George Orwell's 1984

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Probably the most important thing to remember while reading 1984 is that Orwell never intended the book to be a prediction of the future. It was more or less a satire of political fiction, however, I believe Orwell was on the right track concerning future possibilities of a New World Order, or total government control. An interesting quotation from the book is from the "thought police" when they say "If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face forever." I believe Orwell's hope in writing the book was to warn people of political warning signs he saw. Another interesting characteristic I noticed about the book, was the fact that he only revealed to the reader the full names of only three characters in the book. The book features the main character, Winston Smith, who is a man in his late 30's and a member of the 'outer party' - the lower of the two classes. Winston Smith works for the government in one of the four main government buildings called the Ministry of Truth where his job is to rewrite history books in order for people not to learn what the past used to be like (the slogan of 'the party' is "who controls the past, controls the future."). As the book is beginning, Winston begins to contemplate setting himself against Big Brother and the Party, but of course is reluctant, knowing that even thinking about such a thing could easily result in his death. The three sentences sum up what the party stands for, and they are: "War is Peace" "Freedom is Slavery" "Ignorance is Strength" All appear to be oxymoron's, but make some sense once the reader has progressed through the book, for example, the term "War is Peace" has a simple, but somewhat complex explanation. The society in 1984 revolves around 3 'superstates' which are Eurasia, Eastasia, and Oceania. All of these states are in a constant state of war with one another, yet all are self contained, and require no trade with one another, and therefor do not require war as a means of economical necessity. However, it is their feeling that as long as a constant state of war is prevailing, the people will be too preoccupied with the war effort to worry about whether or not the present political system is working. The government constantly reminds the people that when they win the war, Oceania will rule the world, and life will be better.

In this essay, the author

  • Opines that orwell never intended the book to be a prediction of the future.
  • Analyzes how winston smith is a member of the 'outer party' and works for the government in the ministry of truth. he contemplates setting himself against big brother and the party.
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