Coming Up For Air
Coming Up For Air
Coming Up for Air is a book by George Orwell that explores the story of George Bowling, a fat, married, middle-aged (45 years old) insurance salesman, with 'two kids who lives in Lower Binfield. It documents his story to return to his childhood haven and 'Come up for Air' from his mundane existence. Overall I somewhat enjoyed the book though I prefer some of his other books more. This may be due to me not understanding many of the references in the book, many of which are listed below.
- Everyone of those down trodden bastards, sweating his guts out to pay twice the proper price for a brick dolls house.
- There’s always a fascination in watching anybody do a job which he really understands.
- Perhaps a man really dies when his brain stops, when he looses the power to ake in a new idea.
- Coming Up For Air – Meaning to escape from ordinary life.
Words I didn't Understand
Popular Front - a party or coalition representing left-wing elements, in particular ( the Popular Front ) an alliance of communist, radical, and socialist elements formed and gaining some power in countries such as France and Spain in the 1930s.
Anti comintern pact- The Anti-Comintern Pact was an anti-communist pact concluded between Nazi Germany and the Empire of Japan (later to be joined by other, mainly fascist, governments) on November 25, 1936 and was directed against the Third (Communist) International.
Trotskyist - a supporter of the political or economic principles of Leon Trotsky.
Dialectical Materialism - the Marxist theory (adopted as the official philosophy of the Soviet communists) that political and historical events result from the conflict of social forces and are interpretable as a series of contradictions and their solutions. The conflict is seen as caused by material needs.
Proletariat - working-class people regarded collectively (often used with reference to Marxism).
Dossier - a collection of documents about a particular person, event, or subject.
Undulating - move with a smooth wave-like motion.
Old lower binfield – a part of Oxfordshire
Ingelnooks - a space on either side of a large fireplace.
Epitaphs - a phrase or form of words written in memory of a person who has died, especially as an inscription on a tombstone.
Dodderer - To shake or tremble, as from old age; totter. 2. To move in a feeble, unsteady manner.
Distingue (French) - having a distinguished manner or appearance.
Sanatorium - an establishment for the medical treatment of people who are convalescing or have a chronic illness.
Threshed – a separate grain from corn or other crops – or to violently thrash
Wasp grubs - The larva of a wasp, used for bait by anglers.
Fret Work - ornamental design in wood, typically openwork, done with a fretsaw.
Surly - bad-tempered and unfriendly.
Billeted - assign temporary accommodation to (soldiers mainly)
Pidgin - a grammatically simplified form of a language, typically English, Dutch, or Portuguese, some elements of which are taken from local languages, used for communication between people not sharing a common language.
Marose - sullen and ill-tempered.
Paroxysm - a sudden attack or outburst of a particular emotion or activity. Or sudden return of a disease.
Crab Apples – A small sour apple
Pignuts - another term for earthnut (peanuts)
Dogcarts – like a horse drawn cart for dogs
Heifer - (in farming) a cow that has not borne a calf, or has borne only one calf.
Duckweed - a tiny aquatic flowering plant that floats in large quantities on still water, often forming an apparently continuous green layer on the surface.
Pituitary - the major endocrine gland, a pea-sized body attached to the base of the brain that is important in controlling growth and development and the functioning of the other endocrine glands.
Harems - the separate part of a Muslim household reserved for wives, concubines, and female servants. The women occupying a harem; the wives (or concubines) of a polygamous man.
Black eunuchs - he Harem Ağası, head of the black eunuchs of the Ottoman Imperial Harem. The title literally means "Chief of the Girls".
Eunuch - generally refers to a man who has been castrated, typically early enough in his life for this change to have major hormonal consequences.
Zenana - (in India and Iran) the part of a house for the seclusion of women.
Blackbeetles – Cockroach
Squailers - A weighted stick used to throw, usually at small animals.
Prole - a member of the working class.
Triichinopoly Cigars – cheap indian cigars
Kow-Tow - act in an excessively subservient manner.
Indignation - anger or annoyance provoked by what is perceived as unfair treatment.
Pelmanism - a card game in which matching pairs must be selected from memory from cards laid face down.
Rome berlin axis- Rome-Berlin Axis, Coalition formed in 1936 between Italy and Germany. An agreement formulated by Italy's foreign minister Galeazzo Ciano informally linking the two fascist countries was reached on October 25, 1936. It was formalized by the Pact of Steel in 1939.
Bunkum – nonsense
Conscription - compulsory enlistment for state service, typically into the armed forces.