Orwell published Nineteen Eighty-Four in 1949, not as a prediction of actual future events, but to warn the world against what he feared would be the fate of humanity if totalitarian regimes were allowed to seize power as they had done recently in Germany under Hitler and in the Soviet Union under Stalin. In the aftermath of World War II, Anglo-American intellectuals were reluctant to criticize the Soviet regime, despite evidence of Stalin's despotism, because Russia had been an ally against Germany and Japan. Orwell, who witnessed firsthand the Soviet-backed Communists' brutal suppression of rival political groups during the Spanish Civil War, returned from the war an outspoken critic of Communism. For the rest of his life he worked tirelessly to expose the evils of totalitarianism and to promote what he called "democratic socialism." To reviewers who wished to see his book as a critique of Soviet Communism, Orwell maintained that he had set the book in Britain in order to show that totalitarianism could succeed anywhere if it were not fought against. In the novel, INGSOC represents the worst features of both the Nazi and Communist regimes. The Party's ultimate ambition is to control the minds as well as the bodies of its citizenry, and thus control reality itself. Totalitarianism was an outgrowth of Socialism, which arose as a response to industrialization, and sought to create more equitable societies by centralizing production and abolishing private property in favor of collective ownership. Emmanuel Goldstein's book, parts of which Winston reads in Book II, outlines the methods by which a totalitarian regime consolidates and extends its power.
Totalitarianism and Communism ThemeTracker
Totalitarianism and Communism Quotes in 1984
"All you care about is yourself," he echoed.
"And after that, you don't feel the same towards the other person any longer." — "No," he said, "you don't feel the same."