Framing the Dialogue

Posts Tagged ‘george orwell’

The Apostle

Common knowledge about Afghanistan and Afghans is generally about how rough a country it is; how inhospitable both the landscape and the residents can be.  It is hard for those of us in the west to imagine a world of dominated by warlords, tribes, and a culture that seems stuck in the first century.  Brad Thor takes us for a brief peek into their lives and gives us a glimpse of what they face.  I get the sense that even though this is a novel, Thor presents an accurate depiction of the troubled country and the battles our military endure.

We

From the back cover:

“Written in 1921, We is set in the One State, where all live for the collective good and individual freedom does not exist.  The novel takes the form of the diary of mathematician D-503, who, to his shock, experiences the most disruptive emotion imaginable: love.”

On the front cover:

“A new translation…”

Ordinarily I would not even pick up a book written in 1921 translated from its original Russian, but it was recommended by a friend.  That was not enough though until I was told that Ayn Rand was influenced by this book.  After finishing the novel, I have to admit that I did not really see the influence in Rand’s work although there were some common threads. 

Thinkpol (think – poll)

Thinkpol is defined as:

“Also known as the Thought Police in George Orwell’s novel Nineteen Eighty-Four

Synonyms:  NHL, NFL, college speech codes, McCain-Feingold, “Hate Crime,”

Can you use it in a sentence?

thought policeThikpol use psychology and surveillance (even within homes) to seek out and destroy people who even think about challenging authority.  The Thought Police are used to investigate and punish citizens who have committed “thoughtcrime.”  The goal is to control speech.

Can you give me an example? 

1984

1984It had been quite a few years since I read George Orwell’s novel about the future and at time 1984 was the future.  Here we are 25 years past and I was compelled to read Nineteen Eighty-Four again as there seemed to be too many parallels to what is happening in America.  I am not suggesting that we have gotten to the same place as Orwell’s Oceana, but a number of recent events had a somewhat chilling effect on me.

Anthem

A number of my recent book reviews were written decades ago.  The odd thing about all of them has been how pertinent they are to the world we live in.  Economics In One Lesson, written in 1946, seemed as if it was written to address our current economic woes.  The 5000 Year Leap was written in 1981, but is based on teachings from the 1970’s and unveils the glories of our Constitution for many of us who learned very little about our founding documents other that memorizing a few pages.