A Self Fulfilled Societal Prophecy
Genocide, starvation, imprisonment, stripping of one’s freedoms, oppressive. These are all words that one may use to describe the regimes of Joseph Stalin and Adolf Hitler. In general, totalitarian states are met with the utmost hostility. They come in extreme variants of their very own extreme, even the aforementioned pair have quite their immense differences. These differences allow for the totalitarian state to sneak into existence under the very nose of those individuals fighting against it, a possibility that the western world, and the United States specifically, may slowly be falling into as a society. Through the use of social scientists, the United States Government, and BBC News, it will be possible to portray the grim reality that may be. By analyzing the film Hot Fuzz and the society that revolves around us, one will be able to identify the key pieces of information that will lead us to a society of fear and oppression. From a deep admiration to the individual survivors, a hatred for the group that took charge, and an inability to acknowledge one’s own flaws in the realm of oppression, one will be able to realize the future reality of societal Totalitarianism in the United States of America.
Throughout this paper we will be discussing various instances of political control and the fullest extent to which they can go. Totalitarianism was coined by social scientist to describe political regimes that had rose to prominence in the twentieth century and had been previously unseen throughout history (Cameron, 394). It specifically involves a government with political control that is fully engrained in the society it controls. It uses the police, military, the media, and a single party government, most often run by a singular entity, to strike terror into the society and impose absolute control over all that reside in their borders (Cameron, 394). This is most notably seen in history within the regimes of Adolf Hitler (1939–1945), Joseph Stalin (1927–1953), Khmer Rouge (1975–1979), and Kim Jong Un presently. This political state completely eradicates all traditions that preceded it’s installment, leaving the state in a feeling of perpetual revolution (Cameron, 394). A similar form of power included in this conversation will be that of the Authoritarian state. This differs from totalitarianism in it’s lack of a central governmental ideology, active push to depoliticize the general public and a reliance on merit legitimacy (Lowell, 155).
Next we must define what exactly utilitarianism is. Utilitarianism was founded by Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mill as a counterpart to a theodicy initially proposed by Immanuel Kant. Bentham and Mill believed that the morally correct action is the action that produces the most good (Driver, 2014). When applying it to this paper, it is important to note that political ideologies are founded upon the belief that what one is doing will ultimately create the best possible world for them to live in. This world may come at a price for others, but to those respective individual executing their ideology, as long as it leads to their best perceived world there is no moral objection to be made.
Within this philosophy and these political ideologies, we are shown the epitome of inequity and controversy. With a plethora of inciting incidents spread all throughout the twentieth century and today, there is a look into the window of what may be in the future. Not much has changed since the start of this political conversation in the late twentieth century, in regards to whom it is the world discusses alongside these terms. The fascist regimes of Hitler and Stalin are nearly always brought up at the first hint of any negative political control. Kairotically, it is shown all throughout the modern political playing field of the United States. From the Washington Post to Salon, modern media outlets are not afraid to point out any and all connections current politicians have to Totalitarian state dictators.
The political field is a perpetual battlefield against dissenting opinions. Technological advancements in social media have allowed the public to enter echo chambers and ultimately result in a world of immense tension towards any dissent. Media outlets such as Politico and NY Daily News repeatedly lampoon the dissenters and help wedge in an even larger gap between the opposing sides. It is a matter of getting your side excited to go after the others, in any way one is able. From terms like libtard to cuckservative, it is as if the world finds great joy in attacking those who disagree with them. This puts all sides of the debate at stake of being removed from the discussion all together. A battlefield on the fringe of collapsing all together, regardless of what anyone has to say about it.
Lastly, it is important to note that we will be analyzing the discourse within the film Hot Fuzz (2007), written by Edgar Wright and Simon Pegg (Wright also directed the film), as a detailed emphasis on the dystopian future we may be heading into as a society.
