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What really happened in Room 101?
Posted: 04 October 2012 07:19 PM   [ Ignore ]
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If you want to learn this, here is the forbidden knowledge directly from Goldstein

Goldstein on Room 101 and Big Brother

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Posted: 17 October 2012 01:52 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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It never really washed with me that “Ingsoc” was supposed to directly correlate with the USSR. Nineteen Eighty Four warns of totalitarianism in all its forms, and took its inspiration from the totalitarian states and parties in the USSR, Nazi Germany, the various competing tyrannies of the Spanish Civil War (Orwell experienced those directly, having fought against Fascism in spain, and seeing Republican combatants locked up, and often killed, by people who were supposed to be on the same side as them, for ‘ideological crimes’ such as being part of a Trotskyist-leaning party at a time when the Spanish Republic was recieving massive aid from Stalin’s USSR. With friends like those, it’s no wonder the Republic was beaten by Franco’s Falangists and his Fascist allies.), the Communist and Fascist parties in the UK, and others.

The fact that Big Brother and Goldstein clearly take heavy inspiration from the war between Stalin and Trotsky for rule over the USSR doesn’t mean every story feature has to correlate directly with Russian or Soviet history. Room 101 exists only in the book, but hideous forms of torture, intimidation and psychological coercion don’t just exist in some real life counterpart in Moscow or Siberia, but in regimes willing to use them, all over the world, even in places we in the West have grown to associate with freedom, democracy and ‘the good guys.’

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Posted: 17 October 2012 04:16 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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C. McArthur - 17 October 2012 01:52 PM

It never really washed with me that “Ingsoc” was supposed to directly correlate with the USSR.

This is probably because of the originality of your comprehension.

Orwell did not write his book in a vacuum. 1984 describes the Soviet Union (the book describes Stalinist Russia so well so that subjects of that evil empire wondered when Orwell had lived there, though he had just described what he saw from the outside.)

http://www.americanthinker.com/2008/11/orwells_children.html

Compare 1984 to USSR or Germany?
I have a report due comparing Orwell’s 1984 to either Stalin and his USSR, or Hitler, and his Nazi party. I need to use 3 examples of how the 2 are similar. Wondering who you think would be better to compare. Also what would the best examples be, and if you have any good sources, I would really appreciate it, as the report is due in 2 days. Pls help!!! Thanks.


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1984 is an allegory for the Soviet Union. Definitely go with that one.

http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20081123153340AAPJFzg

C. McArthur - 17 October 2012 01:52 PM

Nineteen Eighty Four warns of totalitarianism in all its forms, and took its inspiration from the totalitarian states and parties in the USSR, Nazi Germany, the various competing tyrannies of the Spanish Civil War (Orwell experienced those directly, having fought against Fascism in spain, and seeing Republican combatants locked up, and often killed, by people who were supposed to be on the same side as them, for ‘ideological crimes’ such as being part of a Trotskyist-leaning party at a time when the Spanish Republic was recieving massive aid from Stalin’s USSR. With friends like those, it’s no wonder the Republic was beaten by Franco’s Falangists and his Fascist allies.), the Communist and Fascist parties in the UK, and others.

Did you read Orwell’s “Homage to Catalonia?” The repressions against against Trotskyites started after the POUM (a Trotskyite organization) militia started an uprising against other Republicans. This is what helped the defeat of the Republicans, not the repressions against Trotskyites.

C. McArthur - 17 October 2012 01:52 PM

The fact that Big Brother and Goldstein clearly take heavy inspiration from the war between Stalin and Trotsky for rule over the USSR doesn’t mean every story feature has to correlate directly with Russian or Soviet history. Room 101 exists only in the book, but hideous forms of torture, intimidation and psychological coercion don’t just exist in some real life counterpart in Moscow or Siberia, but in regimes willing to use them, all over the world, even in places we in the West have grown to associate with freedom, democracy and ‘the good guys.’

It is not about direct correlation, but about any correlation. To put it simple those, whom you call courageous defecate in their pants. Those whom you call tyrants conduct themselves with dignity.

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Posted: 19 October 2012 08:28 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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I’m not quite sure what you mean by certain of your responses, particularly your last one, since I’m not sure who you think I’m referring to. If nothing else I didn’t refer to anyone as courageous, my point was that Orwell drew on more than recent Russian history as examples of tyranny, some examples he experienced personally and some he had learned of from elsewhere, including abuses perpetrated by people we associate with ‘the good guys’. But to give an idea of people we associate with freedom, who have been willing to use torture in the modern era and how that might have affected Orwell’s work, as a young man Orwell experienced first hand how the democratic United Kingdom was happy to use torture and intimidation in its colonies. As to how colonialism fits into Nineteen Eighty Four, unlike in Communist states that at least claim to give equality to peasants and workers while they screw them, in Nineteen Eighty Four this system of alleged equality begins with the lower Party members, while below them are ‘The Proles’, who nobody even appears to pretend have any right to equality, calling them ‘The Proles’ and openly excluding them from party activities, while in the USSR and other Communist societies, there was at least a pretence that the Party was a representative of the Workers and Peasants it actually exploited. Again, I see Nineteen Eighty Four being inspired by a number of tyrannial societies and situations, not being a direct copy of one.

Similarly, Orwell was aware of the abuses comitted by the various Great Powers of the 19th and early 20th Centuries in their colonial empires, with these powers including the Democratic states of Western Europe, the United States and others. His own experiences of colonial abuse, and the others he knew about, contributed to Orwell’s own socialist ideals, which can be gleaned from his books. (Yes, as well as all the other books he ever had published, and his collected essays, I read Homage to Catalonia. In that he specifically rails against the idea of blaming the POUM for the problems of the Republic as alleged, traitors to the cause, mentioning how sickening it is to see a young man lying wounded and sick on the front lines, then read a pamphlet written by someone far behind the lines, or in London or Paris, in which that young man is decried as a traitor. The exact quote escapes me, I think I loaned my copy to someone a while ago, as it isn’t currently on my shelves. The concept of the POUM as turning against the Republic was one heavily, and inevitably, propagated by organisations allied to Stalin and the USSR, who were never going to tolerate a Troskyist party being influential as part of a post war Republican government in the event of a Republican victory.)

I maintain that, as with Animal Farm, Nineteen Eighty Four isn’t a simple history of the USSR with the character names changed. The tyranny created by Ingsoc, or by the Pigs on Manor Farm, is the tyranny created by the USSR, Nazi Germany, Mussolini’s Italy, Franco’s Spain, British India, the Belgian Congo, William Walker’s Nicaragua and many others rolled into one. As such, Room 101 doesn’t represent one room in Lubyanka or Vorkuta, but the tyranny wielded by any state that choses to, or will chose to in future.

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