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The Last Lecture (Randy Paushe) - 「最後の授業 ぼくの命があるうちに」- 119冊目

ジャンル: ノンフィクション(自伝)
英語難易度: ★★☆
オススメ度: ★★★☆☆


著者のランディ・パウシュは名門カーネギー・メロン大学のコンピュータ科学の教授でした。 すい臓癌に冒され既に末期症状の状態でありながら、「最後の授業」を学生たちに(そして最愛の妻と娘に向けて)行ったその講義の内容を一冊の本にまとめたものです。(2007年発刊)

「最後の授業」とは「もし死ぬことがわかっていたら」という仮定で特別講義を行う同大学の恒例の催しだそうですが、著者は「仮定」ではなく目前に迫る「事実」として講義を行われました。 残り少ない自らの最後の時間を使ってまでも、人に伝えたい強い思いがあったのでしょう。 そして、講義の約一年後に47歳の若さで亡くなりました。 感動の一冊です。

● 著者の父親(既に亡くなっている)が軍に服役していた際のエピソード。 真の男とはこのような人のことを言うんですね。 著者の人間観が分かります。
My dad had also saved a stack of papers. There were letters regarding his insurance business and documents about his charitable projects. Then, buried in the stack, we found a citation issued in 1945, when my father was in the army. The citation for "heroic achievement" came from the commanding general of the 75th Infantry Division.

On April 11, 1945, my father's infantry company was attacked by German forces, and in the early stages of battle, heavy artillery fire led to eight casualties. According to the citation: "With complete disregard for his own safety, Private Pausch leaped from a covered position and commenced treating the wounded men while shells continued to fall in the immediate vicinity. So successfully did this soldier administer medical attention that all the wounded were evacuated successfully."

In recognition of this, my dad, then 22 years old, was issued the Bronze Star for valor. In the 50 years my parents were married, in the thousands of conversations my dad had with me, it had just never come up. And so there I was, weeks after his death, getting another lesson from him about the meaning of sacrifice - and about the power of humility.

● 「最後の授業」の時にはまだ18ヶ月の幼き娘 Chole。 その娘が大きくなって恋人ができた時に届けたかった言葉。 その想いはもう叶わない。 授業にその言葉を託します。 「本当に素敵な男性を見極めるには…」

My daughter is just 18 months, so I can't tell her this now, but when she's old enough, I want Chloe to know something a female colleague once told me, which is good advice for young ladies everywhere. In fact, pound for pound, it's the best advice I've ever heard. My colleague told me: "It took a long time, but I've finally figured it out. When it comes to men who are romantically interested in you, it's really simple. Just ignore everything they say and only pay attention to what they do." That's it. So here it is, for Chloe.

● 著者は若くして教授職を得ました。 周りの多くの候補生がその秘訣を尋ねたところ、彼が答えた言葉とは… 勤勉の人でした。

  • I got tenure a year earlier than people usually do. That seemed to impress other junior faculty members.

" Wow, you got tenure early," they'd say to me. "What was your secret?" I said, "It's pretty simple. Call me any Friday night in my office at 10 o'clock and I'll tell you."

A lot of people want a shortcut. I find the best shortcut is the long way, which is basically two words: work hard. As I see it, if you work more hours than somebody else, during those hours you learn more about your craft. That can make you more efficient, more able, even happier. Hard work is like compounded interest in the bank. The rewards build faster.

モリー先生との火曜日」(66冊目)、「スティーブ・ジョブズ スタンフォード大学卒業式スピーチ」(キンドルでも出ています)もオススメの二冊。
ところで、この本を読んで谷川俊太郎さんの「さようなら」という詩を思い出しました。 愛する人々を残して旅立つ想いを綴ったものです。本作とは親と子の立場は逆になりますが、とても印象に残りました。 短いので全文掲載。

さようなら   谷川俊太郎


The Last Lecture

The Last Lecture

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