雅俗 – Chinese philosophy and culture

yǎsú 雅俗

Highbrow and Lowbrow

指文艺作品品味的雅正与通俗、高尚与低俗。是文艺批评中评论作品品味高下的一对范畴。“雅”指作品的品味高雅正统,符合主流的意识形态;“俗”多指流行于大众与民间的世俗审美标准。从文艺创作上说,高雅文艺优美精良,但人工雕琢的痕迹较重;而通俗文艺源自民间,自然清新,质朴粗放。唐以后,不少文人从通俗文艺中汲取养分,通俗文艺逐渐增多,丰富了社会文艺生活,推动了文艺形态的丰富和发展。

Highbrow and lowbrow, a dichotomy in literary criticism, refer to two kinds of literary and artistic works, namely, the refined versus the popular, and the lofty versus the vulgar. Highbrow describes works that are elegant and reflect what conforms with mainstream ideology, whereas lowbrow-art forms tend to meet popular aesthetic standard. From the perspective of art creation, highbrow art may be exquisite, but often appears affected, whereas lowbrow art, which has a folk origin, is natural, refreshing, unaffected, and unconstrained. From the Tang Dynasty onward, it became a trend for men of letters to borrow the best from popular art, thus further spurring the growth of lowbrow art, enriching cultural life and leading to more diversified artistic expressions.

引例 Citations:

◎子曰:“恶紫之夺朱也,恶郑声之乱雅乐也,恶利口之覆邦家者。”(《论语·阳货》)

(孔子说:“我厌恶用紫色取代红色,厌恶用郑国的音乐扰乱雅正的音乐,憎恶伶牙俐齿而使国家倾覆的人。”)

Confucius said, “I detest replacing red with purple and interfering refined classical music with the music of the State of Zheng. I loathe those who overthrow the state with their glib tongues.” (The Analects)

◎是以绘事图色,文辞尽情,色糅而犬马殊形,情交而雅俗异势。(刘勰《文心雕龙·定势》)

(因此绘画要讲究色彩,写文章要尽力表现思想感情。调配不同的色彩,所画出的狗和马形状才有区别;思想感情有了交错融合,文章的雅俗才显出不同的体势。)

The art of painting requires masterful use of colors, while the art of writing entails effective expression of thoughts and emotions. One needs to blend different colors in order to depict the different shapes of dogs and horses. Only writings that integrate thoughts and emotions demonstrate their highbrow or lowbrow qualities. (Liu Xie: The Literary Mind and the Carving of Dragons)

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