What’s in a Title?

One of the most interesting aspects of this novel is one that is often overlooked- its title. Little Brother is a very interesting title for this book because it draws parallels to the novel 1984 by George Orwell. 1984 is similar to Little Brother in three ways: in 1984, the protagonist and his colleagues in the dystopian society of Oceania are constantly watched by the government. In Little Brother, following the bombing of the Bay Bridge by “an Islamic terrorist group”, the citizens of San Francisco are subject to constant security by the Department of Homeland Security.

Secondly, in 1984, the intrusive governing body is represented by the figurehead “Big Brother”. Little      Brother may be called Little Brother to show that its story and readership revolves mainly  around youth, yet still carries some of the same themes and messages as 1984.

Finally, George Orwell’s protagonist is named Winston, and he rebels against his intrusive government just as Marcus does, however, it is interesting to note that his hopes of inciting a rebellion do not succeed. Marcus Yallow, Little Brother’s protagonist, begins the story with the screen name of W1N5T0n- but when he begins his successful Xnet rebellion, he changes his screen name to M1K3Y.

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