Re: [sixties-l] Fwd: 1984 (big brother)

Date: Tue Oct 02 2001 - 01:15:28 EDT

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    My friends who are veterans of the Lincoln Brigade would agree. Bill
    Mandel wrote:

    > To my horror, in 1998 I read an AP news story which disclosed the fact that George Orwell himself was a snitch. He was turning in the names of communists to British state police.
    > This fact caused me no longer to revere Orwell, and to see his novel 1984 in an entirely different light. I think Orwell somewhat identified with the lead character Winston Smith, and was expressing his own darkest fears of what would happen to him if he didn't become a rat. Orwell had left-wing leanings, and therefore had reasons to fear repression. Smith, in retaliation for his own minor defiance against the regime, was tortured and later executed in the novel.
    > Another motive for Orwell was (I speculate) that he was attempting to clear his own conscience for having been a police state rat by writing a novel which would be seen as a warning and condemnation of police states.
    > As for me, I don't buy it. A rat is a rat, even though some rats might be talented writers.
    > -- Michael Wright
    > Norman, Oklahoma

    Do you teach in the social sciences?  Consider my SAYING NO TO POWER 
    (Creative Arts, Berkeley, 1999), for course use.  It was written as a 
    social history of the U.S. for the past three-quarters of a century 
    through the eyes of a participant observer in most progressive social 
    movements (I'm 84), and of the USSR from the
    standpoint of a Sovietologist (five earlier books) knowing that country 
    longer than any other in the profession.  Therefore it is also a history 
    of the Cold War.  Positive reviews in The Black Scholar, American 
    Studies in Scandinavia, San Francisco Chronicle, forthcoming in Tikkun, 
    etc.  Chapters are up at

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