Nadsat In A Clockwork Orange

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In literature, especially novels taking place in the future in the dystopian genre, the society has normally changed so much that either the main language has changed entirely, or that new languages are formed in order for sub-cultures or opposition groups to still develop and operate without conforming. In the case of quasi-dystopian novel “A clockwork Orange” The protagonist and his group of friends speak an argot called Nadsat. In many of these books the language not only serves to add depth to the setting, but also adds heavier meaning to the dialogue and themes portrayed via characterization in the book. For example, in “1984” the language “Newspeak” is extremely robotic, with a set amount of words, with most emotional concepts lacking…show more content…
he even starts fantasizing about being a family man after talking with his more matured former gang member (Burgess, 202). A very interesting attribute of the last few chapters is that Alex’s use of nadsat drops in frequency when compared to him at the beginning of the book. This addressed indirectly in “Nadsat: The Argot and its implications in Anthony Burgess’s, A Clockwork Orange”. It says “That is not to say that the author is totally unconcerned with moral values. No doubt he deplores the actions of Alex as much as we do. What he is doing is creating a hopeless version of society taken over by youth. The youth do not share the values of their elders, nor do they admit any sort of normal associations with them. Parents are not obeyed, nor do they set examples. The best that can be hopes for in the world of Burgess is that the young will eventually grow up into copies of their parents.” (Evans, 409) This statement provides support that not only does the counterculture not conform to society, they operate independent from it, and a normal attribute of a society independent of another is another language. As Alex starts integrating mentally and socially into the “adult world” his language adjusts

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