First published OTD in 1949, George Orwell’s dystopian novel ‘Nineteen Eighty-Four’. The title of the novel, its themes, the Newspeak language and the author’s surname are often invoked against control and intrusion by the state, and the adjective Orwellian describes a totalitarian dystopia that is characterised by government control and subjugation of the people.

Orwell’s invented language, Newspeak, satirises hypocrisy and evasion by the state: the Ministry of Love (Miniluv) oversees torture and brainwashing, … More

When a land surveyor, known only as “K.”, is summoned to the Village, he is forced to negotiate an obscure hierarchy – among assistants & messengers, chambermaids, landladies, masters & mistresses. But how is he to receive his instructions from the Castle when no one knows what his employer looks like, telephones ring unanswered, & there is anyway no land to survey? A piercing study in futility, Kafka’s final masterpiece ends – much like life itself – in mid-sentence.

Kafka never finished The Castle, his final novel. What he did complete is a vision of a relentlessly dystopian realm … More