A Clockwork Orange (novel)
|Cover artist||Barry Trengove|
|Genre||Science fiction, dystopian fiction, satire, black comedy|
|Published||1962 (William Heinemann, UK)|
|Media type||Print (hardback & paperback) & audio book (cassette, CD)|
|Pages||192 pages (hardback edition)|
176 pages (paperback edition)
A Clockwork Orange is a dystopian satirical black comedy novel by English writer Anthony Burgess, published in 1962. It is set in a near-future society that has a youth subculture of extreme violence. The teenage protagonist, Alex, narrates his violent exploits and his experiences with state authorities intent on reforming him. The book is partially written in a Russian-influenced argot called "Nadsat", which takes its name from the Russian suffix that is equivalent to '-teen' in English. According to Burgess, it was a jeu d'esprit written in just three weeks.
In 2005, A Clockwork Orange was included on Time magazine's list of the 100 best English-language novels written since 1923, and it was named by Modern Library and its readers as one of the 100 best English-language novels of the 20th century. The original manuscript of the book has been kept at McMaster University's William Ready Division of Archives and Research Collections in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada since the institution purchased the documents in 1971. It is considered one of the most influential dystopian books.
Part 1: Alex's world
Alex is a 15-year-old gang leader living in a near-future dystopian city. His friends ("droogs" in the novel's Anglo-Russian slang, "Nadsat") and fellow gang members are Dim, a slow-witted bruiser, who is the gang's muscle; Georgie, an ambitious second-in-command; and Pete, who mostly plays along as the droogs indulge their taste for "ultra-violence" (random, violent mayhem). Characterised as a sociopath and hardened juvenile delinquent, Alex is also intelligent, quick-witted, and enjoys classical music; he is particularly fond of Beethoven, whom he calls "Lovely Ludwig Van".
The story begins with the droogs sitting in their favourite hangout, the Korova Milk Bar, and drinking "milk-plus" – a beverage consisting of milk laced with the customer's drug of choice – to prepare for a night of ultra-violence. They assault a scholar walking home from the public library; rob a store, leaving the owner and his wife bloodied and unconscious; beat up a beggar; then scuffle with a rival gang. Joyriding through the countryside in a stolen car, they break into an isolated cottage and terrorise the young couple living there, beating the husband and gang-raping his wife. In a metafictional touch, the husband is a writer working on a manuscript called "A Clockwork Orange", and Alex contemptuously reads out a paragraph that states the novel's main theme before shredding the manuscript. Back at the Korova, Alex strikes Dim for his crude response to a woman's singing of an operatic passage, and strains within the gang become apparent. At home in his parents' flat, Alex plays classical music at top volume, which he describes as giving him orgasmic bliss before falling asleep.
Alex feigns illness to his parents to stay out of school the next day. Following an unexpected visit from P.R. Deltoid, his "post-corrective adviser", Alex visits a record store, where he meets two pre-teen girls. He invites them back to the flat, where he drugs and rapes them. That night after a nap, Alex finds his droogs in a mutinous mood, waiting downstairs in the torn-up and graffitied lobby. Georgie challenges Alex for leadership of the gang, demanding that they focus on higher-value targets in their robberies. Alex quells the rebellion by slashing Dim's hand and fighting with Georgie, then pacifies the gang by agreeing to Georgie's plan to rob the home of a wealthy elderly woman. Alex breaks in and knocks the woman unconscious; but, when he hears sirens and opens the door to flee, Dim strikes him in payback for the earlier fight. The gang abandons Alex on the front step to be arrested by the police; while in custody, he learns that the woman has died from her injuries.
Part 2: The Ludovico Technique
Alex is convicted of murder and sentenced to 14 years in prison. His parents visit one day to inform him that Georgie has been killed in a botched robbery. Two years into his term, he has obtained a job in one of the prison chapels, playing music on the stereo to accompany the Sunday Christian services. The chaplain mistakes Alex's Bible studies for stirrings of faith; in reality, Alex is only reading Scripture for the violent or sexual passages. After his fellow cellmates blame him for beating a troublesome cellmate to death, he is chosen to undergo an experimental behaviour modification treatment called the Ludovico Technique in exchange for having the remainder of his sentence commuted. The technique is a form of aversion therapy in which Alex is injected with nausea-inducing drugs while watching graphically violent films, eventually conditioning him to become severely ill at the mere thought of violence. As an unintended consequence, the soundtrack to one of the films, Beethoven's Ninth Symphony, renders Alex unable to enjoy his beloved classical music as before.
