Compare Orwell's 1984 to our government today

Essay by shalzbalzHigh School, 11th gradeA+, February 2009

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When George Orwell's epic novel 1984 was published in 1949 it opened the public's imagination to a future world, where privacy and freedom had no meaning. The year 1984 has come and gone and recent advances in technology have emerged. These new developments have empowered the government, and help to highlight the similarities between the American government and the government in 1984. Although many cannot even begin to accept the disturbing similarities shared between America's government today and that of George Orwell's 1984, they do exist. Today's American government mirrors the government in 1984, because in both societies the government violates one's basic right to privacy, and misleads their citizens into supporting their war efforts.

The governments of 1984 and America both violate the privacy of their citizens. In Orwell's 1984, the government violates its citizen's privacy by monitoring them, using telescreens and the "thought police." Knowing that "at any rate they [the government] could plug in your wire whenever they wanted to," one could never achieve peace of mind.

One has "to live-did live, from habit that became instinct-in the assumption that every sound they made was overheard…and every moment scrutinized." (49) The citizen's right to privacy has been taken away, and furthermore, citizens in Oceania are not just being watched, but every one of their actions is studied closely. If one is suspected of a "thought-crime," they are harshly punished. The people in each society are forced to bottle up their emotions and thoughts about their government, and suppress their urge to rebel against the Oceanic Party. This creates a sense of uneasiness for the citizens and a need for a safe place to go where they can freely express themselves without being watched. Likewise, the government today restricts the privacy of its citizens. Around every...