Orwell's Revenge

The 1984 Palimpsest

Orwell's Revenge

Mark Zuckerberg's ‘A Year of Books’ Selection George Orwell’s bleak visions of the future, one in which citizens are monitored through telescreens by an insidious Big Brother, has haunted our imagination long after the publication of 1984. Orwell’s dystopian image of the telescreen as a repressive instrument of state power has profoundly affected our view of technology, posing a stark confrontational question: Who will be master, human or machine? Experience has shown, however, that Orwell’s vision of the future was profoundly and significantly wrong: The conjunction of the new communications technologies has not produced a master-slave relation between person and computer, but rather exciting possibilities for partnership. In an extraordinary demonstration of the emerging supermedium's potential to engender new forms of creativity, Huber’s book boldly reimagines 1984 from the computer's point of view. After first scanning all of Orwell’s writings into his personal computer, Huber used the machine to rewrite the book completely, for the most part using Orwell’s own language. Alternating fiction and non-fiction chapters, Huber advances Orwell’s plot to a surprising new conclusion while seamlessly interpolating his own explanations and arguments. The result is a fascinating utopian work which envisions a world at our fingertips of ever-increasing information, equal opportunity, and freedom of choice.

George Orwell

Into the Twenty-first Century

George Orwell

The year 2003 was the 100th anniversary of the birth of George Orwell, one of the most influential authors of the twentieth century. Orwell's books are assigned today in over 60,000 classrooms annually. In this book essays by prominent writers and scholars explain why his impact continues in a world much changed from his own. The essays explore new aspects of Orwell's life and work and his continuing relevance for the interpretation of modern social, political, and cultural affairs. Thematic topics include: the use and abuse of 1984; ideas, ideologues, and intellectuals; biography and autobiography; literary and stylistic analyses; and the reception of Orwell's work abroad. The volume is an ideal secondary source for those who continue to be influenced by Orwell's insights and for teachers of Orwell's work. Contributors: Christopher Hitchens, Jonathan Rose, Ian Williams, Morris Dickstein, John Rodden, Thomas Cushman, Ronald F. Thiemann, Lawrence Rosenwald, Todd Gitlin, Erika Gottlieb, Dennis Wrong, Daphne Patai, Jim Sleeper, William Cain, Lynette Hunter, Margery Sabin, Vladimir Shalpentokh, Miquel Berga, Gilbert Bonifas, Robert Conquest.

George Orwell, Updated Edition

George Orwell, Updated Edition

George Orwell wrote many essays and political pamphlets, yet most know him for his fable Animal Farm and his dystopian novel 1984. The essays in this enhanced Bloom's Modern Critical Views volume offer precise commentary on Orwell's p

Political and Cultural Perceptions of George Orwell

British and American Views

Political and Cultural Perceptions of George Orwell

This book analyzes George Orwell’s politics and their reception across both sides of the Atlantic. It considers Orwell’s place in the politics of his native Britain and his reception in the USA, where he has had some of his most fervent emulators, exegetists, and detractors. Written by an ex “teenage Maoist” from Liverpool, UK, who now lives and writes in New York, the book points out how often the different strands of opinion derive from “ancestral” ideological struggles within the Communist/Trotskyist movement in the 30’s, and how these often overlook or indeed consciously ignore the indigenous British politics and sociology that did so much to influence Orwell’s political and literary development. It examines in the modern era what Orwell did in his–the seductions of simplistic and absolutist ideologies for some intellectuals, especially in their reactions to Orwell himself.

Culture and the State

Culture and the State

From the end of the eighteenth century to the late nineteenth century, a remarkable convergence takes place in Europe between theories of the modern state and theories of culture. Culture and the State explores that theoretical convergence in relation to the social functions of state and cultural institutions, showing how cultural education comes to play the role of forming citizens for the modern state. It critiques the way in which materialistic thinking has largely taken the concept of culture for granted and failed to grasp its relation to the idea of the state.

