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A Clockwork Orange (Norton Paperback Fiction)

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A Clockwork Orange (Norton Paperback Fiction) Cover

ISBN13: 9780393312836
ISBN10: 0393312836
All Product Details

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

In this 1962 classic, a novelistic exploration of modern crime and punishment, Alex is the 15-year-old leader of his gang of "droogs" thriving in the ultraviolent future as prophetically imagined by Burgess. Speaking a bizarre Russian-derived slang, Alex and his friends freely pillage and slash their way across a nightmarish urban landscape until Alex is captured by the judicial arm of the state. He then becomes their prized guinea pig in a scientific program to completely "redeem" him for society. If we had the power of absolute criminal reform, what, the novel asks, would this mean for our ideals of freedom and society? This edition reinstates the final chapter missing from Kubrick's film and from all American editions prior to 1987, in which Alex is on the verge of starting a family as he reflects on — and completely rejects — his adolescent nastiness. It also includes Burgess's introduction "A Clockwork Orange Resucked."

Review:

"Anthony Burgess reads chapters of his novel A Clockwork Orange with hair-raising drive and energy. Although it is a fantasy set in an Orwellian future, this is anything but a bedtime story." The New York Times

Review:

"A terrifying and marvelous book." Roald Dahl

Review:

"I do not know of any other writer who has done as much with language as Mr. Burgess has done here — the fact that this is also a very funny book may pass unnoticed." William S. Burroughs

Synopsis:

The only American edition of the cult classic novel.

Synopsis:

The only American edition of the cult classic novel.

Synopsis:

In Burgess's infamous nightmare vision of youth culture in revolt, 15-year-old Alex and his friends set out on a diabolical orgy of robbery, rape, torture and murder. Alex is jailed for his teenage delinquency and the state tries to reform him — but at what cost?

Synopsis:

A vicious fifteen-year-old "droog" is the central character of this 1963 classic, whose stark terror was captured in Stanley Kubrick's magnificent film of the same title. In Anthony Burgess's nightmare vision of the future, where criminals take over after dark, the story is told by the central character, Alex, who talks in a brutal invented slang that brilliantly renders his and his friends' social pathology. A Clockwork Orange is a frightening fable about good and evil, and the meaning of human freedom. When the state undertakes to reform Alex--to "redeem" him--the novel asks, "At what cost?" This edition includes the controversial last chapter not published in the first edition and Burgess's introduction "A Clockwork Orange Resucked."

About the Author

Anthony Burgess (1917—1993) is the author of many works, including A Clockwork Orange, The Wanting Seed, Nothing Like the Sun, Honey for the Bears, The Long Day Wanes, The Doctor Is Sick, and ReJoyce.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 6 comments:

