Brainwashing of Constituents in George Orwell's "1984"

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Eric Blair wrote the novel 1984 under the pseudonym George Orwell. The original title of 1984 was The Last Man in Europe, however, the title was changed for unknown purposes. It has been speculated that the change in title was done because it was a mere reversal of the last two digits of the year in which it was written. The novel was first received with conflicting acclamations and criticisms. Those who provided acclamation for the novel believed that it portrayed the impending possibility of the future and what it might bring. Some reviewers, however, disliked its dystopian satire of the class system, the power struggles of world leaders, nationalism, totalitarian regimes, and bureaucracy. Others panned it as nihilistic prophesy on the downfall of humankind and perceived the novel to be very anti-Catholic because Orwell replaced God and the church with Big Brother (Merriman.) In spite of these negative remarks, the power and magnitude of the content of 1984 is phenomenal. The influence of this book is so vast that some words from the novel, like facecrime and oldthink, are used in modern day language. Another of these words is “doublethink.” The word doublethink means “the power of holding two contradictory beliefs in one’s mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them.” This word is included in what is described as “Newspeak,” the language spoken in 1984. 1984 is about a totalitarian form of government that has taken over the country of Oceania. In this country, Big Brother controls all. He is the leader of The Party, which is the only form of leadership present in Oceania. A mystery that presents itself throughout the book, is whether or not Big Brother, the person, does or ever actually existed. Everything The Party does, ... ... middle of paper ... ... point, ambitious politicians begin to brainwash their constituents until they [the officials] get what they want and the people no longer trust the politicians and become apathetic toward the entire system. These examples display the inevitable fact that all over the world subtle but significant events are taking place that appear to signify a shifting toward a totalitarian government, much like the one present in 1984. This is extremely disturbing because most people will agree that the life lived by the characters in 1984, is not one of any value. Though they are “protected” from several of the problems that many of the free world citizens and officials face, they have no control over their thoughts or actions. This leads to unbearable uniformity. It is chilling to know that though George Orwell’s book was written as fiction, portions of it are becoming factual.

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