Shrinking dictionary and subjugation
RE: Revisiting Orwell’s “1984” (Jan. 30)
Perhaps Orwell’s keenest insight in 1984, it seems prophecy now, was the institution of “Newspeak,” the continual process of shrinking the dictionary. The removal of words from the language also purged the concepts, ideas and thought processes connected with those words from public consciousness in order to make those subjugated by the Party easier to manage.
In 2017, instead of articulate, coherent, reasoned political discourse — “a written, well-considered policy statement on the way forward, or a piece of legislation” — with which the public, press and other politicians can engage, we are tweeted pronouncements of 140 characters or less which prove difficult to argue against because they often lack substance, logic, context, even truth.
As the perfect vehicle for “alternative facts,” they’re well suited to making America “double plus good” again. Recent announcements from the camps of Leitch and O’Leary suggest that this strategy has migrated to Canada as well. Mark Dineen, Hamilton