Placeless People

Writings, Rights, and Refugees

Placeless People

In 1944 the political philosopher and refugee, Hannah Arendt wrote: 'Everywhere the word 'exile' which once had an undertone of almost sacred awe, now provokes the idea of something simultaneously suspicious and unfortunate.' Today's refugee 'crisis' has its origins in the political–and imaginative–history of the last century. Exiles from other places have often caused trouble for ideas about sovereignty, law and nationhood. But the meanings of exile changed dramatically in the twentieth century. This book shows just how profoundly the calamity of statelessness shaped modern literature and thought. For writers such as Hannah Arendt, Franz Kafka, W.H. Auden, George Orwell, Samuel Beckett, Simone Weil, among others, the outcasts of the twentieth century raised vital questions about sovereignty, humanism and the future of human rights. Placeless People argues that we urgently need to reconnect with the moral and political imagination of these first chroniclers of the placeless condition.

George Orwell the Essayist

Literature, Politics and the Periodical Culture

George Orwell the Essayist

George Orwell is acclaimed as one of English literature's great essayists. Yet, while many are considered classics, as a body of work his essays have been neglected. Peter Marks provides the first sustained study of Orwell the essayist, giving these compelling pieces the critical attention they merit. Orwell employed the essay as a tool to entertain, illuminate and provoke readers across an array of topics. Marks situates the essays in their original contexts, exploring how journals influenced the type of essay Orwell wrote. Acknowledging this periodical culture helps explain the tactics Orwell employed, the topics he chose and the audiences he addressed. Orwell's first and last published works were essays, providing evidence of the development of his cultural and political views over two decades. Essays helped him fashion his distinctive literary 'voice' and Mark traces how their afterlife contributes to Orwell's posthumous reputation. Arguing the essays are central to Orwell's enduring literary, political and cultural value, Marks shows how we understand the complexities, subtleties, and contradictions of Orwell better when we understand his essays.

Shakespeare's Tremor and Orwell's Cough

The Medical Lives of Famous Writers

Shakespeare's Tremor and Orwell's Cough

The doctor suddenly appeared beside Will, startling him. He was sleek and prosperous, with a dainty goatee. Though he smiled reassuringly, the poet noticed that he kept a safe distance. In a soothing, urbane voice, the physician explained the treatment: stewed prunes to evacuate the bowels; succulent meats to ease digestion; cinnabar and the sweating tub to cleanse the disease from the skin. The doctor warned of minor side effects: uncontrolled drooling, fetid breath, bloody gums, shakes and palsies. Yet desperate diseases called for desperate remedies, of course. Were Shakespeare's shaky handwriting, his obsession with venereal disease, and his premature retirement connected? Did John Milton go blind from his propaganda work for the Puritan dictator Oliver Cromwell, as he believed, or did he have a rare and devastating complication of a very common eye problem? Did Jonathan Swift's preoccupation with sex and filth result from a neurological condition that might also explain his late-life surge in creativity? What Victorian plague wiped out the entire Brontë family? What was the cause of Nathaniel Hawthorne's sudden demise? Were Herman Melville's disabling attacks of eye and back pain the product of "nervous affections," as his family and physicians believed, or did he actually have a malady that was unknown to medical science until well after his death? Was Jack London a suicide, or was his death the product of a series of self-induced medical misadventures? Why did W. B. Yeats's doctors dose him with toxic amounts of arsenic? Did James Joyce need several horrific eye operations because of a strange autoimmune disease acquired from a Dublin streetwalker? Did writing Nineteen Eighty-Four actually kill George Orwell? The Bard meets House, M.D. in this fascinating untold story of the impact of disease on the lives and works of some the finest writers in the English language. In Shakespeare's Tremor and Orwell's Cough, John Ross cheerfully debunks old biographical myths and suggests fresh diagnoses for these writers' real-life medical mysteries. The author takes us way back, when leeches were used for bleeding and cupping was a common method of cure, to a time before vaccinations, sterilized scalpels, or real drug regimens. With a healthy dose of gross descriptions and a deep love for the literary output of these ten greats, Ross is the doctor these writers should have had in their time of need.

Orwell's England

Orwell's England

Collected together for the first time, this volume includes the complete text of THE ROAD TO WIGAN PIER - Orwell's vivid and impassioned documentary of unemployment and proletarian life - as well as Orwell's best writing on the political and social condition of England.