henningkatie24, April 2, 2014 (view all comments by henningkatie24)
A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess exposes the unknown and violent teenage world while expressing how destructive it really is. Burgess’s 1962 novel is directed at mature ages because it helps show what youths must go through to come of age. However, the novel uses quite a bit of slang, or Nasdat, Russian terms, Cockney rhyming slang, and strange phrasing. This is what makes the novel somewhat of a challenge to read. In addition to the language, the violence in the novel is very graphic and disturbing.
This famous novella is set in a futuristic England where the youths hold all of the power by using ‘ultra-violence’ and secret slang. In the novel, the main character and our anti-hero is Alex. A fifteen year old boy who loves committing graphic acts of violence with friends which he calls ‘droogs.’ However, one night his friends decide to turn the tables on our gang leader, Alex, leaving him helpless against the police where he then undergoes the “Ludovico Treatment” where they condition people to hate violence and sex. However, the treatment does not last and he is back to his old ways. The 21st chapter is the most crucial since Stanley Kubrick voided it from the infamous movie of the same name. This caused a lot of disagreements between Burgess and Kubrick because it took away from the entire lesson of the novel. In this last chapter Alex decides that he would rather become a father and stops committing heinous acts of violence. My personal opinions on this book are quite favorable. I was expecting a lot of violence, since I’d seen the movie first I thought I could handle it, but got a bit more than I bargained for. Despite the violence, the themes that are captured in this novel are what really made me want to read it. I thought the entire novel was well worth the read, despite the mentions of underage drug use, violence, rape, etc.
This book was able to capture the feel of Britain during the 50’s through 60’s but adding a futuristic flare. During the 50’s and 60’s the younger teenage generation ran a muck and called themselves “Teddy boys” which are the equivalent of “Greasers” in America.During this time in Britain there was social unrest and the government didn’t do much to stop it. This background information helps to understand why the novel is so violent and how they can get away from it since it was written during this time period.
“What happens in the 21st chapter? You now have the chance to find out. Briefly my young thuggish protagonist grows up. He grows with violence and recognises that human energy is better expended on creation than destruction” (xi) Anthony Burgess’s introduction quote was one I found very important. This helps to tie back into the overall theme of the novel. This whole novel is about coming of age, with violent tendencies. Burgess is able to take the normal “average boy” and turn it inside out. Alex, loves music, specifically Beethoven’s 9th symphony. However Burgess skews this and has Alex compare his violent acts to the movements in the symphony. “And there was the slow movement and the lovely last singing movement still to come. I was cured alright” (186).
One thing that is most intriguing about this novel was the name for me. “A Clockwork Orange.” Anthony Burgess chose this because he had heard it somewhere in a pub, and then thought of what the saying really meant. To take something so natural and beautiful and to turn it hard into a mechanical machine like a clock is a big hint to the entire plot. The name itself foreshadows the events that happen to Alex. He is the orange, and when he goes through the therapy, becomes a clockwork orange. Meaning there is nothing natural left to him. “Goodness comes from within…Goodness is something chosen. When a man cannot choose he ceases to be a man’” (93). However his statement “I was cured alright” proves that despite the therapy and the change, he was still his natural self the whole time. Thus making him “A Clockwork Orange.”
This book was able to capture all of the themes expressed. The idea that the teenage world is not what it appeared to be, and may even be more violent than thought is shown in this novel.This novel is able to help others understand how the teenagers of that time, and quite possibly even today, think of things differently. Burgess’s use of literary elements like style, characters, plot and diction all help for a better look into the violent gang member world. Burgess tells the story through first person narrative via Alex, who goes through a series of flashbacks to what life was like before, during and after his time in prison. The style and diction are the two main elements that help distinguish this books from others like it. The typical dystopian books use different languages depending on how sci-fi they are, but in this one, it takes a more close look at the language used among young men. In every generation of teenage boys there are some trigger words that only mean something to them. In this novel, Nadsat is what they call their language. Which is a combination of mixed Cockney rhymes, Russian terms, and English.
Burgess’s novel acts as an insight into a deranged and skewed teenage world that still has elements that can be applied to today’s society. By using the slang language of Nadsat Burgess has developed his own unique style and was able to convey the overall theme of violence amongst youths and coming of age with a twist.
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DanielleART, January 3, 2011 (view all comments by DanielleART)
Although the slang made reading this book hard to read in the beginning, I was instantly sucked in. I would say everyone should read this book sometime in their life, as it makes you think about what is right and wrong and what really makes some one a "good person" Also a good example of classical conditioning.
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nathan2010, May 3, 2010 (view all comments by nathan2010)
A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess is a piece of literature that contains many relevant ideas pertaining to power, choice, and corruption. Burgess explores these and others immensely, creating a fascinating and thought-provoking novel. The main character Alex is caught after committing many crimes, and is sent to prison. There, a new procedure called Ludovico’s Technique is tested on him. This technique ends up drastically affecting his life and power of choice. The reader should be prepared for some graphic violence, and also for many unknown slang words. Overall, A Clockwork Orange is a very powerful novel with many intriguing ideas about humanity.
This book is set in a futuristic England. In this time, young men run rampant, and are not afraid to steal or kill. Many of these boys group themselves into competing gangs. The police are not very effective, and the government is obviously looking for a means to put an end to the crime and violence taking place.
A major point that comes up frequently is the idea of a clockwork orange. Within the novel, F. Alexander (not to be confused with the main character Alex) has written a book with the same name. When Alex discovers it he reads a small section, “‘-The attempt to impose upon man, a creature of growth and capable of sweetness, to ooze juicily at the last round the bearded lips of God, to attempt to impose, I say, laws and conditions appropriate to a mechanical creation’” (25). This point is touched on again when Alex is just about to begin Ludovico’s Technique. A member of the church tells Alex, “‘The question is whether such a technique can really make a man good. Goodness comes from within…Goodness is something chosen. When a man cannot choose he ceases to be a man’” (93). This is the biggest idea of the novel, and one that is evaluated extensively. Another key idea is the ignorance of youth. Throughout the book, Burgess raises a question: can a person change dramatically between childhood and adulthood? By the end, he provides a bit of an answer, but ultimately it is up to the reader to decide.
The book manages to raise its questions very effectively and make the reader think. Burgess portrays a true human boy well with Alex. Though he has evil tendencies, the reader sees glimpses of good. He could be seen as an exaggerated model of the average teenage boy: obsessed with violence and sex. Alex is what most adults would find as a normal boy gone wrong, but what Burgess does so successfully is to raise the point that maybe it is not permanent. He also suggests that the choice to be a criminal is just as necessary as the choice not to be. Without it, no one is truly good, for they have not decided for themselves to be righteous. Everyone should be able to discover for themselves what ultimately is wrong or right. Many other issues were touched on as well; Burgess never leaves an idea without making a comment on it. Through Alex’s experiences, sex, the prison system, government, and religion were all covered. Differing views for each idea are presented, allowing the reader to have his own choice to decide what to think.
The most convincing point of the entire novel is the idea about choice. Burgess really drives his thoughts home, and manages to persuade the reader well. The inclusion of the final chapter is especially necessary, so make sure you have a copy with it. When the American edition A Clockwork Orange was published in the United States, this essential chapter was left out, and was also left out of the movie. However, it is probably the most important chapter, for it really completes the idea concerning choice.
Anthony Burgess’s language in the novel is astounding. He managed to create a whole new vocabulary called “Nadsat.” At first, it is difficult to understand what Alex is saying or thinking, but it gets much easier as you go on. For instance, “litso” means face, “viddy” means see, “rooker” means arm, and there are many more. By learning this different language that Alex uses, it is easier to get inside his head and try to relate to this very unordinary person.
The plot in A Clockwork Orange is well thought out and very intriguing. Burgess never just lets an event take place and mean nothing. Almost everything that Alex does or experiences is referenced again by the end of the novel; nothing seems meaningless or unnecessary. The characters in this book are also very deep. Alex will sometimes surprise you with his actions, and other times will not, which is a very human characteristic. Again, the last chapter is very important in assessing Alex’s growth as a character, so please consider that. Other characters will also end up being different than the reader would think, but some stay the same throughout. Burgess uses a good mixture of flat and round characters in order to add variety to the story. Finally, the tone within the book keeps it interesting. At some points the tone is almost jovial, while at others it can be quite malicious. Since Alex is able to find such joy out of his life as a criminal, the tone of his thoughts often conflict with the tone of what is taking place. This creates some great contrast.
Overall, A Clockwork Orange was fascinating to me, and would at least be an interesting read for anyone else. From language to characters to tone, Burgess creates a truly sophisticated novel that delves into many important philosophical issues. This book is still very relevant today, and will make you think if nothing else.
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Product Details

