Comparing V For Vendetta And Nineteen Eighty-Four

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Human Degradation in V for Vendetta and Nineteen Eighty Four V for Vendetta by James McTeigue and Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell are two powerful texts that are similar in theme and illustrative influence. The central idea of human degradation due to unjust and socially inequitable practices contained within both pieces connects with the audience in a basis of experience, beliefs ideas and values, and is the cause of the significance that the two texts hold within society today. The use of repression, symbolism through masks, and dark settings portray the fascist and totalitarian states that the texts involve, and draw the viewer in to stimulate emotional response to the historically based story, occurring factually in Russia, Germany,…show more content…
The depiction of masks, whether implemented through literal or figurative disguises, represents the fear and compliance of the characters, but also their rebellion. V uses his mask to overcome his destruction and become a revolutionary representation, personifying his beliefs of volition and vengeance and allowing London to follow his lead, informing, “Beneath this mask, there is more than flesh. Beneath this mask, there is an idea… and ideas are bulletproof.” The symbolism of the Fawkian mask becomes a rebellious icon and is the stimulus behind the civil upheaval denouncing brutal totalitarianism, being adopted into reality as a symbol of modern protest. Orwell however, deploys masks as a figurative tool, in the forms of controlled expression and party uniform. Winston remarks, “You had to live… In the assumption that every sound you made was overheard, and, except in darkness, every movement scrutinised“ (Pg. 5), signifying that in order to survive, party members wore a mask of deference and order. This is further explored with Julia’s orthodox Anti-Sex League sash, however she uses this symbol to disguise her free sexual activity, combining irony with satire. Such as in Vendetta, Winston and Julia’s masks become allegories for survival, and allow the characters to overcome their repression, appealing to the audience’s empathy and autonomy, and comparing the façade of freedom to their own

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