Introduction 1984 by George Orwell is a novel about a totalitarian government attempting to destroy individuality. This story is Winston Smith’s quest to rebel against those that dictate every part of his life. Winston rebels by finding someone that shared his beliefs, Julia, and falling in love with her. His dreams are shattered when they are discovered and are brainwashed into living only to serve the Party. In the end, Winston loved Big Brother. Plot Summary The novel 1984 takes place on Airstrip One, formerly known as England, in the city of London.
Airstrip One is a part of a greater political body called Oceania, which consists of North America, South Africa, Australia, and England. The nations of Oceania, Eurasia, and Eastasia are constantly fighting an endless war where no side ever gains an advantage. 1984 centers around the life of Winston Smith, an average member of the Outer Party living in London. 1984 begins with Winston Smith walking into his home at the Victory Mansions. He is forced to walk up the stairs rather than take the elevator because he knows the electricity will be shut off during the daytime due to the economic drive for Hate Week. Posters of Big Brother are posted on all the walls as he trudges up the stairs in pain because of the varicose ulcer in his ankle.
He finally reaches his room and moves to a section of the room where the telescreen can’t see him. The telescreen is a device which broadcasts and receives images and sound and the Thought Police constantly monitor everyone through these devices. He took out a book that he bought in the proletarian section of London. The book was a diary, and he wrote about the movies he had seen the night before and began thinking about a dark-haired girl he works with and a man named O’Brien. He wrote about the hate and lust he felt for the girl and also wrote about O’Brien, a member of the Inner Party.
... in or around the year 1984. The world Winston Smith is living in is one where the government ... com 1). Down and Out in Paris and London was published in 1933. This short story was ... Great Britain, and Japan. By 1930 the Nazi Party came in second in their election (History 31). ... of expressing his resentment towards imperialism. Many authors write their real life experiences into their novels. George ...
He also thought about the Two Minutes Hate, a time when the Party stirs up the hate all loyal Party members feel for the enemy of Oceania. This enemy could be either Eurasia or Eastasia at any given time, because the Party is only at war with one at a time and the war is always changing. During the Two Minutes Hate, he realized he hated Big Brother and saw the same look in O’Brien’s eyes. As he was thinking this, he noticed that he was writing “DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER” all the way down the page in the diary. By doing this he committed the most severe crime, Thoughtcrime. Winston thought to himself, “Thoughtcrime was not a thing that could be concealed forever.
You might dodge successfully for a while, even for years, but sooner or later they were bound to get you… You were abolished, annihilated: vaporized was the usual word” (Orwell 19-20).
Winston closed the diary and remembered a dream he had where O’Brien told him that they would meet in the place where there is no darkness. He fell asleep and dreamt of the Golden Country, where he saw the dark-haired girl take off her clothes and in doing so, seemed to sweep aside Big Brother and the Party. He also dreamt of his parents and how he felt responsible for their deaths. He woke up and began doing his daily exercises called Physical Jerks.
He thought about his childhood but can’t remember much because no records were taken and the ones taken are inaccurate. He also thinks about the war with Eurasia, the war that supposedly had always been against Eurasia. He vaguely remembers a time when Oceania was at war with Eastasia. He also remembers that Big Brother was not around before the 1960 s, but records say he has been in power since the 30 s.
Winston went to work at the Ministry of Truth, the department in charge of creating propaganda, destroying obsolete recross, and changing “inaccurate” data. He rewrites the story of a deceased soldier and then has lunch with a man named Syme. Syme is working on the Newspeak dictionary which will eventually change the language so that Thoughtcrime is impossible. Winston believes that Syme will be vaporized due to his intelligence, and later in the book Syme is vaporized. That night he goes home and writes an entry in his diary about his last sexual experience. The Party condemns sex for pleasure and will only allow marriages if there is no possibility of love.
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Winston and his wife Katherine were one of these couples, and they would only have sex because, as Katherine put it, they had to “make babies” or because it was “their duty to the Party” (58).
