Orwell and Totalitarianism

Topics: Nineteen Eighty-Four, Totalitarianism, Communism Pages: 4 (1299 words) Published: April 7, 2013
George Orwell was a novelist who opposed communism through his writing, as can be shown by his most famous works, Animal Farm and 1984. The former reflects the developments in the Soviet Union after the Russian Revolution, whereas the latter depicts life under totalitarian rule. Having witnessed firsthand the horrific lengths to which totalitarian governments in Spain and Russia would go in order to sustain and increase their power, Orwell wrote 1984 to alert Western nations about the approaching threat of communism. In 1984, Orwell portrays the perfect totalitarian society, an extreme realization of a modern-day government with absolute power. As the novel progresses, the timidly rebellious Winston sets out to go against the Party’s power, only to discover that its ability to control and enslave its subjects dwarfs even his most paranoid conceptions of its reach. Through Winston’s experience in the dystopian society, Orwell displays his concerns about the widespread cruelties and oppressions he observed in communist countries, while also commenting on technology’s role in enabling oppressive governments to monitor and control their citizens. In creating the title of 1984, George Orwell meant to indicate to its readers in 1949 that the story represented a very real possibility for the near future, as shown by Winston’s experiences in it. Orwell was making the point that if totalitarian regimes were not opposed, the ideas within the novel could become a reality in only thirty-five years. In the novel, Orwell portrays a state in which government attempts to monitor and control nearly all aspects of human life to the extent that even having a disloyal thought is against the law. Winston displays his opinion on the futility of rebelling against the Party when discussing the possibility of doing so with Julia,

“The party could not be overthrown from within. Its enemies, if it had any enemies, had no way of coming together or even of identifying one another. Even...
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