Analysis Of Language In 1984 By George Orwell

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Philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein is quoted as saying, “The limits of my language means the limits of my world,” a sentiment heroically displayed in the novel 1984, written by George Orwell. Within the confines of the story of Winston, a man living in Oceania under the complete and total control of the Party, Orwell accurately displays the limited language forced upon the citizens and explains the inexplicable way the party destroyed the past in order to completely control the future of its members. Furthermore, Orwell intricately examines the devolution of language and the subsequent effects on the intellect of citizens and their personal belief systems. Upon reviewing and examining Old English and Middle English prose, it has become blatantly…show more content…
Along with this, Orwell openly portrays his anger revolving around the destruction of the English Language. In prior writings, Orwell displays his disgust at the evolution of language and his unhappiness in the migration of shorter, unexaggerated sentences to the lengthy wording of simple phrases. In Orwell's writing titled “Politics and the English Language,” he states “no modern writer of the kind I am discussing- no one capable of using phrases like “objective consideration of contemporary phenomena”- would ever tabulate his thoughts in that precise and detailed way,” a passage which thoroughly depicts Orwells contempt of modern writers. By incorporating Old English language into his writings, Orwell subtly displays his unrest with the modernization of our language. In Orwell's opinion, the destruction of Language is used to dumb down the people and control the minds of the masses. This ideology is exhibited in the fictional language of Newspeak, the language created by Orwell in the book 1984. The purpose of Newspeak is to lessen the knowledge of the people under the Party and eventually make thought crime impossible. An example of this is in the…show more content…
In Politics and the English Language, Orwell writes, “In certain types of writing, particularly in art criticism and literary criticism, it is normal to come across long passages which are almost completely lacking in meaning. Words like romantic, plastic, values, human, dead, sentimental, natural, vitality, as used in art criticism, are strictly meaningless, in the sense that they not only do not point to any discoverable object, but are hardly ever expected to do so by the reader” (Language that Manipulates, 238). Orwell asks the reader to evaluate a scenario in order to point out one or more of the ways society takes words for granted. Orwell carefully exaggerates the issue of vocabulary apprehension and usage, thereby drawing light to the impending consequences of a seemingly small societal issue. This is particularly evident in the story when the character Syme is tasked with creating a new version of the Newspeak dictionary and one day informs Winston of the fact that “Newspeak is the only language whose vocabulary gets smaller every year” (Orwell 52). This information exaggerates the slow process of language devolution and helps to enlighten unaware readers of the detrimental changes taking
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