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George Orwell was the pen name of Eric Arthur Blair, born on June 25, 1903, in Motihari, India, to British parents. Eric had one older sister, Marjorie, and one younger sister, Avril.
The family moved to England from India when Orwell was very young. He was educated at a succession of boarding schools - first St. Cyprian's and then Eton. He did not do well enough in school to apply to University. Instead he applied to join the British Imperial Police and was stationed in Burma. He disliked police work and disapproved of the cruelties of the imperial system. After five years he resigned his commission.
Orwell decided he wanted to write and lived in rooms in London and Paris over the next few years. His first professional articles were published in 1928 - for the rest of his life he continued a flourishing career writing articles and reviews. He was a hard, conscientious worker and produced an almost unbelievable volume of output.
Around this time he began an odd practice of "tramping." He wanted to learn about the living conditions of the poorest of the poor, and so he would acquire old, shabby clothes, dress up as a tramp and go to seedy areas where he would mix with rough characters including sailors and unemployed laborers, sleeping in workhouses with the homeless.
In 1931 he finished his first novel, Down and Out in Paris and London, a description of his tramping in England and his experiences living on a shoestring in Paris. It was published in 1933.
His next novel was Burmese Days (1934), based on his experiences in Burma. In 1935 A Clergyman's Daughter was published and he wrote Keep the Aspidistra Flying. He met and became deeply involved with Eileen O'Shaughnessy. He wanted to research unemployment and poverty in the north of England and spent two months investigating conditions and speaking to miners. What he experienced had a profound effect on Orwell and was instrumental in developing his socialist ideas. On his return he wrote his most successful book to date, The Road to Wigan Pier. He and Eileen married on June 9, 1936.
Orwell was very upset over the threat Fascism posed to liberty in Europe and when the Spanish Civil War broke out, he went to Spain to fight against the fascists. On his return to England, Orwell wrote Homage to Catalonia, based on his war experiences. His next book was Animal Farm, which became his first major success. He and Eileen adopted a baby boy, Richard, in 1943. On March 29, 1945, Eileen died of cardiac arrest during an operation, leaving Orwell devastated. He retired to a remote island, along with Richard and a housekeeper/nanny. Here he wrote his final masterpiece, 1984.
The lung problems which plagued Orwell all his life, worsened, and he was finally diagnosed with advanced tuberculosis in 1948. He spent most of the rest of his life in hospitals and sanatoriums, but married again on October 13 1949, in his hospital room. Orwell and his second wife, Sonia Brownell, had decided to marry essentially because he trusted her to manage his estate and deal with editors and copyright lawyers after his death. He died on January 21, 1950.
Buddicom, Jacintha. Eric and Us: a Remembrance of George Orwell. London: Frewin, 1974.
Shelden, Michael. Orwell: The Authorized Biography. New York, NY: HarperCollins, 1991.
Steinhoff, William. George Orwell and the Origins of 1984. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1975.
The novel, published in 1949, takes place in 1984 and presents an imaginary future where a totalitarian state controls every aspect of life, even people's thoughts. The state is called Oceania and is ruled by a group known as the Party; its leader and dictator is Big Brother.
Winston Smith, the central character, is a thirty-nine year old man living in London. He secretly hates the Party and decides to rebel by starting a diary in which he reveals his rebellious thoughts. Through keeping a diary, Winston commits thoughtcrime and knows that one day he will be discovered by the Thought Police and probably killed.
Winston is fascinated by "proles," the lowest class in the social hierarchy of Oceania. They are the only group allowed to live pretty much as they like without heavy police surveillance. He befriends Mr. Charrington, the prole owner of a junk-shop, who shares his interest in the past and life before the rule of Big Brother.
At work, a dark-haired girl who works in another department approaches Winston in the corridor. She pretends to fall and hurt herself; when he helps her up she slips a piece of paper into his hand. It says "I love you." Winston is surprised and disturbed by this; any sexual relationship between Party members is strictly forbidden. Nevertheless, he is intrigued. They secretly arrange to meet in the country. He begins a love affair with the girl, who finally introduces herself as Julia. They have to be very cautious and meet in places that aren't watched: a clearing in the woods, an old church. Winston and Julia eventually rent the room above Mr. Charrington's junk-shop as a long-term private place for the two of them.
