Censorship In 1984 And Today's North Korean Government

Good Essays

Potter Stewart, an Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court, once said,“Censorship reflects a society's lack of confidence in itself”(“Potter Stewart Quotes”). A well-built, structured society can tolerate dissent. On the other hand, some governments censors their citizens to suppress opposing opinions. This is relevant to the novel 1984, by George Orwell, and today’s North Korean government as both countries use the same types of censorship to censor information and ideas and influence their citizens’ opinions. In the novel, the totalitarian government, which is called the Party ruled by a god-like figure who is Big Brother, controls every aspect of human life ranging from action to thought. This control can be seen …show more content…

Governments use censorship to influence and suppress the opinions and ideas of their citizens. A prime example of that is Winston’s job. Winston works at the Ministry of Truth, the department that is responsible for censoring and altering information. Winston explains the reasoning behind that by writing in his diary: “In this way every prediction made by the Party could be shown by documentary evidence to have been correct, nor was any item of news, or any expression of opinion, which conflicted with the needs of the moment, ever allowed to remain on record. All history was a palimpsest, scraped clean and reinscribed exactly as often as was necessary” (Orwell 40). The Party changes and reviews every piece of information to be in line with their ideology. Any piece of information against it will be revised and altered. Therefore, the government is protected by allowing no evidence to be held against them.The Party’s ideology can be presented as flawless. This usage of censorship allows the Party to consolidate as much power as possible by not losing the power it already gained. This can be reflected by the North Korean …show more content…

In 1984, limiting communication comes in the form of language. The Party are inventing a new language that shortens words, and they call it “Newspeak.”Syme, a philologist who specializes in “Newspeak” discusses this language with Winston:
It's a beautiful thing, the Destruction of words. Of course the great wastage is in the verbs and adjectives, but there are hundreds of nouns that can be got rid of as well. It isn't only the synonyms; there are also the antonyms. After all, what justification is there for a word, which is simply the opposite of some other word? A word contains its opposite in itself. (Orwell

Get Access