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Sales of Orwell’s ‘1984’ Soar Amid NSA Surveillance Disclosure

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Posted on Jun 11, 2013
Screenshot via Amazon.com

Big Brother is indeed watching us. After the revelation of the National Security Agency’s top-secret snooping programs, sales of George Orwell’s dystopian novel “1984” soared on Amazon. As of Tuesday afternoon, the Centennial edition of Orwell’s classic work had shot up nearly 5,000 percent on Amazon’s Movers & Shakers list, while a 60th anniversary edition was also among the site’s best-sellers.

The Christian Science Monitor:

Based on Orwell’s observations of Stalinist Russia and Nazi Germany, the novel, published in 1949, warns of the dangers of government surveillance. It paints a picture of a state constantly tracking the thoughts and actions of its citizens, crystallized in its slogan “Big Brother is watching you.”

That slogan has been used to describe the government’s recent actions. Recent news has revealed that the NSA has been collecting the phone records of millions of Americans to create a database to determine whether terror suspects have been in contact with US residents, according to the AP. The program has reignited the debate about whether heightened security measures to fight terror infringe on privacy and civil rights.

...Not surprisingly, news coverage and social media chatter about the NSA’s surveillance program has been rife with terms like “Big Brother” and “Orwellian,” phrases borrowed from the dystopian world of “1984.”

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—Posted by Tracy Bloom.

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