On the seventieth anniversary of the publication of George Orwell’s 1984, the dystopian classic that offered a barely veiled political criticism of existing totalitarianisms by shifting them into a grim future, Orwell World is an essay in the same spirit, that proposes to help those navigating through the net and through everyday life to face up to the challenges of a new world. A world defined by the acceleration of technological changes imposed on all aspects of our daily life at an overwhelming speed, determining our way of relating to one another, of working, even of thinking. A world that implies serious dangers to our value systems, our identities, and the concepts that have accompanies us from the time of the Enlightenment or before. Some of those dangers are unimaginable, others foreseeable, and still others represent a palpable threat to our security and freedom.
Ángel Gómez de Ágreda here reviews the state of the question with information, examples, and a praiseworthy approachability: manipulation of information, concealment of the truth, the end of work as we have known it up to now, the questioning of values like privacy, and risks to individual and collective freedom. Many of the cases the author brings together are enough to cause goose bumps: they portray an often horrifying reality, a war of all against all. And yet…
And yet, these pages are not there to make people embrace or question technology––being a technophobe or a technophile is useless: the future is here, whether we want it or not, for good or for bad. What the author does is examine the need to develop the intellectual tools necessary to survive the new reality and, if possible, make the most of it. It is nothing less than a moral imperative to take responsibility for building a better world, one we can live in, to keep from ending up in an Orwell World.
Survival manual for a hyperconnected world.
"If we want to adapt to the world of Big Brother, if we are going to live in the dystopia Orwell described, we need a survival manual."