George Orwell's masterpiece 1984—the title derived by reversing the last digits of the year of its completion—is a dystopian novel depicting an oligarchical, collectivist society. Winston Smith, the protagonist, practices "thoughtcrime"—he lets his mind wander in ways the government would disapprove of—and it is through him that we discover the atrocities of the society. Orwell wrote this novel after he wrote Animal Farm; both works wanted to depict the downfalls of a Communist regime. 1984 has been particularly influential, and one of its creations, "Big Brother," has found a prominent place in pop culture. Ironically, the book has, at times, been challenged for being intellectually dangerous, even to the point of being banned. Its influence, however, remains unmatched and its message unforgotten.
Copyright: Public Domain in Canada