The effectiveness of the technique is demonstrated to a group of VIPs, who watch as Alex collapses before a man who slaps him and abases himself before a scantily clad young woman. Although the prison chaplain accuses the state of stripping Alex of free will, the government officials on the scene are pleased with the results, and Alex is released from prison.
Part 3: After prison
Alex returns to his parents' flat, only to find that they are letting his room to a lodger. Now homeless, he wanders the streets and enters a public library, hoping to learn of a painless method for committing suicide. The old scholar whom Alex had assaulted in Part 1 finds him and beats him, with the help of several friends. Two policemen come to Alex's rescue, but they turn out to be Dim and Billyboy, a former rival gang leader. They take Alex outside town, brutalise him, and abandon him there. Alex collapses at the door of an isolated cottage, realising too late that it is the one he and his droogs invaded in Part 1.
The writer, F. Alexander, still lives here, but his wife has since died of what he believes to be injuries she sustained in the rape. He does not recognise Alex but gives him shelter and questions him about the conditioning he has undergone. Alexander and his colleagues, all highly critical of the government, plan to use Alex as a symbol of state brutality and thus prevent the incumbent government from being re-elected. Alex inadvertently reveals that he was the ringleader of the home invasion; he is removed from the cottage and locked in an upper-story bedroom as a relentless barrage of classical music plays over speakers. He attempts suicide by leaping from the window.
Alex wakes up in a hospital, where he is courted by government officials anxious to counter the bad publicity created by his suicide attempt. He is informed that Alexander has been "put away" for Alex's protection and his own. Alex is offered a well-paying job if he agrees to side with the government once he is discharged. A round of tests reveals that his old violent impulses have returned, indicating that the hospital doctors have undone the effects of his conditioning. As photographers snap pictures, Alex daydreams of orgiastic violence and reflects, "I was cured all right."
In the final chapter, Alex—now 18 years old and working for the nation's musical recording archives—finds himself halfheartedly preparing for yet another night of crime with a new gang (Len, Rick and Bully). After a chance encounter with Pete, who has reformed and married, Alex finds himself taking less and less pleasure in acts of senseless violence. He begins contemplating giving up crime himself to become a productive member of society and start a family of his own, while reflecting on the notion that his own children could possibly end up being just as destructive as he has been, if not more so.
Omission of the final chapter in the US
The book has three parts, each with seven chapters. Burgess has stated that the total of 21 chapters was an intentional nod to the age of 21 being recognised as a milestone in human maturation. The 21st chapter was omitted from the editions published in the United States prior to 1986. In the introduction to the updated American text (these newer editions include the missing 21st chapter), Burgess explains that when he first brought the book to an American publisher, he was told that US audiences would never go for the final chapter, in which Alex sees the error of his ways, decides he has lost his taste for violence and resolves to turn his life around.
At the American publisher's insistence, Burgess allowed their editors to cut the redeeming final chapter from the US version, so that the tale would end on a darker note, with Alex becoming his old, ultraviolent self again – an ending which the publisher insisted would be "more realistic" and appealing to a US audience. The film adaptation, directed by Stanley Kubrick, is based on the American edition of the book, and is considered to be "badly flawed" by Burgess. Kubrick called Chapter 21 "an extra chapter" and claimed that he had not read the original version until he had virtually finished the screenplay and that he had never given serious consideration to using it. In Kubrick's opinion – as in the opinion of other readers, including the original American editor – the final chapter was unconvincing and inconsistent with the book. Kubrick's stance was unusual when compared to the standard Hollywood practice of producing films with the familiar tropes of resolving moral messages and good triumphing over evil before the film's end.
- Alex: The novel's protagonist and leader among his droogs. He often refers to himself as "Your Humble Narrator". Having coaxed two ten-year-old girls into his bedroom, Alex refers to himself as "Alexander the Large" while raping them; this was later the basis for Alex's claimed surname DeLarge in the 1971 film.
- George, Georgie or Georgie Boy: Effectively Alex's greedy second-in-command. Georgie attempts to undermine Alex's status as leader of the gang and take over their gang as the new leader. He is later killed during a botched robbery while Alex is in prison.
- Pete: The only one who does not take particular sides when the droogs fight among themselves. He later meets and marries a girl named Georgina, renouncing his violent ways and even losing his former (Nadsat) speech patterns. A chance encounter with Pete in the final chapter influences Alex to realise that he has grown bored with violence and recognise that human energy is better expended on creation than destruction.
