1984 Importance of Language; Newspeak Doublethink and how it affects personal thought and freedom

Essay by dragon76University, Bachelor'sA+, December 2003

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Importance of Language; Newspeak.

It is the intention of the government to make it impossible to convey any nonconformist thoughts. Hence Newspeak was designed for this very intention. To narrow down what people can actually say and think, the rules of language are being skewed from what we actually say right now. Negative terms have been eliminated from the language. In Newspeak, "bad" and "awful" are altered to mean "ungood" or "doubleplus ungood." This language leaves no room for nuance or shades of meaning. It also shortens terms in order to make the language as simple as possible, as in "Thought Police" becoming "thinkpol." The influence of this language spreads out among the people to cull what they are actually thinking. Since language is the expression of ones thoughts, if the words you need to express your thoughts are no longer there, then you will simply cease to have those thoughts.

For future generations of Oceania, thoughts that the government didn't approve will no longer even be there because there will be no words to describe them.

The thing that comes to mind when thinking on American society of 2003 and the idea of Newspeak is the influence that the Internet has had on our very language. With acronyms like LOL (laugh out loud), BRB (be right back) and ROFL (rolling on floor laughing) being used online to cut down on the time spent actually typing, the younger generation are running away with it and actually using such acronyms in their everyday lives. It is the younger generations that also take words that we understood to mean one thing to mean the opposite. For example, I remember how confused my parents were when the word "bad" actually meant "good." Another term used nowadays from the younger generations is...