ISBN:
9780393312836
Introduction:
Burgess, Anthony
Author:
Burgess, Anthony
Introduction by:
BURGESS, ANTHONY
Introduction:
BURGESS, ANTHONY
Author:
BURGESS, ANTHONY
Publisher:
W. W. Norton & Company
Location:
New York :
Subject:
Classics
Subject:
Science Fiction - General
Subject:
Science fiction
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Copyright:
Edition Description:
(Reissue, 1995)
Series:
Norton Paperback Fiction
Series Volume:
52
Publication Date:
19950431
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Yes
Pages:
240
Dimensions:
8.26x5.56x.59 in. .43 lbs.

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A Clockwork Orange (Norton Paperback Fiction) New Trade Paper
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Product details 240 pages W. W. Norton & Company - English 9780393312836 Reviews:
"Review" by , "Anthony Burgess reads chapters of his novel A Clockwork Orange with hair-raising drive and energy. Although it is a fantasy set in an Orwellian future, this is anything but a bedtime story."
"Review" by , "A terrifying and marvelous book."
"Review" by , "I do not know of any other writer who has done as much with language as Mr. Burgess has done here — the fact that this is also a very funny book may pass unnoticed."
"Synopsis" by , The only American edition of the cult classic novel.
"Synopsis" by , The only American edition of the cult classic novel.
"Synopsis" by , In Burgess's infamous nightmare vision of youth culture in revolt, 15-year-old Alex and his friends set out on a diabolical orgy of robbery, rape, torture and murder. Alex is jailed for his teenage delinquency and the state tries to reform him — but at what cost?
"Synopsis" by , A vicious fifteen-year-old "droog" is the central character of this 1963 classic, whose stark terror was captured in Stanley Kubrick's magnificent film of the same title. In Anthony Burgess's nightmare vision of the future, where criminals take over after dark, the story is told by the central character, Alex, who talks in a brutal invented slang that brilliantly renders his and his friends' social pathology. A Clockwork Orange is a frightening fable about good and evil, and the meaning of human freedom. When the state undertakes to reform Alex--to "redeem" him--the novel asks, "At what cost?" This edition includes the controversial last chapter not published in the first edition and Burgess's introduction "A Clockwork Orange Resucked."
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