- Dim: An idiotic and thoroughly gormless member of the gang, persistently condescended to by Alex, but respected to some extent by his droogs for his formidable fighting abilities, his weapon of choice being a length of bike chain. He later becomes a police officer, exacting his revenge on Alex for the abuse he once suffered under his command.
- P. R. Deltoid: A criminal rehabilitation social worker assigned the task of keeping Alex on the straight and narrow. He seemingly has no clue about dealing with young people, and is devoid of empathy or understanding for his troublesome charge. Indeed, when Alex is arrested for murdering an old woman and then ferociously beaten by several police officers, Deltoid simply spits on him.
- Prison Chaplain: The character who first questions whether it is moral to turn a violent person into a behavioural automaton who can make no choice in such matters. This is the only character who is truly concerned about Alex's welfare; he is not taken seriously by Alex, though. He is nicknamed by Alex "prison charlie" or "chaplin", a pun on Charlie Chaplin.
- Billyboy: A rival of Alex's. Early on in the story, Alex and his droogs battle Billyboy and his droogs, which ends abruptly when the police arrive. Later, after Alex is released from prison, Billyboy (along with Dim, who like Billyboy has become a police officer) rescues Alex from a mob, then subsequently beats him in a location out of town.
- Prison Governor: The man who decides to let Alex "choose" to be the first reformed by the Ludovico technique.
- The Minister of the Interior: The government high-official who determined that the Ludovico's technique will be used to cut recidivism. He is referred to as the Inferior by Alex.
- Dr Branom: A scientist, co-developer of the Ludovico technique. He appears friendly and almost paternal towards Alex at first, before forcing him into the theatre and what Alex calls the "chair of torture".
- Dr Brodsky: Branom's colleague and co-developer of the Ludovico technique. He seems much more passive than Branom and says considerably less.
- F. Alexander: An author who was in the process of typing his magnum opus A Clockwork Orange when Alex and his droogs broke into his house, beat him, tore up his work and then brutally gang-raped his wife, which caused her subsequent death. He is left deeply scarred by these events and when he encounters Alex two years later, he uses him as a guinea pig in a sadistic experiment intended to prove the Ludovico technique unsound. The government imprisons him afterwards. He is given the name Frank Alexander in the film.
- Cat Woman: An indirectly named woman who blocks Alex's gang's entrance scheme, and threatens to shoot Alex and set her cats on him if he does not leave. After Alex breaks into her house, she fights with him, ordering her cats to join the melee, but reprimands Alex for fighting them off. She sustains a fatal blow to the head during the scuffle. She is given the name Miss Weathers in the film.
A Clockwork Orange was written in Hove, then a senescent English seaside town. Burgess had arrived back in Britain after his stint abroad to see that much had changed. A youth culture had developed, based around coffee bars, pop music and teenage gangs. England was gripped by fears over juvenile delinquency. Burgess stated that the novel's inspiration was his first wife Lynne's beating by a gang of drunk American servicemen stationed in England during World War II. She subsequently miscarried. In its investigation of free will, the book's target is ostensibly the concept of behaviourism, pioneered by such figures as B. F. Skinner.
Burgess later stated that he wrote the book in three weeks.
Burgess has offered several clarifications about the meaning and origin of its title:
- He had overheard the phrase "as queer as a clockwork orange" in a London pub in 1945 and assumed it was a Cockney expression. In Clockwork Marmalade, an essay published in the Listener in 1972, he said that he had heard the phrase several times since that occasion. He also explained the title in response to a question from William Everson on the television programme Camera Three in 1972, "Well, the title has a very different meaning but only to a particular generation of London Cockneys. It's a phrase which I heard many years ago and so fell in love with, I wanted to use it, the title of the book. But the phrase itself I did not make up. The phrase "as queer as a clockwork orange" is good old East London slang and it didn't seem to me necessary to explain it. Now, obviously, I have to give it an extra meaning. I've implied an extra dimension. I've implied the junction of the organic, the lively, the sweet – in other words, life, the orange – and the mechanical, the cold, the disciplined. I've brought them together in this kind of oxymoron, this sour-sweet word." Nonetheless, no other record of the expression being used before 1962 has ever appeared. Kingsley Amis notes in his Memoirs (1991) that no trace of it appears in Eric Partridge's Dictionary of Historical Slang.
The saying "as queer as ..." followed by an improbable object: "... a clockwork orange", or "... a four-speed walking stick" or "... a left-handed corkscrew" etc. predates Burgess' novel. An early example, "as queer as Dick's hatband", appeared in 1796, and was alluded to in 1757.
