A Clockwork Orange

"I would there were no age between ten and three-and-twenty, or that youth would sleep out the rest, for there is nothing in the between but getting wenches with child, wronging the ancientry, stealing, fighting."
-- William Shakespeare, "The Winter's Tale"

An old problem, recently revived (in 1962 England) as the post-war babies came of age; however, jobs were scarce, UK society was rebuilding (war-time rationing lasted a decade after the war, until 1954). Result: too many kids with too little to do.

Burgess dresses [1] up this intergenerational conflict in future chic to allow himself the freedom to exaggerate differences between age classes in a) clothes, b) language, and c) activities. However mindless we may view these fashioned children in their enterprises of great pith and moment, the adults are just children from the previous generation: the politicians scheme and squabble, ordering conscientious doctors to trial a Solution that fixes the symptom but not the root cause, because fixing society's ills would cost themselves too much, it's easier to shift the costs to the youth and their victims. Just as the youth shift the cost of their entertainment to society.

Avoiding a complete misanthropic tale, Alex grows up. Naturally, the question remains whether we can....

[1] Do authors ever really die?

Great post. Makes me want to reread the book. - David W
And hopefully some Shakespeare as well. ;) -- Patrick.