Social Science with an Emphasis on Political Science Discourse Analysis
When analyzing the way in which social scientists regard totalitarianism, it will be important to analyze a selection of pieces covering multiple different experiences of totalitarianism. Each document that has been selected originates from the textbook Histories of Everyday Life in Totalitarian Regimes: Volume 2: Effects of Totalitarianism. This source was published in May of 2015 by St. James Press. It focuses on the individual experience of life in a totalitarian state. Explored through the writings left by individuals who had lived through, and possibly survived, the horrors of a totalitarian regime. Allowing for researchers and members of the public to be able to fully understand just how awful and oppressive these regimes were. While also allowing for a change in the conversation regarding Totalitarianism by showing the world through a bottom up perspective. There is no emphasis on the horror that these regimes inflicted on groups of people that is seen in our other sources, rather an emphasis on the horrors individuals had to suffer at the hands of these oppressive regimes and their enablers.
Velvet Totalitarianism was published in 2009 and is and is a half fact half fiction novel chronicling the regime of Nicolae Ceausescu in Romania (1965–1989). Written by novelist and art/literary critic, Claudia Moscovici, this text details factual and fictional stories that all took place under the regime of Ceausescu. Throughout this text, Moscovici refers to her experiences in this regime with an aura of “fear” and “paranoia.” This sense of paranoia is seen to be fueled by the non-stop surveillance done by the Regime’s secret police. Words such as “bugged,” “invasive,” and “guarded speech” imply a society in which any form of individual thought or expression is monitored in an almost conveniently Orwellian fashion. Though many individuals had been able to escape the horrors of Ceausescu’s oppressive regime, there lie many who had remained and now live a “joyless existence” in which seemingly lives are spent standing in line waiting to receive rations (Gard, 2). This article paints a picture that even the smallest amount of goods caused by an oppressive regime must come out of the depths of something awful. “Killing your spirit even when it spared your life” (Gard, 1).
Our second document to be analyzed is “Beyond Totalitarianism: Stalinism and Nazism Compared.” It is a collection of academic essays which analyze the regimes of Adolf Hitler and Joseph Stalin, while making a point to express the vast differences they had in terms of ideology and execution. Edited by historians Sheila Fitzpatrick and Michael Geyer, this collection results in an in depth analysis of the two regimes in all regards, positive and negative, to accurately and appropriately compare the regimes towards one another. There are approximately two instances of appraisal, one in regards to the “good social and political liberal democracies” that are found in the western world outside of these regimes (Duncan, 1). The other being in regards to the successful organization of a stable communist government headed by Stalin, which is immediately juxtaposed with the “unstable and disorganized” regime of Hitler. All other descriptives present within this document center around the negative appraisal of both dictators and their regimes. Words such as, “mass purging,” “terror,” “ruled ruthlessly,” and “viscously persecuted” present the image of a state that relentlessly goes after those individuals that seek to harm their ultimate plan. In fact, repeatedly stated in the analysis is the emphasis that Stalin and Hitler both believed their ultimate goals to be utilitarian at heart. An added emphasis is then put on the fuel to their power being run by the cult of personality and their deep and passionately held ideologies. Words such as “create a model,” “disrupt his plans,” and multiple instances of “Ideology”, and any of its alternatives, create an overall sense of ultimate purpose and goal that flows through every morsel of the regimes existence.
Our third and final document is “Stay Alive, My Son.” Written by Pin Yathay and John Man, the document is an autobiographical account of what life under the Khmer Rouge regime in Cambodia was like. Throughout this document we are presented with very few instance of positive remarks. Most notably, the document presents a passionate appraisal of authors words, “In a vivid and powerful prose…” (Oko-Odoi, 1). Furthermore, the document expresses positive regards towards all things freedom and personal liberation. Within this text, there are multiple allusions to utilitarianism and its use as a defense for the horrific acts taking place within the regime of Khmer. Khmer created a “new and perfect social order” that would force individuals to endure the horrors of a totalitarian state under conditions that were set “in the name of higher ideals” (Oko-Odoi, 1). The greater good becomes the ultimate absolver of all sins committed in its name. Yet, this document makes a point to actively fight against that mentality. Of the roughly 50 descriptive quotes, only six were positive. Nearly 88% of all descriptions were set forth with the intent to negatively impact the thing it describes. Terms such as “unspeakably inhuman and immoral,” “dehumanization,” “eradicated,” “repressed,” “sacreligious” and “slaves for the revolution” present an absolutely vicious description of the horrid regime that dominated Cambodia in the late 20th century (Oko-Odoi, 1–3). This document presents a full scale assault on the totalitarian front and refuses to allow any morsel of defensibility for the actions of those involved.