A member of the Inner Party, O'Brien, finds an excuse to give Winston his home address, an unusual event. Winston, noticeably excited, has always believed O'Brien may not be politically orthodox and could sympathize with his hatred of the Party. Winston and Julia go to see O'Brien and he enlists them into the Brotherhood, a secret organization dedicated to fighting Big Brother. He arranges to give Winston a copy of "The Book," a document that contains the truth about Big Brother and the development of the super-states. Winston and Julia go to their room above the junk-shop to read the book. The Thought Police burst in to arrest them and they discover that Mr. Charrington is a Thought Police agent. They are taken separately to the Ministry of Love. There, Winston learns that O'Brien is in fact an orthodox government agent and has deliberately tricked him. O'Brien takes charge of the process of "re-integrating" Winston, torturing and brainwashing him until he fully believes in the Party and its doctrines. As the final step of this process, Winston is forced to betray his love for Julia, and his feelings for her are destroyed.
Winston is released to live out his final days as a broken man. Soon, the Thought Police will execute him. Winston has submitted completely and loves Big Brother.
Winston Smith: Winston is thirty-nine, small and frail with fair hair and reddish skin. He wears the blue overalls that are the uniform of the Outer Party. He has a varicose ulcer above his right ankle. He is dissatisfied with life under the Party and wonders what things were like before, when people were free and had human dignity. He thinks deeply about the condition of the world. Winston has a phobic fear of rats.
Big Brother: The beloved leader of Oceania and symbol of the Party. Big Brother has black hair, a black moustache and piercing eyes that seem to follow you. His face and voice are everywhere--on the telescreens, coins, stamps, banners, posters, cigarette packets and book covers. Winston sometimes doubts that Big Brother is a real person.
Mr. Charrington: The owner of the prole junk-shop Winston visits. He is an old man, with a mild, friendly face and thick glasses. He has an intellectual air. His hair is almost white but his eyebrows are still black. Later, when Winston is arrested, he sees him with black hair and no glasses, a man of about thirty-five, and he realizes that all along Mr. Charrington was a disguised Thought Police agent.
Julia: When Winston first meets Julia he doesn't know her name and thinks she is a typical Party follower--a mindless, well-behaved robot. She works as a mechanic on a novel-writing machine. She has short, thick, dark hair, a freckled face and is twenty-six years old. Around her waist she wears a red sash, a symbol of the Junior Anti-Sex League. Later Winston discovers that Julia merely participates in the Anti-Sex League and other community activities as a cover and that she, too, hates the Party. She is intelligent and less likely to be fooled by Party propaganda than even Winston, but she is more interested in evading authority and having a good time than trying to overthrow the government. Julia is a highly sexual person.
Winston's Mother: She was tall, silent and moved slowly. She had magnificent, fair hair. She disappeared when Winston was about ten or eleven years old. Winston finds it tragic that she loved him and died loving him when he was too young and selfish to love her in return.
O'Brien: O'Brien has a very important, mysterious job. He is a large, well-built man with a 'coarse, humorous, brutal' face. He wears spectacles. Winston has always hoped that O'Brien may be an ally and also against Big Brother. As it turns out, he has been toying with Winston and is in charge of his torture and 're-integration' in the Ministry of Love. The two of them do have a special kind of empathy, although O'Brien can also be very cruel and is determined to force Winston to conform: ''Do you remember writing in your diary,' he said, 'that it did not matter whether I was a friend or an enemy, since I was at least a person who understood you and could be talked to? You were right. I enjoy talking to you. Your mind appeals to me. It resembles my own mind except that you happen to be insane.' (Part 3, Chapter 2, pg. 271)
Mr. Parsons: Parsons is not only Winston's neighbor but also works with him in the Ministry of Truth. Parsons is fattish but active. He is stupid, and incredibly enthusiastic about all political and community activities. He sweats a lot--he always smells of sweat and leaves damp patches on the handles of the table-tennis rackets at the Community Center. Winston thinks of him as 'one of those completely unquestioning, devoted drudges on whom, more even than on the Thought Police, the stability of the Party depended.' Even in the cells of the Ministry of Love, Parsons is loyal to the Party and glad to be arrested.
Ampleforth: A poet who works with Winston in the Ministry of Truth. He is quite fond of Winston in his own way. Working on a definitive edition of the works of Kipling, he allows the word 'God' to remain at the end of a line because he cannot find another suitable rhyme, and he is taken to the Ministry of Love.
Winston's Father: He was dark and thin, wore spectacles and dressed neatly. Winston especially remembers that the soles of his shoes were very thin.
