Anthony Burgess on A Clockwork Orange the Movie

Posted 8 years ago by Adam Gautsch

1972 Anthony Burgess wrote an article for Rolling Stone magazine about Kubrick's movie version of A Clockwork Orange. The entire article is great and interesting but my favorite part is his discussion of language and in particular

The American paperback edition of A Clockwork Orange has a glossary of Nadsat terms, but this was no idea of mine. As the novel is about brainwashing, so it is also a little device of brainwashing in itself or at least a carefully programmed series of lessons on the Russian language. You learn the words without noticing, and a glossary is unnecessary. More—because it’s there, you tend to use it, and this gets in the way of the programming.

I like the idea of learning language through brainwashing or to put it correctly I like the idea of learning through immersion. Programming, cooking, writing, or whatever it seems best to just do.

PS: The most recent book I've read that forces you to "learn" a new language is Pygmy by Chuck Palahniuk
It's a good read if you're interested.

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