United States Government Discourse Analysis
When analyzing the US Government’s discourse revolving around totalitarianism, it is extremely important to note the country’s past with oppressive governments. The very formation of this country was molded by those suffering from the oppression of tyrants. Whether it be the British empire pre-revolution, the nation itself pre-civil war, or the extensive and bloody battle against the totalitarian figure heads, Joseph Stalin and Adolf Hitler. This country’s history is soaked in the fight against oppression, from within and without. This history has molded a theme of fetishizing freedom. Freedom from oppression, freedom of speech, freedom of life, freedom, freedom, and more freedom than you thought possible. When combating such a force that seeks out the antithesis of freedom with no restraint, it becomes important to paint them in only negative light and to bolster those against to the highest regard.
Within the National Security Strategy of the United States, the US openly avoids any mention of negative or anti-freedom things China and Russia have been involved in, preferring to shine a light on just how wonderful their attempt at freedom and democracy is. While also making a point to express that they are in direct conflict with terror, making Russia an active partner with the United States. Done as a way to show that the United States is a country wanting to move forward, to instill freedom for all and a deep trust in the United States. The future is what the US wants everyone to look forward to, the present may be difficult, but the future will be the epitome of freedom and the US, as well as any “freedom-loving” countries that wish to help, will take you there (National Security, 4). Throughout the last three pages of the NSS, the word “freedom” is stated about 25 separate times, almost always in regards to those allies and what they have and hope to accomplish. It is almost alway present/future tense when speaking of Freedom.
The only instances the tense and positivity change is in regards to the evil that terrorists and tyrants have done to take away your freedom. Freedom is something that the good fight for and the evil fight against. With the negativity around these “terrorists” past comes a slew of negative attributions. “Terrible,” “destruction,” “evil designs,” “endanger,” “great chaos and suffering,” “gravest danger,” “and “violence and chaos” are all examples of the descriptions the terroristic groups and tyrannical nations have received. Not once does a nation not united with the US in the “war on terror” get a single positive description. Positivity is resigned strictly for those in support of the United States, “strong states,” “best intelligence,” “peace and security,” “unparalleled military strength,” “great powers,” “freedom and liberty,” “national greatness” (NSS, 3–5).
While the National Security Strategy is used as a way to demonize those against freedom and deify those who seek it out, the Executive Summary of Cuba acts more as a direct informational on the human rights violations throughout the history of Cuba. Nearly all of the summary is in the past-tense, being used as a way to immortalize the acts committed by a totalitarian state such as Cuba. The very first statement made is the affirmation that “Cuba is a totalitarian state” (Cuba, 1). There is zero hesitation in regards to exposing the harsh realities of life in Cuba. Once again, there is a heavy reliance on expressing the “restricted freedom,” “limited freedom,” and other ways in which the rights and freedoms of the people are taken away. Freedom is seen as the most important aspect of a non-totalitarian state, and the most violated aspect of life in a totalitarian state. The Executive Summary of Cuba provides a look into the governmental opinion on totalitarian states and exactly how they wish to depict them. In any instance where there is a chance for a positive attribution, the response is left bland and dry. In regards to unlawful killings, the summary states plainly, “There were no reports that the government or its agents committed arbitrary or unlawful killings” (Cuba, 1). The same theme is repeated when referring to disappearances or any other violation of freedom that Cuba did not commit. The US Government wants the focus to remain on how horrible they are, not how much less horrible they are in comparison to other things.
