DETAILS ABOUT BOOK
Written by: George Orwell
Type of Work: novel
Genres: utopian literature; social criticism
First Published: 1949
Motifs: repressed sexuality; dreams
Major Symbols: Newspeak; prole woman; birds; telescreens; glass paperweight
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George Orwell wrote 1984 in 1949. The dystopian novel is set in 1984 – Orwell’s near future and our recent past – but the novel is still relevant today, due to its depiction of a totalitarian government and its themes of using media manipulation and advanced technology to control people.
Winston Smith lives in London, but not the London we know. Instead of being a part of England, 1984‘s London is part of Oceania, one of the three huge governments that exist in the book’s world. Oceania is controlled by a powerful and mysterious elite. The government, referred to as ‘Big Brother,’ uses cameras and listening devices to constantly observe all of its citizens. There is also a secret police force dedicated to reporting both rebellious thoughts and general misbehavior to the appropriate authorities.
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