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A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess
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A Clockwork Orange (original 1962; edition 1995)

by Anthony Burgess (Author)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
19,778295111 (4.02)651
Member:S.R.Gurney
Title:A Clockwork Orange
Authors:Anthony Burgess (Author)
Info:W. W. Norton & Company (1995), 213 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:
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Work details

A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess (1962)

  1. 321
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    lucyknows: One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest by Ken Kesey may be paired with A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess or The Outsider by Albert Camus. All three novels explore the them of society versus the individual.
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    Aeryion: The sub-culture of designer drug use and it's effect on the gritty society within Rubicon call back to A Clockwork Orange like an anesthetized echo. The prevalent use and abuse of the potent designer neurocotic Synth and the language (Illuminese) that the addicts speak amongst themselves is a brilliant homage to Burgess's original genius! This story gave me shivers as I read through the vivid hallucinatory narrative. A must read for every fan of the genre!… (more)
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English (278)  Spanish (5)  French (3)  German (2)  Swedish (2)  Finnish (1)  Dutch (1)  Portuguese (1)  Danish (1)  Italian (1)  All languages (295)
Showing 1-5 of 278 (next | show all)
# 5 of 100 Classics Challenge

A Clockwork Orange🍒🍒🍒🍒
By Anthony Burgess
1962

At 15, Alex was a terror. A mean spirited "droog"-a gang of young boys who would rob and beat innocent people and vandalize property, with no provocation and even less remorse. The slang invented by the Droogs symbolizes the evil, bleak and malicious tone of their thoughts and acts. While in prison, Alex is subjected to a controversial drug, Ludovico, as a means to reform him. This drug injected daily , along with forced watching of films of violence over and over were the elements of this reform.

P.106 "It may not be nice to be good, little 6655321 (Alexs identity in prison).It may be horrible to be good.....What does God want? Does God want goodness or the choice of goodness? Is a man who chooses bad perhaps in some way better than a man who has the good imposed upon him?"

Good vs Evil. Is there a choice? What is the cost?
Fantastic book that will make you ponder.... ( )
  over.the.edge | Sep 16, 2018 |
On the shelf next to 1984. A masterpiece. Period. ( )
  mmmorsi | Aug 24, 2018 |
I don't know how to describe this book other than it was really weird but that Burgess was masterful with the written word. The first part of the book was really hard to get through because so much of the 'slang' used was not at all familiar to me and much of it was made up. The more I read though, the more my brain started to automatically fill in the gaps (slang terms and phrases translated in my brain to what they meant, and I, in a way, basically learned a new sort of language almost!). It was no different than struggling through Shakespeare for the first quarter of a play and by the end, realizing you're fluent. It also definitely had a lot to say about moral issues, acceptable behavior, society, etc. I recommend reading this BEFORE you attempt to see the movie because the movie was horrifying on so many levels and resulted in my needed a good brain scrub afterwards. The book is nothing like it. ( )
1 vote justagirlwithabook | Aug 1, 2018 |
The audiobook is a must.
  Leslie.Claussen | Jul 20, 2018 |
I found it quite annoying at first, with all the made up slang that is used. But once I broke the code I got into it. Its a tough read...but fairly rewarding overall. I found its strongest element was the fact it was written decades ago, but was still so relevant. Give it a go. ( )
  SadieBabie | Jun 23, 2018 |
Showing 1-5 of 278 (next | show all)
Mr. Burgess, whenever we remeet him in a literary setting, seems to be standing kneedeep in the shavings of new methods, grimed with the metallic filings of bright ideas. A Clockwork Orange, for example, was a book which no one could take seriously for what was supposed to happen in it-its plot and "meaning" were the merest pretenses-but which contained a number of lively notions, as when his delinquents use Russian slang and become murderous on Mozart and Beethoven. In a work by Burgess nothing is connected necessarily or organically with anything else but is strung together with wires and pulleys as we go.
added by SnootyBaronet | editThe New York Times, John Bayley
 
Burgess’s 1962 novel is set in a vaguely Socialist future (roughly, the late seventies or early eighties)—a dreary, routinized England that roving gangs of teenage thugs terrorize at night. In perceiving the amoral destructive potential of youth gangs, Burgess’s ironic fable differs from Orwell’s 1984 in a way that already seems prophetically accurate. The novel is narrated by the leader of one of these gangs-—Alex, a conscienceless schoolboy sadist—and, in a witty, extraordinarily sustained literary conceit, narrated in his own slang (Nadsat, the teenagers’ special dialect). The book is a fast read; Burgess, a composer turned novelist, has an ebullient, musical sense of language, and you pick up the meanings of the strange words as the prose rhythms speed you along.
added by SnootyBaronet | editThe New Yorker, Pauline Kael
 
A Clockwork Orange, the book for which Burgess — to his understandable dismay — is best known. A handy transitional primer for anyone learning Russian, in other respects it is a bit thin. Burgess makes a good ethical point when he says that the state has no right to extirpate the impulse towards violence. But it is hard to see why he is so determined to link the impulse towards violence with the aesthetic impulse, unless he suffers, as so many other writers do, from the delusion that the arts are really rather a dangerous occupation. Presumably the connection in the hero’s head between mayhem and music was what led Stanley Kubrick to find the text such an inspiration. Hence the world was regaled with profound images of Malcolm McDowell jumping up and down on people’s chests to the accompaniment of an invisible orchestra.