Lastly, we have the Declaration of the Presidents of the American Republics in Panama. Released far before the previous two documents, July 22, 1956, we are given a post World War 2 look into the totalitarian discourse. A nation that has just defeated the totalitarian juggernaut that was Adolf Hitler now has members of it’s government expressing their direct intentions. Freedom is still the strongest motivator throughout this document, but it isn’t just something that the US will work to achieve. This is the “destiny of America”. The United States has the “historic mission” of becoming a bastion of “human liberty and national independence” (United States, 1). This declaration makes it apparent that the United States is, or at least was, the sole arbiter of the war on terror, tyranny, and totalitarian states. This is done to paint the United States as the hero of the world, they seek only to make the world free, while those who dissent seek to oppress. It creates an image of Good vs Evil with zero wiggle room for a grey area.
All together, the US Government, past and present, views Freedom as the ultimate goal for any being or society and totalitarianism as its sole adversary. To be free is to live happy, to withhold one’s freedom is the ultimate act of oppression on any society or individual.There is far less of an emphasis on chastising the individuals involved in the evil, rather choosing to focus on the government themselves and how they have failed their own people. It creates a viewpoint that one single person cannot be blamed for the horrors, but that the entire system must be at fault. The US Government wants the conversation to be about how evil those on the other side are, wanting nothing but your oppression, while emphasizing that the US is a bastion of morality and freedom for all. They venerate those who fight alongside them against the evil of totalitarianism. It creates an ideal for what a nation should look like while presenting what exactly an oppressive regime would entail. All while keeping the United States at the center of freedom and liberty, while only stating that they “support” those who fight alongside them. The US Government wants to remain the king of morality for as long as the discussion of freedom continues. The US Government creates an image of extreme negativity towards totalitarianism and deity-like images of all those nations that directly oppose it.
BBC News Discourse Analysis
While analyzing BBC News, it is important to note that it will have a different perspective from that seen in the US Government. BBC News comes from a separate nation with a separate past. With a history of tyrannical rule, colonization, and revolts, Great Britain has far less close of a relationship to freedom as the United States. With that perspective in mind, BBC News can be more effectively analyzed.
Regarding the Cambodia country profile, there is a heavy reliance on adjectives with negative connotations. From “painful memories,” “murderous rule,” to “brutal pursuit,” BBC makes a point to detail the terror of Cambodia’s ways. In fact, the only instances of positive reflection revolve around King Sihamoni and his father, King Sihanouk. King Sihanouk is pointed out to be one of the most beloved kings Cambodia has ever had, while his son is even given an unrelated anecdote “a trained ballet dancer” (Cambodia, 2). BBC News holds King Sihamoni in such high regard that they feel it is necessary to let you know that he is quite the ballet dancer. Not only do you love him as your king, but did you know he can dance? It acts as a way to instill further faith and praise in an already beloved king. While the description of Cambodia’s Prime Minister follows without a single positive reflection. BBC News wants Prime Minister Hun Sen to be infamous for the extensive misdeeds taking place in Cambodia (Cambodia, 3).
Within the North Korea Country profile, we are given absolutely zero positive remarks. North Korea is painted with a broad brush of negativity and a distinct description of “totalitarian state” (North Korea, 1). With North Korea being one of the most secretive nations in the world, it becomes really hard for BBC to report on anything other than the outline of their totalitarian state. From “systematic human rights abuses” to “economic hardships and famine,” much of what goes on in North Korea is unreported and leads BBC to tread along a cautious line. While continuing to display a negative view of the totalitarian country, BBC makes sure not to overstep its bounds in describing the country. The current and previous leaders are given simple and quick descriptions, explaining simply who is/was in charge, when, and how nothing of substance changed under the rule of each coming supreme leader (North Korea, 3).