When they didn’t have children, they both went their separate ways. He wrote about his last sexual experience because, if done for reasons other the Party gave, sex was an act of rebellion. The Party is aiming to control people not only physically, but mentally. Here Winston says a line that is brought up towards the end of the book.
He said “Freedom is the freedom to say that two plus two make four. If that is granted, all else follows” (69).
Soon after this Winston thinks about revolution and realizes that it can only be done if the proles (proletariat) participate. The mysterious Brotherhood could not do it themselves because they are too few in number, but the proles could care less about revolting and they lack the will to do so. He goes to the prole district of London and enters Mr. Charrington’s shop, where he bought the diary.
He views his shop as a link to the past before the Revolution. He buys a paperweight and Mr. Charrington leads him upstairs. He sees a picture of St. Clement’s church and remembers part of a rhyme. He sees the dark-haired girl following him on his way home and he wants to kill her with the paperweight because he thinks she is a spy.
The next day at MiniTrue Winston was working in his cubicle when the dark-haired girl walked toward him. She tripped, fell, and cried out in pain. When Winston goes to help her up, she gives him a note. He waits until no telescreens or people can see him to read the note. He unfolded the note and read the words “I love you.” Winston waited a week before seeing her again, where he and Julia made plans to see each other again alone. He follows her directions and she sneaks up behind him.
1984 By George Orwell, 1949 Main Characters Winston Smith - The 39 year old protagonist of the novel whose rebellion against Big Brother and the Party and love for Julia is completely wiped out by O'Brian at the Ministry of Love. Julia - Member of the Junior Anti-Sex league who becomes Winston's secret lover and fellow rebel. O'Brian - Member of the Inner-Party who learns that Winston has ...
They go to a place where they cannot be observed and she says her name is Julia, and that she is attracted to him because she knows he is against the Party. She takes off her Party overalls, much like the girl in the dream at the beginning of the book, and Winston and Julia proceed to have sex. She tells him she has done this dozens of times with other men, and this makes Winston love her even more. The fact that she has rebelled against the Party in this way without being caught gives him hope. They plan to meet again, and Winston rents the room above Charrington’s shop for the occasion. They were unable to see each other for a long period of time due to preparations for Hate Week.
They both did volunteer work to create an illusion that they were both faithful Party members. Winston hears the news the Syme has been vaporized and made an “unperson”, just as Winston predicted. Julia and Winston have a discussion about the Brotherhood and that Julia believes that it is not real and either is the war. She believes that the Party made them and that the Brotherhood could not survive if it were real.
Winston finally gets a chance to speak to O’Brien at the MiniTrue. He makes a reference to Syme, which is a small act of Thoughtcrime because he is an unperson, and tells Winston to go to his flat to see the latest Newspeak dictionary. This leads Winston to believe that O’Brien is a member of the Brotherhood. Julia and Winston go to O’Brien’s flat where he turns off the telescreen. Normally they cannot be turned off. Winston tells O’Brien that they are against the Party and they make a toast to Goldstein, the rebel leader.
O’Brien tells them that they will receive a copy of “the book.” Several days pass and Winston is busy at work because he has to change the records to say that they have always been at war with Eastasia, not Eurasia. Winston finally receives a copy of the book and he and Julia read it at Charrington’s. The book outlines how the world now works and what the Party does. They fall asleep together and awake the next morning. They are talking when a voice comes from behind the picture of St.
Clements. The picture falls and reveals a telescreen, and Charrington comes up and arrests them, as Charrington was a member of the Thought Police. Winston finds himself in a cell surrounded by four telescreens. Whenever he made a noise or moved, a voice from the telescreen would yell at him. O’Brien enters the cell and Winston believes that they got him too, but he tells Winston that they got him long ago. A guard knocks Winston out and he wakes up in a bed with O’Brien standing over him.
Winston Smith and Julia, the protagonists from George Orwell’s dystopian novel 1984, were brought together by their hate of the society in which they lived. Their relationship, which budded throughout the middle third of the novel, brought to light many interesting contrasts between the rebels. They were equal opposites, with different skills, priorities and tactics. Because of this, they ...