Goldstein: The leader of the mysterious Brotherhood, and the enemy of the Party. He was one of the original leaders of the revolution, but Big Brother later exposed him as a traitor and forced him into exile.
Jones, Aaronson and Rutherford: Among the last survivors of the original leaders of the Revolution--who were all, except for Big Brother, exposed as traitors and counter-revolutionaries or wiped out. Like all Party enemies, they were arrested and then released for a while after they confessed, but eventually killed by the Thought Police. After their release Winston saw them in the
Katharine: Winston's wife. They parted nearly eleven years ago and he hardly ever thinks of her. She was tall and fair-haired with strong facial features. She was very politically orthodox and not at all intelligent. 'She had not a thought in her head that was not a slogan, and there was no imbecility, absolutely none, that she was not capable of swallowing if the Party handed it out to her.' (Part 1, Chapter 6, pg. 67) Katharine hated sex, but insisted that she and Winston should try to have children for the Party.
Martin: O'Brien's mysterious servant. A small, dark-haired man in a white jacket, with a totally expressionless, yellow face which might be Asian. O'Brien reveals that he is one of the Brotherhood. It seems to Winston that Martin's whole life is playing a part. O'Brien tells them that sometimes the organization finds it necessary to alter someone's appearance, and Winston wonders whether Martin has a synthetic face, if this is why he shows no expression.
Comrade Ogilvy: A character Winston makes up. He is the perfect Oceanian citizen and even as a child had spent all his time supporting the Party. As an adult, he had designed a highly effective hand grenade and then died in action at the age of twenty-three protecting important dispatches. He didn't drink or smoke, was completely celibate and never discussed anything but the Party philosophy, Ingsoc. 'Comrade Ogilvy, who had never existed in the present, now existed in the past, and when once the act of forgery was forgotten, he would exist just as authentically, and upon the same evidence, as Charlemagne or Julius Caesar.' (Part 1, Chapter 4, pg. 50)
Mrs. Parsons: Mr. Parson's wife. She is about thirty, but looks older. She has dust in the creases of her face and her hair is wispy. She looks crushed and afraid.
The Skull-faced Man: One of Winston's fellow prisoners in the Ministry of Love. He looks ordinary and mean--he might have been an engineer or technician. He radiates murderous, unappeasable hatred. His face is so emaciated that it looks like a skull, and he is obviously starving to death. When the guards come to take him to Room 101, he hysterically begs them not to take him. He starts to scream and says he will do anything rather than go there--offers to confess to anything, tells them to shoot him, tells them to cut the throats of his wife and three small children in front of him, but begs them not to take him to Room 101.
Syme: One of Winston's co-workers. A Newspeak specialist who is working on the Eleventh Edition of the official dictionary. He is politically orthodox and a hard worker, but, Winston thinks, he is too intelligent. Sooner or later he will get vaporized.
Airstrip One: The territory that used to be known as Britain.
The Alcove: Winston's plan of keeping a diary is partly suggested by the fact that the telescreen in his living room is unusually placed--there is a shallow alcove in the wall next to the screen which is out of sight. The alcove was probably intended to hold bookshelves, but Winston puts a table there and uses it as a private place to write in. In the alcove he can be heard, but not seen, by someone watching him through the telescreen.
The Book: The book that contains all the truth against the Party and Big Brother. Goldstein wrote it. The book is highly illegal--copies are produced by the Brotherhood, and continually sought out and destroyed by the Thought Police. The title, as Winston discovers when he finally gets hold of a copy, is The Theory and Practice of Oligarchical Collectivism.
The Brotherhood: A secret organization, led by Emmanuel Goldstein, which is dedicated to overthrowing the Party government. O'Brien tells Winston and Julia that no-one knows how large the Brotherhood is or who the members are--no single member ever meets more than three or four contacts at a time, so that they can never betray more than a handful of people. When members are finally caught, they get no help. If it is vital to silence someone, a razor blade may be smuggled into their cell so that they can kill themselves before being questioned.
The Chestnut Tree Café: Haunt of painters and musicians, the place seems ill omened and slightly disreputable. It is associated with those out of favor with the Party--the old leaders of the Party, before they were exposed as traitors and purged, used to gather there. The specialty of the house is gin flavored with cloves.
Crimestop: Stopping short, by instinct, on the threshold of any train of thought that could prove disloyal to the Party.
