A teacher contacted me recently regarding the 'ambiguities and paradox' aspect of the Common Module and how best to evaluate it. Orwell has been praised for his ironic use of language which is both insightful and dystopic in tone. His use of verisimilitude and simulacrum aptly conveys totalitarian methodology include duplicity and indoctrination. O'Brien's confronting revelations about Party ideology demonstrates the gulf between their motivations and triggers reader response. The novel's enduring relevance arises from the those the universal humanist concerns that plague Winston. '1984' has been a popular text for the Common Module, praised by Margaret Atwood as being a 'visionary text which casts its 'shadows over our future.'
George Orwell drew on his own W.W.II. experiences working with the BBC to demonstrate the power of propaganda to bolster the political power of those in control. In Oceania, patriotic fervour for the Party is linked to the perpetual state of war, with enables those in power to claim emergency powers over their populace.
The novel's protagonist is well aware of the falsification of statistics and data used to dupe the populace and make them compliant.
Readers of the novel when it was first published, would be familiar with the use of posters during the war, reinforcing that Orwell was making use of contextual influences to make his dystopic vision credible.
Orwell's text has proved to be a popular choice and so a second workshop has been organised. I have included a copy of the workshop agenda and you can email me for further details about the day.
Sample Feedback from previous Workshop: