1984 Of: Double Think: In Term Paper

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Also, although not as skillfully manipulated by a totalitarian state, the media has a frightening amount of power in setting -- or not setting -- a national agenda in terms of 'what is important.' Until recently, genocide in Africa was hardly reported upon at all, for example, and the local media tends to focus on 'true crime' sensationalistic stories that make people fearful, even if the neighborhood crime rate has not actually escalated. Images more than reality fuel people's imagination, and because images are so powerful, they create a new future and past, defined by what is recorded rather than what actually existed. And corrupt politicians, because of the public and the media's increasingly short attention span, are given a tremendous amount of leeway to rehabilitate themselves, and the public is often quick to excuse past mistakes and simply turn its attention to the next sensational story.

Finally, there is a very simple, human tendency...

...

People of a generation or two ago tend to remember the 1950s as glorious, for example, even though there was the Cold War, pressures to conform, and few civil rights for African-Americans. And words affect people's perceptions, too -- people insist that "socialized medicine" is bad, but universal healthcare is good. Orwell, as well as showing the terrors of totalitarian control over the media, also highlighted human tendencies to be affected by the limits of memory, language, and moment-to-moment snippets of news. People often seem to only remember the last news story or alert they heard, and forget the rest, or remember the past only in terms of the new, sensationalistic half-true story.
Works Cited

Orwell, George. 1984. George-orwell.org. 30 Mar 2008. http://www.george-orwell.org/1984/2.html

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Works Cited

Orwell, George. 1984. George-orwell.org. 30 Mar 2008. http://www.george-orwell.org/1984/2.html


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