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Big Brother
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Big Brother


Be careful. Big Brother is watching.
  a person or organization that attempts to exercise total control over people and that invades their privacy to do so
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Notes:
This use of the term "Big Brother" was popularized by George Orwell in his novel, Nineteen Eighty-Four. In the novel, citizens were under constant surveillance by an authoritarian government that was personified through a nominal leader, Big Brother.
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Samples:
  • Be careful. Big Brother is watching.
  • The new technology has aroused Big Brother fears since, in theory, it could be used to spy on anyone watching one of the new televisions.
  • BIG BROTHER IS WATCHING YOU, the caption beneath it ran.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • Or maybe it was his intense dislike of the government: He saw the sign on the Park Service cabin identifying it as such, assumed all three cabins were government property, and decided to strike a blow against Big Brother.
    Jon Krakauer  --  Into the Wild

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  • If our society ever opted for Orwell’s Big Brother approach, the instrument of choice for oppression would have to be the credit wake.
    Dan Simmons  --  Hyperion
  • Nut jobs are exactly the kind of people who will have survived. People who saw Big Brother when he wasn’t there. People who suspected the rest of humanity before the rest of humanity turned dangerous. People with hiding places ready.
    Stephenie Meyer  --  The Host
  • But after a few months, when the big  brother upstairs turned out to be Big Brother, she got on her bicycle and rode through the neighborhood of her high school days until she spotted an apartment with fresh-painted walls and masking tape on the windows.
    Sandra Cisneros  --  The House on Mango Street
  • "What, you’re all-knowing and all-seeing now?" I asked. "Who are you, Big Brother?"
    Sarah Dessen  --  Along for the Ride
  • BIG BROTHER IS WATCHING YOU, the caption said, while the dark eyes looked deep into Winston’s own.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • Nobody heard what Big Brother was saying.
    George Orwell  --  1984

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  • Whether he wrote DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER, or whether he refrained from writing it, made no difference.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER was written all over it, in letters almost big enough to be legible across the room.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • On the walls were scarlet banners of the Youth League and the Spies, and a full-sized poster of Big Brother.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • There, too, in tiny clear lettering, the same slogans were inscribed, and on the other face of the coin the head of Big Brother.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • He tried to remember in what year he had first heard mention of Big Brother.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • In the Party histories, of course, Big Brother figured as the leader and guardian of the Revolution since its very earliest days.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • It was therefore necessary to rewrite a paragraph of Big Brother’s speech, in such a way as to make him predict the thing that had actually happened.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • Very likely as many as a dozen people were now working away on rival versions of what Big Brother had actually said.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • Perhaps Big Brother was merely getting rid of a too-popular subordinate.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • Winston decided that it would not be enough simply to reverse the tendency of Big Brother’s speech.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • Big Brother added a few remarks on the purity and single-mindedness of Comrade Ogilvy’s life.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • A sort of vapid eagerness flitted across Winston’s face at the mention of Big Brother.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • It appeared that there had even been demonstrations to thank Big Brother for raising the chocolate ration to twenty grammes a week.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • By 1970 none of them was left, except Big Brother himself.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • He picked up the children’s history book and looked at the portrait of Big Brother which formed its frontispiece.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • The face of Big Brother swam into his mind, displacing that of O’Brien.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • He had the feeling, though already at that time facts and dates were growing blurry, that he had known their names years earlier than he had known that of Big Brother.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • The songs, the processions, the banners, the hiking, the drilling with dummy rifles, the yelling of slogans, the worship of Big Brother — it was all a sort of glorious game to them.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • Partly it was a sort of hymn to the wisdom and majesty of Big Brother, but still more it was an act of self-hypnosis, a deliberate drowning of consciousness by means of rhythmic noise.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • There were occasions when Big Brother devoted his Order for the Day to commemorating some humble, rank-and-file Party member whose life and death he held up as an example worthy to be followed.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • Big Brother’s Order for the Day, it seemed, had been chiefly devoted to praising the work of an organization known as FFCC, which supplied cigarettes and other comforts to the sailors in the Floating Fortresses.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • "I heard you call him."
    I raised my eyebrows. "You are like Big Brother."
    Sarah Dessen  --  Along for the Ride
  • His pen had slid voluptuously over the smooth paper, printing in large neat capitals DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER over and over again, filling half a page.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • His pen had slid voluptuously over the smooth paper, printing in large neat capitals DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER over and over again, filling half a page.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • His pen had slid voluptuously over the smooth paper, printing in large neat capitals DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER over and over again, filling half a page.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • His pen had slid voluptuously over the smooth paper, printing in large neat capitals DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER over and over again, filling half a page.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • His pen had slid voluptuously over the smooth paper, printing in large neat capitals DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER over and over again, filling half a page.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • With its grace and carelessness it seemed to annihilate a whole culture, a whole system of thought, as though Big Brother and the Party and the Thought Police could all be swept into nothingness by a single splendid movement of the arm.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • But in the same moment, drawing a deep sigh of relief from everybody, the hostile figure melted into the face of Big Brother, black-haired, black-moustachio’d, full of power and mysterious calm, and so vast that it almost filled up the screen.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • The thing had been plastered on every blank space on every wall, even outnumbering the portraits of Big Brother.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • To the death of Big Brother?
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • At the apex of the pyramid comes Big Brother.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • Big Brother is infallible and all-powerful.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • For example, it appeared from The Times of the seventeenth of March that Big Brother, in his speech of the previous day, had predicted that the South Indian front would remain quiet but that a Eurasian offensive would shortly be launched in North Africa.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • A number of The Times which might, because of changes in political alignment, or mistaken prophecies uttered by Big Brother, have been rewritten a dozen times still stood on the files bearing its original date, and no other copy existed to contradict it.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • He believed in the principles of Ingsoc, he venerated Big Brother, he rejoiced over victories, he hated heretics, not merely with sincerity but with a sort of restless zeal, an up-to-dateness of information, which the ordinary Party member did not approach.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • He might be denouncing Goldstein and demanding sterner measures against thought-criminals and saboteurs, he might be fulminating against the atrocities of the Eurasian army, he might be praising Big Brother or the heroes on the Malabar front-it made no difference.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • If you’re happy inside yourself, why should you get excited about Big Brother and the Three-Year Plans and the Two Minutes Hate and all the rest of their bloody rot?’
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • He was particularly enthusiastic about a papier-mâché model of Big Brother’s head, two metres wide, which was being made for the occasion by his daughter’s troop of Spies.
    George Orwell  --  1984
  • All over Oceania this morning there were irrepressible spontaneous demonstrations when workers marched out of factories and offices and paraded through the streets with banners voicing their gratitude to Big Brother for the new, happy life which his wise leadership has bestowed upon us.
    George Orwell  --  1984
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Associated words [difficulty]:   Big Brother [7] , loophole [4] , affirmative action [6] , global warming [6] , hard money [6] , OPEC [8] , privatization [9]
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