During the week of 9th-15th October, community discussions of Orwell’s timeless text will be taking place across North America and here in London. In Kentish Town (9th Oct) the London Literary Salon will be offering a study that’s free of charge and open to the public. Early sign-ups for this date have been strong, say the organisers, and they expect to add a second study when they reach capacity.“It’s a significant moment for people all over the world to re-read George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four,” says Salon founder Toby Brothers, “as well as consider how the control of language and information can result in a loss of democracy and individual freedoms.”
The current political situation in the UK and the US demonstrate the importance of words. They cannot be treated as vacuous utterances, ignorantly conjured up, butchered down to 140 characters, ready to be recklessly flung out and, soon after, swiftly dismissed with a prod on ‘delete.’“Trump’s language continues to implicate him. His tweets and unscripted pronouncements reveal his white supremacist roots—and words can not be erased with desperate re-phrasing or ‘it was just a joke!’ codicil. Words matter. All over the globe, people are paying attention to what is being said—and what is submerged just below,” says Toby.
“George Orwell understood the importance of language — in propaganda, in the framing of history — to our very existence in a democratic society,” she says.
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