V for Vendetta/ 1984 Comparison

Topics: Nineteen Eighty-Four, V for Vendetta, Totalitarianism Pages: 6 (2315 words) Published: January 6, 2013
Comparative Essay Assignment

1984 And V for Vendetta

George Washington once said, “Government is not reason; it is not eloquent; it is force. Like fire it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master.” George Orwell’s satirical novel 1984 is based on the life of Party member Winston Smith, a free thinker, and his battle to restore humanity that has been snatched from the residents of Oceani0a since the totalitarian rule of Big Brother. V for Vendetta, a satirical film directed by James McTeigue, revolves around the actions of an antihero named V and his struggles to re-establish humanity in individuals by rebelling against the government’s rule. In both satires, 1984 and V for Vendetta the concept of humanity is exaggerated in the Party’s struggles for power and ridiculed in the influence of the proles, whilst the concept of the oppressive rule of the government is criticized in the relationships between the main characters.

The concept of humanity is greatly exaggerated in the power-hungry attitudes of the Party’s and the mindlessness of the citizens in both V for Vendetta and 1984. In both satires, fear is used as an instrument of power; Big Brother spreads fear through war, and the High-Chancellor does the same by constantly reminding the citizens of the mayhem that use to occur when he did not have power. In 1984, the Party is not concerned about the well-being of its citizens or resources but just wants to exercise total power over their minds. O’Brien says “We are not interested in the good of others… only power, pure power, (78 Orwell).” The main goal of the Party is to snatch the individuality in citizens by making them powerless and mindless drones by having them accept whatever the Party preaches. It does this by forcing humanity into submission on a daily basis by having them live in a state of constant paranoia. This is done by closely monitoring the actions of every citizen residing in Oceania by cameras on the street and telescreens in their homes; they make sure that every individual does not commit any crimes whether those are of thought or action. Failure to do so means that the Thought Police intervenes and vaporizes the individual committing the crime and erases them from their existence. Therefore the Party forces humanity to submit to them by using fear and paranoia. Thus, there is a very little chance that the individual thought which is a significant aspect of humanity can actually survive because every resident is expected to be fully committed to the Party’s every word. The Party’s exaggerated power hungry mindset is signified in the members of the Inner Party who religiously adhere to the ideologies of the government, which makes them lack humanity and make the Party’s power everlasting. Too much power like this leads to corruption (greed), domination and a totalitarian style of government that steals the individualism of populations. However, Norsefire’s(the Party in V for Vendetta) rule in V for Vendetta is not as uniform as in 1984, as there is tension and disagreements within the circle which inadvertently represents a small portion of humanity within the leaders. Adam Sutler says “What we need right now is a clear message to the people of this country. This message must be read in every newspaper, heard on every radio, seen on every television... I want *everyone* to *remember*, why they *need* us!” He is trying to brainwash the citizens of London by sending out a false message through the media and wants to reaffirm the fact that he is still very much in charge despite the rebellion from V, which had caused the population to question Norsefire’s rule. Since the arrival of V the population of London has started to lose their faith in Norsefire, and to regain it Sutler sends lies through the media to ensure that everything is still running smooth and that he still very much in charge. This form of rule is an exaggeration of how the government takes advantage of society by...
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