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1930 年代的中国绑匪

Derek Parfit 出生在 1942 年的成都,当时他父母都在中国做医生、教医学,不过 Derek 出生一年后,他们就离开了中国。所以这位英国哲学家与中国有很微妙的关系。

刚看到 Parfit 在 On What Matters Vol. 1 里讨论康德伦理学中的 merely as a means 问题时,写到他母亲在 1930 年代的中国的遭遇:

In a case that is less clear, when my mother travelled on a Chinese river in the 1930s, her boat was held up by bandits, whose moral principles permitted them to take, from ordinary people, only half their property. These bandits let my mother choose whether they would take her engagement ring or her wedding ring. If these people treated my mother as a means, they did not treat her merely as a means. Were they close to doing that? I am inclined to answer No. But this may be a borderline case, in which this question has no definite answer.

顺带一说,我认为中文里「20 世纪 30 年代」这种说法就像把 2018 年说成「21 世纪第 18 年」一样累赘而愚蠢,然而大陆的正式出版物中似乎还不允许「1930 年代」这种说法。

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