Chapter Five . 1984 by George Orwell. What is verbal camouflage? . Bell Work . Using the terms below explain verbal camouflage. Euphemism Soft Language. George Carlin.
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Chapter Five 1984 by George Orwell
What is verbal camouflage? Bell Work • Using the terms below explain verbal camouflage. • Euphemism • Soft Language
George Carlin • Give you another example. Sometime during my life toilet paper became bathroom tissue. I wasn’t notified of this. No one asked me if I agreed with it. It just happened. Toilet paper became bathroom tissue. Sneakers became running shoes. False teeth became dental appliances. Medicine became medication. Information became directory assistance. The dump became the land fill. Car crashes became automobile accidents. Partly cloudy became partly sunny. Motels became motor lodges. House trailers became mobile homes. Used cars became previously owned transportation. Room service became guest room dining. Constipation became occasional irregularity. • When I was a little kid if I got sick they wanted me to go to a hospital and see the doctor. Now they want me to go to a health maintenance organization. Or a wellness center to consult a health care delivery professional. Poor people used to live in slums. Now the economically disadvantaged occupy sub-standard housing in the inner cities. And they’re broke! They’re broke. They don’t have a negative cash flow position. They’re [really]broke! Because a lot of them were fired. You know, fired. Management wanted to curtail redundancies in the human resources area. So many people are no longer viable members of the work force. • Smug, greedy well-fed white people have invented a language to conceal their sins. It’s as simple as that. The CIA doesn’t kill people anymore, they neutralize people, or they depopulate the area. The government doesn’t lie, it engages in disinformation. The pentagon actually measures radiation in something they call sunshine units. Israeli murderers are called commandos. Arab commandos are called terrorists. Contra killers are called freedom fighters. Well if crime fighters fight crime and fire fighters fight fire what do freedom fighters fight? They never mention that part of it to us, do they? • And some of this stuff is just silly. We know that. Like when the airlines tell us to pre-board. What the [heck] is pre-board? What does that mean? To get on before you get on?
George Carlin Continued • They say they’re going to pre-board those passengers in need of special assistance …cripples! Simple honest direct language. There’s no shame attached to the word cripple I can find in any dictionary. In fact it’s a word used in Bible translations. “Jesus healed the cripples.” Doesn’t take seven words to describe that condition. But we don’t have cripples in this country anymore. We have the physically challenged. Is that a grotesque enough evasion for you? How about differently-abled? I’ve heard them called that. Differently-abled! You can’t even call these people handicapped anymore. They say: “We’re not handicapped, we’re handy capable!” These poor people have been [lied to] by the system into believing that if you change the name of the condition somehow you’ll change the condition. Well, hey cousin … doesn’t happen! [omitted paragraph] • And we have no more old people in this country. No more old people. We shipped them all away and we brought in these senior citizens. Isn’t that a typically American twentieth century phrase? Bloodless. Lifeless. No pulse in one of them. A senior citizen. But I’ve accepted that one. I’ve come to terms with it. I know it’s here to stay. We’ll never get rid of it. But the one I do resist, the one I keep resisting, is when they look at an old guy and say, “Look at him Dan, he’s ninety years young.” Imagine the fear of aging that reveals. To not even be able to use the word old to describe someone. To have to use an antonym.
George Carlin Continued • And fear of aging is natural. It’s universal, isn’t it? We all have that. No one wants to get old. No one wants to die. But we do. So we [con] ourselves. I started [conning] myself when I got in my forties. I’d look in the mirror and say, “Well…I guess I’m getting …older.” Older sounds a little better than old, doesn’t it? Sounds like it might even last a little longer. I’m getting old. And it’s okay. Because thanks to our fear of death in this country I won’t have to die. I’ll pass away. Or I’ll expire, like a magazine subscription. If it happens in the hospital they’ll call it a terminal episode. The insurance company will refer to it as negative patient care outcome. And if it’s the result of malpractice they’ll say it was a therapeutic misadventure. • I’m telling ya, some of this language makes me want to vomit. Well, maybe not vomit …makes me want to engage in an involuntary personal protein spill.”
New York Times “Newspeak in Japan” Published: August 25, 1982 • West Germany rearmed only a few years after Hitler's defeat and without reigniting the militaristic nationalism its neighbors feared. The returns from Japan's neighbors are not yet in, as can be seen in the controversy over the rewriting of history textbooks by Tokyo's Education Ministry to soften accounts of Japanese wartime brutalities. • Japan is finally starting a military buildup, long urged by Washington, 37 years after World War II. It is supported by a new domestic consensus that stems from the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, the threat to Japan's oil supplies and Washington's insistence that Tokyo defend its sea lanes out to 1,000 miles. The buildup was accepted initially by Peking, as a way of containing the Soviet Union. But the history controversy has revived such concern there and elsewhere about Japanese militarism that Prime Minister Suzuki is being forced to reverse his Education Minister on the book revisions. • The controversy heated up after the press disclosed an Education Ministry memorandum that sought to justify the revisions. It said the number of Chinese civilians slaughtered during the ''Rape of Nanking'' had been deleted because accounts ranged from 10,000 to hundreds of thousands. References to Japanese ''aggression'' were deleted and Japan's invasion of China was termed an ''advance,'' it said, to achieve consistency with euphemisms for European incursions in the 19th century. South Korean street demonstrations called for breaking relations with Tokyo and banning Japa-nese imports unless the books were amended. China gave a chilly reception to Japanese officials sent to explain the changes. Prime Minister Suzuki finally realized that the controversy could endanger his visit to Peking next month to commemorate the 10th anniversary of normalization, and intervened.
New York Times “Newspeak in Japan” Published: August 25, 1982 • To Americans as well as Asians, the changes sound a lot like Orwell's newspeak. Even more dismaying is that Education Minister Heiji Ogawa refused for six weeks to answer the criticism. All he would say publicly was that the changes had been recommended by a committee of responsible teachers, scholars and public members - not by extreme nationalists. • His view, however, was not the only one in Japan. Opposition leaders urged corrections. The vigorous Japanese press, which revealed the book revisions, refused to drop the issue. Foreign Minister Sakurauchi struggled openly with his Cabinet colleague, rejecting the thesis that the issue was an internal affair. ''The point,'' he said, ''is whether Japan, in the eyes of the countries concerned, is abiding by responsibility for its past actions as stated in separate postwar joint communiques with China and South Korea.'' • That Japan needed such a reminder is disturbing. So was Mr. Suzuki's prolonged reluctance to challenge the right wing of his conservative party by overruling his Education Minister. Now he insists he will settle the issue ''in a manner acceptable to China'' before his September visit. It's welcome if belated recognition that newspeak is newspeak, whatever the reason or the region.
Assignment • Compare Japan’s revisions to the Newspeak and alterations in 1984. Use a double bubble map. On the outside of the bubbles add supporting quotations. Add the effects of changing words and omission. • On the back of the map in one to two paragraphs, explain the similarities and the outcomes of the altering of documents. Use Carlin’s comments on soft language for voice and support.