The Value Of The Humanities In The 21st Century

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The value and importance of studying the Humanities in the twenty-first century is emphasised through the analysis of today’s politics via an Orwellian lens. Products of the Humanities, such as novels, are important as they provide a scope through which humanity is viewed and pose significant questions. George Orwell’s 1984 critiques totalitarian regimes and authoritarian governments. The state of today’s politics suggests that we have built a society similar to that which Orwell condemns in 1984, reminding us of the value and importance in studying Literature and Politics, and the Humanities as a whole, in the twenty-first century to critique the society that we live in. To evaluate this assertion - with an explicit focus on 1984 - the novel’s main themes of deceptive language and the manipulation of facts should be analysed to assess to what extent the political sphere of the twenty-first century replicates that of 1984.…show more content…
The novel’s protagonist, Winston, works in the Ministry of Truth which is accountable for any needed falsification of historic records, upholding the contradictory state of ‘doublethink’. The fictional book within the novel, The Theory and Practice of Oligarchical Collectivism by Emmanuel Goldstein, defines doublethink as “the power of holding two contradictory beliefs in one’s mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them”. A primary example of this within the novel is the infamous torture scene in which O’Brien forces Winston to accept the doublethink concept that 2+2=5. This is a remarkable example as it shows the Party’s hunger to control even the most objective facts in existence that are not normally subject to political manipulation. In the novel, Doublethink is used as means to control people’s thoughts and beliefs to align to the Party’s ruling ideologies, helping to maintain their dominance over

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