1984 by George Orwell

1984

The year 1984 has come and gone, but George Orwell's prophetic, nightmarish vision in 1949 of the world we were becoming is timelier than ever. 1984 is still the great modern classic of "negative utopia" -a startlingly original and haunting novel that creates an imaginary world that is completely convincing, from the first sentence to the last four words. No one can deny t...

Title:1984
Author:
Rating:
ISBN:0451524934
Edition Language:English
Format Type:Mass Market Paperback
Number of Pages:328 pages

1984 Reviews

  • Bill  Kerwin
    May 28, 2007

    This book is far from perfect. Its characters lack depth, its rhetoric is sometimes didactic, its plot (well, half of it anyway) was lifted from Zumyatin’s

    , and the lengthy Goldstein treatise shoved into the middle is a flaw which alters the structure of the novel like a scar disfigures a face.

    But in the long run, all that does not matter, because George Orwell got it right.

    Orwell, a socialist who fought against Franco, watched appalled as the great Soviet experiment was reduced to a totalita

    This book is far from perfect. Its characters lack depth, its rhetoric is sometimes didactic, its plot (well, half of it anyway) was lifted from Zumyatin’s

    , and the lengthy Goldstein treatise shoved into the middle is a flaw which alters the structure of the novel like a scar disfigures a face.

    But in the long run, all that does not matter, because George Orwell got it right.

    Orwell, a socialist who fought against Franco, watched appalled as the great Soviet experiment was reduced to a totalitarian state, a repressive force equal in evil to Fascist Italy or Nazi Germany. He came to realize that ideology in an authoritarian state is nothing but a distraction, a shiny thing made for the public to stare at. He came to realize that the point of control was more control, the point of torture was more torture, that the point of all their "alternative facts" was to fashion a world where people would no longer possess even a word for truth.

    Orwell’s vision of the world is grim; too grim, some would argue, for it may deprive the faint-hearted among us of hope. But Orwell never wanted to take away hope. No, he wished to shock our hearts into resistance by showing us the authoritarian nightmare achieved: a monument of stasis, a tribute to surveillance and control.

    Here, in the USA, in 2017, our would-be totalitarians are a long way from stasis. Right now they’re stirring up chaos and confusion, spreading lies and then denying they spread them, hoping to gaslight us into a muddle of helplessness and inactivity. They are trying to destroy a vigorous democracy, and they know it will take much chaos and confusion to bring that democracy down. They hate us most when we march together, when we occupy senate offices and jam the congressional switchboard, when we congregate in pubs and coffee houses and share our outrage and fear, for they know that freedom thrives on solidarity and resistance, and that solidarity and resistance engender love and hope. They much prefer it when we brood in solitude, despairing and alone.

    Which reminds me...one of the things we should

    do is brood about the enemy’s ideology (

    ), for while we try to discern his “ideological goals,” the enemy is busy pulling on his boots, and his boots are made with hobnails, with heel irons, and equipped with toecaps of steel.

    Finally, it does not matter who heads up the authoritarian state: a bully boy like Mussolini, a strutting coprophiliac like Hitler, a Napoleonic pig like Stalin, or a brainless dancing bear like Trump. Whatever the current incarnation of “Big Brother” may be, the goal is always the same:

  • Dave
    Jul 28, 2007

    In George Orwell's 1984, Winston Smith is an open source developer who writes his code offline because his ISP has installed packet sniffers that are regulated by the government under the Patriot Act. It's really for his own protection, though. From, like, terrorists and DVD pirates and stuff. Like every good American, he drinks Coca-Cola and his processed food has desensitized his palate to all but four flavors: sweet, salty-so-that-you-will-drink-more-coca-cola, sweet, and Cooler Ranch!(tm). H

    In George Orwell's 1984, Winston Smith is an open source developer who writes his code offline because his ISP has installed packet sniffers that are regulated by the government under the Patriot Act. It's really for his own protection, though. From, like, terrorists and DVD pirates and stuff. Like every good American, he drinks Coca-Cola and his processed food has desensitized his palate to all but four flavors: sweet, salty-so-that-you-will-drink-more-coca-cola, sweet, and Cooler Ranch!(tm). His benevolent overlords have provided him with some war happening somewhere for some reason so that he, and the rest of the population, can be sure that the government is really in his best interests. In fact, the news always has some story about Paris Hilton or yet another white girl who has been abducted by some evil bastard who is biologically wired by 200,000 years of human evolution to fuck 12-year-olds, but is socially conditioned to be obsessed with sex, yet also to feel guilty about it. This culminates into a distorted view of sexuality, and results in rape and murder, which both make for very good news topics. This, too, is in Winston's best interests because, while fear is healthy, thinking *too* much about his own mortality is strictly taboo, as it may lead to something dangerously insightful, and he might lose his taste for Coca Cola and breast implants. The television also plays on his fears of the unknown by exaggerating stereotypes of minorities and homosexuals, under the guise of celebrating "diversity", but even these images of being ghetto-fabulous and a lisping interior designer actually exist solely to promote racism and homophobia, which also prove to be efficient distractions.

