George Orwell1984Portfolio by Karasani Alessia Index?George Orwell and “1984”

George Orwell1984Portfolio by Karasani Alessia Index?George Orwell and “1984” 3Activity 1 – Life in Britain during Orwell’s Time 4Activity 2 – Reading Comprehension 6Activity 3 – Part I, Chapter I 8Activity 4 – Part I, Chapter II-III 9Activity 5 – Part I, Chapter IV 10? George Orwell and “1984””1984″ is a darkly satirical, dystopian and political novel. It was published in 1949 by George Orwell, whose real name was Eric Blair. Blair, an Englishman, was born in India in 1903 and died at the age of 47 because of depression and the use of drugs. As a teenager he went to “Eton”, a boarding school in England, but then skipped college and worked as a British Imperial Policeman in Burma. There he began to hate being part of a regime that abuses people, he came back to England and as a result of his political dissatisfaction started writing. Blair was a democratic socialist, he hated communism. He hated intellectuals who only talk instead of taking action such as Hitler and Stalin. He hated lying, cruelty and political authority. In his opinion, the future was really dark, as it is easily recognizable in his novel “1984”, which he wrote in the 40s and is his imagination of the year 1984.Nineteen Eighty-Four In “1984” Orwell describes a dystopia, a world full of terror and oppression. Winston Smith, the protagonist, lives in what the thinks is the year 1984 in a totalitarian state ruled by an ominous form of government known as “The Party”. Winston’s world is a squalid and menacing futuristic London, called Oceania, where people are constantly under surveillance and individual identity has been lost.Throughout the work, orwell explores the mechanisms that build up a totalitarian regime, most notably the control of information, erasure of the collective memory, distortion of truth, repetition of rituals, use of slogans, mass brainwashing and idealisation of the leader. Activity 1 – Life in Britain during Orwell’s TimeOrwell presents his vision of a futuristic society. He speculates on possibilities about Great Britain’s future government, social structure, and political system. A thorough understanding of life in England during Orwell’s lifetime (which he was deeply disturbed by) provides insight into the subject matter of 1984 and enables you to view and evaluate Orwell’s ideas and vision within the context of the political, cultural and social landscape of his time. Research Great Britain between 1900 and 1955, focusing on above-mentioned criteria.(Hints: Africa, Germany, naval fleet, August 1914, enthusiasm, horror/revulsion, versailles treaty, sept 1939, suffragette movement, trade unions, welfare state, Albert Einstein, Sigmund Freud, Karl Marx)In the 19th century, wealthy and industrialised Britain became the major world power with an empire that included colonies on every continent. However, the 20th century reversed much of this. Two world wars, failure to keep pace with industrial advance, a severe brain drain and the independence of Commonwealth countries reduced Britain’s position on the world stage. But it remains a leading liberal democracy, with art and literature, intellectual freedoms and parliamentary traditions of lasting influence.In 1901 Queen Victoria died and a new “Edwardian” era began but ideas about the imperial role of Britain in the world continued. The century began with some revolutionary scientific discoveries, as the Theory of Relativity by Albert Einstein in 1905, and changes in the exploration of the human mind by Sigmund Freud and his International Psychoanalytical Association (psychotherapy, 1910). The following years, however, were filled with wars which empowered Britain as well as caused social suffering to different parts of the country. Britain’s dominance of the seas was threatened by the European powers who tried to gain control of Africa and the tension in Europe increased. Britain signed a contract with France in 1904, paving the way to future diplomatic and military co-operation. As a result, in 1914 to defend the NL Britain declared war against Germany, which initially motivated people, but soon cost many lives and caused poverty. This First World War, during which chemical weapons were used for the first time, lasted from 1914 to 1918 and the UK and its allies emerged as victors, which laid down punitive measures against Germany (Versailles treaty) and provoked further conflicts which lead to the Second World War. The already crumbled well-being of the capitalist West of Europe, which as a result of WWI is in a close relationship with the USA, is badly affected by the Wall Street Crash in New York and the following economic depression. The British Commonwealth of Nations in 1926 continues to weaken Britain’s positions as a world power as British colonies demand for independence and as a result are granted different degrees of self-government. The time of the British Empire ended, even though the queen remained the souverain of the new countries. Britain also lost its force over the southern part of Ireland due to the Irish question. During this period also in Russia happened political changes: In 1917 the Bolshevik Revolution in Russia establishes Soviet Communism, with Lenin as the first leader. As Lenin died, he was replaced by Josef Stalin who made the communism, which first was theorized by Karl Marx, grow further. All these political and social changes provoked a new role of women in society. The suffragette movement founded by Mrs. Pankhurst eked out the women’s right to vote and generally more freedom for women in the society. In 1939, with the declaration of the Second World War, the war against the Nazi regime, another devastating period began, which lasted until 1945 and let the allies come out as winners again. At the same time England waged another war in the south-east of Asia, in Burma (nowadays: Myanmar). Burma was a part of British India and a colony of Britain, until Japan occupied the country during the SWW. Britain was now so weakened that there were very few objections to the granting of Burma’s independence. Despite all these grievances Britain had gone through during the last years, after WW2 it still strived for some social changes and raised a Welfare State with its basic social services such as health insurance, old age pensions etc. Activity 2 – Reading