Between trying to study for my mid-terms and trying to finish reading The Master and Margarita I have to admit I’ve become very confused; everything is just mixing together in this one big container labelled “brain”.
And while this mixing is going on, certain aspects of George Orwell’s 1984 surfaced and made me cringe because I did not particularly enjoy that reading from high school, though I have to admit a lot of what happens here in The Master and Margarita is similar to that of the dystopian world of 1984. Everyone is spying on everyone, everyone is suspicious of everyone, and everything is the same for everyone. Kind of boring, except there’s supposed magic and sorcery in this, which piked my interests a little. That and it’s just downright creepy what happens to some of the characters in this novel.
During the lecture today, the idea of choice was mentioned, and that lead me to think about one particular slogan used in 1984, “Freedom is slavery”. Whether or not the citizens of Moscow had a choice of which radio channel to listen to, is it not all controlled by the government either way? “Freedom is slavery”; the illusion of freedom results in the slavery of the people. They think they have a choice, but they are actually controlled by the government in the choices they make.
This leads to another thought, of whether this form of control is present in our society today. In a sense, we are slaves of choice as a representation of freedom. I say this because we are constantly having to make choices through our everyday lives. Starbucks or Tim Hortons? Tea or coffee or hot chocolate or latte or cappuccino? Don’t all these small decisions in our lives enslave us to consumerism and capitalism, aiding the economy and the government as well?
The regulation of the population in The Master and Margarita also highlights this, in that people supposedly have a freedom to do as they please, but they do not, in fear for the secret police and the mysterious disappearances. Maybe I’m not articulating this very well since I am just wondering around aimlessly on this train of thought and will just disappear now amongst the studying and readings I have to do.