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EL-336. Orwell-1984. I always feel like, somebody's watching me, and I got no privacy

"they'll shoot me i don't care they'll shoot me in the back of the neck i don't care down with big brother they'll always shoot you in the back of the neck i don't care down with big brother-" (Orwell 1984, p.20)

Orwell's discontent for totalitarianism shines vibrantly in 1984. Oceania, what a place to be stuck. I dug the names of the Ministries-Truth, Peace, Love, and Plenty, how ironic. It's rather humorous how Big Brother control their people, they give them homes to live(which are shacks), a place to work (which benefits the government), and entertainment(selections by the Party), which all comes to restrictions. The Party members live in pyramid like structures that surround the brain-washed citizens of Oceania, so they are unable to escape. I feel that this is a optimistic look into the future of America, and where it's heading, into extinction. 1984 is orchestrated mechanically. Orwell's style puts the reader as a shadow of Winston. I was put into the story by a combination of images, fear, and hatred.
No laws meant a harsh government that provided love and peace, if the citizens adhered to them. I did find the passage on p,9 distasteful- "...but if detected it was reasonably certain that it would be punishable by death, or at least by twenty-five years in a forced-labor camp." All that for even the mere thought of keeping a diary? How restrictive. Winston was enthused about keeping a diary for future generations, that may hinder them from having productive lives. His entries might have caused the future of Oceania to have a grim, bleak outlook on their government.
Big Brother had turned a meager group of people into a group of biggoted nationalists.
One connection that I may have made with 1984 and EL-336, the theme of History and Future of the Book, is that the same 'the book' of 1984? A book without a title, mentioned on p,15., that Goldstein authored.

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Comments

You've found some good points. Note also how the movies and popular music (mass media, meant to be enjoyed in groups) serve to distract the people. There are also references to the Prole newspaper (containing mostly sports and crime reporting), and the fellow across the hall from Winston whose main task is to freshen up the literature selections to keep them in line with party politics. You're right that The Book serves an important purpose in the storyline... but also note how Winston's job would be a heck of a lot easier if Orwell had the idea of eliminating print altogether and having people only read via their telescreens. There would be no physical copies of books or newspapers to "rectify".

I also read this last semester for PS 228 and what we were taught was how totalitarianism was so related to this book. After the reading, we were asked to write about how the government is doing similiar things as big brother in our society today. So if you take some time to think, there is no future. This kind of thing is present in society today. Future is now and what do we intend to do about it?

Jeremy, do you remember the 1984 essay we had to write for PS 228? It's scary to make the connections, but I do think that America would never go so far as to eliminate words to vocalize opposition. The parts about newspeak were the scariest parts of the book for me. Many have thought about what would happen if the government put computer chips into our brains. Oceania didn't need to. To not be able to think would be the worst part for me. forget about expresssion; as long as my thoughts were alive, there could be hope in my eyes...

One of my favorite parts is when Julia and Winston meet in the forest and she confesses to having had many lovers. Each partner was like a slash in the Party's side. Kind of puts the hippies in perspective.

Of course totalitarianism wouldn’t be possible if it weren’t for the people themselves and their submissiveness and eagerness to turn in one another. When people are quick to turn each other in, Big Brother has less work to do because the people are policing themselves.

I like how children are one of the greatest tools of Big Brother. They have pretty much destroyed the love between parent and child. They see the family unit as an obstacle and they are quickly destroying it by having children fanatically spy on their parents.

In the United States we are consistently given the message to report suspicious behavior. Even internet providers are giving out information about their customers to the government.

Its not literally meant to be seen as America, but it does include many ideas and flaws that American culture/government perpetuates

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