Similarities Between 1984 And Metropolis

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The utilization of technology in an autocratic regime is evident throughout both history and within dystopic fiction. Through the comparative study of Fritz Lang’s Metropolis and George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four (1984), the extent of which technology impacts and aids a dictatorial regime is examined through the intertextual perspectives offered by each text. The incorporation of the political philosophy of collectivism, and by extension the absence of individual liberty and freedom, reflects both the social and cultural influences surrounding the composer upon the creation of the text. Both Metropolis and 1984 delve into the idea of collectivism, whereby individuals are subjugated to a group. A clearly defined link between collectivism…show more content…
The division of classes derives predominantly through their interactions with technology, with the workers being the proletariats whilst Joh Frederson is the omnipotent autocrat. The workers operate the machines from below where the repetitive nature of their work, made apparent by the repetition of the non-diegetic music and the continual rotation of workers, reinforces the idea of blind obedience of the proletariats. Even upon collapse, Georgy insists that “there must be someone at the machine”, highlighting the extent of control over him. In contrast, Frederson leisurely sits behind his control desk and overlooks the city, drawing emphasis to the difference between the social classes. The towering position of his office physically represents his authority and power over society while the dials on his desk suggests that it is through technology that he is able to control and dictate the city. Furthermore, the class divide is further emphasised through the difference of time for both classes. Whilst the bourgeoisie operate under the standard time of 24 hours, the proletariats work through 13 hour days, further highlighting the utilisation of technology in the restriction of the worker’s freedom. The difference in sizes of the clocks suggests that the proletariats are highly regulated…show more content…
Lang’s concerns of the possibility and consequence of a dictatorial government brought forth by the growing class division was presented throughout Metropolis – such concerns were also integrated throughout Orwell’s novel, 1984. Akin to Metropolis, the idea of individuals within a society being split into certain groups is painted as a dangerous concept in 1984 due to Orwell’s predisposition against Communism, a political theory based largely off the idea of collectivism. His opinion was shaped by the brutality of the Stalinist Communist regime he saw when working with the BBC in WWII and the emergence of the technological age within society. His fear of technology and the group mentality is made apparent through the usage of ‘Two Minutes Hate’ throughout 1984. Broadcasted through a telescreen for an audience at regular intervals, Orwell draws links between the usage of technology to instil uncontrollable fear into a group of people. The worst thing about the ‘hate’ was the fact that “it was impossible to avoid joining in … the hideous ecstasy of fear … flowed through the people … turning one against one’s will”. The high modality

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