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Nineteen Eighty-Four

Discussion in 'BigFooty Book Club' started by Kong, Apr 12, 2012.

Put it out there
  1. Kong

    Kong User of non-performance enhancing PEDS

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    Possibly my all time favourite book, although admittedly I haven't read many. :p

    Disappointed not to see another thread on this yet.

    Such a lasting experience, and I still think about it a fair bit.
     

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  2. Cursed_Cat

    Cursed_Cat Premiership Player

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    Nice one, Kong, one of my favourites too.

    There is actually a bit of discussion (erm, most it just me waffling unfortunately) on this thread :

    http://www.bigfooty.com/forum/showthread.php?t=299115&page=4

    Not long after posting on the linked thread my sister brought 1984 up in conversation, apparently I had lent her the book years ago, and she was interested in a re-read - so I dug out my old tattered copy, and, realising it was on it's last legs (pages falling out) I ordered a hardback edition from the Book Depository.
    It arrived last week - haven't had a re-read yet, just flicked through a few pages, but will tackle it again soon ...
     
  3. Cursed_Cat

    Cursed_Cat Premiership Player

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    just to get some kind of discussion going though, I recall last year when U.S. troops apparently found, shot, killed and dumped the body of Osama Bin Laden.

    It really brought to mind Emmanuel Goldstein, Oceania's faceless enemy.

    As Wikipedia says, Goldstein "may in fact be nothing more than a useful propaganda fabrication of the Ministry of Truth."

    Who knows ?

    But this is partially the beauty of Orwell's book, he causes the reader to re-examine the status quo in relation to government and politics.

    To be honest these are matters that I rarely take much interest in; I was originally interested in reading 1984 because of it's vaguely sci-fi bent (I was only young, maybe 13 but I think younger when I first read the book).

    But once you have read Orwell's book, your eyes are opened to the sinister world of propaganda and dictatorial rule, and you can never un-see these things again - despite my earlier admission of apathy when it comes to most things political, thanks to Orwell I can usually smell governmental bullsh*t when it is dished up.
     
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  4. Cursed_Cat

    Cursed_Cat Premiership Player

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  5. Kong

    Kong User of non-performance enhancing PEDS

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    Yeah, I have no doubt that Goldstein was simply a creation of Big Brother for the aforementioned reasons.

    New film? Nice.

    I've got the original on my computer, but can't bring myself to watch it; I just get the feeling (from the 2 minutes I saw) that it would annoy me.
     
  6. Kong

    Kong User of non-performance enhancing PEDS

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    One thing that I never understood was O'Brien's ability to seemingly read Winston's mind.

    I get that his intellect enabled to have similar thoughts and therefore predict what Winston was thinking, and that by analysing his every move, he could tell when Winston "betrayed Big Brother" in the lock up, for example.

    However, when they were in Room 101, O'Brien revealed the finale to Winston's dream from the beginning of the book, and therefore his biggest fear: the rat.

    O'Brien detailed that beyond the wall in Winston's dream, lay rats.

    How did he know this?
     
  7. Cursed_Cat

    Cursed_Cat Premiership Player

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    I have seen it, maybe even twice, but don't really remember it all that well - can't have been too gripping ! :eek:

    The movie does have John Hurt and Richard Burton in it, so it can't be all bad - I may see if I can find and download it ..
     
  8. Cursed_Cat

    Cursed_Cat Premiership Player

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    Thought Police ?

    I really need to read the book again, must brace myself for that gruelling interrogation/brainwashing/torture sequence at the end though, truly horrifying !
     
  9. Kong

    Kong User of non-performance enhancing PEDS

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    From what I can recall, Winston never wrote it in his diary, though.

    In fact, he never even revealed the full dream to the reader/himself, so I don't know how others could possibly know.
     
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  10. Kong

    Kong User of non-performance enhancing PEDS

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    Yeah that was pretty horrific.

    It just about broke my own spirit when he finally gave Julia up.

    Their reunion was quite sad, too.
     
  11. Cursed_Cat

    Cursed_Cat Premiership Player

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    :( you're gonna make me tear up in a minute ;)

    that's a really interesting point; short response is : "I dont know"
    longer, but no more insightful response is : did we ever truly learn what the Thought Police are capable of ? Who knows, they may have straight-up divined the information from his very mind.

    Alternatively, he may have filled out one of those on-line Internet quizzes that were so prevalent during the days of Myspace and in Facebook's early years - e.g.
    Q : What is your greatest fear ? A : Rats !

    got him ! ;)
     
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  12. Kong

    Kong User of non-performance enhancing PEDS

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    Haha, don't joke about that, you're probably not far off the truth.

    Reading the book, although it was obviously in England which is more relatable to Australia (good thing), I couldn't help but think of China, and how many similarities there are (see: Tiananmen Square).

    Any signs of protest results in death and diappearance from history.
     
