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Until they become conscious they will never rebel

GCSE pupils stumble at the three Rs - Telegraph
Fewer than half of teenagers in England mastered the three Rs in their GCSEs this summer, official figures show.

  • The Government report in full
  • Check out the GCSE results at your local school
  • Despite record levels of investment in education under Labour, almost 350,000 failed to gain five good GCSEs including the key subjects of English and mathematics – the Government's official benchmark of an acceptable education.

    More than 113,600 teenagers – one in five – failed to get a single good GCSE.

    A report published yesterday also showed that almost a quarter of boys did not earn any A* to C grades – leading to fresh fears over the gender gap in education.

    Last night teachers claimed young people were being let down by a "flawed, exam-based" education system.

    They warned that many pupils were being left on the scrapheap as they finish school with no useful qualifications.

    It is almost as though it was a system designed to turn out worker drones and state dependent proles.....

    In Orwell's novel Nineteen Eighty-Four the society of Oceania was divided into 3 distinct classes: Inner Party, Outer Party, and proles, 85% of the population are proles. They were given little education, worked at jobs in which tough physical labor was the norm, lived in poverty, had plenty of children, and usually died by the age of sixty.

    Proles were still free. As the Party's slogan put it: "Proles and animals are free." This is a sharp contrast to the control of the members of Inner and Outer Parties. That is mostly due to a fact that proles were not considered to be human beings. They did not have the intellectual power to understand that they are exploited by the Party (as a source of cheap labor) and were unable and/or unwilling to organize resistance. Their functions were simple: work and breed. They did not care much about anything else than taking care of home and family, quarreling with neighbors, watching films and football, drinking beer, and buying lottery tickets. They were not required to express their support to the Party. The Party created meaningless songs, novels, even pornography for the proles (All written by machines, except pornography, which was compiled by humans in the Outer Party and only ever readable by party members who worked inPornosec.) Proles did not have to wear a uniform; they could use cosmetics...

    To keep them in control was not difficult. A few agents of the Thought Police moved always among them, spreading false rumours and marking down and eliminating the few individuals who were judged capable of becoming dangerous; but no attempt was made to indoctrinate them with the ideology of the Party. It was not desirable that the proles should have strong political feelings. All that was required of them was a primitive patriotism which could be appealed to whenever it was necessary to make them accept longer working-hours or shorter rations. And even when they became discontented, as they sometimes did, their discontent led nowhere, because, without general ideas, they could only focus it on petty specific grievances. The larger evils invariably escaped their notice. Even the civil police interfered with them very little. There was a vast amount of criminality in London, a whole world-within-a-world of thieves, bandits, prostitutes, drug-peddlers and racketeers of every description; but since it all happened among the proles themselves, it was of no importance. In all questions of morals they were allowed to follow their ancestral code.

    If there is hope, wrote Winston, it lies in the proles.

    One of the recurring themes in the novel is if proles revolted they could establish something like a utopia. It's a struggle between a wild hope carried by Winston Smith, the main character, and his realization that proles were incapable of such an act. Winston admired proles because as he said, “Proles remained human.” That means that they preserved emotions which Party members had to avoid because they were in constant surveillance of telescreens. Any “non-patriotic” emotion expressed, even involuntarily, by a Party member resulted in “vaporisation” (i.e., total deletion from all the records – such people, for all intents and purposes, never existed). Thus Winston believed that if there were any hope, it lay with proles. Proles preserved the essence of life, human emotions, and even the English language (Oldspeak) and the Party could not control it. However, Winston's hope clashes with O'Brien’s view that the proles would never revolt because they would never have the need to do so. Winston also recognized that proles were not capable and/or willing of organizing a revolution. It is also important to note, that nobody (even Winston) had any thoughts that the Party could collapse by itself. It had too tight control over the Party members who had already lost their human feelings (Winston himself recognized that he no longer felt compassion; children reported their parents to the Thoughtpolice on a daily basis; sex became a “duty to the Party” with the only purpose to produce children). The younger generation (represented by Winston’s love of Julia) showed a rapid degradation of humanity.
    Until they become conscious they will never rebel,
    and until after they have rebelled they cannot become conscious.

    Comments

    Quite. As long as they vote Labour, who cares?

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