This Article is written by Amra (Senior editor at Legalonus and Content head for The Radicals)
There was a totalitarian approach in Germany and Russia. Orwell gets influenced by seeing the conditions and wrote the novel in 1948 but gives it the title 1984 as he imagines the world situation in 1984 by the identical philosophy going. The book is set in 1984 in Oceania, a totalitarian state together with Eurasia and Eastasia. . Oceania was ruled by the all-powerful Party, which had brainwashed the populace into mindless obedience to its leader, Big Brother, leading to the creation of a police force, the “Thought Police,” as well as constant reminders on posters that “Big Brother Is Watching You,” despite the fact that there were no laws. This novel served as a cautionary tale against authoritarianism. It left a lasting impression on the audience. His thoughts made it into popular culture. Newspeak was devised by the Party as a propagandistic language. It was clearly designed to stifle free speech and promote the Party’s ideologies. Newspeak included words like doublethink which meant belief in contradictory ideas simultaneously. For instance, the Party used the slogans like “War is peace(Constant warfare ends up in an obedient and fearful population . Devotion & Sacrificed),” “Freedom is slavery(free people represent a threat to the party, so make freedom taboo.),” and “Ignorance is strength(A population that’s ignorant to the facts won’t be able to raise questions against governments).” And these slogans lead to think about whether the said statements are facts or fiction? As Rebellious thought = Thoughtcrime = Your disappearance.
Winston Smith is the book’s protagonist, a minor party functionary residing in London whose life is wrecked after World War II by a nuclear war. Within the Ministry of Truth, his role was to rewrite history to coincide with contemporary political views. Winston’s search for the truth, however, took the form of a rebellion against the government. He began a relationship with Julia, a like-minded woman. Winston developed an interest in the Brotherhood, a group of dissenters. The trap was created when Winston was approached by O’Brien, an officer of the Inner Party who appeared to be a covert member of the Brotherhood. O’Brien was a Party detective on the lookout for “thought-criminals,” as he was characterized.,” Winston and Julia were caught and were sent to the Ministry of Love for a violent reeducation. The Humiliation, imprisonment, torture, reeducation of Winston were intended not just to break him physically or make him submit, a more prominent cause was to uproot his independence and destroy his dignity and humanity. And it depicts another essential character of 1984 as it’s all about Love, Hate, Individuality, functional govt and a way forward to the simplest form of government as Love and Desire are the most concentrated forms of rebellion. By eliminating words like freedom & rebellion, the citizens cant express themselves or perhaps give some thought to a revolution if they don’t have words for it. This incident throws light on Luxuries, conveniences& freedom we enjoy exist because of the governing principles that society has built up over the last 5,000 years.
A cage of rats was connected to his head during the torture. “Do it to Julia!” he screamed, frightened and in pain. It makes no difference to me what happens to her. Winston was released as a result of this. He and Julia were driven to betray one another by the Party system. Throughout the book, their love was the last light of hope, and with their final betrayal, nothing was left. This incident focused on today the government has laid down the foundation & has made today what is possible, e.g., rights and freedoms and the courts and the check and balances on the government power. We, the people, are vigilant, involved, engaged, and educated, and also the government is accountable, transparent, efficient.
The narrative describes a society in which those who dare to think differently face punishment and humiliation. Every second of the day, people are being observed, and party propaganda outweighs free speech and thought. The book emphasises the significance of liberty and depicts what life might be like without it. We were scared by Hitler’s and Stalin’s depictions of the end of humanity. We believe that the Germans of that era were different and that we would never fall to Hitler’s propaganda because our democracy is too powerful to be easily dismantled. Even after so much modernization, we can see indifference, inequality, and helplessness in many parts of the world like Syria, African countries, South Sudan, The recent episode of the takeover of Afghanistan after US withdrawal where many innocent lives have been taken.
In the present context, this book enables us to determine into the society that is entirely upto the speed of corrupted politicians. We frequently find ourselves in the kinds of situations depicted in the book, and that we turn blind to several issues and choose silence even when we know whatever is happening is wrong. This book screams out an enormous message for humankind. Even at the conclusion, the author has made it apparent that nothing, including hope, love, and the human spirit, can win the battle against a totalitarian government. This was a wake-up call for each of us as individuals and as a nation. He had offered us a glimpse into a possible future based on current government policy that is as pertinent today as it was back then. This book serves as a severe warning of what can happen if we ignore freedom rights & checks and balances within the government, e.g., freedom, privacy, surveillance. So, remember and learn from the past.
It is rightly said that “Power corrupts, but absolute power corrupts absolutely.” Some thinkers like Machiavelli and Chanakya have propounded that politics or diplomacy is based primarily on circumstances and factors rather than explicit Ideological notions or moral/ethical premises, which is wrong ethically on many levels. A good ethical form of government is a sine qua non for the fundamental development of a nation. This book leaves an indelible question on our minds: where can we head as a nation if there is no democracy? No democracy does not only imply the absence of an elected Government; it means the absence of Justice, Equality, Liberty, Dignity, and many more things.