  13. MattDoggies

    MattDoggies Draftee

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    Maybe it's as simple as Winston telling O'Brien whilst he is being tortured by him? If I remember correctly (It's been a while since I last read it) Winston was completely out of it during all the torture sessions that he could barely tell where he was or what time of day it was. I'm sure O'Brien could have asked him what his greatest fear was then and Winston wouldn't have recalled telling him.
    As I said I haven't read the book in a while so I might be completely wrong/missed something.

    1984 is one of my favourite books though! You should also read Animal Farm if you haven't already. :thumbsu:
     
  14. Subprime

    Subprime Premiership Player

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    Been a while since I've read it but perhaps Winston told Julia....

    'under the spreading chestnut tree, I sold you and you sold me...'
     
  15. Cursed_Cat

    Cursed_Cat Premiership Player

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    that's a good analogy, China seem hell-bent on keeping their citizens as uninformed and voiceless as possible (e.g. some of the world's toughest Internet restrictions) - their casual attitude to the human rights of their own citizens is very much in keeping with Oceania's !

    I'm changing the subject a bit, but something I found interesting was reading about the post world war 2 climate which inspired a lot of Orwell's planning for 1984.

    When I first read the book years ago I kind of assumed Orwell was casting a cynical eye to the future and more or less prophesising on the shape of things to come.
    It wasn't until a long time after that I read something indicating he had in fact been disillusioned by the political atmosphere post-WWII and the realignment of the reigning powers of the time.

    In many ways it seems Orwell simply extrapolated political practices and trends he was already seeing around him, with a little bit of speculation thrown into the mix.
     
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  16. Cursed_Cat

    Cursed_Cat Premiership Player

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    may have been a while but your quote is spot-on :thumbsu:

    might be time for a re-read ?

    regardless, great to see some contributions to this thread !
     
  17. Cursed_Cat

    Cursed_Cat Premiership Player

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    The first time I read Nineteen Eighty-Four, it was part of a two-in-one type volume which also contained Animal Farm, which I read at the time ... I've also seen the animated movie, we watched it in primary school (!) one year...
     
  18. Kong

    Kong User of non-performance enhancing PEDS

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    Pardon my igorance, but I what's the link with that quote and him telling Julia?

    (It's probably really obvious :eek:)
    Yeah another possibility.

    I guess not answering these questions help build the mistique of The Party.
    Yeah I've heard that's quite good, I might have to buy it.
     
  19. Tulip

    Tulip Club Legend

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    Ordering 1984 and Animal Farm in a combined hardcover in a few days, $20 is a great deal. Already read Animal Farm as school work, but can't wait to get into 1984
     
  20. Subprime

    Subprime Premiership Player

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    Under the spreading chestnut tree, I sold you and you sold me ....its about betrayal isn't it?

    To me it links back to Winston and Julia's love affair, they first made love in a rural setting, not quite under the spreading chestnut tree but it was a roll in the hay in a barn at the end of a secluded country lane.

    Perhaps there, or in little bedsit above the shop, when they were entwined and naked they told each other all their dreams and fears.

    And later after they were detained, under interrogation, Julia sold Winston out, and Winston did likewise to Julia.

    I think that's the way O'Brien would have wanted it, or deemed it necessary, for them to betray one another. At the end of the book they meet and there was nothing left, all the love for each other had gone.

    Then again maybe Winston wrote in his diary.
     
  21. evo

    evo Brownlow Medallist

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    It is really an anti state-socialist tome, but try telling that to most of your teachers/ lecturers.

    Orwell was a anarcho-syndicalist at heart - he was anti big government, impressed by the Spanish Mondragons. By the time he wrote Nineteen Eighty Four, he had become disillusioned with regular socialism and the left side of politics and realised where it would lead. It is a cautionary tale ( obviously) but most people these days appear blissfully unaware what he was cautioning against.


    "I worked out an anarchistic theory that all government is evil, that the punishment always does more harm than the crime and the people can be trusted to behave decently if you will only let them alone."
     
  22. Kong

    Kong User of non-performance enhancing PEDS

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    Yeah good post.

    That, perhaps more than anything, destroyed me; reading Winston and Julia betray each other and reunite without any love remaining.

    What O'Brien did was pure evil.
     
  23. Z_K

    Z_K Brownlow Medallist

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    I really think it's as simple as a statement against totalitarianism.
    Aside from the fact that facism had been beaten up by the time it was published, if there are more socialist characteristics noticable in the Ministries in the book, this is simply a reflection of the late 1940's and the threats present as he perceived them.
     
  24. itsabomber

    itsabomber Debutant

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    Probably my favourite novel of all time. Very different to any other novel I've read but it but it's brilliant on so many different levels. It's just so bleak and prophetic. Time hasn't aged it at all.

    I remember the movie got very luke warm reviews way back when so I've never seen it. I seem to remember somone saying the movie didn't go right to the end of the novel but I may be wrong, it was a long time ago.

    As already mentioned Animal Farm is also worth a read.
     
  25. Northworth

    Northworth rebmeM ytooFgiB

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    One of my all time favourite reads

    Extremely well written... a deep analysis of politics, human nature and fear. There is lots to think about in the relationships between O'Brien, Winston and Julia..

    the end was just heart breaking