It is a moot point whether Burgess is saying much about human psychology when he so connects the destructive element with the creative impulse. What is certain is that he is not saying much about politics. Nothing in A Clockwork Orange is very fully worked out. There is only half a paragraph of blurred hints to tell you why the young marauders speak a mixture of English and Russian. Has Britain been invaded recently? Apparently not. Something called ‘propaganda’, presumably of the left-wing variety, is vaguely gestured towards as being responsible for this hybrid speech. But even when we leave the possible causes aside, and just examine the language itself, how could so basic a word as ‘thing’ have been replaced by the Russian word without other, equally basic, words being replaced as well?
added by SnootyBaronet | editNew York Review of Books, Clive James
 
But all in all, “A Clockwork Orange” is a tour-de-force in nastiness, an inventive primer in total violence, a savage satire on the distortions of the single and collective minds.
 
In A Clockwork Orange, Anthony Burgess has written what looks like a nasty little shocker but is really that rare thing in English letters—a philosophical novel. The point may be overlooked because the hero, a teen-age monster, tells all about everything in nadsat, a weird argot that seems to be all his own. Nadsat is neither gibberish nor a Joycean exercise. It serves to put Alex where he belongs—half in and half out of the human race.
added by Shortride | editTime (Feb 15, 1963)
 

» Add other authors (37 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Burgess, Anthonyprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Arbonès, JordiTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Šenkyřík, Ladislavsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Brumm, WalterTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Buenaventura, RamónPrefacesecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hollander, TomReadersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Jones, BenIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Morrison, BlakeIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Pelham, DavidCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Walsh, JohnIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Welsh, IrvinePrefacesecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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'What's it going to be then, eh?'
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Goodness comes from within [...] Goodness is something chosen. When a man cannot choose he ceases to be a man.
Does God want goodness or the choice of goodness? Is a man who chooses to be bad perhaps in some way better than a man who has the good imposed upon him?
There is, in fact, not much point in writing a novel unless you can show the possibility of moral transformation, or an increase in wisdom, operating in your chief character or characters.
It's funny how the colors of the real world only seem really real when you watch them on a screen.
Then I noticed, in all my pain and sickness, what music it was that like crackled and boomed on the sound-track, and it was Ludwig van, the last movement of the Fifth Symphony, and I creeched like bezoomny at that. ‘Stop!’ I creeched. ‘Stop, you grahzny disgusting sods. It’s a sin, that’s what it is, a filthy unforgivable sin, you bratchnies!’
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Wikipedia in English (2)

Book description
A Clockwork Orange (1962) is a dystopian novel by Anthony Burgess.
The title is taken from an old Cockney expression, "as queer as a clockwork orange", and alludes to the prevention of the main character's exercise of his free will through the use of a classical conditioning technique. With this technique, the subject’s emotional responses to violence are systematically paired with a negative stimulation in the form of nausea caused by an emetic medicine administered just before the presentation of films depicting "ultra-violent" situations. Written from the perspective of a seemingly biased and unapologetic protagonist, the novel also contains an experiment in language: Burgess creates a new speech that is the teenage slang of the not-too-distant future.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0393312836, Paperback)

The only American edition of the cult classic novel.

A vicious fifteen-year-old "droog" is the central character of this 1963 classic, whose stark terror was captured in Stanley Kubrick's magnificent film of the same title. In Anthony Burgess's nightmare vision of the future, where criminals take over after dark, the story is told by the central character, Alex, who talks in a brutal invented slang that brilliantly renders his and his friends' social pathology. A Clockwork Orange is a frightening fable about good and evil, and the meaning of human freedom. When the state undertakes to reform Alex—to "redeem" him—the novel asks, "At what cost?" This edition includes the controversial last chapter not published in the first edition and Burgess's introduction "A Clockwork Orange Resucked."

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:22:27 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

Told through a central character, Alex, the disturbing novel creates an alarming futuristic vision of violence, high technology, and authoritarianism. A modern classic of youthful violence and social redemption set in a dismal dystopia whereby a juvenile deliquent undergoes state-sponsored psychological rehabilitation for his aberrant behavior.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 18 descriptions

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W.W. Norton

An edition of this book was published by W.W. Norton.

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Penguin Australia

4 editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 0141182601, 0141037229, 0141192364, 0241951445

 

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