Typo: Nineteen Eighty-four and English Language Essay

Submitted By barelybecky
Words: 1128
Pages: 5

Rebecca Goerling
Mr. Steve Wyrick
AP English Language and Composition
21 August 2013

Typo Ever changing since its infancy, different languages are still growing and evolving, as well as the countries and the cultures that speak them. As time and technology progress, there are words today that were nonexistent mere decades ago. Although the two works, Anthem and 1984, were written based on the idea of a collective Unitarian society, where the society was kept “dumb” so that the government would have total control, the works of both authors, Ayn Rand and George Orwell, were published to promote individualism, objectivism, and an anti-Unitarian government. 1984 addresses the evolution of language as well as the effects of a totalitarian government. The narrator, Winston Smith, paints a clear picture of the incredibly restrictive world he lives in, known as Oceania. In a society where “the past was dead, the future unimaginable” (Orwell 26), Smith begins to rebel and disobey the law by keeping a journal and having an affair with a youthful woman in his workplace. In this realm, it is considered unacceptable to do anything for oneself or go against “Big Brother” in any way. No action goes unchecked, nor any thoughtcrime unpunished. Thoughtcrime is a newspeak worth that roughly translates to a crime that hasn’t been committed physically, but rather any thoughts that would betray the government or one’s loyalty to the Party. 1984 is a prime example of how one’s thoughts and emotions can be manipulated and twisted, so as to make one betray those they are closest to. During Winston’s torture in the Ministry of Love, he is told that, “Power is inflicting pain and humiliation. Power is tearing human minds to pieces and putting them together again in new shapes of your own choosing” (Orwell 266), which is a statement that describes exactly what the government of Oceania was doing to its people. Physical pain and fear will always cause people to betray their convictions if doing so will end their suffering. However similar in theme, Anthem has distinct, defining characteristics of its own, yet manages to explore similar concepts to 1984. Anthem, at first, does not focus on the individual so much as a hive-mind society, then through much character and plot development, the narrator then discovers himself as an individual being, rather than one of his brothers. The narrator is raised by “the brotherhood” from birth, being taught to think and learn as his brothers and sisters do. Anthem illustrates that when one has time to themselves to think and learn, that one may open an entirely new world of possibilities. Rand only sketches in details the government, depicting is with phrases like, “We are one in all and all in one. There are no men but only the great WE, One, indivisible and forever,” (Rand 19). Overly oppressive, it doesn’t have locks in the prison and everyone has their livelihoods assigned to them. “I wonder, for it is hard for me to conceive how men who knew the word “I,” could give it up and not know what they lost,” (Rand 103) a phrase, which is odd, in this day and age, where our own personal universes entirely revolve around ourselves. Every word was devoted to enforcing the message of individuality. Both novels are a social commentary; they both hone in on the possibility that one man who could eventually defeat Communism. By calling for extreme unity and forgetting the right and freedom to be individual, the U.S. is morphing and abandoning the values the country was founded on. The adaptation of technology has rapidly increased the evolution of the English language. Being able to utilize many different forms of communication has allowed for the development of different slang words and phrases, as well as words that had never existed before the twenty-first century. Computers, cell phones, and digital cameras are all words that are part of the every day vocabulary of the average American, but were nonexistent…