1984: Some Prophecies Have Come True Essay, Research Paper
1984: Some Prophecies Have Come True
In many ways 1984 by George Orwell, was ahead of its time— ironically,
it parallels present day society in the U.S. in many ways. Yet at the same time,
the novel falls short—certain prophecies have yet to come true.
The story 1984 predicted many truths about present day society, truths
such as illegal prostitution, brainwashing, and personal identification were
predictions expressed in the book that have come true today. In the story,
prostitution was illegal and in present day society it is very much illegal.
Within the novel, during newspeak, thought criminals spoke about the crimes they
committed. The most popular crime was engaging in sexual activities with a
prostitute. Now we wouldn’t be tortured for it today but we can serve jail time
for soliciting with a prostitute.
Another example in the book was the prediction of brainwashing. The
truth is that today people are being brainwashed constantly and some times they
don’t even know it. For example people are always being brainwashed into buying
a certain product by advertisements on the televisions or by subliminal messages.
Winston was brainwashed into conforming to the normal society by loving Big
Brother. The brainwashing in the book might be a little exaggerated but it is
still the same concept.
Yet another example is how people are tagged with numbers. People today
are identified by a social security number same as in 1984. Many of Orwells
predictions became true but many didn’t.
Despite the truths, there were many untruths prevalent in 1984. Many
concepts expressed in the book such as banned sex, thought police, food
shortages from the past were all predictions that never became true. Orwell made
the prediction that sex would be illegal in the year 1984. In the story Winston
and Julia were caught having sex and Winston was tortured almost to death. A lot
of criminals expressed in newspeak that a reason for them being convicted was
for sex related charges. Today sex is legal (thank God) and although it might
not be the most safe thing, it is still a very big part of society today.
Another stagnant prophecy was that Orwell predicted that there would be
thought police reading our minds in the year 1984. This is a really scary
concept and luckily this prediction was false and it is not a part of present
day society. In 1984 they had thought police that knew what people were thinking
at all times. People were convicted for thinking about anything that had to do
with going against Big Brother. Parsons’ children were thought spy’s and they
turned in their own father. This is a major invasion of people’s rights and
thats why it would not be accepted in society today.
Another prediction was that in the year 1984 we would not have objects
from the past. For example, in the story coffee was illegal because of the
content of caffeine. The only way to obtain these thing was illegally. This
prediction was false because substances like coffee are still legal and still
After reading this story you get a weird feeling of what the future
might bring. Gathering all the facts and finding out that some of the
predictions Orwell made were correct leads us to think about wether or not the
false predictions might come true someday.