This book starts off like most other books, this book has a generic main character with his damsel in distress. And like any book, it has an antagonist which is the government in this case. 1984 created an environment where a monarchy government wants to limits its citizen's thoughts. They used tactics such as lying about an on-going war to exert control, taking vocab out of a citizen's daily life to limit certain thoughts and intruding into each citizen's life with hidden cameras and a special type of police - "thought police". In the society of the book, the thought of freedom or possession is a crime and any citizens that show signs of this thought would be followed and tracked down. In this controlled society, grown individuals are constantly aware of their actions while the young roam around normally being used to the special treatment they have. Kids are educated in such extremes where watching hangings are a treat for them. The idea of this type of governing is that by getting rid of any possible thoughts about revolt and rebellion, no one would oppose the government even if they put on the cruelest of acts. The author hypothesized that extreme control that includes the control over thoughts would be feasible and sustainable.
Although the purpose of this book is not to correctly predict the future and is to warn people about the implications of exerting control, the concepts that are used in the book aren't really that logical. The biggest one of this is that it thinks the control over language would control the mind. This is tremendously false because or thoughts are only partly guided by words. For example, if the purple isn't ever made up in English, people would still see purple and remember the resemblance of it in their mind. Although the person may not express what he saw easily, he is still capable of thinking about it. And when things could be remembered and thought of, words would be created in place of describing it. In the book's defense, the inability of describing something would oppress actions of it because one individual will not be able to organize or spread his/her ideas easily. More control would be exercised with the deletion in people's vocabulary, but it does not limit their thoughts in any way.
Another idea that this book represented is that if long-term brainwash is made, people would change their way of thinking. And even though they still remember the days where they thought of justice and human right, they would no longer abide by what they believe. And although it is a very compelling point, I strongly disagree with his idea. If a person still remembers the concept that they had believed in, they would retain the reasoning behind it and keep on believing in it. Rigid believes could not be erased with brainwashing. Rigid believes need reasoning to be dispatched. One would not forget that 1+1=2 because he is told enough times that it isn't. The author had been confused between brainwashing and reasoning.
With all that said, although the book contains ideas about brainwashing and dystopian society that I do not agree with, I am amazed by how complex the philosophy is behind the simple story. If the book had a more interesting plot I would definitely recommend it, but otherwise, only read it if you are super into philosophy.
P.S: Finally finished the book review, now I can go back to reading books.
why did I deprive myself of books even?
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