Community Center: Where Party members are supposed to go after work for communal recreation--games, lectures and drinking. Party members are not supposed to spend a lot of time alone or have spare time.
The Diary: Where Winston writes his secret thoughts. He uses a real, old-fashioned pen and ink, and writes in a beautiful book with creamy paper, which he found in the junk-shop. He puts a special speck of dust on the cover so that he can tell if anyone has found the diary, but does not realize that the Thought Police actually move and replace the speck of dust so he will not know that he is being watched.
Doublethink: The practice of thought control necessary to be a good Party disciple. No Party member can ever admit that the Party might be wrong. However, sometimes reality shows something to the contrary. Through using doublethink, the Party member can deal with any problems or inconsistencies with the Party. Party members simply block all awareness of the Party's falsities from their mind and then, as another act of doublethink, they forget that they have even used doublethink.
Eastasia: One of the three world superpowers. This super-state that has the least land, but still a large population. It contains China and all of southern and eastern Asia.
Eurasia: One of the three world superpowers. Its landmass is the whole of the northern part of Asia, and Europe. In the novel, Oceania is first at war with Eurasia and allied with Eastasia, but then is at war with Eastasia and allied with Eurasia.
The Glass Paperweight: A beautiful antique that Winston finds in the junk-shop--a heavy lump of glass, curved on one side and flat on the other, almost like half a sphere. The color and texture of the glass has a softness, like rainwater, and in the center is a piece of pink coral. Winston buys it because of its beauty, but it is a strange thing for a Party member to buy and it would be difficult for him to explain if anyone knew that he had it. It seems to him as if the surface of the glass is like the sky, and inside is a tiny world where Julia's life and his own are fixed, like the coral, in a kind of eternity.
The Golden Country: A landscape that recurs in Winston's dreams that he thinks he recognizes in the country area he visits with Julia. There is an old pasture (a field used for grazing animals) with a foot-track running across it and a few molehills. Nearby he can hear a stream.
Hate Week: A kind of week-long festival involving processions, speeches, films, banners, posters etc., aiming at building hatred of the enemy.
Inner Party: The highest level of Oceania society, easily visible because of their black overalls. Regular people like Winston belong to the middle level, the Outer Party.
Junior Anti-Sex League: An organization for young people to advocate complete celibacy for both sexes. Their ideal is that all children will be the products of artificial insemination and will grow up in public institutions. Members wear a red sash around the waist.
The Junk-shop: Winston finds this shop in a slummy area of town and is fascinated. Although Party members are not supposed to go into ordinary shops, he goes in to buy a blank book, which he uses as his secret diary. Winston later returns and meets the owner, Mr. Charrington. He and Julia rent the room above the shop, which has an armchair, a mahogany double bed and an 'old-fashioned' clock with a twelve-hour face, as a private place for the two of them.
Ministry of Love: In charge of law and order; the Ministry of Love is where political prisoners are tortured. It is hard to get into, surrounded by barbed wire and steel doors, and the surrounding streets are patrolled by guards.
Ministry of Peace: In charge of war--Oceania is constantly at war with either Eurasia or Eastasia and alternates which superpower is the friend and which is the enemy at an instant's notice.
Ministry of Plenty: In charge of economic affairs and production of goods. The Ministry of Plenty fabricates shortages of everyday items, such as razor blades.
Ministry of Truth: Like the other ministries, it is housed in a huge white pyramid-shaped concrete building. It is in charge of creating and rewriting all news, education, entertainment and art.
Newspeak: The official language of Oceania. The idea behind Newspeak is to develop a language in which it is technically impossible to disagree with the Party because there are no words for unorthodox ideas. Every year the vocabulary of Newspeak becomes smaller and smaller and the language is more simplified.
Oceania: The super-state headed by the Party and Big Brother. It consists of what used to be called North and South America, the Atlantic islands including Great Britain, Australasia and the southern part of Africa.
Proles: The proletariat--the working class of Oceania. They have much freer lives than Party members and the Party spends much less time watching and controlling the proles, because they aren't worth the time and effort. The Party does not view the proles as a threat to the system. Winston believes that any change in Oceania society would have to come from them.
Records Department: The department in the Ministry of Truth which changes all records of the past, from newspapers to poetry, so as to reflect current politics and show the Party in the best possible light.
The Spies: The Party's organization for children. They wear blue shorts, gray shirts and red neckerchiefs. In the Spies children are taught to hate traitors and thought criminals. They also learn to worship the Party and Big Brother but rebel against all discipline except that of the Party, so that they become 'ungovernable little savages' and often turn on their parents.