- His second explanation was that it was a pun on the Malay word orang, meaning "man". The novella contains no other Malay words or links.
- In a prefatory note to A Clockwork Orange: A Play with Music, he wrote that the title was a metaphor for "an organic entity, full of juice and sweetness and agreeable odour, being turned into a mechanism".
- In his essay Clockwork Oranges, Burgess asserts that "this title would be appropriate for a story about the application of Pavlovian or mechanical laws to an organism which, like a fruit, was capable of colour and sweetness".
- While addressing the reader in a letter before some editions of the book, the author says that when a man ceases to have free will, they are no longer a man. "Just a clockwork orange", a shiny, appealing object, but "just a toy to be wound-up by either God or the Devil, or (what is increasingly replacing both) the State."
This title alludes to the protagonist's negative emotional responses to feelings of evil which prevent the exercise of his free will subsequent to the administration of the Ludovico Technique. To induce this conditioning, Alex is forced to watch scenes of violence on a screen that are systematically paired with negative physical stimulation. The negative physical stimulation takes the form of nausea and "feelings of terror", which are caused by an emetic medicine administered just before the presentation of the films.
Use of slang
The book, narrated by Alex, contains many words in a slang argot which Burgess invented for the book, called Nadsat. It is a mix of modified Slavic words, Cockney rhyming slang and derived Russian (like baboochka). For instance, these terms have the following meanings in Nadsat: droog (друг) = friend; moloko (молоко) = milk; gulliver (голова) = head; malchick (мальчик) or malchickiwick = boy; soomka (сумка) = sack or bag; Bog (Бог) = God; horrorshow (хорошо) = good; prestoopnick (преступник) = criminal; rooker (рука) = hand; cal (кал) = crap; veck (человек) = man or guy; litso (лицо) = face; malenky (маленький) = little; and so on. Some words Burgess invented himself or just adapted from pre-existing languages. Compare Polari.
One of Alex's doctors explains the language to a colleague as "odd bits of old rhyming slang; a bit of gypsy talk, too. But most of the roots are Slav propaganda. Subliminal penetration." Some words are not derived from anything, but merely easy to guess, e.g. "in-out, in-out" or "the old in-out" means sexual intercourse. Cutter, however, means "money", because "cutter" rhymes with "bread-and-butter"; this is rhyming slang, which is intended to be impenetrable to outsiders (especially eavesdropping policemen). Additionally, slang like appypolly loggy ("apology") seems to derive from school boy slang. This reflects Alex's age of 15.
In the first edition of the book, no key was provided, and the reader was left to interpret the meaning from the context. In his appendix to the restored edition, Burgess explained that the slang would keep the book from seeming dated, and served to muffle "the raw response of pornography" from the acts of violence.
The term "ultraviolence", referring to excessive or unjustified violence, was coined by Burgess in the book, which includes the phrase "do the ultra-violent". The term's association with aesthetic violence has led to its use in the media.
Banning and censorship history in the US
In 1976, A Clockwork Orange was removed from an Aurora, Colorado high school because of "objectionable language". A year later in 1977 it was removed from high school classrooms in Westport, Massachusetts over similar concerns with "objectionable" language. In 1982, it was removed from two Anniston, Alabama libraries, later to be reinstated on a restricted basis. Also, in 1973 a bookseller was arrested for selling the novel. The charges were later dropped. However, each of these instances came after the release of Stanley Kubrick's popular 1971 film adaptation of A Clockwork Orange, itself the subject of much controversy.
The Sunday Telegraph review was positive, and described the book as "entertaining ... even profound". Kingsley Amis in The Observer acclaimed the novel as "cheerful horror", writing "Mr Burgess has written a fine farrago of outrageousness, one which incidentally suggests a view of juvenile violence I can't remember having met before". Malcolm Bradbury wrote "All of Mr Burgess's powers as a comic writer, which are considerable, have gone into the rich language of his inverted Utopia. If you can stomach the horrors, you'll enjoy the manner". Roald Dahl called it "a terrifying and marvellous book". Many reviewers praised the inventiveness of the language, but expressed unease at the violent subject matter. The Spectator praised Burgess's "extraordinary technical feat" but was uncomfortable with "a certain arbitrariness about the plot which is slightly irritating". New Statesman acclaimed Burgess for addressing "acutely and savagely the tendencies of our time" but called the book "a great strain to read". The Sunday Times review was negative, and described the book as "a very ordinary, brutal and psychologically shallow story". The Times also reviewed the book negatively, describing it as "a somewhat clumsy experiment with science fiction [with] clumsy cliches about juvenile delinquency". The violence was criticised as "unconvincing in detail".
