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Animal Farm is a novel about animals that rebel against their human owners on a farm, and end up ruling the farm on their own, without the presence of any humans. 1984, is a dystopian novel about a superstate named “Oceania”, being ruled by a totalitarian government that desires to control every part of its citizen’s life. Both novels are written George Orwell and share some similarities such as, both showing examples of totalitarian governments with tyrannical dictators who would punish individuals that opposed them. However, I think that the novel 1984 is more relevant today than Animal Farm, since 1984 shines a light on more topics that are relevant, compared to Animal Farm, and these are the topics that make 1984 more relevant today.

Firstly, 1984 is more relevant because it shows us an example of a never-ending war, that is caused by superpowers, and this is relevant today because there are still modern examples of this. In the novel, the superpower “Oceania” is at war with the superpower “Eurasia”, which seems to never have an ending, which is keeping the people living in “Oceania” in constant fear, and in this way, the Superstate maintains their political power and control over its citizens. A modern example of this would be The United States’ war on terror, which started in 2001 after an attack on the World Trade Center in New York. The war on terror is still an ongoing war, that still hasn’t come to an end, since the US has been responsible for warfare in Yemen in 2013, despite the damage the USA is claiming they’ve done to Al-Qaeda, who were responsible for the attack in 2001. This war has also created a certain fear among people, since it’s an ongoing war, people might never know when they’ll be attacked. In 1984 you are told that the superstates have always been at war, meaning that people spend their entire lives knowing that and adapting to that situation, similar to real life, a very large part of young Americans spend their entire life being thought about the era after the attacks in 2001.

Secondly, the novel shows the use of technology throughout the entire story, and the way technology is used in the novel is for surveillance in connection with invading private life, which is also happening today. Throughout the novel, there’s Big Brother, which is the government of Oceania, who wants to control every part of its citizen’s life, however in order to be able to control them, they use something called “telescreens”. Telescreens are screens that every citizen has in their homes, which are used to broadcast propaganda and news, but also used as monitors to spy on people’s private lives. The government uses to slogan “Big Brother is watching you”, which means that the government knows everything you do, can see everything you do, what you say, they’re a big role in your everyday life, without the help of telescreens they wouldn’t be as effective. Real-life examples of this type of surveillance are social media and National Security Agency since they play a huge role in modern technology.

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Facebook is an example of a social media that connects people around the world, however, once they’ve got access to your microphone and camera, they’re able to record you through your camera, take pictures of you, upload videos or pictures of you, and run a facial recognition. Social media can spy on the individual on a daily basis, a modern “telescreen”. The National Security Agency, which is a governmental agency, can and has in the past been monitoring individuals by having access to their pictures, videos, and messages and even listening to phone calls and an individual’s activity on social media. As social media can play a big role in our everyday life, our activities are being monitored every day without us thinking about it.

Thirdly, the novel 1984 shows us how the government controls the truth with the help of censorship, this is relevant today and a modern example of this is censorship in North Korea. To start with the novel, throughout 1984, there’s a “Ministry of Truth” that controls books, news, and newspapers and makes up their own versions of events, controlling all the information that goes out to the public. The Ministry of Truth becomes the only source of information, as no other sources other than the government, are allowed thanks to their censorship. Today in North Korea, access to the internet and other news sources is banned, and connecting with others outside of the country is forbidden, making the government the only source of information. Furthermore, North Korea also requires their libraries to edit their books every couple of years, this means that the government controls history.

In conclusion, after comparing Orwell’s 1984 and Animal Farm, I was able to show how and why I think 1984 is more relevant today than Animal Farm. 1984 shines a light on topics such as never-ending wars, the use of technology, and the use of censorship, and how well George Orwell predicted the future, keeping in mind that 1984 was written in 1949. Even though both novels shared some similarities, they are very different in relevancy.

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