Contemplations on a thought-provoking novel
Having just finished this masterpiece by Orwell, I couldn’t help but having the uncontrollable urge to write about it. After finishing part III in a single stretch, some things have fundamentally changed the way I view certain aspects in life. It is by no means that there could be any doubt about the warning Orwell was trying to give us.
At the end of the book I was contemplating how I myself would have handled the situation in which Winston was in. Having run over the different scenarios in my head, I could come to no other conclusion that I would probably have caved in much sooner than him.
Humans are a fragile race. We go by our daily lives and wear masks to shield us from other individuals, hoping that they don’t discover the real thoughts that run through our heads. Thought crime or the freedom to think, either way you interpret it, humans are free in their own minds. Or so we are told to believe.
After reading 1984 I’m left to wonder for how long until this also is taken away from us. The last place where we can go to and truly be ourselves, free from judgement and punishment. It’s by the end of the book that I’m no longer sure if that safe haven will forever remain.
I was talking to someone the other day about online privacy and the implications of today’s exposure of a person to the unknowns. My opinion about it until now was that as long as a person’s privacy is respected within the laws and rights of the domain within they reside, there is no problem.
But what if the embodiment of that domain suddenly shifts towards a more radical and dictative one. What happens to the granted access of data from before? I fear that tomorrow’s society might not be as open and forgiving as now. Big Brother is already watching us but in the future he might not only be watching but enforcing and punishing as well. And I’m not entirely sure anymore I want that kind of society & BB to know about me what today’s society & BB already know about me.
As with everything these days, we need to stay vigilant and watchful not to forsake the freedoms we’ve fought so hard to achieve. I’m not going to lie. I’m not to optimistic about our future. But if we give up already, then there’s truly no reason at all to continue with anything.
My hope is still that tomorrow’s society is a more inclusive one and one that understands each other’s choices and beliefs. And not one where the betrayal of our loved ones is the last resort to escape. Live and let live.