‘A Clockwork Orange’, novella by Anthony Burgess, later made into a feature film by Stanley Kubrick narrates the dystopic world of Alex de Large and his droogs.
What is translation?
You could say translation is a myth. Nothing that we want to convey is exactly translated. Our thoughts churn and we are only able to spew signifiers.
Or you could say that translation is the only reality. Everything is translated. Everything changes form. Everything becomes something else. We think of anything and it is translated into an image or being or existence.
Many often complain that language is inevitably a means of miscommunication. It misdirects us into an overlaying loop. Anthony Burgess uses language exactly for this purpose. He portrays that words don’t have inherent meanings. And it is not words themselves that convey meaning but their position on the string. In other words, context creates content.
Burgess invents a language derived from Russian to weave this distopic world together. These words don’t exist outside the universe of ‘A Clockwork Orange’. There is no glossary to refer. So we must wonder, how does the author communicate with the audience? How does the image of the mad world of Alex de Large manage to invoke and provoke the sensibility of generations?
What do we learn from ‘A Clockwork Orange‘ about digital communication?
- Create your own vocabulary: The world has its language and so should you. As a brand/organization/culture you need to develop your own system of language. Influence the audience and induct them within your special world of words/meaning. Invest in your own visual language.
- Establish context: Context generates meaning. With context comes perspective and with perspective comes perception. Communication is vastly about the context you establish.
- Take the audience on a journey: On a journey and not a guided tour. A journey is about wandering and discovery. It is not about sight-seeing. Communication should aim at self-discover.
- It is a process w/o a catalogue: Communication is a process but it may or may not be catalogued. Audience will not always have access to the library. Don’t take references for granted.
- Brainwashing doesn’t work: The human brain has evolved out of the grind. Forceful injection of ideas and repetitive assault on senses creates disassociation. Humans have become more susceptible to nuances and subtleties.
- Subversive culture is a system of its own: Mainstream has more ears but it has the noisy mob too. Investigate into the systems of subversive cultures. Involve and establish your niche.
- Translation is a continuous generation of meaning: Translation is not a transfer or a commute from A to B. It is a process of generation of meaning itself. Therefore digital communication is not a function of conveying your idea to the intended subject but rather it is an ability to generate meaning together. Communication is then the enabling of the audience to create something of value (meaningful) with its interaction with your language/message.
ASIDE: Alex is a bad bad man. He is devoid of any humanity and is morally bankrupt. Yet with a change in context, we feel sad for him. Remember, we all empathise with a vulnerable man.
At Brainpan Studio we simplify complexity. We help brands bypass the language flaw of miscommunication and create impactful digital and visual communication.
We don’t offer answers, we design solutions.
Message in for more elaboration/clarification on the above points or to talk about ‘A Clockwork Orange’ in general. Viddy well, little brother. Viddy well.
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