    For some reason, Winston gets tired of eating recycled Pop Tarts and eating happy pills and pretending to be interested in sports and manufactured news items. But, in the end, they fix him and he's happy again. Or something.

  • John Wiswell
    Aug 12, 2007

    is not a particularly good novel, but it is a very good essay. On the novel front, the characters are bland and you only care about them because of the awful things they live through. As a novel all the political exposition is heavyhanded, and the message completely overrides any sense of storytelling. As an essay, the points it makes can be earthshaking. It seems everyone who has so much as gotten a parking ticket thinks he lives in a 1984-dystopia. Every administration that reaches for po

    is not a particularly good novel, but it is a very good essay. On the novel front, the characters are bland and you only care about them because of the awful things they live through. As a novel all the political exposition is heavyhanded, and the message completely overrides any sense of storytelling. As an essay, the points it makes can be earthshaking. It seems everyone who has so much as gotten a parking ticket thinks he lives in a 1984-dystopia. Every administration that reaches for power, injures civil liberties or collaborates too much with media is accused of playing Big Brother. These are the successes of

    's paranoia, far outliving its original intent as a battery against where Communism was going (Orwell was a severely disappointed Marxist), and while people who compare their leaders to Big Brother are usually overreaching themselves and speak far away from Orwell's intent and vision, it is a useful catchcloth for dissent. Like so many immortalized books with a social vision,

    's actual substance is so thin that its ideologies and fear-mongering aspects can be stretched and skewed to suit the readers. If you'd like a better sense of the real world and Orwell's intents, rather than third-hand interpretations of his fiction, then his

    is highly recommended.

  • Silvana
    Dec 07, 2007

    WAR IS PEACE.

    FREEDOM IS SLAVERY.

    IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH.

    Those words keep sounding in my head since I read this book. Gosh, probably the most haunting not to mention frightening book I've ever read. 1984 should also be included in the horror genre.

    1984 describes a Utopia. Not Thomas More's version of Utopia, but this is one is the antithesis, i.e. Dystopia. Imagine living in a country, whose leaders apply a totalitarian system in regulating their citizen, in the most extreme ways, which make Hitler

    WAR IS PEACE.

    FREEDOM IS SLAVERY.

    IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH.

    Those words keep sounding in my head since I read this book. Gosh, probably the most haunting not to mention frightening book I've ever read. 1984 should also be included in the horror genre.

    1984 describes a Utopia. Not Thomas More's version of Utopia, but this is one is the antithesis, i.e. Dystopia. Imagine living in a country, whose leaders apply a totalitarian system in regulating their citizen, in the most extreme ways, which make Hitler, Mao, Stalin and that old bloke in

    look like sissies.

    Working, eating, drinking, sleeping, talking, thinking, procreating...in short living, all are controlled by the state. Any hint of obedience or dislike can be detected by various state apparatus such as the Thought Police, telescreen, or even your children, who will not hesitate to betray you to the authorities. Even language is modified in such ways that you cannot express yourself, since individualism is a crime.

    The past is controlled, rewritten into something that will strengthen the incumbent ruler. Who controls the past, controls the future. Who controls the present, controls the past. There is no real truth. The "truth" is what the state says it is. Black is white, 2+2=5, if the state says so.

    The world in 1984 is divided into three states, originated from the ashes from World War II: Oceania (British Isles, the Americas, Pacific, Australia), Eurasia (Europe & Russia), and Eastasia (the rest of it). Continuous warfare between those three (who hold similar ideologies) is required to keep the society's order and peace. Si vis pacem para bellum. That's describes the first slogan.

    The second slogan, freedom is slavery, means the only way to be free is by letting you lose yourself and to be integrated within the Party. That way, you'll be indestructible and immortal.