St. Clement's Dane Engraving: Screwed onto the wall in the room above the junk-shop, a steel engraving of the church, which is an oval building with rectangular windows and a small tower. Mr. Charrington offers to sell it to Winston but it is obviously too big and awkward for him to take home. It later turns out that there was a telescreen behind the engraving, spying on Winston and Julia during their time together.
Telescreen: A square metal screen, like a dulled mirror, which works like a television screen except that it not only shows programs (all praising the Party) but also allows anyone within its range to be seen and heard by the Thought Police.
Thoughtcrime: The crime of thinking anything that disagrees with Big Brother, the Party or the Party philosophy, Ingsoc.
Thought Police: The specialized, terrifying branch of the police that detects and arrests thought criminals.
Two Minute Hate: A daily ritual. Everyone assembles in front of the telescreen at eleven hundred for a two-minute program that shows Emmanuel Goldstein, the Enemy of the People, and marching enemy soldiers. This is a highly emotional moment and it is impossible even for Winston to avoid joining in: 'A hideous ecstasy of fear and vindictiveness, a desire to kill, to torture, to smash faces in with a sledgehammer, seemed to flow through the whole group of people like an electric current, turning one even against one's will into a grimacing, screaming lunatic.' (Part 1, Chapter 1, pg. 16) At the end of Two Minute Hate, Big Brother's face appears, inspiring everyone with relief and is followed by the three Party slogans.
Vaporizing: Enemies of the party are arrested in the middle of the night and completely disappear. Their names are wiped from register and all records of any of their actions are destroyed, so that they are totally abolished--'vaporized'--and have become an 'unperson', someone who supposedly has never existed.
Victory Gin: The alcoholic beverage drunk by Outer Party members--it is colorless, oily, tastes like nitric acid and has a sickly smell. Drinking it causes an effect like being hit on the back of the head with a rubber club. It is the only product in Oceania that is both cheap and easy to find.
Victory Mansions: The apartment building where Wilson lives. It was built in 1930 and is falling apart. Nothing, from the plumbing to the electricity, works right. The hallway smells like boiled cabbage and old rags.
Quote 1: "BIG BROTHER IS WATCHING YOU" Part 1, Chapter 1, pg. 3
Quote 2: "WAR IS PEACE
FREEDOM IS SLAVERY
IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH." Part 1, Chapter 1, pg. 6
Quote 3: "A hideous ecstasy of fear and vindictiveness, a desire to kill, to torture, to smash faces in with a sledgehammer, seemed to flow through the whole group of people like an electric current, turning one even against one's will into a grimacing, screaming lunatic." Part 1, Chapter 1, pg. 16
Quote 4: "one of those completely unquestioning, devoted drudges on whom, more even than on the Thought Police, the stability of the Party depended." Part 1, Chapter 2, pg. 23
Quote 5: "We shall meet in the place where there is no darkness." Part 1, Chapter 2, pg. 27
Quote 6: "The past was dead, the future was unimaginable." Part 1, Chapter 2, pg. 28
Quote 7: "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." Part 1, Chapter 3, pg. 33
Quote 8: "'Who controls the past', ran the Party slogan, 'controls the future: who controls the present controls the past.'" Part 1, Chapter 3, pg. 37
Quote 9: "Comrade Ogilvy, who had never existed in the present, now existed in the past, and when once the act of forgery was forgotten, he would exist just as authentically, and upon the same evidence, as Charlemagne or Julius Caesar." Part 1, Chapter 4, pg. 50
Quote 10: "Your worst enemy, he reflected, was your own nervous system. At any moment the tension inside you was liable to translate itself into some visible symptom." Part 1, Chapter 6, pg. 64
Quote 11: "She had not a thought in her head that was not a slogan, and there was no imbecility, absolutely none, that she was not capable of swallowing if the Party handed it out to her." Part 1, Chapter 6, pg. 67
Quote 12: "Sexual intercourse was to be looked on as a slightly disgusting minor operation, like having an enema." Part 1, Chapter 6, pg. 69
Quote 13: "They were born, they grew up in the gutters, they went to work at twelve, they passed through a brief blossoming period of beauty and sexual desire, they married at twenty, they were middle-aged at thirty, they died, for the most part, at sixty. Heavy physical work, the care of home and children, petty quarrels with neighbors, films, football, beer, and, above all, gambling filled up the horizon of their minds." Part 1, Chapter 7, pg. 71
