Ideas from Orwell’s “1984” become a reality in the era of trump

After 68 years after the Englishman George Orwell (George Orwell) published his masterpiece, “1984”, the dystopian future found in the West of the new paint.

After the adviser to trump, Kellyann Conway on Sunday 22 January this year used the expression “alternative facts” to describe the blatant lies of the administration trump, in particular, on the number of participants in the inauguration ceremony of the President, “1984” rocketed to the top of the bestseller list of the online store Amazon.

Sales statistics edition Gyldendal shows that after winning trump in the presidential elections in November 2016 and March 2017, in just five months, in Denmark it was sold 1 of 410 copies of “1984”. It’s more than it sold for all of 2014. And more than all of 2015.

Orwell became noticeable not only due to increased sales of his books. Old film made on this novel, on 4 April this year was shown in 90 independent cinemas in 34 U.S. States in protest against the ugly relationship trump the facts. In June of this year “1984” will be delivered as a play on Broadway in new York. In addition, Sony Pictures in recent years working on a film based on this novel, directed by Paul Greengrass (Paul Greengrass, “the Bourne Ultimatum”, “Captain Phillips”).

“Renaissance Orwell”

Former Minister of foreign Affairs Per Stig Meller (Per Stig Møller), author of the book “Hope and fear Orwell’s” (“Orwells håb og frygt”,1983), confirms that we in the West in recent times live with “a greater sense of Orwell”. The current so-called “Renaissance Orwell’s” roots in 2013, when the exposure agent Edward Snowden (Edward Snowden) revealed massive NSA surveillance programs, but now the novel became popular because of the appearance of the President of Donald trump (Donald Trump), and false news. Per Stig møller says: “All the debate about false news very well suited to what Orwell wrote about the “Ministry of truth” and use of “Newspeak”, when people were filled with lies. At trump, we were witnesses of how pronounced the beautiful words meaning absolutely the opposite of what was said.”

If you want to refresh your memory, “1984” and Orwell’s concepts, then keep reading.

2 + 2 = trump

In “1984” we meet Winston Smith (Winston Smith) living in a totalitarian state Oceania ruled “Party” which is headed by Big Brother controls everything, even people’s thoughts. Smith works in the Ministry of truth building, built of white cement in the form of a pyramid with a height of 300 meters, with three slogans of the Party written in beautiful letters on beautiful faces: “War is peace” “Freedom is slavery” and “Ignorance is strength”.

Winston’s job is to rewrite or destroy historic materials to “history” to always support the latest position of the Party. In short, there do lie dressed as truth. And since the Party fully controls both historical documents, and thoughts of Party members, it is quite natural that the past really needs to be whatever the Party wants. Even 2 + 2 equals 5, if it wants the Party. Weapons of the Party in seeking to control people’s thoughts is “Newspeak”, a particularly primitive form of the English language, designed to destroy or befuddling citizens and the impossibility of the existence of critical thinking.

According to Round Rye Andersen (Tore Rye Andersen), a teacher of history of literature of the University of Aarhus, Orwell “extremely dire” uses “Newspeak”: “we are Talking about how reality can change if manipulated purely linguistic way. This is in complete harmony with modern society, when the Internet or social networks you can see and read about the news so often that eventually you begin to believe that it’s true.”

From television to Twitter

It is not difficult to establish a link between “1984” and current Donald trump, who lies about everything, starting with the terrorist attacks in Sweden and ending with reports that Obama listens to his phone in trump Tower. Trump, however, does not use “television” for their propaganda, like Big Brother in “1984”. He uses Twitter.

Canadian IT thinker and writer Michael Harris (Michael Harris) tells the newspaper Jyllands-Posten in connection with this material that it is wrong to ask about how true or false statements trump on Twitter: “he Says the truth or lies is irrelevant. He writes these tweets is not because he believes that they are true. He writes them because they must be truthful if he wants to reasonably explain the changes he wants to implement”.

Doublethink lives

The fact that you can be both true and false, is another great invention of Orwell, experts say. Winston in the novel is in a strange position. Because of their work, he realizes that the past is constantly being edited by the Party. But at the same time, it needs to believe the new truth that he continuously creates. Therefore he must, like all other citizens of Oceania, to possess so-called “doublethink”, which in “1984” is described as the ability “to simultaneously have two opinions that contradict each other, and know that they are contradictory, but believe so, and others”.

Corporation CNN wrote January 26, 2017, which can be considered as an expression of “doublethink” the faith of Donald trump in the fact that during the presidential election was forged three million votes, and that his victory is by its nature was historical.

“Ignorance is strength”

Round Rye Andersen, Professor of history University of Aarhus, says that such findings in “1984” as the “Ministry of truth”, “Newspeak”, “doublethink” and the slogan “ignorance is strength” are “more relevant than ever” and “accurate in relation to modernity the Invention of Newspeak is a form of anti-intellectualism. And in the US the citizens there was always a particularly strong anti-intellectual position that is not necessary to believe that man is because he has a good education. This is one of the currents, which played a role in the election trump”.

Very strong influence of Orwell felt that the US elected a President who does not look “real”, says Rye Andersen: “trump is a virtual President. In fact he is only a television image, almost like a Big Brother. In the book expressed doubt whether Big Brother really, or is it only the screen. And the same with trump. It’s almost so ridiculous that it can be a parody, which you watch on TV”.

Dystopia = Orwell

In explaining the popularity of Orwell in our time of need, according to the teacher, mentioning that “1984” over time became “a symbol of the dystopian novel”.

“If people perceive the reality as a dystopia that is “1984”. Many people automatically choose this novel, although there are other anti-utopian works, which, at least, as much describe the various parties time in which we live.”

Rye Andersen calls “O brave new world” by Aldous Huxley (Aldoux Huxley), which describes well how people become passive because of the opportunities, “Fahrenheit 451” by ray Bradbury (Ray Bradbury), where anti-intellectualism is manifested in the burning of the books, and finally, “Neuromancer” by William Gibson (William Gibson), which is particularly acute shows how governments and firms merge in an uncertain apparatus of power.

Internet activist Peter Kofod (Peter Kofod) felt like Rye Andersen that there is a large group of American voters, including their supporters in the West, which feels that the reality was transformed into “Orwell’s dystopia”: “They really want to understand this dystopia. And here Orwell can serve as a good assistant”.

The increased popularity of the book must still be considered as a confirmation of its intrinsic value, according to Rye Andersen. Because when growing book sales, and media around the world then write about the trend, it creates a snowball effect. The teacher has bought, for example, this book to my thirteen year old daughter, when I read the news that the book topped the bestseller list of Amazon.

Fear of totalitarianism

Peter Kofod refers to “the effect Big Brother” to find the main reason for the success of the book. Every time the agenda appears surveillance since the Snowden in 2013 and ending false claims trump of listening to Tower of trump, the popularity of the book grows. About news and “alternative facts” is an additional gasoline on the burning fire of Orwell fame.

Per Stig møller believes that although we in the West, of course, do not live in totalitarian conditions, as in Orwell’s Oceania, the fear of totalitarianism, or “liberal democracy” came back: “We are naturally afraid that we will have authoritarian rule and a surveillance society in which people will hunt down on smartphones, reacting to the false news. This may indeed happen in the name of democracy. We saw in the Germany of the thirties, as democracy has abolished itself.”