Esteban Poveda December 12 Mrs Suhr Mindless Robots It is interesting how individuals are those who make the greatest advances in mankind, yet it is human nature to want to be a part of something, to conform to those around them. Those who go against their basic instincts and think out loud are those who are first considered mavericks or protestors but over times become heroes to future generations. Which is why being an individual is the greatest think one can be. In both Brave New World by Aldous Huxley and 1984 by George Orwell individuals are punished or casted away from society as they are a danger to the rtificially created stability which lies within these societies. In these dystopias measures have been taken to insure individual thinking is no longer possible. Firstly, dystopian literature explores the problems that arise when governments use brainwashing in order to prevent any unique thoughts within their citizens. Secondly, dystopian literature explores the consequences that derive when governments choose to alter arts and media that provoke individual opinion in order to prevent distinction within the population. Thirdly, in dystopian societies class structure s used to prevent singularity within the population. Dystopian fiction explores the removal of individuality using dystopian control methods in society. Dystopian literature explores the problems that arise when governments use brainwashing in order to prevent any unique thoughts within their citizens. The setting is London, better known as airstrip one in the year 1984. In a world where nuclear war has forced countries divided into three mega states, Oceania, Eastasia and Eurasia, society has been created in a completely different way. A totalitarian government rules over the repressive society they have created.
Society has been divided into three class structures, Inner Party, outer Party and proletarians. The inner Party controls every detail and aspect of their population always ensuring their society is in order. They restrict communication, personal beliefs, freedom of thought and expression and most importantly, individuality. Using technology and Party officials, the government exercises complete control over their citizens. However when someone shows suspicious behaviour or signs of rebellion they are taken to the ministry of Love where they are brainwashed and then released back into society in their new state.
This was the case with Winston Smith as he began to show signs of individuality and rebellion. Throughout the novel the character of Winston is progressed from an individual unsure of his actions and motives to a confident protestor pledging his alliance to taking down the Inner Party. Once in the ministry of love his brainwashing is taken care of by a fellow coworkers Obrien. At the end of a torture session Obrien adds: “ Power is in tearing human minds to pieces and putting them together again in new shapes of your own choosing. Do you begin to see, then, what kind of world we are creating? (Orwell 266) […] “ Already we are breaking down the habits of thought which have survived from before the Revolution” (277) In this session, O’Brien makes the intentions of his government very clear. They wish to eliminate the habits of thought which were not completely removed from before the revolution. Essentially they want to completely wipe human down the natural way humans process thoughts and instill their new way of thinking. This technique is also known as brainwashing, the human mind is wired a certain way depending on the given environment, in order to rewire the human ind one must go through certain to steps in order to instill a new way of thinking. This is precisely what the dystopian government in 1984 wishes to do and is currently doing so. Naturally, all humans think differently, it is what makes each human an individual, their unique thought processing. This is however inconvenient because if everyone thinks differently than order is difficult to maintain. For this reason the government in 1984 wishes to remove individuality from human nature and instill a new way of thinking using brainwashing. This is nequitable because it goes against the will of the individual; it is unjust to instill a new way of thinking simply because it is more convenient to the government. It is unjust because humans are unique creatures, it is essentially what makes humans the dominant race, however if individuality is removed by instilling a new way of thinking, humans simply become machines wired by the biased opinions and beliefs of a minority population. For these reasons individuality Brave New world also takes place in London; the year is A. F 632(After Ford). This society worships their one god, Henry Ford, the creator of the production line.
They encompass his legacy by using a modernized version of the production line to create human life. The center of hatcheries creates thousands of artificially created babies each year. Each baby starts of as an embryo and depending on the pre-chosen caste will be conditioned and nurtured accordingly. Once hatched the babies are conditioned to fit perfectly into their caste, each night they are exposed to recordings of a human voice, speaking suggestions of the government. This technique is called hypnop? dia and is essentially recordings of short messages and suggestions created by he government which are repeated thousands of times while the children are sleeping. The book starts off with the Director of hatcheries giving a tour of the facility to a group of new students. The director explains the intentions of called hypnop? dia: “Not so much drops of water, though water, it is true, can wear holes in the hardest granite; rather drops of liquid sealing-wax, drops that adhere, incrust, incorporate themselves with what they fall on, till finally the rock is all one scarlet blob. ‘Till at last the child’s mind is these suggestions, and the sum of the suggestions is the child’s mind. And not the child’s mind only.
