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1984 - George Orwell
Transcript of 1984 - George Orwell
Date First Published: 1949
A woman in some parts of the story sings: "Under the spreading chestnut tree I sold you and you sold me - " (Orwell 277). That symbolizes Winston's and Julia's betrayal to each other when they were being tortured.
" 'I betrayed you' she said baldly.
'I betrayed you' he said." (Orwell 292).
Analysis of a Character
The book is very strange, creepy and hard to understand when you first start reading it. The author uses a lot of detail and repeats some random things like a girl singing and the party slogans, but when the story keeps progressing everything starts to make sense. The idea of being watched at all times makes you feel very uncomfortable as you read the book, however I actually like that because it makes you get into it. The story by itself is very suspensive, but the fact that you know Winston is doing something he isn't supposed to do makes you want to read more to know what are the consequences.
If the Party said anything as ridiculous as saying two plus two make five, you would have to believe it no matter what. But the worst part is not that you would die for not believing that, but that you had to believe it because you wouldn't really know the truth. If the Party said something, you would believe that simply because they control your mind and memory.
The story takes place in London in the year 1984, where a ruling Party controls everything. Winston Smith is a low ranked member of the party, who eventually starts disagreeing with the Party's believes. First, he writes a diary to control his own memory, and then starts having a close relationship with a woman named Julia to control his feelings. However, the Thought Police capture them, and they are both tortured by the party. Finally, they are both released, however Winston ends up believing he loves the Party, and when he sees an image of Big Brother, the leader of the party, he feels happy and safe.
Right when you start reading the book the author immediately gives you descriptions so that you can visualize what is going on.
" The hallway smelt of boiled cabbage and old rag mats. At one end of it a colored poster, too large for indoor display, had been tacked to the wall. It depicted simply an enormous face, more than a meter wide: the face of a man of about forty-five, with a heavy black mustache and ruggedly handsome features" (Orwell 1)
The mood of the book right when you start reading it is very sad, and the author uses a lot of detail and imagery to enhance that sadness.
One of the things Julia does to be against the Party is to talk with hatred and swear every time she mentions the Party, and that is compared to a horse aneezing to say that somehow it is natural and healthy.
"In the end the Party would announce that two and two made five, and you would have to believe it ... And what was terrifying was not that they would kill you for thinking otherwise, but that they might be right. For, after all, how do we know that two and two make four? Or that the force of gravity works? Or that the past is unchangeable?" (Orwell 80).
Winston is the main character of the story. He is very thoughtful and is constantly questioning everything. Throughout the story he writes a diary to express his feelings and to try to keep his memory safe, but every time he writes something he meditates about it and analyzes it. He is also very suspicious about everything, but still has a rebellious nature, especially agaisnt the party.
Psychological Effects of Torture:
"He began to write down the thought that came into his head. He wrote in large clumsy capitals: FREEDOM IS SLAVERY. Then almost without a pause he wrote beneath it: TWO AND TWO MAKE FIVE." (Orwell 277).
The Party uses torture to make Winston believe everything they say, and after few torture sessions they accomplish that.
The author describes Winston to be as weak and fragile as jelly because of how tired he was after ninety hours of work in five days.
"His body seemed to have not only the weakness of jelly, but its translucency" (Orwell 179).
“Outside, even through the shut window pane, the world looked cold. Down in the street little eddies of wind were whirling dust and torn paper into spirals, and though the sun was shining and the sky a harsh blue, there seemed to be no color in anything except the posters that were plastered everywhere" (Orwell 2).
"It was merely one symptom of her revolt against the Party and all its ways, and somehow it seemed natural and healthy, like the sneeze of a horse that smells bad hay" (Orwell 122).