He finds out that O’Brien is there to torture him and to teach doublethink to Winston. Doublethink is a manipulation of the mind so that people will believe contradictions. O’Brien holds up four fingers and turns a dial that increases pain until Winston believes that there are five fingers. O’Brien tells Winston that he is the last humanist and defender of the “human spirit” and lets him look in a mirror. Winston looks at his reflection to see his emaciated and battered body. He realizes that by resisting the Party, this is what he is defending.
During his torture, he submits to the Party about many things but always remains loyal to Julia. They feed him and let him bathe and he soon is very healthy again. The last phase of his “healing” begins, and that is acceptance. He is finally brought to Room 101. This room is different for every person because it exploits the person’s greatest fear. In this case, Winston is afraid of rats.
A cage of rats is strapped to his face and O’Brien will not remove it until Winston begs him to torture Julia instead. He finally betrayed Julia. Soon after he is at the Chestnut Tree Caf’e drinking Victory Gin and remembering his childhood. He believes these to be false memories though. He sees Julia on the streets and they admit that they betrayed each other. Winston finally realized that, Orwell said in the final sentence of the novel, “He loved Big Brother: (245).
Setting The beginning of 1984 takes place in what is believed to be April of 1984. No one is sure about the date anymore though. Winston thought this was the year because “It must be around this date, since he was fairly sure that his age was thirty-nine, and he believed that he had been born in 1944 or 1945; but it was never possible nowadays to pin down any date within a year or two” (10).
The book starts off with an interesting first sentence 'the clocks were striking 13.' ; To me this was unusual because there is no 13 on a clock and it is usually considered an unlucky number. I thought it was kind of weird and different compared to what kind of world we are living in today. This is because in London the province of Oceania is where our first and main character Winston Smith ...
As previous mentioned, the story takes place in London on Airstrip One in the country of Oceania, which is one of three countries constantly at war.
Ever since the rise of Ingsoc (English Socialism) in Oceania, Death-worship or Obliteration of the Self in Eastasia, and Neo-Bolshevism in Eurasia, the world has constantly been at war. This is evident as Winston makes note of the rocket-bombs constantly falling on London and as he hears about the new Floating Fortresses being deployed in the seas. All three countries share the same principles, but this also means that they must be in a constant state of war. War and hate are they only ways to keep the people of the country totally loyal. The setting of the novel are essential to the story. The environment of the story is what makes the novel so compelling and realistic.
The idea of a totalitarian government where people lived in fear of the Thought Police would not be as realistic if all the people were happy with their lives and the government did not oppress its citizens. Instead, Orwell created a place that most people know about, London, and made it a dystopia. Everywhere you were, a telescreen is watching every move you make and listening to every word you speak. Posters of “Big Brother” are everywhere as a constant reminder that he is watching you. Parents fear their own children because the government has brainwashed them into turning in any thought-criminals and congratulate them for turning in their own parents. Without a setting such as the one Orwell provides, the novel would not be nearly as realistic and frightening as it is.
Main Character The main character in 1984 is Winston Smith, an average member of the Outer Party who, unlike most people, realizes the faults of the Party. His whole life he worked as a slave to the Party and in a single moment he committed thoughtcrime. From that point forward, his life is run by love, freedom, and fear. The main relationship in this novel is between Julia and Winston. This love is discovered when Julia passes a note to him that says “I love you” on it. Before this, he wanted to kill her, saying “He hated her because she was young and pretty and sexless, because he wanted to go to bed with her and would never do so…
This was only a facade on her part, however, and supposedly has actually slept with dozens of Party members. As their relationship develops, Winston and Julia also have sex, which is the ultimate form of rebellion against Big Brother. Fear begins to set in on Winston, as he fears that they are both basically dead from this point on. Julia differs in this belief, however, and believes they should live their lives to the fullest until they are caught. The only hatred Winston has is directed toward Big Brother.