Lastly, BBC News heralded King Michael of Romania as a political bastion for democracy in the face of totalitarian evil. Written by Petru Clej, a Romanian journalist, Clej takes this opportunity to describe King Michael in very high regard while maintaining a great distance from anything remotely totalitarian. This is about King Michael’s fight against totalitarianism. This results in those he fought against being left with the simple descriptors of “fascist,” and “dictator” (Clej, 2). When describing the actions taken by those totalitarian states, all actions are past-tense and negative at their core. King Michael was “forced” to abdicate, he did not hand it over at will. He was “forced” into exile, his political activities were made “forbidden.” Not only does this paint the totalitarian states as aggressive and dangerous, it paints King Michael with the will to fight back. He did not give up his nation easily, he fought hard and the tyrants had to fight him with all their will. Totalitarian states didn’t control that generation, they “dominated” them while people like King Michael “[fought] back.” (Clej, 2+5).
BBC News and it’s contributors have presented a theme of praising those that fight totalitarian regimes, while referring to the regimes themselves in as negatively simple ways as possible. Refusing to attribute any positivity no matter what the instance. BBC News puts far more of an emphasis on the individuals involved in the state than the US Government has. The emphasis is on the individuals that have corrupted the system, individuals that have dominated the lives of the oppressed while the system itself is taken advantage of. This presents an implied argument that the system isn’t to blame when things go wrong but that the individuals that took advantage of a system are solely at fault. This distinction could be present when considering the history of Great Britain, a history that relied on overthrowing tyrants while the US relied on separating itself entirely from them. The US found the system to be at fault and instigated a revolution, which is shown through their discussion of who is at fault within totalitarian states. BBC News presents an image of simplistic negativity towards totalitarian regimes while directly praising those individuals that stand against it.
Hot Fuzz stars Simon Pegg as lead, Police Sergeant Nicholas Angel, and Nick Frost as his partner in law, Danny Butterman. On the surface level, Hot Fuzz follows Sergeant Angel as he finds himself in the small town of Sandford, Gloucestershire which appears to be a peaceful village, prized by the country as a regular winner of Village of the Year. But, much like the point of this research paper, much more sinister things are taking place under the surface.
Hot Fuzz depicts a grim reality where a town’s Neighborhood Watch Alliance has managed to dig its nails into the roots of their society. The NWA acts as a puppet master of their town, with the ability to dispose of anything that may come to harm their prized goal, maintaining their yearly victory of the coveted Village of the Year Award. It becomes so imperative to maintain this tradition, that any and all of their actions are justified underneath the principle that it is “for the greater good. The Greater Good.” This has been seen all throughout history as a marker of almost all totalitarian states. That their ideology, their ultimate goal, is of utmost importance. That all those who stand opposed are to be dealt with by any means necessary. Echoed intensely throughout the regimes of Joseph Stalin, Adolf Hitler, and Khmer Rouge, Hot Fuzz brings this utilitarian and totalitarian mindset to the absolute limits of our society. The NWA creates an absolute totalitarian state within the society of Sandford, while managing to do so unbeknownst to those individuals outside. The police force has been infiltrated at the highest point, allowing for all cases to be wiped clean. The NWA can now commit heinous acts with no repercussions and no way of the press finding out. Murder becomes a car accident, murder becomes a gas leak, murder becomes “she just tripped on her hedge trimmers.” The entire narrative is taken over and shielded from the world around.
Nonstop surveillance has been enforced over this society at large, cameras cover every aspect of the town while being monitored by the NWA. The media is run and heavily influenced by the NWA, providing implicit threats when their individuals needs aren’t met. Simon Skinner is repeatedly shown giving vague and deeply threatening remarks to anyone who poses even the smallest threat to the villages success. There is repeated scenes where the members of the NWA are all lined up in an almost preset routine to keep an eye on the films dystopian hero, Sergeant Nicholas Angel. They communicate with radios while maintaining the groups ability to be fully aware of the comings and goings of the citizens within Sandford and its visitors. There becomes an inherent inability to shield oneself from their watchful gaze. One’s presence is always known.
