big brother

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big brother

1. One's older brother. My big brother said he would help us move the couch. Andrew is Julie's big brother.
2. A shorthand reference to oppressive rule that was popularized by George Orwell's dystopian novel Nineteen Eighty-Four. In this usage, the phrase is usually capitalized. You have to be careful what you write in an email these days. Big Brother is watching you, after all.
See also: big, brother
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

Big brother

the state perceived as a sinister force supervising citizens' lives.
Big brother comes from the slogan Big Brother is watching you in George Orwell's novel 1984.
See also: big, brother
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

ˌBig ˈBrother (is watching you)

a leader, a person in authority or a government that tries to control every aspect of people’s lives: We live in a society where all kinds of information about the individual may be stored on computer. Big Brother, if not actually watching you, can quickly check on you if he wants to.This comes from the novel Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell, in which the leader of the government, Big Brother, had total control over people. The slogan ‘Big Brother is watching you’ reminded people that he knew everything they did.
See also: big, brother
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

big brother

1. n. a personification of the totalitarian state. (From George Orwell’s 1984.) Big brother has changed the tax laws again.
2. n. someone who personifies the totalitarian state: the police, parents, teachers. Big brother says the paper is due tomorrow, or else.
See also: big, brother
McGraw-Hill's Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
We at Levin Furniture are so excited to be able to make this donation to Big Brother Big Sisters of Greater Pittsburgh, as we know they will put these funds to good use supporting youth in the Pittsburgh area all year long.
ON the same day that this year-long series ended, Big Brother: The Village began.
IN the first series of the Polish show Big Brother provoked a mutiny by the smokers in the house for refusing to supply any more cigarettes.
A COUPLE in the Portuguese Big Brother fell in love and decided to get married during the show.
"They've definitely made an impression on Big Brother historically.
Paul, who is co-executive producer with Claire O'Donohoe, is the latest Scot to take over as Big Brother's Big Brother.
The first was Edinburgh-born Philip Edgar - Jones, who used to oversee the UK's most talked about show but this month was promoted to creative director of Brighter Pictures, an Endemol UK company that makes Big Brother.
"We try to make it very straightforward, commonsense, and doable to be a big brother or big sister," says Clay Brewer, Big Brothers Big Sisters executive vice president and chief operating officer.
"Big Brothers Big Sisters has really demonstrated the benefits of mentoring, but stigma has made it very difficult for the gay groups to allow adults to be alone with young people," Bowman says.
Carter, Arent Fox PLLC 2004 marks Big Brothers Big Sisters of New York City 100th Anniversary.
During this time, Ohls has served as mentor and big brother to an 11-year-old boy named Trevor.
Both the signing of the proclamation by the governor and the presentation of the Big Brother of the Year award took place during the National Volunteer Appreciation Week, when volunteers across the country are recognized for their contributions.
And he likens Big Brother to the Bond franchise as it comes to Edinburgh Corn Exchange tomorrow to audition potential contestants for Big Brother 6.
He said: 'As long as people are enjoying Big Brother it could last forever, as could I'm A Celebrity, which is brilliant.
'I'd love it to go up to Big Brother 10 and beyond and I think Celebrity Big Brother can continue as well as there are enough celebrities out there to sustain it.'
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