序统治期间失去的中国文化和语言遗产。”“但年轻一代的身份更加全球化,特别是在城市地区;他们的中国化是世界性的,与老一代有很大的不同。”

Setefanus Suprajitno,associate professor of cultural studies at Petra Christian University in the Indonesian city of Surabaya,says:“Indonesians who move to a majority Chinese country don’t necessarily anticipate problems.They’re surprised when they find the culture isn’t the same.”

印度尼西亚泗水市佩特拉基督教大学文化研究副教授塞特法努斯·苏拉吉特诺说:“移居到大多数华人国家的印尼人不一定会预料到问题的发生。当他们发现文化不一样时,他们会感到惊讶。”

Suprajitno says that many Chinese Indonesians who migrate to Chinese-majority countries have a hard time fitting in.

苏拉吉特诺说:许多移居到华人占多数的国家的印尼华人很难适应。


Setefanus Suprajitno is an associate professor of cultural studies at Petra Christian University in Surabaya,Indonesia.Photo:Courtesy of Setefanus Suprajitno

塞特凡努斯·苏普拉吉特诺是印尼泗水市佩特拉基督教大学的文化研究副教授。
图片:塞特凡努斯·苏普拉吉特诺提供

“Even those who are knowledgeable about Chinese culture find that it doesn’t make them Chinese in the sense it’s understood in Taiwan,”he says.“Their preconception of Taiwan is very different to how it turns out to be in reality.”

他说:“即使是那些了解中国文化的人也发现,在台湾,中国文化并不能使他们成为中国人。他们对台湾的先入为主的看法与事实上的不同。”

Timmerman continues to take Mandarin classes two days a week and practices with her local friends.

蒂默曼继续每周上两天的普通话课程,并和她的当地朋友一起练习。

“My first instinct is to say‘I am an Indonesian’,but then I realise my Indonesian-ness is complex.‘Native’Indonesians might describe their identity more easily;it takes me two or three paragraphs to describe mine,”she says.

她说:“我的第一本能是说‘我是一个印尼人’,但后来我意识到我的印尼身份具有复杂性,土著人可能更容易描述他们的身份,但我需要两三倍的时间来描述我的身份。”


The interior of Yang’s Sate House restaurant in Taipei.Photo:Randy Mulyanto

台北杨氏酒楼餐厅的内部。图片:Randy Mulyanto

While Chandra now has permanent residency in Taiwan,he says he will always be Indonesian.

钱德拉现在台湾有永久居留权,但他说他永远是印尼人。

“It’s simple,”he says,“I am an Indonesian who happens to have a Chinese cultural background.You can’t choose your background–you were born that way.”

“这很简单,”他说,“我是一个印尼人,碰巧有中国文化背景。”你不能选择你的背景-你生来就是这样的。“

“Chinese people like to wander.But wherever we go,we are considered immigrants,”says Yang.“But I am also proud to be an Indonesian living in Taiwan.When I hear our national anthem I still get goosebumps.”

杨说:“华人喜欢到处走,但无论我们去哪里,我们都被认为是移民。但我也为自己是一个住在台湾的印尼人而感到自豪。当我听到国歌时,我还是会感到很兴奋。”