1984 Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. What is the name of the device Winston uses to write?

2. How does Victory Gin smell?

3. What is the resistance to the Party called?

4. What do the proles call rocketbombs?

5. When the Thought Police secretly arrest and execute someone, most people would say that person has been _______.

Short Essay Questions

1. What does Part 1, Chapter 1 show the reader about the quality of Oceania's services and products?

2. When Winston kisses Julia, he feels "incredulity and pride ... but he had no physical desire." Why do you think he feels this way? What does it reveal about why he needs Julia?

3. "All history was a palimpsest, scraped clean and reinscribed exactly as often as was necessary." What is a palimpsest, and why do you think the author used this word?

4. Look up the word "proletariat" in the dictionary. What does it mean? Why does the Party ignore the proles? Is this strange?

5. Why doesn't Winston kill the girl with the dark hair? Who else doesn't he kill for very similar reasons?

6. Describe Winston's marriage. Why did he separate from his wife?

7. Winston fears that the dark-haired girl is not a member of the Thought Police; instead, she is an amateur spy. Why do you think the latter is more dangerous?

8. Explain Julia's attitude towards the Party. What does this reveal about her character?

9. Who was comrade Ogilvy, and what was he like? How did he supposedly die?

10. The sandy-haired woman in the cubicle next to Winston spends all day deleting any record of people who have been "vaporized," even though her own husband had been killed this way. How do you think she felt when she deleted her own husband's name? Why does she continue to do this job?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Limits on power are often referred to as "checks and balances." Write an essay on this subject, touching upon:

1) The checks and balances that exist in the U.S. Constitution.

2) Some examples of checks and balances that have succeeded or failed.

3) Your vision of what the ideal system of checks and balances would look like.

Essay Topic 2

Love is one of the most fundamental human emotions. In Nineteen Eighty-Four, love and sexual affection are outlawed so that citizens will reserve their love for Big Brother. Write an essay explaining:

1) Why love is (or is not) important.

2) The ways that love can fundamentally change a person's life.

3) Whether or not love can really "conquer all." Examples, both literary and real, are encouraged.

Essay Topic 3

Privacy is a highly relevant issue in the modern world. Possibilities for surveillance and citizen control have expanded significantly since George Orwell's time, and this trend frequently inspires references in the news and pop culture to Nineteen Eighty-Four. Write an essay on the topic of privacy, stating:

1) What privacy means to you.

2) The importance of privacy to a society as a whole.

3) Your opinion on the current debate over privacy, security, terrorism, and the constitution.

(see the answer keys)

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