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Word Count: 3,589
Both the novels 1984 and The Handmaids Tale provide warnings of how each author sees certain problems in society leading to dystopian states Dystopian genres exist in both novels but arise for different reasons Resulting from Atwoods concerns about political groups and aspects of feminism The Handmaids Tale illustrates how declining birth rates could lead to a state where women are forced into bearing children In contrast 1984 depicts a terror state where poverty is rife and tyrannical leaders force citizens to live by their rules Although both novels share such themes as surveillance deprivation and loss of identity they describe two very different dystopian worlds often by using identical literary techniques but also differing ones In both The Handmaids Tale and 1984 language is obviously used as a form of state control enabling dystopian leaders to remain in power by manipulating language to restrict free thought People are consequently politically unaware and unable to rebel against them This is done in 1984 through using Newspeak a reduced version of todays Standard English or Oldspeak As the Oceanian powers have omitted words from peoples vocabulary they are unable to speak words The Party deems unsuitable or create unorthodox thoughts This makes all modes of thought impossible except those agreeing with The Partys principles Winston Smiths conversation with Syme demonstrates this Even the slogans will change How could you have a slogan Freedom is Slavery When the concept of freedom has been abolished If The Party fulfilled its aims abolishing further words such as freedom citizens would become ignorant that they had ever possessed freedom would not want freedom from the regime and would not rebel against it giving Big Brother total control The appendix further shows how reducing words and meanings will affect everyday language The word free still existed in Newspeak but could only be used in such statements as This dog is free from lice it could not
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