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Is this book about Big Brother?

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message 1: by [deleted user] (new)

This book is fascinating but also mysterious. The sufferings of the children in this horrible control freak school are hideous. I am not sure I understand the book and if you do would you please explain it to me? It seems to me here that liberal socialism has gone too far and Big Brother is breathing down the necks of the poor children to the extreme.
It reminds me of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest.

Fianna Whitman I read this book many years ago. I thought the end was a little confusing. I have a feeling that it didn't translate as well as Hoeg would have liked. I liked two of his others - Smilla's Sense of Snow and The History of Danish Dreams.

Tonya I think it may have been about how controlled the main character felt through out his life in the types of enviornments he was forced to be in, and about how he dealt with that control and tried to understand it. The main characters all felt like there was some sort of conspiracy behind everything that was taking place around them and in some ways they were correct, although the intent of the "conspiracy" wasn't as malevolent as they presumed it to be. The children were deeply troubled and confused and were just trying to make sense of their enviornment and the people around them. The ending was abrupt and the stroy felt like there may have been more to tell but I understood why the author left off where he did.

message 4: by Kaj (new) - rated it 3 stars

Kaj Peters I never was very involved with the storyline to really think it through, but I think that it tried to tackle the issue of the subjectivity of childhood memories and how they shape your understanding of the present.

Inna In fact it reminded me of Dostoevsky's Notes from the Underground in combination with Bentham's design for panopticon prisons (where prisoners are treated kindly, but can be constantly observed). That is, the kids are not given any private space, either physically or emotionally (somebody else decided for them what they should be, with no place for difference). In a way this is a very religious book - what was taken from these kids is an option to decide between right and wrong, an option which August violently took back. The book, in that sense, is about (and against) Dostoevsky's inquisitor (rather than the Big Brother who is only allegedly benevolent).

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