Opinions of The Theory and Practice of Oligarchical Collectivism

While reading chapter 9 of Book II from 1984, I came to a conclusion: George Orwell is some kind of oracle or sorcerous. As sad as it may seem, The Theory and Practice Oligarchical Collectivism, a book inside a book, written by the character Emmanuel Goldstein. Goldstein is the main villain of the Party. He continues conspiring against Big Brother and his face is used as a type of “excuse” from the state to create hatred inside Oceania. What Goldstein explains in his book, is mainly the three phrase of the slogan. “War is Peace; Freedom is Slavery; Ignorance is Strength”. That book was given to Winston by O’Brien. In fact, that book had no name so people just named it “The Book”. The chapters explain the story or background of each contradictory phrase in the slogan.

In my opinion, that book is just a mirror of today’s society. The “War is Peace” technically explains what is happening today. Yes, just like in the bookception where the three main powers are in constant war to maintain inner peace, the countries of today are basically the same. Perhaps, the hatred towards each country isn’t directly present but war is still used in order to reach that so-wanted peace.

The three social classes are obviously present today. The high-class dominates the rest of the class in an oligarchical state. Orwell coined the term ‘Oligarchical Collectivism’ back in 1948 and it describes our society. Even though the high class is a minority, they still have the power and money to control both the middle and low class, described in “The Book”. The middle class, in the other hand, wants to change position with the high class. They want that so-wanted power over the rest so they ‘join’ the lower class in order to eradicate the high class men. However, the middle class manages to take control for both the high and low class. The lower class in the other hand ( yes, three hands now) wants simply to survive. They will try to do their best to continue living in the world. The whole classes work like a pyramid, where the lower class in the base, the majority. The middle class works for the high and tries to take their place and they are located in the middle. The high class is the minority and is at the top of the pyramid. This is simply a reflection of our society and reality. Something that is just as true as the corruption of politicians.

Lastly, the “Freedom is Slavery”. There is in some way Freedom for the high class and slavery for the middle and low class. The Elite wants to fully control the rest of the population through taxation and hard work. That creates a feeling of false freedom for the population which is actually slavery. A deeper analysis can be found in my other article: “Within 200 yards of the apartment in which Orwell wrote 1984, there are now 32 security cameras.” In what ways has Orwell’s vision of a dystopian future come true?”

Written by: Luis Polanco

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