ComprehensionGlossarydown and out – heruntergekommendissident – Andersdenkenderenforce – durchsetzen, erzwingenexit poll – Wählerbefragungturn somebody in – jemanden anzeigenscholarship – Stipendiumpathway – Pfadostracized – ausgeschlossenpolitical credo – die politische Überzeugungto be disillusioned – ernüchtert/desillusioniert werdenIn how far did the feeling of being ostracized influence Orwell’s writing?In boarding school Eric Blair felt lonely, so he soon developed disagreeable mannerisms which made him even more unpopular and ostracized. He had the typical lonely child’s habits of making up stories and conversations with imaginary people and so with his feeling of being isolated and undervalued also his literary ambitions were born. What were his initial thoughts on Imperialism and Totalitarianism and in how far did his perception thereof change over years?At first, he was enthusiastic when he heard about Imperialism and Totalitarianism, he liked it, imperialism was a part of his life. Later on, this changed when he saw the effects of the colonialism on the aboriginal peoples. As soon as he worked for the Indian Imperial Police in Burma and therefore acted as an active part of the oppressive forces of the British Empire, he felt disillusioned with Imperialism and his participation in it, which also influenced some of his following novels (“Burmese Days”…). “All animals are equal… but some animals are more equal than others”: where does this quote emanate from? In how far does it depict the political credo of Orwell’s time?This quote comes from Orwell’s novel “Animal Farm”. The setting of the novel is a farm where the animals take control after a revolt. The pigs take charge but soon become as ruthless as the former human owner. The egalitarian rules on which the farm is run soon reduced to one single commandment: “All animals are equal… but some animals are more equal than others.” and the other animals eventually realise that they can no longer tell the pigs from men. This story is an indictment of communism and the inequality on which totalitarian regimes are built. With this novel Orwell primarily attacks Stalin’s totalitarian regime. Mention one real-life example resp. incentive (Anreiz) for Orwell’s 1984.A real-life example which acted as an incentive for Orwell’s 1984 was the Soviet practice of removing “unpersons”. The regime deleted political figures who had fallen out of favour from photographs in old newspapers.  Also in 1984 the party constantly rewrites history in an attempt to prove that its own actions have always been correct.Facecrime is actually an invention of Orwell’s. Was there an incident where people were punished (in reality) for such a crime?As facecrime, which is a punishable offence, Orwell describes having an improper expression on your face, which carries with it the suggestion of having something to hide. A real-life example for Orwell’s facecrime took place in January 2012, when thousands of North Koreans had not shown enough emotion when their “Dear Leader”, Kim Jong-il, died and therefore were forced to spend six months in a labour camp.What does “Orwellian” mean according to the text?The term “Orwellian” is used to talk about unsettling developments in one’s own society: things like police cameras in public places, or political slogans and names of laws that express the opposite of what they really stand for. Also Wikipedia articles about controversial topics are an example. Why does George Orwell write? Do you agree with his approach on /motives for writing a novel/article, etc.According to Orwell there are four main reasons why people write: sheer egoism (money-making), aesthetic enthusiasm (to create something beautiful), historical impulse and the political purpose. Orwell’s greatest motive for his writing is the political purpose because he lives in a tumultuous time and as a result has a lot to write about. He wants to make political writing an art and that’s only possible when there is a feeling of injustice. He wants to criticize something, alter the people’s’ idea of a perfect society, push the world in a certain direction, expose a lie or draw attention to a specific fact, always trying to make an aesthetic experience out of it. I especially agree with his idea of writing with political purpose, because if I wrote just out of aesthetic enthusiasm, the outcome would be lacking in content and consequently good for nothing. For me, a novel/article is based on a good content, whether it is political or historical, the main thing is I can learn something from it. Activity 3 – Part I, Chapter IDescribe the living conditions as they are presented in the first chapter. What does this tell you about society?The lives of the people living in Oceania are controlled by Big Brother. They always have to be careful to not do anything that’s against the will of BB. The people are constantly surveilled by the telescreens, which simultaneously operate as televisions. They have to show enthusiasm for their leader and if they get caught thinking or saying something bad about him or making a face while he’s talking it’s called thought/facecrime and it’s punished by death. The daily routine is characterized by activities that work as thought control and strengthen the enthusiasm for BB, like the “Two Minutes Hate”. The society isn’t allowed to use its own brain and its free will and when it comes to the daily “Two minutes Hate” it falls into a state of trance. It is blind and hasn’t got enough courage or good sense to overthrow its leader.Explain why you think that Winston’s diary is important.I think Winston’s diary is important because it shows that his will of writing that book and resisting the Party is bigger than his fear of being discovered. With this diary he makes the first step towards developing his own thoughts, independent from the ones of the Party and he shows that the Party isn’t strong enough to oppress everyone. He wakes up from the state of trance the regime has put him into. By writing this diary Winston, who is full of rage, finally finds a way to express his feelings and that gives him such a satisfaction that he hazards the consequences. He needs this writing as an affirmation that his mind is still alive, in contrast to almost anyone else. This diary represents the beginning of his further development and I think that with this diary there also grows a