Totalitarian regimes are viciously effective at enhancing their power and miserably incompetent at providing for their citizens. The primary goal of Nineteen Eighty Four is to demonstrate the terrifying possibilities of totalitarianism. The terrifying and unpleasant world envisioned by Orwell is played out in the eyes of Winston Smith. How then is Nineteen Eighty Four like other quest narratives? How does it compare with other similar stories? What can we learn from the comparisons? In this discussion we shall narrow down to the character development while comparing and contrasting various attributes.Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four and Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451 are both works of dystopian fiction. One of the most overt similarities between the two sets of books is the character development. At the start of each of these novels, both the protagonists lead empty and meaningless lives.
A lady appears to them and as a result they break away and completely rebel against their societies although they calm down in the long run. The character of Guy Montag ultimately wins. He evades government, finds peace and escapes destruction in the nuclear war, Bradbury (2012). As shown in Orwell (2009), this is in sharp contrast to Winston Smith who fails eventually submits to the authoritarian regime.Winston Smith, the protagonist in the Nineteen Eighty-Four and Guy Montag, the main character in the Fahrenheit 451 surprisingly possess lots of things in common. From roles the play in these narratives to some of the character traits they portray, these two characters play a major role in defining the destinies of their societies.
Both Winston and Guy Montag are dissatisfied with their present situations and the situation in the whole world they live in. Out of dissatisfaction, they both try to do something to change the world by fighting the systems in place. While Montag does get actively involved by coming up with a plan to take down the organization of the firemen, Smith only builds the thoughts and plans in his mind.
Further in both stories, their actions are revealed and they come to a conflict with their enemies who represent the system. These are O’Brien and Captain Beatty. Towards the end of both novels, O’Brien and Captain Beatty are revealed to be the adversaries of the adversaries and what follows thereafter is a fight. Montag engages Captain Beatty in a fight and eventually manages to kill him.
This represents Montag’s symbolic winning over the system. He down a system that he had so wished to see Coming down. Winston, however, so lucky.
In the end he is finally subdued and by O’Brien and gets assimilated into the system. One struggle ends up in futility. Winston hopes to bring the system down but ends up subdued. He therefore has to be part of the system he so loathed and abhorred. He therefore have to work within the policies he had once undermined. Montag on the other hand manages to turn the tables and bring about the change he so yearned for. Like many other modern societies, there are numerous people who have put their lives in the front line to bring change and liberate their nations.
While some like Montage put up a spirited and successful struggles, others like Winston are not so lucky and they are outfoxed and forced into the system.Moreover, there are many similar elements shared between the two worlds where Nineteen Eighty Four and Fahrenheit 451 take place. The similarities are the elements of a dystopian society, censorship and types of governments in place. Censorship, one of the most significant themes in these novels is given different approaches by the two authors. Newspaper articles in the Nineteen Eighty-Four are mainly written to suit the will of the government and to strengthen the citizens’ trust in the party and Big Brother. However, some inappropriate documents are discarded using the memory holes (Orwell 38).Also, it is important to note the view on literature.
Literature, with other forms of art such as music and movies, is artificially made for the lower class, proles. This compares with the intellectual decline which is apparent in Fahrenheit 451. The people want everything to be quick, simple and shortened. They want simplified versions to suit their needs. One main similarity that comes from the two books is the desensitization of societies. The government of the day controls the people by denying them information, eliminating dissenting voices, glorifying the brutal force meted on her citizens and the denial of basic and social amenities to her People. Citizens are made to be over-dependent on the authority. They become weak to this effect and have to abide by the bad regime since their basic needs are paramount.
Supplementary, Romance though satirical, plays a major role in bringing out Winston as rebellious and fatal. Winston’s hatred for and rebellion against the Party grew more and more intense with the progression of their affair with Julia (Orwell 61). The novel clearly elaborates the main motif behind Smith’s involvement into an active sexual relationship with Julia. In this scenario, romance is given a different contextual meaning function far from the love perspective. This analogy displays a drawback in the social welfare and overall social organization of the inhabitants.Nineteen Eighty-Four is a novel that carries along with it the tone of a dark, frustrated and pessimist society. It intends to lay bare the rogue governments and regimes that have become the norm in our modern societies.
Authoritarian regime like the one played out in the novel are viciously effective at stamping their authority and pathetically incompetent in providing for the citizens. The novel succeeds in highlighting the evils and malpractices within our governance structures. As a solution, it plays out armed struggle as a way of restoring sanity and getting rid of the rogue governments.
Finally, as already alluded previously on this work, totalitarianism is best understood in a political setup that embraces both utopian and dictatorial kinds of governance, Linz (1964). The novel in discussion, The Nineteen Eighty-Four has succeeded in reflecting the grave effects of this kind of governance on the citizens in the particular regime. Political theorists further explain the implications of this regime.
It leads to a world without freedom, where every step the human being makes is predetermined by the authority. Freedom of expression is therefore stepped on fully by the government. The citizens also lose trust on themselves and on the government. This denotes a situation of insecurity even when under your own house with family members. A state of trust nobody emerges as a result of this regime.
Levitsky and Luan (2010) alludes that such hybrid regimes emulate corruption. All the activities undertaken by the stakeholders in the government aim gaining more power. The citizens are compelled to act against their democratic will.
Žižek (2001) further hints that as the regime controls both public and private aspects of the society, no room of talent development is available. This means that property belongs to the few individuals in power. Use of mass surveillance adds up on the sufferings experienced in this scenario. Orwell therefore manages to expose the human suffering observed in many nations across the world. The suffering that starts from birth to death of the citizens.
This situation suggest a case of being a slave in a person’s homeland, the mother country where life should be friendlier to that effect.