... Winston and Julia. Winston Smith is just a lonely worker with too much time on his hands. His recent feelings about Big Brother and the Party ... overthrow the Party. Winston doesn t know what to make of his relationship with Julia, but more than ever, he loves her. Julia is a ... happening in their world, they both find someone they can love and relate to. Many of these ideas can be shown ...
At the beginning of the novel, he writes “DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER” in his diary despite it being thoughtcrime. He hates Big Brother for destroying humanity and everything else the Party has done. At the end of the book, Winston feels that he is the defender of humanity. Strangely enough, he shows no hate to O’Brien, the man that tortured him. Winston has always silently admired him, first as being the man who brought him into the Brotherhood, and secondly as the man who taught him what was right and what was wrong according to Big Brother.
Winston can be best described as a very insecure person. He is always worried that the Thought Police will come and get him, but this is for obvious reasons. He considers himself a deadman weeks or months before he is caught. He is not even sure if two plus two equals four, as he shows at the end of the novel. When Julia is in the prole district, he thinks about killing her because he fears she is a spy. He only feels secure at the end of the novel when he loves Big Brother.
Theme The Party has absolute control over all of its citizens, controlling not only their actions but their minds as well. In children, this is done by teaching them the ways of Ingsoc as soon as they are able to understand it and by having them join groups like the Junior Anti-Sex League and the Spies. With adults, they allow them to work at the community center to organize events such as Hate Week. Sometimes though, this is not enough. The Party will then employ tactics of fear to push un loyal citizens into submission. Fear causes people to shirk away from what they believe in order to please those who control them.
Fear is a recurring topic that is first mentioned at the beginning of the book. When Winston bought the diary and opened it at his flat, Orwell said that “He had carried it guiltily home in his brief case. Even with nothing written in it, it was a compormising possession” (9).
Just by buying the diary, he felt guilty. Nothing had been written in it as of yet. Just by opening it, .”..
it was reasonably certain that it would be punished by death… .” (9).
He did not feel too much fear yet, but Winston panicked after he wrote “DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER” all the way down the diary page. He had committed thoughtcrime, not just by writing that but because he was thinking it subconsciously. Winston began to think about the Thought Police and all the rumors about them. The rumors said that they came at night and took you away and eventually you were vaporized.
Soon after his first panic attack about the Thought Police came an incident of the use of fear regarding children. In the world of 1984, a parent’s worst enemy is his or her own child. Winston had gone to help Mrs. Parsons with her sink drain when her children went out of control. They had been inside all day and wanted to see the hangings of Eurasian prisoners in Victory Square. The children were members of the Spies and the son had said to Winston “You ” re a traitor! You ” re a thought-criminal! You ” re a Eurasian spy! I’ll shoot you, I’ll vaporize you, I’ll send you to the salt mines!” (23).
This behavior was typical of children now, who seemed to be rebellious in every manner except that they had complete loyalty to the Party. As Winston left Mrs. Parsons’ apartment and went back to his flat he thought “It was almost normal for people over thirty to be frightened of their own children” (24).
The Party had shifted the love that children should have for their parents to love for the Party and only the Party. The Party used this love to instill fear into possible thought-criminals and make them serve the Party or suffer a horrible fate. Later in the novel, Winston fears that the Thought Police will catch him and Julia and he tells her that “We are the dead…
Not physically. Six months, a year-five years, conceivably. I am afraid of death” (113).
Also, he thought of renting Mr. Charrington’s room as if they were .”.. intentionally stepping nearer to their graves.
As he sat waiting on the edge of the bed he thought again of the cellars of the Minsitry of Love” (116).
Winston is very aware that his actions will get him killed, and rather than accepting this, he fears it. He still remains loyal to Julia, however, and still covertly works against the Party. This all ends after he is caught and finally submits to the Party in Room 101. The Party’s ultimate victory over Winston is achieved by exploiting his greatest fear. Winston was horribly afraid of rats, and the Party used this to their advantage.
