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Example research essay topic: 1984 1 - 1,205 words

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... it for his next victim to enter his store. The Ministry of Truth is a place where history and facts--significant and insignificant are rewritten to reflect the party's utopian beliefs. They thoroughly destroy the records of the past; they print up new, up to-date editions of old newspapers and books; and they know corrected versions will be replaced by another, re-corrected one. Their goal is to make people forget everything- facts, words, dead people, and the names of places. How far they succeed in obliterating the past is not fully established in Orwell's description; clearly they try hard and they score impressive results.

The ideal of complete oblivion may not have been reached, yet further progress is to be expressed (Kolakowski 126). Winston and Julia are workers at the Ministry of Truth. Winston gets more mentally involved in his work than Julia. "Winston Smith and his fellows at the Ministry of Truth spend their days rewriting the past: Most of the material you were dealing with had no connection with anything in the real world, not even the kind of connection that is contained in a direct lie'" (Daley 118). Winston is not as strong mentally as Julia is. His work affects him more.

The Ministry of Truth is like a totalitarian country, because it has ways to scare its citizens. People guilty of crimes are erased from having ever existed. "Your name was removed from the registers, every record of your existence was denied and then forgotten" (Orwell 19). Again people were taken away without any rights. "...There was no trial no report of arrest" (Orwell 19). The actual purpose of the Ministry of Truth is to spread lies and to have control over its citizens using memory-erasing techniques. "...The distinction between true and false in their usual meaning has disappeared.

This is the great cognitive triumph of totalitarianism: it cannot be accused of lying any longer since it has succeeded in abrogating the very idea of truth (Kolakowski 127). These same control techniques are used by totalitarian nations that seek control over there citizens. The Ministry of Truth is a complete contradiction of itself. A Ministry of Truth should not change past occurrences or say people never existed. It should exemplify the truth and not erase records of the existence of people. The Ministry of Love is where all criminals are tortured, rehabilitated, then set free or killed.

As soon as Winston is captured he knows he is going to the Ministry of Love. The Ministry of Love was the really frightening one. There were no windows in it at all. Winston had never been inside the Ministry of Love, nor within half a kilometer of it. It was a place impossible to enter except on official business, and then only by penetrating through a maze of barbed-wire entanglements, steel doors, and hidden machine-gun nests. Even the streets leading up to its outer barriers were roamed by gorilla-faced guards in black uniforms, armed with jointed truncheons (Orwell 8). In a totalitarian state something resembling a Ministry of Love is common place. It's a place where the government can inflict pain on its subjects for crimes big and small.

That is how totalitarian nations keep, power over their citizens-- by fear of pain. The name Ministry of Love is a contradiction of itself. Its name shows a feeling of love and warmth, but in actuality it's the complete opposite. It's a place of hate and pain and is cold and dark. A better name for it would be the Ministry of Hate. George Orwell lived during a time when Europe was in a period of rebuilding after World War II.

During that time Soviets gained six nations as satellites. England was helpless and had to worry about their own problems and had to watch the Soviet Union take control of half of Germany. The leader of the Soviet Union, Stalin, closely resembles Big Brother. They were both larger than life figures in their respective countries. In the Soviet Union you could easily have found large posters with Stalin's face on them. The same holds true in 1984; Big Brother's face is everywhere.

A famous quote from 1984 is "Big Brother is watching you" (Orwell 5). Meaning if his Thought Police don't catch you, his telescreens and hidden microphones would. In the Soviet Union, Stalin's KGB sought criminals who plotted against the government. In Stalin's regime over 10 million people were killed. In 1984 hundreds of criminals were killed daily. Another aspect of the 1940s was the new broadcast TVs and mainframe computers.

The new technologies could be used for means of control. Orwell saw communist countries using these technologies for control (Kolakowski 125). This is where Orwell's idea of telescreens and hidden microphones came from. Before World War II, Orwell had his worst encounter with communists. While Orwell was in the Spanish Civil War, he was running away from Soviet communists who were trying to kill him. After that experience he got out of the army and became a writer full time. "Another shock to Orwell was when the Nazi-Soviet pact signaled the breakdown and the beginning of the mental and emotional state out of which grew Animal Farm and 1984"(Greenblast 105). Orwell may of have extracted what he saw in his world while writing but it was done to get people's attention of problems in the existing world.

"Orwell's primary purpose is to distort disturbing conditions tendencies and habits of thought that he saw existing in the world"(Stansky 105). Orwell saw, the whole world steadily moving toward a vast ruthless tyranny. He felt nothing could stop its monstrous progress. 1984, in spite of its setting in the future, is not primarily a utopian fantasy prophesying what the world will be like in thirty or forty years but a novel about what the world is like now (Greenblast 112). Orwell always relates characters in his books to points of view and real people. In Animal Farm every farm animal represents a person in the Soviet Union.

In 1984, Orwell represents his point of view in Winston. He shows a totalitarian leader, in O'Brien and Big Brother, while Julia is the desire and lust in every human being. George Orwell had deep resentment against totalitarianism and what it stood for. He saw the problem of totalitarianism in his existing world. He also understood how the problem could fester and become larger due to instability in Europe's economy after World War II. He purposely makes the story, 1984, unrealistic and blown out of proportion to capture people's attention and make them think maybe it wouldn't be unrealistic in the near future.

With his deep resentment toward totalitarianism it became the focal point of his novels. George Orwell's, novels were directed toward against totalitarianism and for Socialism and what it stood for. Bibliography: Reference Page Orwell, George. 1984. New York: The New American Library Inc., 1983. Daley, Alan L.

George Orwell, Writer and Critic of Modern Society. Charlottesville: Samhar Press, 1974. Greenblast, Stephen J. "Orwell as Satirist." George Orwell, A Collection of Critical Essays. Ed. Raymond Williams.

Englewood Cliffs: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1974. 103-118. Kolakowski, Leszek. "Totalitarianism and the virtue of the Lie." 1984 Revisited, Totalitarianism In Our Century. Ed. Irving Howe. New York: Harper and Row, 1983. 122-136.

Stansky, Peter and William Abrahams. Orwell: The Transformation. London: Gramala Publishing Limited, 1981..

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