The Great American Read discussion

1984
This topic is about 1984
29 views
PAST Group Reads 2018 > 1984- June- NO Spoilers

Comments Showing 1-12 of 12 (12 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by NancyJ, Moderator (last edited Jun 02, 2018 10:49PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 1835 comments Mod
Hi everyone. This is the SPOILER-FREE thread for 1984.

Please refrain from discussing the ending or any other spoilers here.

The original thread for this book may contain spoilers. It also contains analysis about the book, so when you're ready, hop on over to that thread.

These threads will remain in the Current Read Folder until June 30. They will be bumped down to a new folder, where you can continue the discussion. These threads will all remain open.


message 2: by NancyJ, Moderator (new) - rated it 3 stars

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 1835 comments Mod
Who is reading this book? What are your first impressions?


Sheila (sheilaj) I just started this finally. Can't believe this wasn't a high school assignment. For some reason I got a Fahenheit 451 vibe from the beginning.


message 4: by Parker (new)

Parker | 204 comments Sheila wrote: "I just started this finally. Can't believe this wasn't a high school assignment. For some reason I got a Fahenheit 451 vibe from the beginning."

It's a very cary book (as is Farenheit 451), especially with what's going on today.


Diane I'm about a quarter of the way through the book. I had read 1984 back in the 60s when I was in Junior High. I remember at the time I thought 1984 was so far in the future. Now it is more then 30 years ago!

A few parts of the book are coming back to me - but I don't remember the ending. I find it quite depressing. Easy for me to put down - but I will persevere and get to the end!


message 6: by NancyJ, Moderator (new) - rated it 3 stars

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 1835 comments Mod
Diane wrote: "I'm about a quarter of the way through the book. I had read 1984 back in the 60s when I was in Junior High. I remember at the time I thought 1984 was so far in the future. Now it is more then 30 ye..."

I'm in exactly the same boat (I read it 40+ years ago). I was listening in the car today and it made me really tense. The narrator really conveyed the feeling of paranoia. I was tempted to stop reading, but I want to know what happens next and how it ends. I think he falls in love, but I'm not sure what else.

Diane, let's stick it out together and finish it.

What references are you seeing from 1948? Was Stalin in power then? I see references to Nazi Germany with the Hitler youth telling on their parents. And the neighborhood women in China telling on their neighbors.


message 7: by NancyJ, Moderator (new) - rated it 3 stars

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 1835 comments Mod
Sheila wrote: "I just started this finally. Can't believe this wasn't a high school assignment. For some reason I got a Fahenheit 451 vibe from the beginning."


Yes I got the Fahrenheit 451 vibe right away too. I just read it a few months ago. The paranoia, not being allowed to read. Winston is afraid he's going to be killed just for having a notebook! Even before he wrote anything in it!


message 8: by NancyJ, Moderator (new) - rated it 3 stars

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 1835 comments Mod
This seems a lot like Russia after WWII. I can hear Greta Garbo's voice in the film Ninotchka, saying (with a Russian accent):

"There are going to be fewer but better Russians."


message 9: by NancyJ, Moderator (last edited Jun 08, 2018 06:40PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 1835 comments Mod
I know a lot of people see this book reflected in our current political climate but I don't, despite the fact that NSA and other groups are threatening our privacy, and the fact that many people voluntarily give away bits of their privacy every day through social media.

The key difference is that there is a great deal of open dissent in our culture. People speak out against the president, march in demonstrations, write blogs and tweets, all the time. There is so much information and scrutiny of our leaders, it would be much harder for them to cause people to disappear than it was for Stalin or Hitler.

Added - I don't know if it's clear that even though I hate all the fighting and conflict in politics, I think the ability to express dissent is essential. I wish our leaders could figure out how to discuss differences without resorting to offensive and inflammatory insults. A little diplomacy would be nice!


message 10: by Diane (new) - rated it 1 star

Diane I have now made it 2/3rds through the book. Still very depressing to me. Was wondering why we read this book in Jr. High and what the teachers/school were trying to have us learn through this book? Any teachers out there??? I've never been very political - but still feel that the book would only dis-engant me - not instill an interest in politics or government for me.


message 11: by Parker (new)

Parker | 204 comments Diane wrote: "I have now made it 2/3rds through the book. Still very depressing to me. Was wondering why we read this book in Jr. High and what the teachers/school were trying to have us learn through this book?..."

It was a warning about what happens when people are asleep and don't pay attention to what's going on in their government.


message 12: by NancyJ, Moderator (last edited Jun 08, 2018 06:35PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 1835 comments Mod
Diane wrote: "I have now made it 2/3rds through the book. Still very depressing to me. Was wondering why we read this book in Jr. High and what the teachers/school were trying to have us learn through this book?..."

I think this book suggested what could happen under communism, where they had mass trials and killed people who were opposing the government. It also serves as a warning to protect our privacy from the government.

To me it also serves as a reminder to fight hard for free speech, to encourage people to speak up if they see something dangerous, and to speak truth to power. In corporate life, where you have much less free speech (you can't tell the boss he's an idiot for instance), it's much harder to "Speak truth to power" and tell the boss about serious issues. Some bosses don't want to hear the truth. I imagine it's why many people have lost their jobs in Trump's White House.

I think it also shows that we MUST allow dissent and consider dissenting opinions. I think allowing opportunities to discuss conflicting opinions is critical in corporate life too. We can't get better if people are afraid to say what's not going well.


.


back to top