If George Orwell were alive today …: on Nineteen Eighty-four and the thrust of Orwellian political satire

Australian Scholarly Publishing
Free sample

Great writers engage with the changing times and by using their imaginations transform their ideas and environments into fiction. More than any other writer of the 20th century, George Orwell responded to a period of historical change by imagining his dystopian future of Nineteen Eighty-Four, perhaps the most influential political novel ever written. At the same time Nineteen Eighty-Four was very much a product of post-war England with its rations and shortages. Orwell, in fact, remained a socialist until his death in January 1950, but the far more intriguing question is what Nineteen Eighty-Four would be like if it were written today, in an age of Islamist terror, fake news and post-truth politics.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Australian Scholarly Publishing
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Published on
Aug 4, 2019
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Pages
44
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ISBN
9781925801873
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Language
English
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Genres
Literary Criticism / General
Social Science / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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Politics, the workings of government and of people in government, has long been a fertile field for exploration by the novelist. The political arena offers many examples of conflict—between individuals, groups, or the individual and the group, or within the individual. It is natural then that a sizable body of fiction has grown up using politics as a main source of action.

In this study Joseph Blotner attempts "to discover the image of American poIitics as presented in American novels over a sixty-year span." His major discussion is limited to 138 novels dealing directly with candidates, officeholders, party officials, or "individuals performing political acts as they are conventionally understood." He also refers to nineteenth-century predecessors, European analogues, or other twentieth-century American novels as they bear on his discussions.

Blotner gives a thorough examination of certain archetypal figures (the young hero, the political boss, and the Southern demagogue), which appear in central or subordinate positions in the action of many political novels. He finds that the novels reflect certain major movements or upheavals in the political history of the United States or the world (in particular, fascism and McCarthyism), and that they also give the political aspects of universal attitudes or problems (corruption, disillusionment, reaction, and the role of women and of the intellectual). The author presents a detailed analysis of each of these subjects, prefacing each analysis by a survey of the historical background out of which the fiction grew, and including a brief and often pungent assessment of the literary merits of each novel discussed. He also surveys a large body of political fiction which cuts across all of these categories: the novel of the future—both utopian and apocalyptic.

The Modern American Political Novel will be of great interest to the student of twentieth-century literature; the political scientist, the sociologist, and even the practicing politician will also find its analyses useful and illuminating.

Sydney Noir has been shortlisted for the 2019 Danger Award presented by BAD: Sydney Crime Writers Festival!

"At a time when a significant swathe of Australian crime fiction has relocated to the regions and the drought-stricken interior...it's good to get back to the grime of the city...Edited by John Dale, Sydney Noir brings together 14 compelling short stories by established and emerging Australian authors, each offering a startling glimpse into the dark heart of Sydney and its sprawling suburbs."
--Sydney Morning Herald, review for the Australian edition

"Akashic delivers another impeccable anthology with Sydney Noir, a deep dive into the mean streets, artistic outlets, and sultry demimonde of Australia's largest (and liveliest) city."
--CrimeReads

Included in CrimeReads's Most Anticipated Crime Books of 2019

"This long-time fan of the series breathed a sigh of relief upon discovering that not only is Sydney Noir very good indeed, it is one of the best in Akashic's canon for some time...As a snapshot of contemporary Australia, this collection delivers in ways that most middlebrow literary fiction cannot seem to get its head around, even though much literary fiction flirts with the noir genre without fully committing. Here is a touch but tender vision of multicultural working-class Australia, with all its wards and anxieties."
--Australian Book Review

"The writing is fantastic across the board. It's evocative and engaging...If you have any interest in noir, crime novels, or just excellent writing, you can't go wrong with this collection."
--Tails from the Dog-Side

"Overall I really enjoyed this collection...I've definitely got the taste for more Australian crime fiction this year."
--Col's Criminal Library

"Sydney is a good choice for Akashic's first noir anthology set in Australia...The 14 uniformly strong selections feature familiar subgenre figures: gangsters, ethically compromised cops, and people bent on revenge for the loss of a loved one...Fans of dark crime fiction will want to seek out other works by these contributors, most of whom will be unfamiliar to American readers."
--Publishers Weekly

Akashic Books continues its award-winning series of original noir anthologies, launched in 2004 with Brooklyn Noir. Each book comprises all new stories, each one set in a distinct neighborhood or location within the respective city.

Brand-new stories by: Kirsten Tranter, Mandy Sayer, John Dale, Eleanor Limprecht, Mark Dapin, Leigh Redhead, Julie Koh, Peter Polites, Robert Drewe, Tom Gilling, Gabrielle Lord, Philip McLaren, P.M. Newton, and Peter Doyle.

From John Dale's introduction to the book:

Nothing lasts in Sydney, especially good fortune: lives are upturned, shops are sold, roads dug up, trees and houses knocked down, premiers discarded, and entire communities relocated in the name of that economic mantra--growth and progress. Just when you think the traffic can't get any worse and the screech of the 747s descending over your roof can't get any louder, along comes a wild electrical storm that batters the buildings and shakes the power lines and washes the garbage off the streets and you stand, sheltered under your broken brolly in the center of Sydney, admiring this big beautiful city.

What never changes, though, is the hustle on the street. My father was a detective in the vice squad shortly after the Second World War, and he told stories of busting SP bookies in Paddington and Surry Hills, collaring cockatoos stationed in the laneways of South Sydney, and arresting sly-groggers. Policing back then was hands-on for the poor and hands-off for the rich. Crime and Sydney have always been inseparable: a deep vein of corruption runs beneath the surface of even its most respectable suburbs.

Bill Cooper, former United States Naval Intelligence Briefing Team member, reveals information that remains hidden from the public eye. This information has been kept in Top Secret government files since the 1940s. His audiences hear the truth unfold as he writes about the assassination of John F. Kennedy, the war on drugs, the Secret Government and UFOs. 


Bill is a lucid, rational and powerful speaker who intent is to inform and to empower his audience. Standing room only is normal. His presentation and information transcend partisan affiliations as he clearly addresses issues in a way that has a striking impact on listeners of all backgrounds and interests. He has spoken to many groups throughout the United States and has appeared regularly on many radio talk shows and on television. In 1988 Bill decided to "talk" due to events then taking place worldwide, events which he had seen plans for back in the early '70s. Since Bill has been "talking," he has correctly predicted the lowering of the Iron Curtain, the fall of the Berlin Wall and the invasion of Panama. All Bill's predictions were on record well before the events occurred. Bill is not a psychic. His information comes from Top Secret documents that he read while with the Intelligence Briefing Team and from over 17 years of thorough research. 


"Bill Cooper is the world's leading expert on UFOs." — Billy Goodman, KVEG, Las Vegas. 


"The only man in America who has all the pieces to the puzzle that has troubled so many for so long." — Anthony Hilder, Radio Free America 


"William Cooper may be one of America's greatest heroes, and this story may be the biggest story in the history of the world." — Mills Crenshaw, KTALK, Salt Lake City. 


"Like it or not, everything is changing. The result will be the most wonderful experience in the history of man or the most horrible enslavement that you can imagine. Be active or abdicate, the future is in your hands." — William Cooper, October 24, 1989.

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