With this ability to completely control the discourse, to blind the public with language, they can hide the truth from them even when they are staring straight at it. Society within the United States of America is standing at an impasse. There is a tremendous inability to communicate with anyone of a different political stance, which results in a society that builds mufflers around its walls so it can remain deep inside its echo chamber undisturbed. An ever growing trend of utilitarian belief systems have been adopted and are presenting themselves through the use of egregious comparisons to totalitarian regimes of before and all out assaults on the other side with no remorse. The left and the right have a history of insults ranging for “libtard” to “cuckservative,” with an ever growing vocabulary to back it up. Yet, with their ability to throw vitriol, they can’t seem to be able to accept it in return. As if to say, if you take away the PewDiePie of on side for something they have said years before (Gilbert, 2017), that side is going to take away the James Gunn of the other for the very same reason (Price, 2018). There is no consistency of standards across the board, and it acts as an almost true to form epitome of utilitarianism.
Silencing the voice of those who oppose has become a common trend amongst all sides of the political spectrum. From shadow banning dissenters on your platform (Lee, 2018), to starting boycotts because an opposing viewpoint has been displayed (Serwer, 2017), media platforms in the US society have become breeding grounds for unopposed political beliefs. With the suppression of speech being wholly justified in the name of their greater good ideology, an inability to look inwards when expressing criticism of the way individuals behave, and a powerful ability to influence the opinions of the public, it becomes vitally clear how easily the society could slip into to that of the totalitarian rule. If one side were to attain overall societal acclaim, it evolves to a societally enforced mandate on the behaviors of those around them, at the peril of a life now ruined. A society we may already be in the midst of.
Currently, there is a deep seeded hatred for those groups who have perpetuated totalitarianism throughout history. With this history comes a great regard for comparisons to those individuals that headed such horrific regimes, wherein President Donald Trump is Adolf Hitler, the liberals are tyrants, and the conservatives are fascists. There is a willingness to throw the others into a fire of hatred and vitriol, but this willingness comes at a price. To eradicate the voice of dissenters is to eradicate any morsel of self-reflection one may have. Reflection has become exclusively an outward action, one that garners almost inherently criticism of the highest regard. Without an ability to evaluate the self, to criticize the stances, beliefs, or values that one holds, one creates an impassable road block for the growth of society. It is imperative that society learns to abandon its outward group-centric analytical ways for a more individualistically inward-centered analysis. This analysis will allow society to grow in knowledge and appreciation for those around. Without this change, society is doomed to fall face first into the path it has set.
The annotated bibliography is an important tool necessary to understand why these sources were chosen. The reason and importance of each choice is crucial to understanding exactly what message was trying to be displayed throughout a research paper. Most all sources used within this paper have been compiled within the current decade as a way to maintain validity within the current society. The few exceptions come from documents released by the United States Government as a way to view their discourse on the given subject of totalitarianism after they’ve had direct contact with it. There are 14 sources that have been used and they come from social scientists, the United States Government, and BBC News. These act as tools to identify the discourse behind professionals, the media, and a government entrenched in political power.
Thesis: The immense political differences between regimes allow for the totalitarian state to sneak into existence under the very nose of those individuals fighting against it, a possibility that the western world, and the United States of America specifically, may slowly be falling into as a society.
Barrington, Lowell W. “Totalitarianism.” Ethics, Science, Technology, and Engineering: A Global Resource, edited by J. Britt Holbrook, 2nd ed., vol. 4, Macmillan Reference USA, 2015, pp. 392–395. Gale Virtual Reference Library, http://link.galegroup.com.offcampus.lib.washington.edu/apps/doc/CX3727600808/GVRL?u=wash_main&sid=GVRL&xid=303e6f87. Accessed 20 Aug. 2018.
This textbook seeks to inform students and the public on totalitarian states, what they are and how exactly the come to fruition. Barrington tries to paint a vivid picture of what exactly a totalitarian state would look like in the world and how it has looked. This source is important for understanding the basics of totalitarianism and providing a launch off point for greater analysis.
Buric, Fedja. (2016, March 11th). “Trump’s not Hitler, he’s Mussolini: How GOP
anti-intellectualism created a modern fascist movement in America.” https://www.salon.com/2016/03/11/trumps_not_hitler_hes_mussolini_how_gop_anti_intellectualism_created_a_modern_fascist_movement_in_america/.