In 1985, Burgess published Flame into Being: The Life and Work of D. H. Lawrence and while discussing Lady Chatterley's Lover in his biography, Burgess compared the notoriety of D. H. Lawrence's novel with A Clockwork Orange: "We all suffer from the popular desire to make the known notorious. The book I am best known for, or only known for, is a novel I am prepared to repudiate: written a quarter of a century ago, a jeu d'esprit knocked off for money in three weeks, it became known as the raw material for a film which seemed to glorify sex and violence. The film made it easy for readers of the book to misunderstand what it was about, and the misunderstanding will pursue me until I die. I should not have written the book because of this danger of misinterpretation, and the same may be said of Lawrence and Lady Chatterley's Lover."
Awards and nominations and rankings
- 1983 – Prometheus Award (Preliminary Nominee)
- 1999 – Prometheus Award (Nomination)
- 2002 – Prometheus Award (Nomination)
- 2003 – Prometheus Award (Nomination)
- 2006 – Prometheus Award (Nomination)
- 2008 – Prometheus Award (Hall of Fame Award)
The best known adaptation of the novella is the 1971 film A Clockwork Orange by Stanley Kubrick, featuring Malcolm McDowell as Alex. In 1987, Burgess published a stage play titled A Clockwork Orange: A Play with Music. The play includes songs, written by Burgess, which are inspired by Beethoven and Nadsat slang.
In 1988, a German adaptation of A Clockwork Orange at the intimate theatre of Bad Godesberg featured a musical score by the German punk rock band Die Toten Hosen which, combined with orchestral clips of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony and "other dirty melodies" (so stated by the subtitle), was released on the album Ein kleines bisschen Horrorschau. The track Hier kommt Alex became one of the band's signature songs.
In February 1990, another musical version was produced at the Barbican Theatre in London by the Royal Shakespeare Company. Titled A Clockwork Orange: 2004, it received mostly negative reviews, with John Peter of The Sunday Times of London calling it "only an intellectual Rocky Horror Show", and John Gross of The Sunday Telegraph calling it "a clockwork lemon". Even Burgess himself, who wrote the script based on his novel, was disappointed. According to The Evening Standard, he called the score, written by Bono and The Edge of the rock group U2, "neo-wallpaper". Burgess had originally worked alongside the director of the production, Ron Daniels, and envisioned a musical score that was entirely classical. Unhappy with the decision to abandon that score, he heavily criticised the band's experimental mix of hip hop, liturgical and gothic music. Lise Hand of The Irish Independent reported The Edge as saying that Burgess's original conception was "a score written by a novelist rather than a songwriter". Calling it "meaningless glitz", Jane Edwardes of 20/20 magazine said that watching this production was "like being invited to an expensive French Restaurant – and being served with a Big Mac."
In 1994, Chicago's Steppenwolf Theater put on a production of A Clockwork Orange directed by Terry Kinney. The American premiere of novelist Anthony Burgess's own adaptation of his A Clockwork Orange starred K. Todd Freeman as Alex. In 2001, UNI Theatre (Mississauga, Ontario) presented the Canadian premiere of the play under the direction of Terry Costa.
In 2002, Godlight Theatre Company presented the New York Premiere adaptation of A Clockwork Orange at Manhattan Theatre Source. The production went on to play at the SoHo Playhouse (2002), Ensemble Studio Theatre (2004), 59E59 Theaters (2005) and the Edinburgh Festival Fringe (2005). While at Edinburgh, the production received rave reviews from the press while playing to sold-out audiences. The production was directed by Godlight's artistic director, Joe Tantalo.
In 2003, Los Angeles director Brad Mays and the ARK Theatre Company staged a multi-media adaptation of A Clockwork Orange, which was named "Pick of the Week" by the LA Weekly and nominated for three of the 2004 LA Weekly Theater Awards: Direction, Revival Production (of a 20th-century work), and Leading Female Performance. Vanessa Claire Smith won Best Actress for her gender-bending portrayal of Alex, the music-loving teenage sociopath. This production utilised three separate video streams outputted to seven onstage video monitors – six 19-inch and one 40-inch. In order to preserve the first-person narrative of the book, a pre-recorded video stream of Alex, "your humble narrator", was projected onto the 40-inch monitor, thereby freeing the onstage character during passages which would have been awkward or impossible to sustain in the breaking of the fourth wall.
