Orwellian Research Paper

Submitted By kcquitayen
Words: 3010
Pages: 13

America: The Medium between Dystopia and Utopia In life, it is human nature to seek perfection. Unfortunately, perfection is an intangible goal for humanity; it is more likely that humans will achieve utter imperfection. For instance, while it is impossible for civilizations to attain utopia, it is quite possible to attain dystopia. Many individuals in our society have discovered the sad truth within this statement, especially writers, like George Orwell. Orwell’s works not only depict the essence of dystopia, but also takes the concept of disorder to a new level. As a matter of fact, dystopian literature is often compared to Orwellian literature. In his novel, 1984, for example, Orwell illustrates absolute dystopia by distorting the social, intellectual, economic, and political aspects for his characters. In doing this, Orwell also parallels the dystopia currently present within the United States and even predicts the fate of our civilization, a fate that depicts America bordering the existence of an Orwellian society, while still maintaining the identity of a just nation. On the whole, Orwellian works highlight and exaggerate the minute presence of disorder within society. This literature typically describes the situational, conceptual, and societal conditions that are destructive to the welfare of a population. The mandatory totalitarian regime developed in Orwellian literature is so severe that the civilians in Orwell’s world cannot live a truly content, satisfied life. For instance, Winston, the protagonist in 1984, often asks:
Had it always been like this? Had food always tasted like this…was it not a sign that this was not the natural order of things, if one’s heart sickened at the discomfort and dirt and scarcity, the interminable winters, the stickiness of one’s socks, the lifts that never worked, the cold water, the gritty soap, the cigarettes that came to pieces, the food with its strange evil tastes? Why should one feel it to be intolerable unless one had some kind of ancestral memory that things had once been different? (Orwell 59–60)
In Orwell’s works, the individuals of the governed body are often demoted to an animalistic status; human life is utterly invaluable to the supreme powers within an Orwellian society. In addition to the presence of an oppressive government, this literature is also trademarked for its distinct policies of control. Orwell’s worlds habitually exemplify the policy of control by utilizing propaganda, surveillance, denial of the truth, and manipulation of the past. Overall, Orwellian works are noted for the masterfully artistic construction of a merciless, dystopian society. For example, this customary theme of dystopia is an imperative motif in Orwell’s bestselling novel, 1984. Orwell establishes dystopia in 1984 by exemplifying the Party’s total control over the social, intellectual, economic, and political aspects in life.
Societal behavior is one aspect which Orwell uses to display the Party’s control over its people. Social commentary is defined as the interaction found between the individuals of a society. Since Oceania is a dystopian civilization, the Party alters the policies of social interaction to produce maximum misery for the population. Orwell illustrates this by highlighting the family facet of social interaction. The relationship within the Parsons family is a direct effect of the Party’s control over social interaction. The Parsons are the ideal family in Oceania. The family consists of Mr. Parsons, Mrs. Parsons, and their children, a boy and a girl. They are the typical Big-Brother-loving-Thought-Police-fearing family that the Party wants its people to be. Toward the end of the novel, Parsons is denounced to the Thought Police by his own daughter. When he is brought to the Ministry of Love, he feels pride rather than resentment toward his daughter. Parsons says, “She listened at the keyhole. Heard what I was saying, and nipped off to the patrols the very next