Monday, May 12
1984 = Scary
No, not the year itself, even though it was the year in which I learned to speak. And look how far that's got me. Usually it's my big drunken mouth which gets me into trouble. I say the biggest amount of crap when I'm drunk.
Nope, I'm talking about the book by George Orwell. I've just finished reading it for the umpteenth time, and it still scares the crap out of me every time I pick it up. There isn't anything in particular which scares me, but the overall picture it paints of society is a very worrying future. Who knows how much of it is true already? We already have CCTV, and totalitarianism is rife in many countries across the globe. What worries me most is the way in which history is rewritten in order to suit the present.
"Who controls the past controls the future: who controls the present controls the past."
This is already happening, to some extent. I remember reading that in German history textbooks, the holocaust and much of the Anti-Semitism prevalent in the Nazi Party in WW II, and the decade immediately preceding it, is glossed over. How can this be? Millions of people died in those concentration camps, purely because they were different to the rulers of their country. How can this simply be glossed over and accorded a minimum of respect and acknowledgement. It's just wrong. Oh, and any Britons reading this can stop feeling smug. We invented concentration camps in the Boer War.
There is one passage in 1984 which makes me genuinely jump. I'd completely and utterly forgotten how Winston and Julia get captured when they do. Winston and Julia have read parts of Goldstein's book, and are watching a prole woman from out of their window. Winston has come to the conclusion that whatever they do, eventually the Thought Police will catch up with them and kill both of them.
"We are the dead," he said.
"We are the dead," echoed Julia dutifully.
"You are the dead," said an iron voice behind them.
This genuinely made me physically jump, because I'd forgotten it was coming, and had totally immersed myself in the book whilst I had been reading it. If you haven't read this book already, go do it now. Immediately. My next book? Porno, by Irvine Welsh. It's the sequel to Trainspotting, which is one of my favourite books of all time. Also one of my favourite films, and one of my favourite film soundtrack CDs.
Soulfly - Flyhigh
Paul Oakenfold - Atlantis
Cypress Hill - Trouble
Nas & Ginuwine - You Owe Me