This source acts as a way to inform the public that the current theme of Donald Trump/Hitler comparisons is far out of left field. Buric rather chooses to argue that Donald Trump far more appropriately exudes a likeness akin to Benito Mussolini. This source is important because it gives a glimpse into the media’s ways of trying to influence the public’s discussion of the opposing side.
Cameron, Kevin. International Encyclopedia of the Social Sciences. Ed. William A.
Darity, Jr.. Vol. 9 2nd ed. Detroit: Macmillan Reference USA, 2008. p394–397.
This source acts as a way to explain the wide array of social sciences and their importance to society and professionals within the field. Cameron presents a fluid definition for totalitarianism within the grand scheme of social science, while maintaining a less political stance on the matter and more analytical regard. This is important because it allowed for the background section to be void of opinion and remain focused on the informational aspect of this essay.
Carpenter, Amanda. (2018, January 30th). “I’m a Republican. Why Is My Party
Gaslighting America.” https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2018/01/30/republican-party-release-the-memo-gaslighting-america-216554.
This source acts as a way to inform the public on why exactly the republican party has failed to act and is rather choosing to flame the public and the government. Carpenter argues that the republican party is holding onto the smallest thread of information, that may not even exist, as a way to force society to constantly question the world and avoid the truth of the presidential investigation. This is important because it provides an outlook onto how the political spectrum treats those with dissenting opinions and how they view them.
Duncan, Samantha. “Beyond Totalitarianism: Stalinism and Nazism Compared.” Histories of Everyday Life in Totalitarian Regimes, edited by Thomas Riggs, vol. 3: Literary Approaches, St. James Press, 2015, pp. 3–6. The Literature of Society Series. Gale Virtual Reference Library,
http://link.galegroup.com.offcampus.lib.washington.edu/apps/doc/CX3622800262/GVRL?u=wash_main&sid=GVRL&xid=aa0f9d8b. Accessed 20 Aug. 2018.
This source acts as a way to define totalitarianism and actually evaluate the ways in which it has been enforced throughout history, while analyzing the exact similarities and differences they may have. Duncan argues that, while society tends to group Stalin and Hitler as equals, there are actually deep rooted political differences in, not only their ideologies, but their execution. This source is important because it allows for critical analysis of the different ways in which totalitarianism can rear its head in society, and allows for more implications within the film of Hot Fuzz.
Driver, Julia. “The History of Utilitarianism.” Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy,
Stanford University, 27 Mar. 2009, plato.stanford.edu/entries/utilitarianism-history/.
This source acts as a way to identify and explain exactly what utilitarianism is and how it has been represented throughout history. Driver paints a vivid picture of utilitarianism while adding an emphasis on who first proposed this idea and how it’s been implemented and commented on throughout history and philosophy. This source is important because it provides an analytical and non-political stance on utilitarianism, which allows for it to be seamlessly implemented within the background section.
Gard, Daisy. “Velvet Totalitarianism: Post-Stalinist Romania.” Histories of Everyday Life in Totalitarian Regimes, edited by Thomas Riggs, vol. 2: Effects of Totalitarianism, St. James Press, 2015, pp. 188–191. The Literature of Society Series. Gale Virtual Reference Library, http://link.galegroup.com.offcampus.lib.washington.edu/apps/doc/CX3622800197/GVRL?u=wash_main&sid=GVRL&xid=ddb97f17. Accessed 20 Aug. 2018.
This source acts as a way to give a detailed factual, as well as fictional, about what life was like living underneath the regime of Ceausescu. Gard argues that there is nearly no good that can come out of these regimes without facing the evils that they create. This document is important because it shows a deep look into what life is like for the individuals living within a totalitarian regime.
Gilbert, Ben. “YouTube’s Biggest Star Is in Hot Water over Anti-Semitic ‘Jokes’ — Here’s
What’s Going On.” Business Insider, Business Insider, 16 Feb. 2017, www.businessinsider.com/pewdiepie-anti-semitism-jokes-controversy-explained-2017-2.
