1984: The Destruction of Words

WEB: Destroying Words for Syme is Beautiful

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In George Orwell's dystopian novel “1984,” the character Syme expresses his admiration for the destruction of words. He believes that by eliminating unnecessary and ambiguous words from the language, the Party can control people's thoughts and prevent them from forming independent ideas.

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Syme opposes the needless use of words, particularly those that add little meaning or precision to communication. He argues that Oldspeak, the language used before the Party's takeover, is full of vagueness and useless shades of meaning.

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To emphasize the strength of the Party's language control, Syme introduces the concept of “doubleplusgood,” a compound that means “very good.” He explains that the destruction of words allows for the creation of new words with precise and unambiguous meanings.

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Syme argues that this destruction of words is a beautiful thing, as it demonstrates the Party's power to reshape language and control the thoughts of its citizens. However, he acknowledges that the process has led to a significant reduction in the number of verbs and adjectives in the language.

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Syme's enthusiasm for the destruction of words highlights the insidious nature of the Party's control over language. By eliminating words that allow for nuance and complexity of thought, the Party seeks to create a society where independent thinking is impossible.

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