After the Thought Police captured Winston and they made him believe everything the Party said, he still would not betray Julia. However, as the cage of rats grew closer to his face, Winston yelled, “Do it to Julia! Do it to Julia! Not me! Julia! I don’t care what you do to her. Tear her face off, strip her to the bones. Not me! Julia! Not me!” (236).
The last flicker of hope for Winston had been lost. He had betrayed Julia because of the fear the Party pushed on him.
He betrayed the one thing he believed the Party could not take from him, and by doing so, he finally learned to love Big Brother. Style Elements of Meaning Paradox- “WAR IS PEACE FREEDOM IS SLAVERY IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH” (7).
The war keeps the order, those with freedom do not know how to use it, and ignorance keeps the people unaware of life other than the Party. Antithesis- “Two and two are four.”Sometimes, Winston. Sometimes they are five. Sometime they are three” (207).
Two and two makes four, but the Party makes it five, three, or anything they want it to be. Personification- “Oranges and lemons, say the bells of St. Clement’s” (85).
The bells cannot actually say anything. Symbol- “Inside it was the book…
The book represents the sense of rebellion that thought-criminals harbor, as the book is itself the ultimate thoughtcrime. Simile- “The solid, contour less body, like a block of granite, and the rasping red skin, bore the same relation to the body of a girl as the rose-hip to the rose” (181).
This describes the shape of a rather large woman. Elements of Sound Consonance- “Here come a chopper to chop off your head” (83).
Repetition of the “ch” sound. “Four! Five! Four!” (206) Repetition of the “f” sound. Also alliteration. Alliteration-“Swine! Swine! Swine! And suddenly she…
Recurrence of the letter “s.” Assonance-“When will you pay me? Say the bells of Old Bailey,” (147).
Repetition of the hard “e” vowel sound in “me” and “Bailey.”Under the spreading chesnut tree I sold you and you sold me There lie they, and here lie we Under the spreading chestnut tree” (66) Repetition of the hard “e.” Elements of Sentence Structure Parallel Sentence- “‘We are the dead’ echoed Julia dutifully. ‘You are the dead’s aid an iron voice behind them” (182).
Same sentence, different subject.
Inverted Sentence- “2713 Bumpstead J! Let fall that piece of bread” (194).
Should be “Let that piece of bread fall.”When I grow rich, say the bells of Shoreditch” (147).
Should be “The bells of Shoreditch say… .” Pace-Breaking Sentence- .”.. times 3. 12.
83 reporting bb day order doubleplusungood refs unpersons rewrite full wise up sub ante filling” (40).
Sentence was written in English until this section. Periodic Sentence- “If you are a man, Winston, you are the last man” (222) Main point at end of sentence Thesis Essay 1984 chronicles some of the most important events in the life of Winston Smith. The novel starts with his first act of thoughtcrime, buying a diary and denouncing Big Brother, and ends with his ultimate failure by eventually submitting to Big Brother and loving him.
In between these two events, however, is Winston’s quest for freedom and what he was willing to do for that freedom. Even if he is not physically able to do what he wants, he still has the ability to think for himself and not believe what the Party says. In 1984, George Orwell is saying that freedom is the ability to know what you believe is right. “Freedom is the freedom to say that two plus two make four.
If that is granted, all else follows” (69).
This is the basis of Winston’s thinking at the beginning of the novel. He knows that what the Party tells him is just one big lie. Oceania has not always been at war with Eastasia and allied with Eurasia, and vice versa. The chocolate ration did not increase to twenty grams, it was decreased from thirty to twenty.
Big Brother has not existed since the 30 s. The Party did not invent the airplane. Winston knows all of these things to be true, and this makes him a free man. Winston’s main outlet for his freedom is through, and with, Julia. Both have abandoned the principles of the Party and love each other rather than Big Brother. Julia cares for nothing else other than herself and Winston.