This source presents a detailed look into the case of PewDiePie on youtube and how he was targeted in the case of character assassination. Gilbert argues that the issues that people have with PewDiePie don’t actually stem from anti-semitism or racism, rather they stem from a poorly made joke. This source is important because it gives more of an analysis on the way in which people will treat those with dissenting opinions and how they will actively fight to ruin their lives.
King, Shaun. (2017, March 9th). “The democratic party seems to have no earthly
idea why it is so damn unpopular.” http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/king-democratic-party-doesn-unpopular-article-1.2993659.
This source acts as a way to express exactly what one political party has been doing to upset the public and why they have been unable to acknowledge their flaws. King argues that the democratic party doesn’t listen well and has a deep issue with self reflection. This source is important because it gives an insight into the public’s inability to self reflect and correct their own errors when needed, which helps heavily in the implications section of the paper.
Lee, Timothy B. “Did Twitter Engineers Just Admit to Shadow-Banning Conservatives?
Nope.” Ars Technica, Ars Technica, 13 Jan. 2018, arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2018/01/activist-says-twitter-shadow-bans-conservatives-dont-believe-it/2/.
This source gives a detailed look into the controversy of twitter and shadow-banning conservative users. Lee provides a more analytical look into the controversy of twitter shadow-banning conservative users while analyzing the the video released by project veritas as evidence for their analysis. This is important because it gave more examples of targeted hit pieces on a political parties across the board.
McNeill, John. (2016, October 21st). “How fascist is Donald Trump? There’s actually a
formula for that.” https://www.washingtonpost.com/posteverything/wp/2016/10/21/how-fascist-is-donald-trump-theres-actually-a-formula-for-that/?utm_term=.177fb6a629ed.
This source provides a look into the way President Donald Trump most notably resembles fascist regimes of before. McNeill argues that, while he creates an aesthetic of a totalitarian state, he does not actually fit the criteria of a fascist when numerically evaluated. This is important because it provides a solid tangible form of evidence regarding active comparisons to fascists dictators.
Oko-Odoi, Katrina. “Stay Alive, My Son.” Histories of Everyday Life in Totalitarian Regimes, edited by Thomas Riggs, vol. 2: Effects of Totalitarianism, St. James Press, 2015, pp. 161–164. The Literature of Society Series. Gale Virtual Reference Library, http://link.galegroup.com.offcampus.lib.washington.edu/apps/doc/CX3622800189/GVRL?u=wash_main&sid=GVRL&xid=14e50216. Accessed 20 Aug. 2018.
This source acts as a tool of collecting various essays to inform the public on what exactly life was like living under totalitarian regimes. This specific essay focuses on the atrocities committed during the Cambodian genocide. Oko paints a horrifying picture of a reality where all humanity is taken away from the society of Cambodia. This provides the public with first hand accounts of gruesome acts committed under the name of totalitarianism and allows for more impactful discourse.
Price, Emily. “Disney Stands By Decision to Fire ‘Guardians’ Director James Gunn.” Fortune, Fortune, 2018, fortune.com/2018/08/16/disney-fires-james-gunn/.
The source is designed to give a timeline of the James Gunn controversy, while adding absolutely nothing to it. Price acts in a purely informational sense, providing absolutely no details outside of the exact timeline on the event. This is important because it allows for the connection to the subject manner while providing a multitude of links for further information. This was used within the implications section.
Serwer, Adam. “A Nation of Snowflakes.” The Atlantic, Atlantic Media Company, 26 Sept. 2017, www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2017/09/it-takes-a-nation-of-snowflakes/541050/.
This article acts as a way to show that the presidency of Donald Trump has declared a war on free speech. Serwer makes a point to address criticism of her their political party, as if a way to mock that they would even be concerns. This provides a tangible document in which one is immediately unable to address criticism. Rather, they decide to turn the criticism around and use it as a way to attack the other side. This gives our implication two added benefits. Visual proof of the verbal assault one party is willing to launch at the other, while the other side is displaying the deep seeded hypocrisy within.