“Brave New World’ and “1984” –the Sequel

Instructor:  Peter Reilly

  • Thursday morning
  • 9:30 – 11:30 am
  • No text required

This will be a 6-week course that will take a critical look at Aldous Huxley’s and George Orwell’s novels and how some “tech giants” of today (Microsoft, Amazon, Google, Uber, Air B & B, Facebook, Bitcoin, etc.) might fit into their future predictions.  In that context we will study some of today’s powerful companies — what they do, how they started, who started them, how they are changing our world, etc. As we look at these companies, we will not only be learning a little about how to use their services and products, but also thinking about “are they fulfilling the prophecies of Huxley and Orwell?”  Aldous Huxley and George Orwell will have much to say each day.

Outline:

Day 1 –
Overview of Brave New World/1984, the power of Internet Companies, and introduction to Amazon.com
Day 2 –
Amazon.com continued; Overview of Brave New World Revisited, 1984 overview, Google, Microsoft
Day 3 –
BNW/1984 Discussion, How we Travel today – Uber, Lyft and Air B & B
Day 4 –
BNW/1984 Discussion, How we learn, stay in touch, get our news etc.
Day 5 –
BNW/1984 Discussion, How we pay for everything, future of currency — Bitcoins
Day 6 –
BNW/1984 Discussion, How we prepare for the day everything crashes –The Cyber Attack

 

No text required. Students may read the books ahead of class, but it is absolutely not necessary. There will be a synopsis of each book presented in class, plus a brief handout.

Peter Reilly has presented a number of well-received classes at Senior College on a variety of topics. He holds a BS and MBA from Monmouth University.