Nineteen Eighty-Four: Exploring the Text

How does Nineteen Eighty-Four help us to define the genre “Dystpian Literary Fiction”?

In class we identified features of the novel Nineteen Eighty-Four that might help us to develop a clear understanding of the genre: “Dystopian Literary Fiction”

From this we will now expand our study by investigating:

  1. Evidence in the text that supports our impressions recorded above – particularly those in relation to the setting, style, language and structure of the novel.
    • Select 5 aspects of the novel from the list above (or add your own) and write a supporting analysis that contains at least two quotations each. Use this model to support the construction of these analytical pieces
  2. The historical context of George Orwell’s authorship of the novel
  3. The actual realities of world politics in 1950 and 1984
    • Explore specific socio-political elements of the time: Technology, Political Systems, The Cold War, The USSR, Post-WWII Europe, Mutually Assured Destruction.
  4. The allegorical basis for the text – Stalin’s Russia
  5. Other texts that fit the dystopia genre (read, view and summarise)
    • FILMS: V for Vendetta, Children of Men, Gattaca, Minority Report, Elysium, ExistenZ, Mad Max: Fury Road, In Time
  6. Marxism as a literary theory.
  7. Resonance in our society now – to what extent was George Orwell’s vision of the future prophetic?
    • Draw distinct parallels between features in Orwell’s vision of the future and that which we find to be true of our world today – match the present day truths with specific quotes from the text. Consider: Politics, Political Corruption, Technology, Privacy, Class, Sex, State Control over the Individual, Inequality, Media manipulation, Totalitarianism.

Posted by Christopher Waugh

“Risk! Risk anything! Care no more for the opinions of others, for those voices. Do the hardest thing on earth for you. Act for yourself. Face the truth.” (Katherine Mansfield)

  1. […] in the programme will be a study of the grammar of dystopian writing and an exploration of the wider genre. The […]


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