by George Orwell
The year is 1984. Be careful of your thoughts and actions. Big Brother is watching. No one knows exactly who or what Big Brother is, only that he exists, and anyone who attempts to defy him will be tortured and annihilated by his enforcers, the Thought Police. Even with this knowledge, Winston Smith and his companion, Julia, strive to resist the Thought Police and rid the world of Big Brother and his dehumanizing power. George Orwell wrote 1984, not with the intention of frightening his readers, but to warn them of what evils the future could hold.
Orwell had an uncanny knack for forcing his readers to reflect on and acknowledge the freedoms that many of us take for granted. The very thought of such an appalling future was, in itself, disturbing, but even more alarming was Orwell's ability to convince his readers that such a dreadful world could truly exist. He does this by creating seemingly real characters and by using remarkable detail when describing these characters and their surroundings. With these techniques, the world portrayed in 1984 becomes more than just a bizarre idea. It almost becomes a reality. 1984 is a representation of the horrific world which could lie ahead. Let us hope that it remains just a theory, and let us be thankful for the freedoms we possess as Americans. .
Review by T. E., Saugus, MA
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.