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角色迷失:我到底是谁?

角色迷失:我到底是谁?

我们翻译这篇文章的理由

很多人发现,当我们进行角色扮演时,会短暂的改变我们的自我意识和行为,那么,经过体验派表演方法训练过的专业演员,是否会更深刻的被所演绎的角色所影响呢?经过科学方法验证,丧失自我的过程很容易发生。研究还发现,我们会很容易受到他人视角的影响。

——张松

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表演改变大脑,所以演员才会陷在角色之中

作者:Christian Jarrett

译者:张松& 郭嘉宁

校对:何翔宇

策划:李蕾

At our English boarding school in the 1990s, my friends and I would spend hours immersed in roleplaying games. Our favourite was Vampire: The Masquerade, and I can well remember experiencing a kind of psychological hangover after spending an afternoon in the character of a ruthless undead villain. It took a while to shake off the fantasy persona, during which time I had to make a conscious effort to keep my manners and morals in check, so as not to get myself into some realworld trouble.

回想起90年代,我在英格兰的寄宿学校的时候,我和朋友会在角色扮演游戏里沉浸个半天。当时我们最爱的是吸血鬼:化装舞会。我清楚地记得我扮了一下午的残暴的不死反派后,我会体验一种心理上的宿醉。当我在幻想的人格时,我必须得有意识的约束自己的行为和道德,以免在真实世界里引起任何麻烦。而从这种幻想的人格中抽离还要花些时间。

If a little fantasy roleplay can lead to a morphing of one’s sense of self, then what must it be like for professional actors, and especially so-called method actors, who follow the teachings of the Russian theatre practitioner Konstantin Stanislavski and truly embody the parts they play?

如果说简单扮演一个想象的角色就能引起自我意识的渐变,那么对于职业演员来说他们会变得怎样?尤其是对于那些接受过俄罗斯喜剧实践家康斯坦丁·斯坦尼斯拉夫斯基方法训练过的,且把自己具象到角色中来的演员。

译者注:康斯坦丁·斯坦尼斯拉夫斯基是《演员的自我修养》的作者,强调体验艺术和表演的真实感

There is certainly anecdotal evidence that actors experience a blending of their real self with their assumed characters. For instance, Benedict Cumberbatch said that, while he enjoyed playing a character as complex as Sherlock Holmes, there is also ‘a kickback. I do get affected by it. There’s a sense of being impatient. My mum says I’m much curter with her when I’m filming Sherlock.’

确实有演员会体会到自己扮演的角色会掺杂到自己真实生活中来。比如说本尼迪克特·康伯巴奇说过,即便他享受扮演夏洛克·福尔摩斯这么复杂的角色,角色确实会给他带来反冲。“我确实会受其影响,会变得不耐烦。我妈说当我在拍夏洛克的时候,我跟她会比较唐突无礼。

Mark Seton, a researcher in the Department of Theatre and Performance Studies at the University of Sydney, has even coined the provocative term ‘post-dramatic stress disorder’ to describe the sometimes difficult, lasting effects experienced by actors who lose themselves in a role. ‘Actors may often prolong addictive, codependent and, potentially, destructive habits of the characters they have embodied,’ he writes.

悉尼大学戏剧与表演研究学院研究院马克·塞顿创造了一个颇具争议的术语——“戏剧后压力失调症”来形容演员迷失在自己的角色中所带给自己的艰难的持久的影响。他写到“演员会经常延伸自己所扮演角色的习惯,这些习惯是成瘾的,互相依赖的,也许还会有一定的破坏性。

But some commentators are skeptical about all this. For example, Samuel Kampa of Fordham University in New York City argued on Aeon recently that the notion of character immersion was exaggerated, and that actors ‘don’t literally forget who they are, since their actual beliefs and desires remain the same’.

然而也有人对此类说法表示怀疑。例如纽约福特汉姆大学的塞缪尔·康巴近期在AEON上驳斥道:角色沉浸的说法被夸大了,演员因为信仰和追求不变,所以并不会真正的忘记他们是谁。

Until recently, this debate over whether actors literally lose themselves in their roles was largely a matter of conjecture. However, a pair of research papers in psychology published this year has provided some concrete evidence, and results suggest that actors’ sense of self is changed profoundly by their characters.