    Ignorance is strength, means the division on high, middle, low classes in society will never be changed. The middle wants to be the high and they'll act "on behalf of the low" to dethrone the high. Afterwards, a new middle class arises, all will change except the low. The high and middle make and uphold the law, the low (proletarian) is just too stupid to revolt. The state maintains its structure by torture, intimidation, violence, and brainwashing.

    Blimey, Orwell's Animal Farm is already depressing, but 1984 gives "depression" a new meaning, at least for me.

  • Stephen
    Aug 28, 2008

    I am a big fan of speculative fiction and in my literary travels I have encountered a myriad of dystopias, anti-utopias and places and societies that make one want to scream and.....

    ...

    ....

    Simply put, George Orwell's 1984 is unquestionably the most memorable and

    vision of a world gone

    utterly bat-shit psycho that I have ever experienced. Ever!!! Despite being published back in 1948, I have yet to f

    I am a big fan of speculative fiction and in my literary travels I have encountered a myriad of dystopias, anti-utopias and places and societies that make one want to scream and.....

    ...

    ....

    Simply put, George Orwell's 1984 is unquestionably the most memorable and

    vision of a world gone

    utterly bat-shit psycho that I have ever experienced. Ever!!! Despite being published back in 1948, I have yet to find a more chilling, nightmarish locale than Orwell's iconic world of

    and

    . The very mention of either of those terms invokes images of Nazis and Soviet gulags in my mind. Yet Orwell's creation is in many ways even more insidious than these real-world bogeymen.

    I first read this book when I was 12 years old in 7th grade as a...get this...class reading assignment. Looking back on it, I have NO IDEA why on Earth we were reading this book at that age but I do recall we spent quite a bit of time discussing it. I wish I could recall the substance of those discussions because I can only imagine the kind of PIERCING INSIGHT that a group of hormonally challenged pre-teens thought up in regards to this book. Needless to say, I think that this is a book that is best appreciated AFTER your first pimple.

    Anyway, I decided to re-read this book recently as an adult in the hopes that I would be able to gain a great appreciation for this classic. Well, the book did more than that.

    . From the very first sentence,

    to the unforgettable final sentence (which I will not give away here), this story sucked me in, beat the living shit out of me and through me out the other side a hollow, wasted wreck. I know, it doesn't sound very cheery, but it is a life-changing experience.

    I have always thought that one of the best and most important qualities of science fiction is that it frees the author to take the controversial, politically charged issues and trends of the day and create a possible future based on exaggerations of such trends and in so doing present a compelling and critical argument for change. Well NO ONE has ever done a better job than better Orwell in showing the possible nightmare (and thus potential danger) of a society without basic civil liberties and a government with complete and unchallenged control.

    This book is bleak, dreary, frightening, upsetting and absolutely BRILLIANT and one of my "All Time Favorite" novels. HIGHEST POSSIBLE RECOMMENDATION!! 6.0 stars.

    ...........

    .............

  • Obaydah Amer
    Jun 03, 2011

    هذه الرواية لا يجب أن تصنف أدبا ورواية وفنا وحسب ..

    كلا .. هي أكبر من ذلك,

    يجب أن تدرس كحالة مستعصية في علم الاجتماع وعلم السياسة .. !

    عندما كتب جورج أورويل في الـ1949 كان متشائما لدرجة بعيدة لما سيؤول له العالم بعد 1984

    نعم، ربما لم يتحقق ما قاله أورويل تماما، لكنه قد حصل بصورة موازية وشبيهة في كثير من المجتمعات الشمولية

    لنتحدث عن سوريا مثلا :

    الأخ الكبير : القائد الملهم والرئيس الشاب الدكتور بشار الأسد ..

    أعضاء الحزب الداخلي: بعض المكونات الرئيسية للنظام

    أعضاء الحزب الخارجي: حزب البعث

    العامة: 19 مليون

    هذه الرواية لا يجب أن تصنف أدبا ورواية وفنا وحسب ..

    كلا .. هي أكبر من ذلك,

    يجب أن تدرس كحالة مستعصية في علم الاجتماع وعلم السياسة .. !

    عندما كتب جورج أورويل في الـ1949 كان متشائما لدرجة بعيدة لما سيؤول له العالم بعد 1984

    نعم، ربما لم يتحقق ما قاله أورويل تماما، لكنه قد حصل بصورة موازية وشبيهة في كثير من المجتمعات الشمولية

    لنتحدث عن سوريا مثلا :

    الأخ الكبير : القائد الملهم والرئيس الشاب الدكتور بشار الأسد ..