Rebellion against BB. He builds the base of a resistance against the Party. Describe the “Two Minutes Hate”. In which ways do people react to the “Hate” (give an example)? Does Winston appear to react differently to other people (example)?The “Two Minutes Hate” is a daily ritual during which the Party members come together in front of a telescreen to watch a propaganda film about the enemies of the party (Goldstein…). On the one hand, the purpose of this brainwashing film is to make the people express their hatred for those enemies, but on the other hand it makes them lose their individuality.Effectively they all show the same emotions as the film starts: They fall into a state of trance, they begin to scream in hate, rage, behave like a grimacing lunatic and stamp. The worst thing about this ritual is that for the greatest part of those people it is impossible to not join in, an ecstasy of fear and a desire to kill flows through them “like an electric current”.Also Winston can’t help joining the general delirium because it is an instinctive reaction, he shouts with the others because if somebody noticed that he wasn’t, he probably would have disappeared somewhat later and not been remembered. But there is a little space of time where his behaviour differentiates from the one of the others: Winston glances at O’Brien and sees that his anger isn’t towards Goldstein but towards BB and he then questions himself if he is doing the right thing. He notices that also his hatred isn’t towards these “enemies of the Party” but towards BB, the Party and the Thought Police. Anyway, at the very next moment he goes back to being one with the other people and all that is said about Goldstein seems to him to be true. Activity 4 – Part I, Chapter II-IIIPart I, Chapter II: This chapter introduces Mrs Parsons and her children. What impressions do you get about the way that children are being brought up? While Winston is occupied with Mrs. Parsons’ plumbing, her children, whose father apparently never questions the BB regime, torment him and accuse him of thoughtcrime, which makes him feel very uncomfortable because of his secret diary. These children are part of the Youth League and the Junior Spies, organizations which are meant to raise fanatic supporters of the Party, who are able to monitor adults for disloyalty to the Party and frequently succeed in catching them. This means that their lives were infused by the thoughts of the Party since they were little and they had no possibility to develop independent thoughts and own opinions. As a result, despite their young age, the Parsons-children are extremely zealous to the regime, which is noticed at the latest when they protest after their mother doesn’t want to take them to the public hanging of the Party’s enemies. Big Brother makes them freak out in such a way that even their own mother seems to be afraid of them. But that’s the purpose: By raising the kids this way, BB prevents them from developing own rebelling thoughts that could harm him. He creates offspring that will always comply with its will and never pose a risk. Part I, Chapter III:What do you think is meant by “doublethink”? What effect do you think that attempting to use doublethink has on people?”Doublethink” is the ability to hold two contradictory opinions at the same time about the same question, people had learned to simultaneously believe two different “truths”, which normally exclude each other, remaining untroubled by the contradiction. Depending on the convenience of the Party they then express one opinion or the other. I think that the 3 slogans of the Party (“War Is Peace; Freedom Is Slavery; Ignorance Is Strength”) are the most obvious examples of “doublethink”.In my opinion, the regime uses “doublethink” to manipulate the people and to prevent them from building up their own opinions. “Doublethink” limits the ability to think because if you believe two contradictory statements at the same time, you probably believe everything somebody tells you, even if it’s absolutely surrealistic and unbelievable. Therefore, the use of “doublethink” acts as an convenient way for the Party to practice thought-control. Activity 5 – Part I, Chapter IVThe chapter talks about changing news/history/information.Please research a real-life example (either a historical event or a present day example), which exemplifies that such “crimes” still happen nowadays.Choose an example and elaborate in 100 words in how far it is similar to “1984”.The Great Moon Hoax of 1835One instance of fake news was the Great Moon Hoax of 1835. The New York Sun published 6 articles about a real-life astronomer, Sir John Herschel, and a made-up colleague, Dr. Andrew Grant, who had written the article. According to the hoax, they had observed bizarre life on the moon. The articles described fantastic animals on the Moon, including bison, goats, unicorns, bat-like winged humanoids and many more. There were trees, oceans and beaches. These discoveries were supposedly made with “an immense telescope of an entirely new principle”.The New York Sun initially invented that story to entertain its readers and not to mislead them, but in reality it  caused popular interest all over the world and attracted new subscribers, similar to the fake news in the book 1984. At the beginning the story wasn’t meant to lead to the kind of thought control Orwell warned of, but then it had the same effect, as many of the readers of the magazine didn’t even question its assertions. In 1984 Winston worked at the Ministry of Truth, whose purpose is changing history and inventing pleasing news in articles about events current and past, so that Big Brother and his government are always seen in a good light. The content is more propaganda than actual news. So did many other newspapers as they had heard about their readers’ intense interest in the lie of the New York Sun. Almost all the other New York papers began reprinting the fake news hoping to increase their publicity. Meanwhile, word of the discoveries quickly spread to the rest of the world. Also like in 1984 people reacted in a positive way to the things invented in the fake news.The magazine suffered very little backlash after it admitted the next month that the series had been a hoax. The moon hoax is remembered as one of the most sensational media hoaxes of all time and one of the earliest examples of “fake news”.