〈日月潭工事〉的熱帶變奏曲:帝國社會、機械文明與自然環境的對話

作者資訊
高嘉勵
國立中興大學台灣文學與跨國文化研究所助理教授

        田村泰次郎的短篇小說〈日月潭工事〉,是以日治時期殖民地台灣重大的日月潭水力發電工程為腳本而創作的文學作品。本論文主張田村的小說利用在殖民島嶼的熱帶自然環境中進行的現代化工程,揭發「昭和十年代」(指1935年前後)日本因帝國主義和資本主義發展引發的社會問題。首先,論文分析日本當時的法西斯主義走向,以及文學在政治箝制下,試圖透過對市井小民的人性關懷,保持社會批判的能量。其次,論文指出報紙媒體的報導非常關鍵,台灣工地問題的報導,使得作品可跳脫出視熱帶島嶼為樂園的浪漫想像,轉而處理資本主義壓迫下庶民現實生活的困境。

        小說透過將機械文明感官化以及將熱帶山林變成工業文明禁臠的描述,呈現下層庶民無處可逃的悲慘絕境,並進行對資本主義的批判。本文也從熱帶醫學與環境論述切入,分析殖民在地性烙印與監工發狂死亡之間的關係,呈現下層庶民的內在問題。進而闡述日本帝國對熱帶島嶼殖民主義系譜的建立,及昭和十年代社會內部的黑暗無秩序。

 

Tropical Variations in “Construction at Sun Moon Lake”: Dialogues between Imperialist Society, Industrial Civilization, and Natural Environment

        Tamura Taijirō created the short story, “Construction at Sun Moon Lake,” based on the construction of a water power station at Sun Moon Lake in Taiwan during the Japanese colonial period. This story uses this modern construction project in Taiwan to disclose social problems that resulted from Japan’s imperialist and capitalist development during “Shōwa Jū’nendai” (meaning time around 1935). First, Japan’s approach to Fascism greatly affected contemporary literary circles, which tried to maintain a critical position by expressing humanist concern for the lower classes. Second, newspapers, were an important medium for reporting problems at the Sun Moon Lake construction site. Those journalistic reports for intolerable tribulation in reality overturned colonial ideology of romanticizing tropical islands as paradise. The disclosure of laborers’ affliction allowed Tamura’s story to focus on the lower class’s predicament at the hands of capitalist oppression in Taiwan.

        In the story, machines are sensualized and tropical mountains are transformed into captives of industrial civilization in order to criticize capitalism and reveal the obstacles faced by the lower classes as well as their criticisms of capitalism. From the perspective of tropical medicine and environmental discourse, this study also examines relationships between a local colonial scar and an overseer’s madness and death to unveil the inner ills of the lower class. In so doing, this essay demonstrates how Japan established colonial knowledge about the tropical islands it colonized, and how restless Japanese society was during Shōwa Jū’nendai.

引用: 
《科技、醫療與社會》,第21期,頁159-208,2015年10月出版