    أعضاء الحزب الداخلي: بعض المكونات الرئيسية للنظام

    أعضاء الحزب الخارجي: حزب البعث

    العامة: 19 مليون ونصف المليون مواطن سوري

    أوقيانوسيا: سوريا الأسد

    الله هو السلطة: الله سوريا بشار وبس

    التفكير المزدوج: "دولة ممانعة لم تطلق رصاصة واحدة على عدوها الذي وجدت لممانعته" مثلا

    شاشات الرصد: الهواتف والتجسس على الإنترنت

    اللغة الجديدة: الإصلاح، الممانعة، التقدم، القومية وغيرها

    أوبراين: نموذج للمخبر السوري الذي تمنحه روحك وثقتك ليضربك ويهينك

    غرفة 101: السجن الصحراوي

    غرف وأقبية وزارة الحب: المقار الأمنية المنتشرة في كل مكان

    حتى الجهاز ذا القرص موجود باسم بساط الريح

    وغيرها ..

    المقصود أن بإمكانك إسقاط الرواية على أي مجتمع شمولي لترى منظورا مشابها لذاك العالم المظلم.

    لكن النتيجة المختلفة ..

    هناك بعض الجمل التي يجب أن تحفظ حفظا، لا أن تسجل فقط :

    وهذا ما نحفظه وندرسه في المدارس بنفس المصطلح، الولاء للأخ الكبير .. بغض النظر عن تصرفاته ونتائجها وأفكاره وما يقوم به، أي فعلا عدم الوعي ..

    تماما .. فقط أعطهم بعض الوعي وسيصنعون المعجزات ..

    أي :

    أرجوك .. إن نسيت كل الرواية، فاخرج منها بهذه الثلاث كلمات فقط .. !

    السلطة وحسب ..

    ولا تصدقوا كل الخطابات الخالدة والوعود الاقتصادية والسياسية والعسكرية والتنموية ..

    السلطة للسلطة، لا لخدمة أحد أو شعب أو إنسانية أو قيمة أو خلق أو أي شيء آخر ..

    لذلك فالسلطة المطلقة دائما مفسدة مطلقة ..

    مقاطع كتاب غولدشتاين وإن كانت طوباوية إلى حد ما، لكنها صحيحة وأكاديمية . !

    الوضع الطبيعي يجب أن يسير كما تحدث عنه أورويل، ولو أن صاحب الحانوت - نسيت اسمه - وأوبراين ما كانا مخبرين لنجحت الثورة ..

    وهذا ما حصل في مصر وتونس، وسيحصل في بقية المجتمعات الشمولية ..

    بوعي العامة وثورتهم ثم وعيهم مرة أخرى ..

  • Huda Yahya
    Apr 19, 2012
  • Mohammed Arabey
    Feb 04, 2013

    It's written 1948? Clearly History has its twisted ways to repeat itself..

    A Note that MUST be written in the cover of every edition..

    لم اتوقع أن هذا التحذير

    بهذه الواقعية، مازالت الحكومات العربية تراقب الجميع لحماية أمن الحكام..بينما مازال أمن الأفراد هزيلا..منعدما

    It's written 1948? Clearly History has its twisted ways to repeat itself..

    A Note that MUST be written in the cover of every edition..

    لم اتوقع أن هذا التحذير

    بهذه الواقعية، مازالت الحكومات العربية تراقب الجميع لحماية أمن الحكام..بينما مازال أمن الأفراد هزيلا..منعدما

    عشقت هذه الروايه لدرجه الكراهيه

    احببت جمال قبح العامه، وكرهت الحريه بشده..اقتنعت باننا يجب ان نخطئ وارتعبت جدا من الصواب

    وقد كرهت بشده الاجزاء السياسيه و ضجرت من تلك المقاله السياسيه الطويله "في الجزء الثاني" والتي عزمت علي ان اقرأها قراءه سريعه ..ولكن قرأت مايقرب من 40 صفحه في ساعه ونصف!! لأني شعرت انها فعلا يجب ان تقرأ بتمعن, فهي من اهم المقالات السياسية الواقعية

    كرهت تلك المشاهد الجنسيه البسيطه ولعلي استشطت غضبا اذا لم تحدث

    وكم كرهت تلك النهايه التي شعرت انها قُدمت كنهاية سعيده..واكرهها اكثر كلما اشعر انها فعلا ليست سعيده

