Review: 1984 by George Orwell.

1984“War is peace.
Freedom is slavery.
Ignorance is strength.”  George Orwell.

1984 is described as one of those classics which millions of people have read and the large majority of which have enjoyed. Furthermore, it has won several literary awards and is therefore seen as an example of great writing.

1984 revolves around the life of Winston Smith. Everything in his life and everyone else’s, what they eat, drink, read etc. is controlled and this is done so by the state. This even includes their language and their history; it is all controlled.

“He who controls the past controls the future. He who controls the present controls the past.”

You are constantly being watched whether this be by telescreens, the Thought Police or even your very own children. In the words of Alastor Moody (please excuse my Harry Potter reference): “constant vigilance”. This means that any hint of disobedience, disloyalty and dislike can be detected and even those you would expect to be trustworthy are more loyal to Big Brother than they are to you.

Winston is one of these people who is against Big Brother and eventually he is found out. The scary thing about this book that gives the impression that it belongs in the horror genre, other than the rats of course, is the ending. It is not a happy ending, except from the point of view of Big Brother because, in the end, Winston is socialised back into this society so that he behaves how the Party wants him to. This book is rather frightening to this degree, but nevertheless, it is a brilliant piece of writing. Goldstein’s book did bore me slightly, but except for that I really enjoyed reading it. It was well-written and once I got into it, especially in the last hundred pages or so, I couldn’t stop reading. While this may not be the most pleasant book among the shelves in the bookstore, it is most definitely worth the read.

“The best books… are those that tell you what you know already.”

– Lauren

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