Archive for April 2013
I finally got around to reading the novel after being adviced by a friend, and chancing upon the book in a thrift store. Although I was initially unimpressed, as Oceania started to come across more and more as a depiction of a communist state, and not any powerful state, as I had anticipated. The description of the mechanics of a dystopian world order and an all powerful state through “the book” also seemed rambling and lacking in unity.
But as I read on, the novel pulled me deeper and deeper, and I finished the latter part in a single sitting. The latter part seems to me to have been delivered in an epiphanic state of mind. I loved the fact that the final justification of an all powerful state was not a misplaced pursuit for utopia, but a raw lust for power – pure and simple. What was especially poignant to me was that deep inside him the protagonist was able to retain inner diginity in the face of the most horrible torture, and a belief in his truth even with the entire world pitted against him. But once he betrayed himself to himself, a belief his own basic diginity and inner worth as a human was forever gone. The final betrayal was not imposed from outside, but came from his own self – and then all was lost. You are forced to raise that question for yourself – in that moment of supreme anguish, would you betray that which inside yourself you hold dearest?
By the end of the novel, I can say it is one of the best books i’ve ever read. It is incredible that the same act of writing, which produces the most superflous products like an article on “5 ways to promote your blog traffic” can also produce something which can question human life in the deepest way.