An adaptation of the work, based on the original novel, the film and Burgess's own stage version, was performed by the SiLo Theatre in Auckland, New Zealand in early 2007.
In 2021, the International Anthony Burgess Foundation premiered a webpage cataloging various productions of A Clockwork Orange from around the world.
- 1962, UK, William Heinemann (ISBN ?), December 1962, Hardcover
- 1962, US, W. W. Norton & Co Ltd (ISBN ?), 1962, Hardcover
- 1963, US, W. W. Norton & Co Ltd (ISBN 978-0-345-28411-2), 1963, Paperback
- 1965, US, Ballantine Books (ISBN 978-0-345-01708-6), 1965, Paperback
- 1969, US, Ballantine Books (ISBN ?), 1969, Paperback
- 1971, US, Ballantine Books (ISBN 978-0-345-02624-8), 1971, Paperback, Movie released
- 1972, UK, Lorrimer, (ISBN 978-0-85647-019-6), 11 September 1972, Hardcover
- 1972, UK, Penguin Books Ltd (ISBN 978-0-14-003219-2), 25 January 1973, Paperback
- 1973, US, Caedmon Records, 1973, Vinyl LP (First 4 chapters read by Anthony Burgess)
- 1977, US, Ballantine Books (ISBN 978-0-345-27321-5), 12 September 1977, Paperback
- 1979, US, Ballantine Books (ISBN 978-0-345-31483-3), April 1979, Paperback
- 1983, US, Ballantine Books (ISBN 978-0-345-31483-3), 12 July 1983, Unbound
- 1986, US, W. W. Norton & Company (ISBN 978-0-393-31283-6), November 1986, Paperback (Adds final chapter not previously available in U.S. versions)
- 1987, UK, W. W. Norton & Co Ltd (ISBN 978-0-393-02439-5), July 1987, Hardcover
- 1988, US, Ballantine Books (ISBN 978-0-345-35443-3), March 1988, Paperback
- 1995, UK, W. W. Norton & Co Ltd (ISBN 978-0-393-31283-6), June 1995, Paperback
- 1996, UK, Penguin Books Ltd (ISBN 978-0-14-018882-0), 25 April 1996, Paperback
- 1996, UK, HarperAudio (ISBN 978-0-694-51752-7), September 1996, Audio Cassette
- 1997, UK, Heyne Verlag (ISBN 978-3-453-13079-1), 31 January 1997, Paperback
- 1998, UK, Penguin Books Ltd (ISBN 978-0-14-027409-7), 3 September 1998, Paperback
- 1999, UK, Rebound by Sagebrush (ISBN 978-0-8085-8194-9), October 1999, Library Binding
- 2000, UK, Penguin Books Ltd (ISBN 978-0-14-118260-5), 24 February 2000, Paperback
- 2000, UK, Penguin Books Ltd (ISBN 978-0-14-029105-6), 2 March 2000, Paperback
- 2000, UK, Turtleback Books (ISBN 978-0-606-19472-3), November 2000, Hardback
- 2001, UK, Penguin Books Ltd (ISBN 978-0-14-100855-4), 27 September 2001, Paperback
- 2002, UK, Thorndike Press (ISBN 978-0-7862-4644-1), October 2002, Hardback
- 2005, UK, Buccaneer Books (ISBN 978-1-56849-511-8), 29 January 2005, Library Binding
- 2010, Greece, Anubis Publications (ISBN 978-960-306-847-1), 2010, Paperback (Adds final chapter not previously available in Greek versions)
- 2012, US, W. W. Norton & Company (ISBN 978-0-393-08913-4) 22 October 2012, Hardback (50th Anniversary Edition), revised text version. Andrew Biswell, PhD, director of the International Burgess Foundation, has taken a close look at the three varying published editions alongside the original typescript to recreate the novel as Anthony Burgess envisioned it.
- Classical conditioning
- List of cultural references to A Clockwork Orange
- List of stories set in a future now past
- Project MKUltra
- Violence in art
- "Books of The Times". The New York Times. 19 March 1963. Archived from the original on 2 February 2017. Retrieved 4 February 2017.
- "Appendix:A Clockwork Orange - Wiktionary". en.wiktionary.org. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 12 June 2018.
- "A Clockwork Orange - The book versus the Film". Archived from the original on 17 August 2013. Retrieved 19 September 2013.
- Grossman, Lev; Lacayo, Richard (16 October 2005). "All-Time 100 Novels: The Complete List". Time. Archived from the original on 25 April 2010. Retrieved 5 May 2007.
