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The Power in Controlling the Past: Orwell’s 1984 & Big Brother

By Laura Sabino, IV Form

The Power in Controlling the Past: Orwell’s 1984 & Big Brother

Editor’s Note: 1984 was the St. Mark’s School Gray Colloquium Summer Read for 2017

In George Orwell’s 1984, the Party aims to control all of the citizens of Oceania. They have figured out how to take away their citizens’ privacy by watching them through tele-screens, brainwashing them to be blindly loyal, and even claiming control over their bodies and mind. The Party has limited language, so rebellious thoughts could not be expressed, and are working towards controlling the past. The Party wants to control the past because by controlling history and memories, they are able to control their citizens and gain power.

At first sight, controlling the past might not seem too important since most people do not think history is crucial to their everyday lives. However, the Party controlling the past ends up giving it power. People look back and learn about history so that they are aware of mistakes and things to avoid. People look at history so that they can get reminders of what worked out and what did not, and what ended up being good and what ended up being bad. In 1984, the Party understands that history defines its people. (more…)

Wake Up! Dreamers: A Rebellious Pamphlet

By Gabe Xu, VI Form

Wake Up! Dreamers: A Rebellious Pamphlet

Editor’s Note: In the VI Form elective “Rebels with a Cause,” the students were tasked with creating articles in a “pamphlet” with an intentional tone to instigate with the dedication of a rebel, thus the approach and aim of the text may come across as aggressive due to the parameters of the assignment. 

Click on image above or here to access articles.

Articles:

Undocumented Immigration…is Wrong.

“Life Is Priceless”…is Wrong.

Political Correctness…is Wrong.

Moral Vegetarianism…is Wrong.

Forced Good Deed…is Wrong. (more…)

An Analysis of Alienation: The Natural Estrangement of the Individual

By Cooper Sarafin, VI Form

An Analysis of Alienation: The Natural Estrangement of the Individual

Total Estrangement

Alienation is a natural state of human beings. We are set in an environment that leaves us with a sense of inadequacy and ineptitude and no matter what extent to which we alter our facades and wear a mask of falsity; we will never be able to cross the glass ceiling that is our expectations. From the very moment we are conceived, we are being classified and divided among throngs of opinions, preferences, and expectations. We are expected to live up to this normality of society, the ever prevalent quest to “fit in”. To be amidst the general populace and succeed in a manner relative to the ideas of said society and government that preside over our specific demographic. We are expected to succeed in the realm of capitalism and to move further up this hierarchy and supersede the ranks of the proletariat in turn for the bourgeoisie. We are expected to develop social relationships with everyone we meet and to be liked by them. We are expected to achieve great things and to do what has never been done before. In the aftermath of all this expectation, what is left for us to expect for ourselves other than that which has been told to us? In that we are governed by these (more…)

I and Other: Thought to Address, with Nods to Kant and Sisyphus

By June Seong, IV Form

 

I and Other: Thought to Address, with Nods to Kant and Sisyphus

It is of ever more pertinence to address the striated homogeneity, be it through race, sex, or socioeconomic background, that divides the boarding school community. Upon closer observance, it would not be a stretch to conclude that such phenomena in schools is directly representative of the striations that exist in American society today. Andreas Wimmer directly hits at this in his study, “Beyond and Below Racial Homophily: ERG Models of a Friendship Network Documented on Facebook.” He states that such homogeneity, or better phrased, homophily, a principle that states that “birds of a feather flock together,” “might be produced by micro mechanisms other than the psychological preference for same-race alters, including and most importantly the segregation of everyday lives into different domains, which reduces opportunities to meet individuals” (Wimmer 3). (more…)

Letter to the Editor: Native American Policy

By Mo Liu and Jamie Lance, V Form

Letter to the Editor: Native American Policy

Dear Editor Jackson,

It occurs to me that there is much attention raised among the general public regarding our government’s policy towards Indians, and therefore in writing to you, I, as a member of the Board of Indian Commissioners, want to clarify my position. Indians cannot be entirely excluded from our picture as a nation. However, the Indian society is not a cultivated society likes ours. One of my colleagues, who is experienced with Indian affairs and always provides us with elaborate information about the Indians, says their tribes are corrupted by “idleness, improvidence, and indebtedness”. The lack of private property or land and the underdevelopment of laws mark the Indian society as barbarous and inferior to ours. Because of this difference, since 1871 Indian tribes are no longer considered sovereign nations. Governments before us circumvented the Indian dilemma by relocating and establishing reservations west to the Mississippi River, yet now with a closed frontier and western migration, conflicts between settlers and the Indians are inevitable. The issue is pressing. (more…)

Paul Tillich and Marcus Borg: Responses to the Challenges of Unbelief

By Charlotte Wood, VI Form

 

Paul Tillich and Marcus Borg: Responses to the Challenges of Unbelief

Paul Tillich and Marcus Borg are Christian Existentialists. They see God and religious life in a radical way. Therefore, they would address the four major challenges to belief (in Philosophy, Psychology, Theodicy, Politics) in thought-provoking ways.

The Challenge from Philosophy is that there is no real “proof” of God’s existence. It is important to note that the “God” most often referenced in this challenge is the God of supernatural theism, that is, the God “out there,” separate from us and our universe. Tillich and Borg would likely agree that there is no proof of this God, however, that is not their God. Tillich describes religion as “asking passionately the question of the meaning of our existence and being willing to receive answers, even if the answers hurt. Such an idea of religion makes religion universally human, but it certainly differs from what is usually called religion. It does not describe religion as the belief in the existence of gods or one God” (Tillich 1). Faith doesn’t necessarily need to involve “God” at all, and definitely does not need to involve the God of supernatural theism or the monarchical God. (more…)