English Unit 2 Comparative SAC.docx - Explore the different...

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Explore the different ways 1984 and Gattaca use surveillance as a means of control. The idea of an authoritarian society is commonly explored in science fiction texts which depict how the state has constant surveillance of its citizens. Both Orwell’s 1984 and Gattaca , directed by Niccol, represent societies in which those with higher power are able to control and monitor their subjects, and both explore different ways in which this can be achieved. Central to both 1984 and Gattaca, citizens are monitored daily and are given minimal privacy, so that the state can be provided with optimal information on its citizens activities and behaviours. The divergence in the texts comes from 1984 in which the individual is always under persistent observation and scrutiny. In contrast Gattaca does not have this constant surveillance but instead is prolonged and invasive, demonstrating that there is a range of ways that the individual can be monitored in these societies, usually with equivalent effectiveness. Of the two societies 1984 depicts a more regimented and constant monitoring of its citizens, prioritising control of thought over control of actions. Winston describes a world where people are bombarded with cautions even before they consider evil, with posters of Big Brother following and warning them wherever they go, “Big Brother is Watching You”. The citizens are aware that they are

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