Orwell’s 1984: Big Brother as Vampire seducing people re their ‘exceptionalism’ while draining them of their will to fight falsehoods
This seems so familiar in 2012…
ORWELL PUTS FORTH THE IDEA THAT WAR WILL KEEP THE HOMELAND SAFE, IS FALSE DOUBLESPEAK.
It was after WWII and the huge millions of lives lost that Orwell wrote 1984. He did not buy the idea that the world had been saved by bombing and murdering civilians worldwide by all sides. 1984 is about what he thought lay under the holocausts on all sides of the oceans that had just occurred in reality. One of the most famous lines from 1984 is that “War is Peace” meaning that being at war constantly actually creates peacetime in the country waging war. But Winston, the protagonist of 1984 shows us the rot under the rhetoric.
IN 1984, LAW ENFORCEMENT IS ONLY GOING THROUGH THE MOTIONS AND BECOMES WEAKER AND WEAKER
We see the overt law enforcement doing mere ‘busy work’ snooping and collecting data that no one in power pays any attention to. THey are unable to hold the peace.
THERE IS A SECRET SET OF ‘WATCHERS’ WATCHING EVERYONE TO SEE IF THEY ARE PATRIOTS OR NOT
But, we see that the ‘thought police’ are the real enforcement/crushers of souls… they creep about in disguise and then pounce on those who are deemed disloyal to ‘Big Brother’– The thought police are draconian and unjust and thereby to be feared greatly.
WORDS THAT ONCE HELD TRUE MEANING, LIKE JUSTICE, LOVE, COMPASSION, BROTHERHOOD ARE CONSIDERED UNFAITHFUL TO BIG BROTHER IDEAS
The over-principle is that Justice is based on Big Brother’s blather: evil is good, and good is evil.
THE PEOPLE STRUGGLE TO KEEP THEIR JOBS AND FEAR BEING MARGINALIZED AND SO GO ALONG TO GET ALONG
And yet people are afraid to confront Big Brother. It is easier for the struggling masses to keep their heads down and keep hoping to eke a living, scared to death they will lose their jobs for even thinking about freedom, let alone saying the abject corruption they see, as they see it, aloud…
BIG BROTHER IS A RICH BLOODSUCKER WHO FEEDS OFF THE POOR AND ECONOMICALLY ENTRAPPED
and even though many somewhere in their hearts dont believe in Big Brother’s touted ‘exceptionalism’ of the people, the truth is the people are more and more debased and depressed, while Big Brother is ever growing glossier and shinier and faux famous. In this sense, one could say Orwell wrote the quintessential Vampire thriller… Big Brother grows ever ruddier, whilst he drains the people who grow more and more pale and gray.
BIG BROTHER IS INVADING PEOPLE’S PRIVACY AND COMPILING THEIR PRIVATE INFORMATION TO USE TO EXPLOIT THE PEOPLE
We are told that not only is the continual propaganda voice pouring into everyone’s room, but also the same device also can hear and film every word, nuance, move each person makes in their own home. That there is no privacy. That the corporation that is Big Brother pretends this is all for the good of the people, but is constantly secretly and not so secretly collecting everyone’s data.
BIG BROTHER HAS CREATED A POLYGLOT LANGUAGE THAT OBFUSCATES FACTS AND FOGS CLARITY OF WHAT BIG BROTHER IS ACTUALLY DOING, OTHER THAN MAKING PROMISES THAT ARE NEVER KEPT AND BELCHING FALSE PROPAGANDA
The Government has developed a new language in which most things that were once true, are seen as no longer true, very similar to changes of regimes that attempt to wipe out all traces of better times.
PEOPLE’S MEMORIES OF FREEDOM GROW MORE AND MORE DIM AS THEY NORMALIZE BEING ENSLAVED TO THE WEALTHY OVERLORD, BIG BROTHER
Winston himself tries to remember his own childhood, but he cannot. The regime counts on the repetitive images stamped down over people’s minds for years on end, ones they are to think over and over– or else be in risk of losing favor, losing job, losing their lives if they didnt– the regime counts on these to overwrite memory until every thought, every idea carries the ill logo of Big Brother only.
BIG BROTHER LIES LEFT AND RIGHT ABOUT HOW EXCEPTIONAL EVERYONE AND EVERYTHING IS, WHLE CREATING A KIND OF STOCKHOLM SYNDROME IN ALL DRONE WORKERS… THEY ARE SUPPOSED TO BE GRATEFUL FOR BEING ENSLAVED INSTEAD OF KILLED.
We see too in this part of 1984, the ‘government/Big Brother’s’ overstated claims about how GREAT everything is, how far ahead of production quotas the province is, how superior, how amazing, how invincible compared to all other nations and provinces. Meanwhile, behind the gaud are the people; once rocks, they are breaking down to sand from all the incessant hammering of their spirits and minds.
From Chapter One of 1984:
“In the far distance a helicopter skimmed down between the roofs, hovered for an instant like a bluebottle, and darted away again with a curving flight. It was the police patrol, snooping into people’s windows. The patrols did not matter, however. Only the Thought Police mattered.
Behind Winston’s back the voice from the telescreen was still babbling away
about pig-iron and the overfulfilment of the Ninth Three-Year Plan.
The telescreen received and transmitted simultaneously. Any sound that Winston made, above the level of a very low whisper, would be picked up by it, moreover, so long as he remained within the field of vision which the metal plaque commanded, he could be seen as well as heard.
There was of course no way of knowing whether you were being watched at any given moment. How often, or on what system, the Thought Police plugged in on any individual wire was guesswork. It was even conceivable that they watched everybody all the time. But at any rate they could plug in your wire whenever they wanted to.
You had to live–did live, from habit that became instinct–in the assumption that every sound you made was overheard, and, except in darkness, every movement scrutinized.
Winston kept his back turned to the telescreen. It was safer; though, as he well knew, even a back can be revealing.
A kilometre away the Ministry of Truth, his place of work, towered vast and white above the grimy landscape. This, he thought with a sort of vague distaste–this was London, chief
city of Airstrip One, itself the third most populous of the provinces of Oceania. He tried to squeeze out some childhood memory that should tell him whether London had always been quite like this. Were there always these vistas of rotting nineteenth-century houses, their sides shored up with baulks of timber, their windows patched with cardboard and their roofs with corrugated iron, their crazy garden walls sagging in all directions?
And the bombed sites where the plaster dust swirled in the air and the willow-herb straggled over the heaps of rubble; and the places where the bombs had cleared a larger patch and there had sprung up sordid colonies of wooden dwellings like chicken-houses?
But it was no use, he could not remember: nothing remained of his childhood except a series of bright-lit tableaux occurring against no background and mostly unintelligible.
The Ministry of Truth–Minitrue, in Newspeak [Newspeak was the official language of Oceania. For an account of its structure and etymology see Appendix.]–was startlingly different from any other object in sight. It was an enormous pyramidal structure of glittering white concrete, soaring up, terrace after terrace, 300 metres into the air.
From where Winston stood it was just possible to read, picked out on its white face in elegant lettering, the three slogans of the Party:
WAR IS PEACE
FREEDOM IS SLAVERY
IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH“