January 13, 2007

名作『長いお別れ』

 

 

 

 

 

 

 年末、新聞の広告を見てびっくりしたこと。

 早川書房の新刊案内だったが、ナント、あのレイモンド・チャンドラーの、あの『長いお別れ』を、かの村上春樹の新訳で、原題の『ロンググッドバイ』のタイトルで出すというのだ。

 ハードボイルド小説の巨匠はダシール・ハメット、チャンドラー、ロス・マクドナルドが御三家とされる。“正統派ハードボイルドの系譜”というような意味で、「ハメット−チャンドラー−マクドナルド・スクール」なんてアメリカの評論家がつくったことばもある(何をもって正統派というのかはいまだによくわからないが)。
 その中で、たぶん日本人が一番好きなのはチャンドラーだ。
「いいや、ハードボイルドは何と言ってもハメットだ」という人ももちろんいる。日本にハードボイルド小説というジャンルを、とにもかくにもつくった大藪春彦がそうだったし、逢坂剛さんだって、もっともハードボイルド小説らしくて、もっとも好きなのはハメットの『ガラスの鍵』だという。
 しかし、「ハメットだ」という人たちの多くの、その言の裏側には、必ず“チャンドラーなんてセンチメンタルで……”という理由がついてくる。“ロス・マクなんて…”ではない、チャンドラーに対する批判なのだ。でも、それって、つまりアメリカを発祥とする(もっと言えばハメットが始祖だとされる)ハードボイルド・ミステリの中で、チャンドラーのセンチメントな叙情が日本人には一番好まれたから、ということを物語ってはいまいか? とぼくは思っている。

 そのチャンドラーだが、日本語版の訳者は、映画評論家として有名な双葉十三郎(最初の長編『大いなる眠り』)、作家の田中小実昌(『高い窓』ほか)、稲葉明雄(短編集)などがいるが、日本人がチャンドラー好きになったのは、何といっても映画の字幕翻訳家だった清水俊二(戸田奈津子さんの師匠)による翻訳だと思う。
 ネイティブに言わせると、田中コミさんのが一番チャンドラーの雰囲気に近いらしいのだが、清水訳は格調高くてセンチメントで、ぼくも20歳の頃に清水訳を読んで、チャンドラーおよびハードボイルドにはまった。

 清水訳は『さらば愛しき女よ』、『長いお別れ』、『プレイバック』(これに例の「しっかりしていなければ生きていけない。やさしくしてやれなければ生きている資格がない」だっけ? のフレーズが出てくる)、そして未完となった『プードルスプリングス物語』(のち、スペンサー・シリーズのロバート・B・パーカーが書き継いで出版した。訳は菊池光さん)があり、作品そのものとしては『さらば…』が一番よくできていると言われている。
 しかし、ぼくも含めてチャンドラー好きにとっては、ベストは『長いお別れ』――小説としては破綻していると言われるものの――で、その理由はただひとつ、「一番長い作品だから」。 つまり、一番長くチャンドラーの世界に浸っていられるからで、その世界をつくりだしたのが清水俊二の翻訳だった。

 個人的な経験でいえば、20代の頃のぼくは、この小説に何度も救われた。失恋やら何やら20代の頃は落ち込むことに忙しいものだが、そのたびにハヤカワ・ポケミスとしては分厚いこの本を開き、主人公である探偵フィリップ・マーロウその他の言動に慰められた。
 日本人のオトコの多くが「ギムレット」というカクテルを知ったのも、この小説だろうと思う。冒頭でマーロウが知り合い、最後に裏切られる酔っぱらい野郎が、「ギムレットはジンと、ローズという会社のライムジュースでつくるものだ」とバーテンダーにのたまう有名なシーンがある。
 余談だが、何年か前、よく通っていた霞ヶ関のバー「ガスライト」のチーフ・毛利さん(現・銀座「毛利バー」のオーナー・バーテンダー)が、「ローズのライムジュースがありますよ」というから、そいつでギムレットをつくってもらったのだが、酸っぱくってちっともおいしくなかった(笑)。

 その、チャンドラー好きにとっては名作中の名作を春樹訳で出すというのだ。
 こりゃ、ビックリものでしょう?
 いや、もちろん村上春樹がサリンジャーの名作『ライ麦畑でつかまえて』(庄司薫の『赤頭巾ちゃん気をつけて』に始まる“薫くんシリーズ”の文体の原型として知られる)を、原題の『キャッチャー・イン・ザ・ライ』のタイトルで新訳して出したことは知っているし、前述のハメットはハードボイルド研究者としても名高い小鷹信光さんが、そのスタイルがハードボイルドだとされるヘミングウェイの短編集を高見浩さんが、それぞれ訳し直していて、そのような時代になってきたことは面白いと思ってはいるのだが、清水訳の名作を改訳というのは、ぼくにしてみれば、それってクロサワの『椿三十郎』を、湾岸署の青島刑事の主演でリメイクするということと同じようなことじゃないかしら? というような感じに近いのだ。

 もちろん春樹訳が出れば(3月だとか)きっと読むでしょう。読むけれども……



(01:19)

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