She has no wish to overthrow the Party or to revolt against it, but only to live her own life. Orwell said about her, “Except where it touched upon her own life she had no interest in Party doctrine… She had never heard of the Brotherhood… Any kind of organized revolt against the Party…
struck her as stupid. The clever thing was to break the rules and stay alive all the same” (109).
Julia did not like the Party, but she did not want to risk her life to fight against it. She would break the rules she wanted to break and live her life like that.
She pretended to be a loyal Party member in order to stay alive. Winston wanted to be free in a different way. He knew that he would be caught for his thoughtcrime, but he also believed in open revolution. He believed that O’Brien was a member of the Brotherhood and sought him out for that purpose.
When he joined the Brotherhood he said he would “commit murder… commit acts of sabotage which may cause the death of hundreds of innocent people… cheat, to forge, to blackmail… .” in order to be free (142).
Winston was not content with only being free himself. He actually thought about a prole revolution and how they were the key to overthrowing the Party.
The ability to think that two plus two make four is not enough for Winston. Together, Winston and Julia work together for their own freedom. They began their fight for freedom the first time she wrote “I love you” to him at the Ministry of Truth. Love was something that was not supposed to exist, and to love someone other than Big Brother was thoughtcrime. However, the only love either of them had was for each other. When O’Brien asked if they would be willing to leave each other for the good of the Brotherhood, Winston had yelled out no.
Julia was more important to him than the entire resistance movement. Orwell said, “Their embrace had been a battle, the climax a victory. It was a blow struck against the Party. It was a political act” (105).
Julia had sex with other men before, supposedly dozens of men, and all of these encounters rebelled against the Party. She was doing this for pleasure, and the Party forbade this.
When Winston and Julia had sex, they also did it for love, which made it a complete victory. They showed their love in the most intimate way possible, therefore performing the most rebellious act they could against Big Brother. Even when Winston is sent to the Ministry of Love, he tries to keep the freedom he fought so hard to have. First O’Brien tries to make Winston see that he is holding up five fingers, when he is really only holding up four. They turn a dial which puts Winston into a great deal of pain, and everytime he says that he sees four fingers, they turn the dial more. Finally, Winston says, “I don’t know.
I don’t know. You will kill me if you do that again. Four, five, six-in all honesty I don’t know” (208).
This is only the beginning of his loss of freedom.
O’Brien convinces Winston that Oceania has always been at war with Eastasia, that the three traitors he saw at the Chestnut Tree Caf’e were not really there, and that he was holding up five fingers. O’Brien tells him that Big Brother will never die, that the Party exists only to torture people and to draw out their hate and use it, and that the Party is the controller of life. “Humanity is the Party” is what O’Brien told Winston (222).
All hope that Winston had for humanity was lost, except for the fact that he had never betrayed Julia. That was the one piece of freedom he could still hold on to. Even O’Briend understood that Winston never betrayed Julia.
When O’Brien asked him what degradation had not happened to him yet, Winston told him that he never betrayed Julia. O’Brien’s only response was, “No, no; that is perfectly true. You have not betrayed Julia” (225).
Of course, Winston was soon going to betray Julia when he was sent to Room 101. He is not able to deal with the torture of having the rats strapped to his face and begs them to torture Julia instead of him. He had finally betrayed Julia.
Orwell raps all of this up with Winston at the Chestnut Tree Caf’e. After reading about a Eurasian attack that could cut Oceania in two, he felt many feelings and emotions coming up that he had not felt in a long time. He then, “Almost unconciously he traced with his finger in the dust on the table: 2 +2 = 5” (239).
He began thinking that if you can believe that two plus two make four, and in the end he cannot even believe that.
Conclusion All in all, 1984 is the story of a man’s quest for freedom in a society that knows no freedom. While ultimately Winston’s quest for freedom was a failure, he did managed to feel freedom a few times before he became just like every other comrade in the Party. For a short time, he knew what it was like to love another person and be loved back. He also learned what it was like to, even for a couple moments, live without any fear whatsoever. Although he ended up losing his freedom, the freedom he had is something that cannot be forgotten by those who read about Winston Smith.