直到最近,关于演员是否会在自己的角色中迷失自己这场辩论还大多基于推断。然而,今年心理学领域发表的两篇研究论文提供了坚实的佐证,结论证明演员的自我意识会被其角色深刻地影响。

In one paper, published in Royal Society Open Science, a team led by Steven Brown at McMaster University in Ontario recruited 15 young Canadian actors trained in the Stanislavski approach, and scanned their brains while the actors assumed the role of either Romeo or Juliet, depending on their sex. The actors spent some time getting into character for the balcony scene, and then, while they lay in the scanner, the researchers presented them with a series of personal questions, such as ‘Would you go to a party you were not invited to?’ and ‘Would you tell your parents if you fell in love?’ The actors’ task was to improvise their responses covertly in their heads, while embodying their fictional character.

其中一篇是由安大略麦克马斯特大学史蒂夫·布朗领导的团队在《皇家社会公开科学》所发表,在研究过程中,他们招募了15名受斯坦尼斯拉夫斯基标准方法训练过的年轻加拿大演员,让他们根据性别,自己选择罗密欧或朱丽叶的角色,同时扫描他们的大脑。随着他们逐渐进入到阳台那一幕中的角色,研究人员也会对躺在扫描仪的他们问一系列私人问题,比如“你会前往未受邀的派对吗?”以及“你会告诉你父母你恋爱了吗?”演员要做的就是在演绎他们的角色的同时,还要暗中进行即兴回答。

The researchers then looked at the actors’ brain activity while they were in role, as compared with other scanning sessions in which they answered similar questions either as themselves, or on behalf of someone they knew well (a friend or relative), in which case they were to take a third-person perspective (covertly responding ‘he/she would’ etc). Crucially, being in role as Romeo or Juliet was associated with a distinct pattern of brain activity not seen in the other conditions, even though they too involved thinking about intentions and emotions and/or taking the perspective of another.

之后,研究人员还会更改条件,问相似的问题,做对照组。比如第2组——让他们就当自己;以及第3组——让他们代表自己的亲友(以第三人称回答)。研究人员通过比较演员在三种情况下的大脑活动,得出了重要结论:即使在2个对照组中也要去思考角色意图和情感,且第3组也是站在他人角度,但是,在扮演罗密欧或朱丽叶时,大脑活动会清晰得显示出一种不同于对照组的独特情况。

译者注:本段原作者表达的很乱,所以进行了意译

In particular, acting was associated with the strongest deactivation in regions in the front and midline of the brain that are involving in thinking about the self. ‘This might suggest that acting, as a neurocognitive phenomenon, is a suppression of self processing,’ the researchers said. Another result was that acting was associated with less deactivation of a region called the precuneus, located further to the rear of the brain. Typically, activity in this area is reduced by focused attention (such as during meditation), and the researchers speculated that perhaps the raised activity in the precuneus while acting was related to the split of resources required to embody an acting role – ‘the double consciousness that acting theorists talk about’.

在表演的过程中,大脑前部及中线区域出现了最强烈的失活,而这一区域是与思考自我相关的。研究人员称:“这可能意味着,作为一种神经认知现象,表演是对自我加工的抑制。”另一项研究结果显示,表演使得大脑后部的楔前叶区域更加活跃。通常来说,注意力集中(比如在做冥想时)会导致这一区域的活动减少。研究人员推测,在表演时出现的楔前叶活跃可能与大脑资源的拆分相关,表现一个角色会占用脑中部分资源,这也就是“表演理论家说到的双重意识”。

In fact, if anything, these new brain-scan findings – the first time that neuroimaging has been used to study acting – suggest that the process of losing the self occurs rather easily. There was a fourth condition in the study, in which the actors were simply asked to respond as themselves, but with a British accent. They were explicitly instructed not to assume the identity of a British person, yet merely imitating a British accent led to a pattern of brain activity similar to that seen for acting. “Even when a character is not being explicitly portrayed, gestural changes through personal mimicry can be a first step towards the embodiment of a character and the retraction of the self’s resources.”the researchers said.

事实上甚至可以说,这些新的脑部扫描发现——这是神经影像第一次被应用到表演研究中——表明,人很容易失去自我。研究中还测试了第四种情形,即只要求演员以自己的身份回答问题,不过要使用英国口音。虽然他们被明确要求不要假装英国人的身份,但是仅仅对英国口音的模仿就让大脑活动呈现出与表演相似的模式。研究者表示:“即使没有直接演绎一个角色,通过模仿产生的示意动作变化可能是表现角色与自我资源回收的第一步。

That last finding, indicating the ease with which the self can be weakened or overshadowed, jibes with another paper, published recently in The Journal of Experimental Psychology: General by a team at Dartmouth College and Princeton University, led by Meghan Meyer. Across several studies, these researchers asked volunteers to first rate their own personalities, memories or physical attributes, and then to perform the same task from the perspective of another person. For instance, they might score the emotionality of various personal memories, and then rate how a friend or relative would have experienced those same events. Or they would rate how much various character terms applied to themselves, and then how much they matched the personality of a friend.