Quote 14: "If there is hope, wrote Winston, it lies in the proles." Part 1, Chapter 7, pg. 72
Quote 15: "Until they become conscious they will never rebel, and until after they have rebelled they cannot become conscious." Part 1, Chapter 7, pg. 74
Quote 16: "a nation of warriors and fanatics, marching forward in perfect unity, all thinking the same thoughts and shouting the same slogans, perpetually working, fighting, triumphing, persecuting - three hundred million people all with the same face." Part 1, Chapter 7, pg. 77
Quote 17: "Freedom is the freedom to say that two plus two make four. If that is granted, all else follows." Part 1, Chapter 7, pg. 84
Quote 18: "It seemed to him that he knew exactly what it felt like to sit in a room like this, in an armchair beside an open fire with your feet in the fender and a kettle on the hob: utterly alone, utterly secure, with nobody watching you, no voice pursuing you, no sound except the singing of the kettle and the friendly ticking of the clock." Part 1, Chapter 8, pg. 100
Quote 19: "Oranges and lemons, say the bells of St Clement's, You owe me three farthings, say the bells of St Martin's." Part 1, Chapter 8, pg. 103
Quote 20: "At the sight of the words I love you the desire to stay alive had welled up in him, and the taking of minor risks suddenly seemed stupid." Part 2, Chapter 1, pg. 110-11
Quote 21: "by degrees the flood of music drove all speculations out of his mind. It was as though it were a kind of liquid stuff that poured all over him and got mixed up with the sunlight that filtered through the leaves." Part 2, Chapter 2, pg. 125
Quote 22: "Not merely the love of one person, but the animal instinct, the simple undifferentiated desire: that was the force that would tear the Party to pieces." Part 2, Chapter 2, pg. 127
Quote 23: "to be bought furtively by proletarian youths who were under the impression that they were buying something illegal." Part 2, Chapter 3, pg. 132
Quote 24: "What was more important was that sexual privation induced hysteria, which was desirable because it could be transformed into war fever and leader worship." Part 2, Chapter 3, pg. 134
Quote 25: "She did not understand that there was no such thing as happiness, that the only victory lay in the far future, long after you were dead, that from the moment of declaring war on the Party it was better to think of yourself as a corpse. 'We are the dead,' he said." Part 2, Chapter 3, pg. 137
Quote 26: "The smell of her hair, the taste of her mouth, the feeling of her skin seemed to have got inside him, or into the air all around him. She had become a physical necessity." Part 2, Chapter 4, pg. 140
Quote 27: "The proles, normally apathetic about the war, were being lashed into one of their periodical frenzies of patriotism." Part 2, Chapter 5, pg. 150
Quote 28: "So long as they were actually in this room, they both felt, no harm could come to them." Part 2, Chapter 5, pg. 152
Quote 29: "Even the one plan that was practicable, suicide, they had no intention of carrying out. To hang on from day to day and from week to week, spinning out a present that had no future, seemed an unconquerable instinct, just as one's lungs will always draw the next breath so long as there is air available." Part 2, Chapter 5, pg. 153
Quote 30: "she only questioned the teachings of the Party when they in some way touched upon her own life. Often she was ready to accept the official mythology, simply because the difference between truth and falsehood did not seem important to her." Part 2, Chapter 5, pg. 154
Quote 31: "He had the sensation of stepping into the dampness of a grave, and it was not much better because he had always known that the grave was there and waiting for him." Part 2, Chapter 6, pg. 160
Quote 32: "He knew that he was starving the other two, but he could not help it; he even felt that he had a right to do it. The clamorous hunger in his belly seemed to justify him." Part 2, Chapter 7, pg. 163
Quote 33: "The terrible thing that the Party had done was to persuade you that mere impulses, mere feelings, were of no account, while at the same time robbing you of all power over the material world." Part 2, Chapter 7, pg. 165
Quote 34: "It's the one thing they can't do. They can make you say anything - anything - but they can't make you believe it. They can't get inside you." Part 2, Chapter 7, pg. 167
Quote 35: "You will work for a while, you will be caught, you will confess, and then you will die... There is no possibility that any perceptible change will happen within our own lifetime. We are the dead." Part 2, Chapter 8, pg. 177
Quote 36: "The primary aim of modern warfare Part 1n accordance with the principles of doublethink, this aim is simultaneously recognized and not recognized by the directing brains of the Inner Party is to use up the products of the machine without raising the general standard of living." Part 2, Chapter 9, pg. 189