- "100 Best Novels" Archived 23 November 2015 at the Wayback Machine. Modern Library. Retrieved 31 October 2012
- Humphreys, Adrian (11 November 2012). "A clockwork original: McMaster University bought manuscript of iconic novel for $250". National Post. Archived from the original on 25 December 2012. Retrieved 13 November 2012.
- "The Big Jubilee Read: A literary celebration of Queen Elizabeth II's record-breaking reign". BBC. 17 April 2022. Retrieved 14 July 2022.
- Podgorski, Daniel (1 March 2016). "Burgess' Myopic Morality: Why Anthony Burgess' Infamous A Clockwork Orange is Stronger Without its Original Last Chapter". The Gemsbok. Archived from the original on 14 April 2016. Retrieved 14 April 2016.
- Burgess, Anthony (1995). "Introduction: A Clockwork Orange Resucked". A Clockwork Orange. New York: W. W. Norton & Company. pp. ix–xv.
- Ciment, Michel (1981). "Kubrick on A Clockwork Orange". The Kubrick Site. Archived from the original on 24 December 2012. Retrieved 14 April 2016.
- A Clockwork Orange Resucked Archived 22 June 2013 at the Wayback Machine. The Floating Library. Retrieved on 2013-10-31.
- Ahmed, Samira (3 July 2012). "A Clockwork Orange - interview with Will Self". Nightwaves (Interview). BBC. Archived from the original on 2 February 2017. Retrieved 31 December 2014.
- A Clockwork Orange (Penguin Modern Classics) (Paperback) by Anthony Burgess, Blake Morrison xv
- Burgess, A. A Clockwork Orange, Penguin UK, 2011, introduction by Blake Morrison, page 17 : " his first wife, Lynne, was beaten, kicked and robbed in London by a gang of four GI deserters ".
- A Clockwork Orange (Hardback) by Anthony Burgess, Will Self
- An examination of Kubrick's A Clockwork Orange Archived 9 November 2016 at the Wayback Machine Camera Three: Creative Arts Television, 2010-08-04. (Video)
- Clockwork Orange: A review with William Everson Archived 10 July 2012 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved: 2012-03-11.
- Dexter, Gary (2008). Why Not Catch-21?: The Stories Behind the Titles. Frances Lincoln Ltd. pp. 200–203. ISBN 978-0-7112-2925-9.
- Dalzell, Tom; Victor, Terry (26 June 2015). The New Partridge Dictionary of Slang and Unconventional English. ISBN 978-1-317-37252-3. Archived from the original on 8 July 2020. Retrieved 30 June 2020.
- Grose, Francis (1796). "A Classical Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue". Archived from the original on 11 July 2020. Retrieved 30 June 2020.
- Hutton, Charles (1775). "The Diarian Miscellany: Consisting of All the Useful and Entertaining Parts, Both Mathematical and Poetical, Extracted from the Ladies' Diary, from the Beginning of that Work in the Year 1704, Down to the End of the Year 1773. With Many Additional Solutions and Improvements".
- Burgess, Anthony (2013). 1985. Profile Books. ISBN 978-1-84765-893-7. Archived from the original on 25 February 2021. Retrieved 30 June 2020.
- AFP (29 October 2007). "Gruesome 'Saw 4' slashes through North American box-office". Archived from the original on 16 January 2008. Retrieved 15 January 2008.
- "Q&A With 'Hostel' Director Eli Roth and Quentin Tarantino". New York. Archived from the original on 9 January 2008. Retrieved 15 January 2008.
- "ADV Announces New Gantz Collection, Final Guyver & More: Nov 6 Releases". Archived from the original on 5 February 2008. Retrieved 15 January 2008.
- CBS News (30 October 2007). ""Manhunt 2": Most Violent Game Yet?, Critics Say New Video Game Is Too Realistic; Players Must Torture, Kill". Archived from the original on 2 January 2008. Retrieved 15 January 2008.
- "Banned & Challenged Classics". American Library Association. 26 March 2013. Archived from the original on 11 October 2018. Retrieved 11 October 2018.
- Chitty, Susan. "Is That the Lot?" Sunday Telegraph, 13 May 1962, p. 9.
- Amis, Kingsley From the Observer archive, 13 May 1962: A Clockwork Orange reviewed The Guardian
- "A Clockwork Orange and the Critics". The International Anthony Burgess Foundation.
- Brooks, Jeremy. "A Bedsitter in Dublin". Sunday Times, 13 May 1962, p. 32.
- "New Fiction". Times, 17 May 1962, p. 16.