The adults mind too- all his life long” (Huxley 28-29). Hypnop? dia is a modernized, almost science fiction way of brainwashing. Unlike brainwashing there is no need to remove previous morals or beliefs; however it is still the same concept of inculcating ideas into a humans mind. The intentions of hypnop? dia are stated very clearly in this analogy; these messages are repeated hundreds of times in order to permanently instill the beliefs of the government, these messages consist of systematically created suggestions of the Party so that the child grows up to belief everything the government wants them to believe.
For example one of the recordings goes “Alpha children wear grey. They work much harder than we do, because they’re so frightfully clever. I’m really glad I’m a beta because I don’t work so hard” (27). These messages are created to implant a sense of conformity into the brain of the child, to be happy in the caste they are in because their caste is the best. This gives a sense of false individuality, since true individuality is the uniqueness, distinctive qualities that one is born with; in this society individuality is separated into five castes and already pre-decided.
Therefore, it is essentially not individuality at all if it is already predestined. For this reason precisely the government has decided to remove true individuality, it is unpredictable and uncontrollable, the government cannot truly rule over a population with each separate belief system. This however is unfair to the youth as they are removing the ability of the child to naturally develop opinions and beliefs. Once the government implants their beliefs on their citizens, they become unconscious machines that simply regurgitate the opinions of the ruling body.
The closest comparison between these two dystopian books is the intentions and motives of the ruling party. In both societies the intention of the government was to remove the natural human uniqueness in each individual, simply because it was more convenient to rule over their population when they were mindless robots. Both societies wanted to create a world where there was no possibility of rebellion since everyone had the same opinions and beliefs, those of the government of course. Also similar in both novels was the methods, both governments used brainwashing techniques to remove the possibility of uniqueness.
However, in 1984 the ruling Party had the task of removing old process of thought an inserting a new one, they were faced with a more difficult task since there was already pre-existing beliefs. In Brave New World the government was not faced with same task, they artificially created their babies and conditioned them since birth, rewiring was not needed as the minds of children are blank spaces waiting to be filled. In both novels a character that is a flaw in the governments perfect plan is shows to the reader, a character who is different from the population in one way or another, perhaps it was heir way of saying that despite the repressive actions of governments, human nature will always prevail in the end. Considering the many similarities, it can be said that these novels simply share different stages in revolution towards a repressive society in 1984 the government is eliminating the few remains of heretical thought and individual belief left in society while in Brave New World, individuals no longer exist because the population has been born mindless robots. In conclusion the ruling body is aware that in order to have complete control over the population, ndividuality must be removed. If all citizens have the same belief as the government then it is nearly impossible for rebellion to occur. Secondly, dystopian literature explores the consequences that derive when governments choose to alter arts and media that provoke individual opinion in order to prevent distinction within the population. One of the many precautions token by the Party in 1984 to insure individuality was eliminated from human nature was the deterioration of how to express uniqueness. We learn about the governments strategies from Syme, a fellow co-worker of
Winston in the ministry of truth. The government wishes to create a new language known as Newspeak which restricts the use of synonyms and antonyms, essentially breaking down English to its simplest form. The A vocabulary consists of the necessary words needed from day to day; the B vocabulary of Newspeak contains all words with political or ideological significance. Finally, the C vocabulary consist words that relate specifically to science and to technical fields. The process of reconstruction of the English language was a long one, it was predicted the language would be completed in the year 2050.
Orwell further explains Newspeak in the Afterword: “A good deal of the literature of the past was, indeed, already being transformed in this way. Considerations of prestige made it desirable to preserve the memory of certain historical figures, while at the same time bringing their achievements into line with the philosophy of Ingsoc. Various writers, such as Shakespeare, Milton, Swift, Byron, Dickens, and some others were therefore in process of translation: when the task had been completed, their original writings, with all else that survived of the literature of the past, would be destroyed” (Orwell 312)
Newspeak is one the final steps in the plan of the Party to insure complete control over their population. It becomes much more difficult to express or be self-conscious of individuality if there are no words to describe such a feeling. The process of Newspeak also involved changing all literature from the past and changing it to Newspeak. Old literature such as Shakespeare and Dickens expresses concepts such as love, human attachment, trust, different personalities, yet more specifically individuality. For these reasons the language in these stories had to be changed, ssentially without the proper language, the stories meaning and message would be completely changed to a dull, meaningless story. By changing the story it is no longer what it once was, and it no longer has the same effect on the reader as it once did. Since these stories contained themes of individuality they provoked a sense of uniqueness to the reader, this is what had to be changed. Despite all the oppressive measures that the Party toke to insure everyone was in order if any object which provoked individuality was among the population it posed a risk to the tightly held control over their citizens.
