George Orwell’s diaries turned into a blog

George Orwell's diaries

I have been a big fan of George Orwell ever since I read 1984. I remember the first time I heard about Orwell. I was 16 and we studied an excerpt from 1984 for our English class. I particularly remember this:

His eyes re-focused on the page. He discovered that while he sat helplessly musing he had also been writing, as though by automatic action. And it was no longer the same cramped, awkward handwriting as before. His pen had slid voluptuously over the smooth paper, printing in large neat capitals –

DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER

DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER

DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER

DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER

DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER

over and over again, filling half a page.

This also stroke me when I first read it:

The Ministry of Truth — Minitrue, in Newspeak — was startlingly different from any other object in sight. It was an enormous pyramidal structure of glittering white concrete, soaring up, terrace after terrace, 300 metres into the air. From where Winston stood it was just possible to read, picked out on its white face in elegant lettering, the three slogans of the Party:

WAR IS PEACE

FREEDOM IS SLAVERY

IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH

I think what I like the most about Orwell’s 1984 is that it was truly a visionary book that decrypted exactly how governments would monitor us, later on.

My favorite thing about the book is how the Government creates a new language called Newspeak. The government deliberately deletes words from the dictionary and from people’s mind. Think about it, if you don’t have a word for “freedom”, how can you fight for it? If you don’t have a word for happiness or sadness, you won’t be able to express your feelings, thus you will be following the leader like a good sheep.

To mark the 70th anniversary of the Orwell Diaries, each diary entry is going to be re-published in blog form on WordPress exactly 70 years after it was originally written.  So, 9th August 1938 will be blogged on 9th August 2008 and so on.

The diaries will be published HERE.

I highly recommend you subscribe to the RSS feeds as it will be a very fascinating blog.

If you haven’t read 1984 and feel to lazy to read it, remember you can download a free audiobook of 1984.

[Via GAS]

George Orwell’s 1984

big brother is watching youOpenCulture found out an audiobook of my favorite book: 1984, by George Orwell. If you haven’t read this book, well, at least now you can listen to it!

1984 is a novel that was written in 1949 by George Orwell, the author of the popular children’s novel Animal Farm. The book has been translated into over fifty languages and has had a major cultural impact in America. Terms such as “Orwellian”, “Big Brother”, and “Room 101”, all originated with the book.

In 1984, the world is divided into three countries, Oceania (North and South America, and Australia), Eurasia and Eastasia. Winston Smith (the book’s protagonist) lives in Oceania, which is a totalitarian society. Winston hates the fact that his life and every moment thereof is closely monitored and controlled by the government. Winston longs for something more. Winston eventually meets and falls in love with another character, Julia, whom he has enjoyable routine sexual intercourse with (an act prohibited by the government). Winston and Julia join the Brotherhood, an underground society of rebels (or so they think). The Brotherhood is actually a trap set by Oceania’s government to catch freethinkers.

Winston and Julia undergo many months of intense torture until they’re forced into total submission and renounce everything the government denotes as un-kosher.

Orwell maintained that the book was written with the explicit intention “to alter other people’s idea of the kind of society they should strive after.”

Visit OpenCulture to download this FREE audio book.