Warning against totalitarianism

George Orwell’s main intention with Nineteen Eighty-Four is to warn against totalitarianism. By describing the terrible reality that might result if we let politics move in a totalitarian direction, Orwell tries to show the readers that they must take an active stance and reject such developments.

This message is conveyed throughout the book, but it is perhaps made most clear in O’Brien’s disturbing monologue in Part III, when he talks about the future direction of the world:

‘A world of fear and treachery and torment, a world of trampling and being trampled upon, a world which will grow not less but more merciless at it refines itself. Progress in our world will be progress towards more pain. [...] There will be no loyalty, except loyalty towards the Party. There will be no love, except the love of Big Brother. There will be no laughter, except the laugh of triumph over a defeated enemy. [...] If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face - for ever.’ (p. 280)

This image of the future is so frightening that the message about not letting the real world develop in such a direction is made extremely clear to the readers.

The dark conclusion to the novel also adds an extra level of urgency to this message. Since a reall...

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