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13th Sep 2013 - 25th Oct 2014

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April, 1984. 13:00. Comrade 6079, Winston Smith, thinks a thought, starts a diary, and falls in love. But Big Brother is watching him - and the door to Room 101 can swing open in the blink of an eye.


George Orwell and 1984

Professor Alex Callinicos is interviewed in his university office.

Prof Alex Callinicos reveals how Orwell's politics and the world in which he lived shaped his vision of 1984.

To find out more about how Orwell's politics and the world in which he lived shaped his vision of 1984watch the full length version of this video at www.digital-double.com.


On 6 June 2013, journalists from the Guardian and Washington Post reported that the US National Security Agency (NSA) was undertaking a portfolio of clandestine mass surveillance programs on a scale reminiscent of George Orwell’s dystopian society of 1984. PRISM is a digital artwork by artist Michael Takeo Magruder reflecting on these revelations and the person who brought this information to the public's attention, Edward Snowden. 

Michael Takeo Magruder and Headlong's associate artist, Sarah Grochala, will be giving a talk on PRISM and the 1984 Digital Double project at the Nam June Paik Art Center on Wednesday 17 September. For full details of the event available here.

Monday 15 – Friday 19 September 2014
Nam June Paik Art Center, Seoul, South Korea
Entrance: 4000 won

Robert Icke and Duncan Macmillan on 1984

'We want at the end of an hour and 40 minutes for the audience to have that same sense of a visceral face-punch.'

Robert Icke and Duncan Macmillan discuss adapting George Orwell's 1984 for the stage with Dominic Cavendish.

1984 - Rehearsal Diary Week 4

The most significant difference going into the fourth and penultimate week of rehearsals is the introduction of the technical elements of 1984, albeit in a primitive form.


Ideology shapes the way that we think and behave as members of society. An ideology is a set of conscious and unconscious ideas and beliefs that a group of people hold about the way that the world works. These ideas shape their sense of what is right and wrong. They shape their sense of what is normal and abnormal behaviour. They define their ambitions and their goals. At a deeper level, they shape their sense of reality.

Ben Kidd on Frank Wedekind

Frank Wedekind wasn’t really a playwright. Of course that makes no sense, since he wrote a whole bunch of plays, but it does have a meaning and it is possibly helpful to remember when staging Spring Awakening.

1984 - Rehearsal Diary Week 3

The third week of rehearsals - by virtue of (usually) being the middle week of the process and so reminding everyone that the point at which more time has passed than there is to come will soon be upon us - can be a nervous one.

1984 Digital Double

Is Big Brother watching you?

As you use the internet, your activity is tracked and monitored. This data is collected by organisations whose interests range from marketing to national security and is used to build up a profile of who you are based on your online activity. This is your “digital double”.

Click here to discover how Big Brother sees you.*



*Best viewed on an iPhone or Android phone or using a Chrome or Safari browser.

Bret Easton Ellis on American Psycho

Bret Easton Ellis on American Psycho and his return to LA.

Descartes Demon

In his 1641 book, Meditations on First Philosophy, Rene Descartes starts by considering the nature of reality. How do we know, he asks himself, that the world around us actually exists and is not just a projection of our minds?

Blanche McIntyre on The Seagull

Blanche McIntyre gives Judi Herman a director's-eye-view of The Seagull.


Dr. Btihaj Ajana is interviewed in her university office.

Dr Btihaj Ajana discusses surveillance in contemporary society and its relationship to the image of the surveillance state imagined by George Orwell in 1984

To find out more surveillance in contemporary society and its relationship to the image of the surveillance state imagined by George Orwell in 1984, watch the full length version of this video at www.digital-double.com.

The Nether Realm

The Nether Realm is a living virtual world inspired by Jennifer Haley’s new play, The Nether. The artwork explores the ways in which virtual environments can be the product of our activities in real life and considers the idea that the moral character of these online public spaces is ultimately dependent on how we create and interact with them.

The realm is linked in real time to the Twitter hashtag #TheNether. Every time the hashtag is used on Twitter, new life is breathed into the world. When the hashtag is not in use the world slowly starts to decay.

It’s up to you how beautiful or how dark the world becomes.


Language is more than simply words. It shapes the way we think. In the appendix to 1984, Orwell tells us that Newspeak is a language deliberately designed to limit the range of people’s thoughts and to make certain ideas unthinkable. It can be argued, however, that all languages, like Newspeak, limit the range of ideas that it is possible for people to understand.

Es Devlin on Good Ideas and Hard Work

Es Devlin talks to Ideas Tap about her approach to her work and the qualities that you need to become a successful designer.

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