George Owell’s 1984 describes a dystopian future where the American Government overseas and controls the lives of civilians. It’s a story that has obviously intrigued American consumers, as Amazon reports the book has increased sales seven-fold in the past week.
The increase in the book’s sales is related to the recent news of the NSA PRISM program which allowed the Government to oversee the phone and internet usage of Americans. The news has led to public outcry of Governmental invasion of privacy; the same as “Big Brother” is allowed to do in the story.
1984 was released in 1949, and was inspired by George Orwell’s observations of Nazi Germany and Stalinist Russia. The book has remained a staple in U.S. literature due to its eerily accurate predictions regarding the ways Governments will restrict freedom in the name of safety.
It is common for book sales to mirror real-life events. Ayn Rand’s Atlus Shrugged received a similar boost in sales after the 2008 financial collapse. It is interesting that in a world where new information is constantly available, that so many would look to the past to provide context for news.