    اذا كنت من هواة قراءة الروايات الحديثة -مثلي- واعجبتك تلك الروايات المصنفه كديستوبيا - حيث يعم المدينه او الدوله او العالم ككل الظلم و القهر والفساد والاستبداد, الدمار والتجارب اللاانسانيه - تلك الروايات مثل

    و

    و

    فعليك بالبدء في تلك الروايه الكلاسيكيه للروائي العبقري "جورج اورويل" 1984

    -فهي مدخل رائع لمثل ذلك النوع من الروايات, ولن تشعر أبدا انها كلاسيكية او قديمة, حتي وان كانت ترجع ل1948...قبل عنوان الرواية بأربعون عاما

    يجب التنويه انه اذا كنت قراءتها واعجبتك بالفعل فعليك بقراءه تلك الروايات الحديثه ايضا- ..بالأخص العاب المجاعات

    ستقابل مفاجأت واحداث مثيره, ثوره داخليه بعقلك,عقل وينستون البطل الذي تتعايش معه..كراهيه التمرد والشغف الشديد به

    نبذ الحريه التي هي العبوديه..نبذ السلام الذي هو الحرب

    راعني ايضا ملاحظه وجدتها علي الويكابيديا هو ان "تبخير الانسان" واعتباره لم يكن

    Unperson

    كان امرا حقيقيا واتبعه بتعديل الصور وذلك في الاتحاد السوفييتي في الثلاثينات في صوره لستالين مع نيكولاي يزوف رئيس الشرطه السريه والتي تم تعديلها بعد اعدام الاخير لينسب الفضل لستالين وحده في حمله التطهير الشيوعيه وليكون وحده صاحب الفضل في بناء الاتحاد السوفييتي..اي ان الامر له اصول حقيقيه

    وأه من مظهر ستالين نفسه :)

    هو من ستتوحد معه خلال احداث الروايه

    وهو الاختيار المناسب ,فهو الطبقه المتوسطه-ماتحت النخبة-..فهو يتوافر له الطعام والشراب والمسكن...ليس ادميا او يتناسب مع كونه احد اعضاء الحزب الخارجي وانما علي الاقل ادميا بما فيه الكفايه مقارنه بعامه الشعب ,اللاشئ , هؤلاء الذين يمثلون 85% من السكان,وهو في وضع أأمن منهم بعيدا عن اماكنهم المعرضه للقصف باستمرار

    ولكنه ليس افضل حالا منهم

    فقيود حريته اعظم بكثير فهو -عكس عامه الشعب-مراقب 24/7حتي في احلامه واغوار عقله الباطن فيجب ان يكون منضبطا كالمسطره..تاركا افكارك ومشاعرك وعواطفك وتوجهاتك في يد "الاخ الكبير"..في يد حزبك الداخلي والذي يمثل 2% من السكان..اسيادك

    ذلك الحزب الداخلي الذي لا تعرف كيف يعيش..هل هو مثلك في تلك المعيشه..معيشه الكفاف او ما دونه؟ بالتاكيد لا, هم ليسوا كعامه الشعب الذين صاروا تحت مستوي الفقر..بل تحت مستوي الحياه نفسها, فلا يلقوا الكفاف..وحياتهم مهدده من وقت لاخر جراء عمليات القصف الحربيه التي لا احد يعرف كنهها بالتحديد

    جوليا جوليا جوليا..اه من جوليا..لازدواجيه الفكر ظللت اعشقها واعشق فكرها واعشق ايضا فكره تحطيم راسها في اغلب الوقت

    هي زميله وينستون في وزاره الحقيقه في الحزب الخارجي..زميلته الغامضه المريبه المتزمته لدرجة انك ستشعر انها روح الحزب نفسه..ولكنك ستكتشف عنها اشياء لم تخطر علي بال

    عضو الحزب الداخلي الموقر..واحد من الساده ..ال2% من الشعب والذي من خلاله ستعرف مميزات هذه النخبه

    رجل وقور..مهيب..محترم..ستشعر كم يتفهمك بمجرد نظرته

    وكم من المفاجأت التي يطويها في طياتها

    فستفاجأ انه مثلك ومعك في الفكر..ولعلك ستفاجأ بحق عندما تجد انه بالفعل روح متمردة تغلغلت الي هذا الحد بالحزب

    محمد العربي

    من 27 مايو 2013

    الي 30 مايو 2013["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>


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