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What Does That Quote Mean?

Archaeology Frequently Asked Questions


George Orwell's 1984

George Orwell's 1984

I am trying to find out the meaning behind George Orwell's quote, "Who controls the past controls the future: who controls the present controls the past." I would also like to know where I can find the meanings of other quotes.

Orwell's quote is from his science fiction novel 1984, which was written in 1949 and is available to be read for free on the Internet in several places, including George-Orwell.org. In this political novel, "Who controls the past controls the future" etc. was one of the ruling government's slogans. To me, this quote has a quite sinister ring to it, suggesting that whoever writes the history books affects the way we view the world and the way we will function in the future; and those who release public information about the workings of government controls what goes into the history books. But, I recommend you read the book to find out what it means for you.

I think that's really what I've always seen as the purpose of this or any of the quotes I've run into over the years: to pique our curiosity, force us to ask questions, and tempt us to read more of the larger work to get the answers for ourselves. This photo of a wall in Trondheim, Norway, was taken by .bandit.

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