Once one removes the instincts of human attachment, individual thought processing etc. , The very nature of a human is altered. Advances in society can no longer be made because for advances to be made one needs to think differently than the previous creator and that is no longer possible if individuality is removed. In conclusion the problem with altering language is that we can no longer think differently, therefore no advances in society can be made. In Brave New World there is a place called the savage resort, a resort with the last known naturally raised humans in the world.
When the main character Bernard Marnx visits the resort he is compelled to bring back John, a boy whose mother was from the dystopian society yet was raised naturally. The morals and understanding of human nature derives from a Shakespeare book he was given at the resort. When John arrives at London he is exposed to the new society. John is confused and fluttered with emotions as he cannot comprehend why society is in the constrained state is it. After an outbreak in public John is brought to Mustapha Mond. The controller explains the governments motives and reasoning, John is curious as to why the overnment does not allow their citizens to read beautiful plays such as Othello: “Because our world is not the same as Othello’s world. You can’t make ? ivvers without steel-and you can’t make tragedies without social instability. The world’s stable now. People are happy; they get what they want, and they never want what they can’t get. They’re well off; they’re safe; they’re never ill; they’re not afraid of death; they’re blissfully ignorant of passion and old age; they’re plagued with no mothers or fathers; they’ve got no wives, or children, or lovers to feel strongly bout; they’re so conditioned that they practically can’t help behaving as they ought to behave” (Huxley 220) Othello is a story of love and compassion; books like these are kept inside the office of Mustapha Monds. They cannot be shown to the population because the current society and the society that Othello lived in are completely different. People raised in this society would not be able to understand the message because they have been conditioned not to. Citizens in this society have been brainwashed since birth into not feeling any human attachment, not understanding what love, hate or pain really are.
They all have the exact same emotion towards everything, in other words they have been deprived of their individuality. Humans should be given the right to develop their opinions, at the end of the day if humans are stripped of their freedom to feel, to want, to need, then essentially they are just bodies walking around with artificially produced emotions, as said as Mustapha Mond, “They can’t help behaving as they out to behave” (220). This is precisely the consequence that occurs when the government strips humans of their freedom to feel, they all feel the exact same towards everything and therefore nobody has any ifferent opinions. This is what makes it so suitable for the government for deprive humans of their individuality, once they are stripped of that, then controlling the human race becomes like programming robots. Opinions are what better our society; criticism towards our way of life is what propels to develop, to create better ways of living. Without the development of our living standards humans will not be able to survive on earth if they cannot create to further advance or even adapt to new conditions. The goals in these two books are similar in the sense that both governments wish to eliminate ndividuality within the community. The end goal is to strip humans of their ability to think differently and react uniquely so that everyone has the exact same brain as the government. However in Brave New World they are completely eliminating literature that could possibly show humans of what humans use to be capable of in the past. They have been conditioned to not feel anything the government does not want them to feel. Differently than in 1984 where the government is limiting the range of thought by limiting the language in which they can express unique or individual thought.
The citizens in Brave New World would not need this because they have already been conditioned otherwise. The government in 1984 simply wants complete and utter control over the population, in effect they are stripping them of everything that could possibly make them an individual or further, even a human. The end result in this is also similar. In Brave New World when humans are deprived of literature essentially it will not matter because they have already been conditioned to hate it. Mustapha is simply taking an extra precaution so that there is no possibility of his population being exposed to different ideas. Therefore in the end y hiding literature there is not a huge impact on the already damaged human. In 1984, diminishing the range of thought is also an extra precaution the government is taking to insure no one can produce rebellious thoughts. Children that have been born into this society will obediently fit into society and adults that have not already been brainwashed, will be stripped of their individuality. In conclusion governments remove literature and media which provoke or speak of unique thought have been removed from society. Dystopian fiction explores the removal of individuality using dystopian control methods in society.
Firstly, dystopian literature investigates the problems that occur when governments use brainwashing in order to prevent any unique thoughts within their citizens. Secondly, dystopian literature foresees the consequences that emerge when the ruling body chooses to alter arts and media that provoke unique opinion in order to prevent distinction within the population. Thirdly, in dystopian societies social structure is used to prevent non conformity within the population. Works Cited ?Huxley, Aldous. Brave New World. New York: Harper Collins Publisher, 1932. Print. ?Orwell, George. 1984. New York: Signet classics Publishing, 1961. Print