1984 Essay by
In the book 1984, telescreens are like televisions that never turn off, always using propaganda to hammer in the Party’s ideas. The Thought Police are known to monitor the actions of citizens. Winston Smith keeps his back to the screen because he doesn’t want to conform. Winston lives in fear of the telescreen and eventually the Party has him “correcting” history to keep everyone ignorant. With the telescreens constantly shoving ideas into people heads and Wilsons “corrections” to history based on the Party’s records, people no longer can think for themselves. In the real world technology is the progression of knowledge and change. Ironically technology is being used to prevent change. The Party uses telescreens and hidden microphones that are spread all over the city to monitor what everyone is doing, the Party is able to see its members almost all the time. Additionally, the Party has machines that existed before computers to take complete control over economic production and information. In addition to the machines taking the jobs from people, machines are also used to oppress and torture people. The book shows technology in a negative light, while technology is generally supposed to make our lives easier. The ever present telescreens in the book are the most prominent symbol of the Party’s control over their subjects, monitoring them and keeping them in line. The Party tries their hardest to make sure the people don’t have ideas of their own. In their totalitarian government, they abuses technology for their own benefits instead of sharing knowledge to help improve the society. In a way this story is very similar to Fahrenheit 451 in the aspect that a higher up official is “fixing” history by destroying the past and keeping the people ignorant.