Evgeniia V. Kashulina
Herzen Russian State Pedagogic University
Kashulina E.V. The theme of total surveillance in the field of digital technologies in the novel “The Circle” by Dave Eggers. Vestnik of Kostroma State University, 2023, vol. 29, № 3, pp. 152–158 (In Russ.). https://doi.org/10.34216/1998-0817-2023-29-3-152-158
DOI: https://doi.org/10.34216/1998-0817-2023-29-3-152-158
УДК: 821(73).09”21”
Publish date: 2023-08-30
Annotation: C Currently, the genre of the dystopian novel is one of the most popular and has been changing significantly. The article studies the trends in the transformation of the surveillance theme in the dystopian discourse of the 21st century based on the novel “The Circleˮ (2013) by Dave Eggers, and compares the representation of this theme with classical novels (“1984ˮ by George Orwell, “Weˮ by Yevgeny Zamyatin). The image of totalitarian power, which is an indispensable component of a dystopian novel, has been modified recently – political terror is replaced by digital terror, where transparency of information, considered to be good, turns into evil and a means of manipulation. The metaphor of transparency is crucial in the novel, it symbolises the desire to create a constrained society, where control is the only constant. The article offers an analysis of the genre. Special attention is paid to the system of characters, which, despite the continuation of the tradition of the classical text, is significantly transformed. In addition, the article deals with the symbolism of the novel, as well as the problem of inaccurate translation of the title of the work, which leads to the loss of individual components of meaning. A detailed examination of the “The Circleˮ by Dave Eggers shows that surveillance affects people’s behaviour, controlling the desires and subordinating the will. The aspiration for absolute transparency of personal life and the monopoly on information create painful moods in a society that, despite security, feels vulnerable.
Keywords: dystopia, surveillance, Dave Eggers, “The Circleˮ, plot, genre, transparency of information
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Author's info: Evgeniia V. Kashulina, postgraduate student at Department of foreign literature, Herzen University, St. Petersburg, Russia, ekashulina@gmail.com