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Nineteen Eighty Four Paperback – Jul 29 2008

4.6 out of 5 stars 1,146 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin UK (July 29 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0141036141
  • ISBN-13: 978-0141036144
  • Product Dimensions: 11.2 x 2 x 17.8 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 181 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars 1,146 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #91 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

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"Outside, even through the shut window pane, the world looked cold. Down in the street little eddies of wind were whirling dust and torn paper into spirals, and though the sun was shining and the sky a harsh blue, there seemed to be no color in anything except the posters that were plastered everywhere."

The year is 1984; the scene is London, largest population center of Airstrip One.

Airstrip One is part of the vast political entity Oceania, which is eternally at war with one of two other vast entities, Eurasia and Eastasia. At any moment, depending upon current alignments, all existing records show either that Oceania has always been at war with Eurasia and allied with Eastasia, or that it has always been at war with Eastasia and allied with Eurasia. Winston Smith knows this, because his work at the Ministry of Truth involves the constant "correction" of such records. "'Who controls the past,' ran the Party slogan, 'controls the future: who controls the present controls the past.'"

In a grim city and a terrifying country, where Big Brother is always Watching You and the Thought Police can practically read your mind, Winston is a man in grave danger for the simple reason that his memory still functions. He knows the Party's official image of the world is a fluid fiction. He knows the Party controls the people by feeding them lies and narrowing their imaginations through a process of bewilderment and brutalization that alienates each individual from his fellows and deprives him of every liberating human pursuit from reasoned inquiry to sexual passion. Drawn into a forbidden love affair, Winston finds the courage to join a secret revolutionary organization called The Brotherhood, dedicated to the destruction of the Party. Together with his beloved Julia, he hazards his life in a deadly match against the powers that be.

Newspeak, doublethink, thoughtcrime--in 1984, George Orwell created a whole vocabulary of words concerning totalitarian control that have since passed into our common vocabulary. More importantly, he has portrayed a chillingly credible dystopia. In our deeply anxious world, the seeds of unthinking conformity are everywhere in evidence; and Big Brother is always looking for his chance. --Daniel Hintzsche --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Review

His final masterpiece. Enthralling and indispensible for understanding modern history Timothy Garton Ash Right up there among my favourite books ... I read it again and again Margaret Atwood More relevant to today than almost any other book that you can think of Jo Brand One of the most shocking novels of the twentieth century Margaret Drabble The book of the twentieth century Ben Pimlott

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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I first read 1984 as part of my High School curriculum.
At the time, it was amazing to think that a book written before any but the earliest forms of computers, when most people had never heard of television, and before CNN existed could have so eerily predicted things like Flat-screens in every house, and ministries in charge of controlling the news and pop culture.

I re-read it some years later and it was scarier still, as the world was at war, only now our enemies were the same band of merry outlaws we had allied with against the Russians. To watch Rambo III, and CNN during Operation Desert Storm, and then to re-read 1984 was an interesting experience.

Now, I think it is even more relevant. With everyone up in arms about the NSA scandal, figures like Osama Bin Laden, Edward Snowden, Julian Assange popping up in the State Controlled news casts, and more and more men and women in North America sporting "smart phones" equipped with great tools like GPS, geo-tagging, facial recognition software and fingerprint pass-protection I shake my head.

Every time I hear a song on the radio that I find my feet tapping along to, and realize the words make little to no sense - they just sound good together, as if synthesized to appeal to as many people as possible - and every time I see some news about climate change, genocide, or an environmental disaster overshadowed by the latest celebrity spotting I cringe and wonder if Orwell understood that he wasn't writing a warning for the public, he was writing a playbook for the elite.

Even if you think, "LOL - this guy is crazy!", you should do yourself a favour and really read this fantastic bit of fiction. Some would say it is a spectacular example of a literary endeavour. Others would say it's a really, really good book. I would give this 2 + 2 stars out of 5. So 5 out of 5 stars.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book caught my interest because of other good reads I've been doing, and recently, the radio hasn't stopped talking about how Orwell-ish our world has actually become. Orwell is a visionnary and it seems like even the book was written in 1930's, the relevance of this book is pretty astonishing. Alot of predition of the future he thinks will happen actually happens in the world today and points out to a terrifying future ahead. Love seeing how older generations had envisionned the future. Although this one is a fiction, ts not that far from not beeing one. And I think thats the most shocking part of it. Excellent red, a must read for every avid reader and a vision to share as much as possible.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
great book, written in 1948 but very relevant to our world today. This paperback has decent binding that should stand up to a few good readings as it gets passed around to other readers. Type face is nice. Basic discount paperback quality that you'd find in bookstore chain store.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The dystopian future envisaged by Orwell seems to still be scarily attainable. Newspeak is not just a fanciful parable about a future gone mad, it can often be detected currently in pronouncements from various sources. Witness the current "protection of ethnic Russians" by the Putin regime.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I don't know exactly why I never sat down and read this book, but I'm really happy I did. I remember reading, Animal Farm, back in high school, but I think this would have been a better selection. The story is heartbreaking and disturbing and you can feel Winston's constraint as he struggles with his beliefs toward Big Brother and his feelings toward himself. It's truly one of the most profound things I've ever read.
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Format: Paperback
This novel is an amazing read! Orwell starts off by introducing the reader into the terribly grim dark world of Big Brother. The state controls everything and everybody. Orwell has written a fictional story, but you soon realize almost everything Orwell writes about, has happened somewhere in the World. I feel this was Orwell`s message, to warn people that Big Brother can and will spring up anywhere, and at any time. In the past one can look to the Stalin and Hitler regimes, for examples of what Orwell is talking about. In the present, North Korea is an almost perfect example of Orwell`s 1984 novel. And sometimes bits of Big Brother, pops up right in your own backyard. In the 2008- 2009 school year, Queens University introduced a "conversation police force" to monitor students living on Campus. This was done to prevent anything happening in the student living quarters, that was not deemed "politically correct". The controversial policy was later dropped by the University. This is the sort of thing that Orwell is trying to warn the reader about. Big Brother can suddenly appear, even in a place of higher learning. Orwell is trying to tell us, that state control is not just something that happens in far away places, such as North Korea.
There are also many smaller examples of state manipulation, such as control of the media, that are explained in the novel. The modern reader will have no trouble relating to media manipulation.
1984 is a novel that everyone living in a free society should read, at least once.
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That this novel was written in 1947 proves that whats going on in the world today has been going on for a long time. 1984 takes it to the extreme, or what was once thought to be extreme. Its not so extreme now, in fact, it highly plausible.
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