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每日英語跟讀 Ep.K397: 這座西班牙小村 書店比學生多 Bookstores Are Keeping This Tiny Spanish Village Alive

· 每日跟讀單元 Daily English

每日英語跟讀 Ep.K397: Bookstores Are Keeping This Tiny Spanish Village Alive

Standing on a hilltop in northwestern Spain, Urueña overlooks a vast and windswept landscape of sunflower and barley fields, as well as a famous winery. The walls of some shops are built directly into the 12th-century ramparts of the village.

位處西班牙西北部一座山頂上的烏魯艾尼亞村,俯瞰一片廣袤且常有強風侵襲的向日葵與大麥田,以及一家知名的釀酒廠。一些店家的牆壁直接建在這個村莊12世紀的防禦土牆裡。

Despite its rugged beauty, Urueña, like many villages in the Spanish countryside, has struggled over recent decades with an aging and dwindling population that has left it stagnant at about only 100 full-time residents. There is no butcher and no baker; both retired in the past few months. The local school has just nine students.

儘管烏魯艾尼亞有種粗獷的美,但就像西班牙鄉間許多村落一樣,近幾十年苦於人口老化與減少,這已使村莊停滯,常住居民僅約百人。沒有肉販和麵包師傅,這兩人都在過去數月退休。當地學校只有9個學生。

But for the past decade or so, one business has been thriving in Urueña: books. There are 11 stores that sell books, including nine dedicated bookshops.

但大約這十年來,有一種生意在烏魯艾尼亞欣欣向榮,就是書店。村裡有11家店賣書,其中9家只賣書。

“I was born in a village that didn’t have a bookstore and where people certainly cared a lot more about farming their land and their animals than about books,” said Francisco Rodríguez, the 53-year-old mayor of Urueña. “This change is a bit strange, but it’s a source of pride for a tiny place to have become a cultural center, which now also certainly makes us different and special compared to the other villages around us.”

烏魯艾尼亞53歲村長羅德里格斯說:「我出生的時候,村裡沒有書店,大家關心耕種土地和畜養動物當然遠勝過看書。這個變化有點奇怪,不過一個小地方變成文化中心讓我們自豪,跟周邊其他村莊相較之下,當然讓我們顯得不同且特別。」

The attempt to turn Urueña into a literary hub dates to 2007, when provincial authorities invested about 3 million euros to help restore and convert village buildings into bookstores and to construct an exhibition and conference center. They offered a symbolic rental fee of 10 euros per month to people interested in running a bookstore.

把烏魯艾尼亞變成書香重鎮的努力始於2007年,當時政府投入300萬歐元,修復村內建物轉作書店,並興建一座會議展覽中心。他們對有意經營書店的人,每月只收象徵性的10歐元租金。

The plan was to keep Urueña alive with book tourism, modeling it after other rural literary hubs across Europe — notably, Montmorillon in France and Hay-on-Wye in Britain. Hay has long hosted one of the continent’s most famous literary festivals.

這個計畫是用書店旅遊維持烏魯艾尼亞的生機,仿效歐洲各地其他農村的書香重鎮,特別是法國的蒙莫里永和英國的瓦伊河畔海伊。海伊長久以來是歐洲最出名書展之一的舉辦地。

Spain has one of Europe’s biggest book-publishing markets, feeding a network of about 3,000 independent bookstores — and double that number if stationery shops and other places that sell books are counted. But about 40% of bookstores have less than 90,000 euros in annual revenue, which amounts to operating “a subsistence business,” according to Álvaro Manso, spokesperson for CEGAL, an association that represents Spain’s independent bookstores.

西班牙是歐洲最大書籍出版市場之一,養活約3000家獨立書店,如果把賣書的文具店和其他地方算在內,數字是兩倍。不過,代表西班牙獨立書店的「西班牙圖書行業協會」發言人曼索說,約40%書店年營收不到9萬歐元,相當於在經營「只夠老闆溫飽的生意」。

“The trend is one in which size matters and more of the very small bookstores will disappear” as they have in other countries where book sectors have consolidated, Manso said.

曼索說,「如今趨勢是規模很重要,更多小書店會消失」,就像其他國家書店業整併一樣。Source article: https://udn.com/news/story/6904/6362727

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