最后一项发现表明,自我可以被轻易地削弱或掩盖。这与另一篇最近发表在《实验心理学杂志:综述》上的论文结论一致,这项研究在梅根·迈耶(Meghan Meyer)领导下由达特茅斯学院和普林斯顿大学的一个团队完成。在几次实验中,研究人员首先要求志愿者对自己的性格,记忆,或身体素质打分,之后再从另一个人的角度完成同样的任务。比如说,他们可能先对一些个人回忆的情绪表现打分,之后再设想如果一位朋友或亲戚经历同样的事件会有怎样的反应,并进行评价。或者,他们会先判断一些描述性格的词语有多符合自己,之后再衡量它们与一位朋友的贴合程度。

After taking the perspective of another, the volunteers scored themselves once again: the consistent finding was that their self-knowledge was now changed – their self-scores had shifted to become more similar to those they’d given for someone else. For instance, if they had initially said the trait term ‘confident’ was only moderately related to themselves and then rated the term as being strongly related to a friend’s personality, when they came to rescore themselves, they now tended to see themselves as more confident. Remarkably, this morphing of the self with another was still apparent even if a 24-hour gap was left between taking someone else’s perspective and re-rating oneself.

在以另一个人视角回答了问题后,志愿者又重新对自己进行了评估:结果发现他们的自我认识改变了——他们现在对自己的评分更加贴近于之前对他人的评分。比如,如果一开始他们认为“自信”这一特点仅差不多符合自己,之后评定这一特点非常符合一位朋友的性格,当他们再次对自己打分时,他们倾向于将自己看作更加自信。神奇的是,即使在采用他人的视角与对自己重新评分之间相隔了24小时,这种倾向于他人的自我转变仍然十分明显。

These studies didn’t involve overt acting, nor professional actors, and yet merely spending some time thinking about another person seemed to rub off on the volunteers’ sense of self. ‘[B]y simply thinking about another person, we may adapt our self to take the shape of that person,’ said Meyer and her colleagues. In light of these findings, it is little wonder that actors, who sometimes spend weeks, months or even years fully immersed in the role of another person, might experience a drastic alteration to their sense of self.

这些研究中没有刻意的表演,没有专业的演员,只是花些时间想想另一个人似乎就可以消磨志愿者的自我意识。迈耶与她的同事表示:“只需要想着某个人,我们就可能会改变自己以变成那个人的样子。”根据这些研究结果来看,既然演员们有时会在数周,数月,甚至数年中都完全沉浸在另一个人的角色里,他们在自我意识上出现巨大改变也不足为奇了。

That our sense of self should have this ephemeral quality might be a little disconcerting, especially for anyone who has struggled to establish a firm sense of identity. Yet there is an optimistic message here, too. The challenge of improving ourselves – or at least seeing ourselves in a more positive light – might be a little easier than we thought. By roleplaying or acting out the kind of person we would like to become, or merely by thinking about and spending time with people who embody the kind of attributes we would like to see in ourselves, we can find that our sense of self changes in desirable ways. ‘As each of us chooses who to be friend, who to model, and who to ignore,’ write Meyer and her colleagues, ‘we must make these decisions aware of how they shape not only the fabric of our social networks, but even our sense of who we are.’

我们自我意识的这种短暂性可能有些令人不安,尤其对于那些努力想要建立起坚定身份认同感的人来说。但是这些研究也带来了一条乐观的信息。改变自己——或者起码更加积极地看待自己——可能比我们想象中容易。通过扮演我们想要成为的人,或者仅是想着并与那些拥有我们向往的特质的人相处,我们就能发现自我意识在向理想的方向改变。迈耶与她的同事写道,“既然我们每个人都需要选择与谁为友,以谁为榜样,以及哪些人无需理睬,在做出决定时,我们必须明白它们不仅仅影响我们社交网络的构成,甚至可能关系到我们对自我的认识。

原文链接:https://aeon.co/ideas/acting-changes-the-brain-its-how-actors-get-lost-in-a-role

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