Explain this quote from Chapter 1 of 1984 by George Orwell:"People simply disappeared, always during the night. Your name was removed from the registers, every record of everything you had ever...

Explain this quote from Chapter 1 of 1984 by George Orwell:

"People simply disappeared, always during the night. Your name was removed from the registers, every record of everything you had ever done was wiped out, your one-time existence was denied and then forgotten. You were abolished, annihilated: vaporized was the usual word."

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dymatsuoka | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

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This quote describes the untimate punishment for going against the Party in the dystopian society described in George Orwell's 1984. Everything about the society is tightly controlled by the government, otherwise known as "Big Brother." So complete is Big Brother's reach that a citizen can be arrested for merely harboring thoughts against the government. As Winston reflects, such "thoughtcrime" is impossible to conceal forever; "sooner or later they [are] bound to get you."

Arrest for thoughtcrime always occurs at night; "people simply [disappear]." No one knows what happens after this, because the government is so powerful that it wipes out all indications that the perpetrator has ever existed. The names of those arrested are completely erased from all records, and no evidence that they have ever existed remains. In a society where the very nature of reality is distorted, people soon forget; for all intents and purposes, those who have been arrested simply disappear, or, as it is commonly described, they are "vaporized," their existence eradicated.

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