A Clockwork Orange Additional Summary

Anthony Burgess


(Critical Survey of Literature for Students)

Alex, a young, English “ultra-violent” gang leader, leads his three “droogs” (or companions) in campaigns of robbery, mayhem, rape, and torture. Alex celebrates gratuitous cruelty and carnality, allowing nothing to get in the way of his impulses. After leaving the Korova Milkbar (the milk is spiked with various drugs) and ducking in and out of a pub, his gang beats up a “doddery starry schoolmaster type veck” (the gang members speak a dialect particular to their violent subculture) and destroys his books, assaults a man and woman while robbing their shop, and brutally thrashes a singing drunk. Spying a rival gang about to rape a girl, Alex, Georgie, Pete, and Dim, although outnumbered, go on the attack until the police break it up.

Their night is not yet over. In a stolen car they take a joyride into the country, wildly running over things. Stopping in a village, they attack a cottage occupied by a writer and his wife, whose educated accents drive them to even greater viciousness. They rape the wife and leave the husband permanently paralyzed. After returning to the Korova Milkbar, Alex bullies and insults Dim, who protests, with the support of Georgie and Pete. Alex’s authority over the gang is faltering. At this point they quit for the night. For Alex, such an active evening requires music to make it complete. At Municipal Flatblock 18-A, where he lives with his parents, he enjoys terrible fantasies of violence as he listens to Mozart and Bach.

The next morning, his counselor sternly warns him that the police suspect him. Alex is undeterred. He lures two girls he meets at a record store back to his flat for an orgy of sex and Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9. As he leaves the flatblock that evening, his gang intercepts him. Georgie asserts himself as the new leader, but Alex, in a quick display of ruthlessness, makes them back down. Alex nevertheless goes along with the robbery they planned. They force their way into the flat of a woman who calls the police and aggressively defends herself. Alex unintentionally kills her in the struggle. On the way out, his companions betray him. Dim hits him with a chain, blinding him, and the police quickly arrest him. In two nights and a day, Alex participated in three gratuitous assaults on strangers, a rape, a murder, a gang fight, and statutory rape, all...

(The entire section is 951 words.)

Part 1 Summary

(Novels for Students)

A Clockwork Orange opens with Alex, the main character of the novel, and his droogs, Dim, Pete, and Georgie, drinking drug-laced milk...

(The entire section is 501 words.)

Part 2 Summary

(Novels for Students)

The second section, chapters eight through fourteen, describes Alex's life in the "staja" (state penitentiary), after he is sentenced to...

(The entire section is 317 words.)

Part 3 Summary

(Novels for Students)

In the third section, Alex becomes a victim. In his absence, Alex's parents have taken a boarder, Joe, so Alex is forced to the streets,...

(The entire section is 378 words.)