- A Clockwork Orange (Penguin Modern Classics) (Paperback) by Anthony Burgess, Blake Morrison xxii
- Calder,, John Mackenzie, and Anthony Burgess. "Ugh". The Times Literary Supplement, 2 January 1964, p. 9.
- Flame into Being: The Life and Work of D. H. Lawrence (Heinemann, London 1985) Anthony Burgess, p 205
- "Libertarian Futurist Society". Lfs.org. Archived from the original on 2 May 2006. Retrieved 3 January 2014.
- "All-Time 100 Novels". Time. 16 October 2005. Archived from the original on 19 August 2007. Retrieved 20 August 2007.
- Dargis, Manohla (27 November 2009). "Working With Andy the Auteur". The New York Times. Archived from the original on 21 February 2019. Retrieved 20 February 2019.
- Canby, Vincent (20 December 1971). "A Clockwork Orange (1971) 'A Clockwork Orange' Dazzles the Senses and Mind". The New York Times. Archived from the original on 16 May 2012. Retrieved 4 February 2017.
- "A Clockwork Orange on Stage". anthonyburgess.org. International Anthony Burgess Foundation. 5 September 2011. Archived from the original on 29 March 2015. Retrieved 27 March 2015.
- "Clockwork Apple (Manga)". Tezuka In English. 21 April 2017. Retrieved 26 January 2021.
- "Mirateca Arts". Mirateca.com. Archived from the original on 14 October 2013. Retrieved 3 January 2014.
- "Brad Mays". Brad Mays. Archived from the original on 20 October 2013. Retrieved 3 January 2014.
- "Ark Theatre". Ark Theatre. Archived from the original on 20 October 2013. Retrieved 3 January 2014.
- "Production Photos from A Clockwork Orange, 2003, ARK Theatre Company, directed by Brad Mays". Bradmays.com. Archived from the original on 4 October 2011. Retrieved 3 January 2014.
- Kavner, Lucas (20 July 2011). "'A Clockwork Orange' Songs To Be Performed For First Time in History". Huffingtonpost.com. Archived from the original on 21 November 2011. Retrieved 28 November 2011.
- "LA Weekly Theatre Awards Nominations A Clockwork Orange - nominations for "Best Revival Production," "Best Leading Female Performance," "Best Direction"". Laweekly.com. 12 February 2004. Archived from the original on 22 December 2014. Retrieved 3 January 2014.
- "LA Weekly Theatre Awards A Clockwork Orange - Vanessa Claire Smith wins for "Best Leading Female Performance"". Laweekly.com. 29 April 2004. Archived from the original on 25 May 2011. Retrieved 3 January 2014.
- "Brad Mays (image)". Archived from the original on 30 October 2008. Retrieved 3 January 2014.
- "Brad Mays Gallery: A Clockwork Orange". Bradmays.com. Archived from the original on 20 October 2013. Retrieved 3 January 2014.
- Burrows, Melanya (28 January 2005). "Addicted to Droogs". The New Zealand Herald. Archived from the original on 29 September 2007. Retrieved 14 August 2007.
- "A Clockwork Orange On Stage".
- "A Clockwork Orange | W. W. Norton & Company". Books.wwnorton.com. Archived from the original on 5 December 2012. Retrieved 3 January 2014.
- A Clockwork Orange: A Play With Music. Century Hutchinson Ltd. (1987). An extract is quoted on several web sites: Anthony Burgess from A Clockwork Orange: A Play With Music (Century Hutchinson Ltd, 1987), anthony burgess on A Clockwork Orange - page 2 at the Wayback Machine (archived 15 December 2005), A Clockwork Orange - From A Clockwork Orange: A Play With Music
- Burgess, Anthony (1978). "Clockwork Oranges". In 1985. London: Hutchinson. ISBN 978-0-09-136080-1 (extracts quoted here)
- Vidal, Gore (1988). "Why I Am Eight Years Younger Than Anthony Burgess". At Home: Essays, 1982–1988. New York: Random House. p. 411. ISBN 978-0-394-57020-4.
- Tuck, Donald H. (1974). The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction and Fantasy. Chicago: Advent. p. 72. ISBN 978-0-911682-20-5.
- A Clockwork Orange title listing at the Internet Speculative Fiction Database
- A Clockwork Orange at SparkNotes
- A Clockwork Orange Archived 4 February 2009 at the Wayback Machine at Literapedia
- A Clockwork Orange (1962) | Last chapter | Anthony Burgess (1917–1993)
- Comparisons with the Kubrick film adaptation