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the meaning of the phrase "the essential crime that contained all others in itself." The phrase comes from a short excerpt from George Orwell's 1984: He did not do so, however, because he knew that it was useless. Whether he wrote DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER, or whether he refrained from writing it, made no difference. Whether he went on with the diary, or whether he did not go on with it, made no difference. The Thought Police would get him just the same. He had committed — would still have committed, even if he had never set pen to paper — the essential crime that contained all others in itself. Thoughtcrime, they called it. Thoughtcrime was not a thing that could be concealed for ever. You might dodge successfully for a while, even for years, but sooner or later they were bound to get you.I found the phrase obscure and abstract... Thanks for helping out. :)
Mar 4, 2010 9:25 AM
Answers · 1
The essential crime is something like the root of all "crimes" that come after it. Thinking like he does will make him question the system. Although the questioning part is the crime. His Thoughts are the essential crime. The actions that his thoughts lead him to are inevitable. Thats how the system thinks.. if you commit such a Thoughtcrime, you automatically will start questioning the system and in the end rebel against it. Although we would say thoughts are free, in this society that is not the case. Thoughts are seen as a direct act of rebellion.
March 4, 2010
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Chinese (Mandarin), English
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