Quote 37: "If the machine were used deliberately for that end, hunger, overwork, dirt, illiteracy, and disease could be eliminated within a few generations." Part 2, Chapter 9, pg. 190
Quote 38: "the consciousness of being at war, and therefore in danger, makes the handing-over of all power to a small caste seem the natural, unavoidable condition of survival." Part 2, Chapter 9, pg. 192
Quote 39: "a mixture of psychologist and inquisitor, studying with extraordinary minuteness the meaning of facial expressions, gestures and tones of voice, and testing the truth-producing effects of drugs, shock therapy, hypnosis, and physical torture." Part 2, Chapter 9, pg. 194
Quote 40: "It was the product of a mind similar to his own, but enormously more powerful, more systematic, less fear-ridden. The best books, he perceived, are those that tell you what you know already." Part 2, Chapter 9, pg. 201
Quote 41: "Even the Catholic Church of the Middle Ages was tolerant by modern standards. Part of the reason for this was that in the past no government had the power to keep its citizens under constant surveillance. The invention of print, however, made it easier to manipulate public opinion, and the film and the radio carried the process further. With the development of television, and the technical advance which made it possible to receive and transmit simultaneously on the same instrument, private life came to an end." Part 2, Chapter 9, pg. 206-7
Quote 42: "the essential act of the Party is to use conscious deception while retaining the firmness of purpose that goes with complete honesty." Part 2, Chapter 9, pg. 215
Quote 43: "everywhere stood the same solid unconquerable figure, made monstrous by work and childbearing, toiling from birth to death and still singing." Part 2, Chapter 10, pg. 222
Quote 44: "It was more natural to exist from moment to moment, accepting another ten minutes' life even with the certainty that there was torture at the end of it." Part 3, Chapter 1, pg. 232
Quote 45: "There were times when it went on and on until the cruel, wicked, unforgivable thing seemed to him not that the guards continued to beat him but that he could not force himself into losing consciousness." Part 3, Chapter 2, pg. 244
Quote 46: "The old feeling, that at bottom it did not matter whether O'Brien was a friend or an enemy, had come back. O'Brien was a person who could be talked to... O'Brien had tortured him to the edge of lunacy, and in a little while, it was certain, he would send him to his death. It made no difference." Part 3, Chapter 2, pg.255-6
Quote 47: "There was nothing left in them except sorrow for what they had done, and love of Big Brother. It was touching to see how they loved him. They begged to be shot quickly, so that they could die while their minds were still clean." Part 3, Chapter 2, pg. 259
Quote 48: "We control matter because we control the mind. Reality is inside the skull." Part 3, Chapter 3, pg. 268
Quote 49: "'Do you remember writing in your diary,' he said, 'that it did not matter whether I was a friend or an enemy, since I was at least a person who understood you and could be talked to? You were right. I enjoy talking to you. Your mind appeals to me. It resembles my own mind except that you happen to be insane.'" Part 3, Chapter 2, pg. 271
Quote 50: "It was like swimming against a current that swept you backwards however hard you struggled, and then suddenly deciding to turn round and go with the current instead of opposing it. Nothing had changed except your own attitude; the predestined thing happened in any case." Part 3, Chapter 4, pg. 280
Quote 51: "For the first time he perceived that if you want to keep a secret you must also hide it from yourself." Part 3, Chapter 4, pg. 283
Quote 52: "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!" Part 3, Chapter 5, pg. 289
Quote 53: "There were things, your own acts, from which you could not recover. Something was killed in your breast; burnt out, cauterized out." Part 3, Chapter 6, pg. 293
Quote 54: "But it was all right, everything was all right, the struggle was finished. He had won the victory over himself. He loved Big Brother." Part 3, Chapter 6, pg. 300
Quote 55: "The purpose of Newspeak was not only to provide a medium of expression for the world-view and mental habits proper to the devotees of Ingsoc, but to make all other modes of thought impossible." Appendix, pg. 303
Newspeak 1: In Newspeak, the official language of Oceania, the Ministries are referred to as "minis:" the Ministries of Love, Peace, Plenty and Truth are "Miniluv," "Minipax," "Miniplenty," and "Minitrue."
Newspeak 2: As Winston wonders for whom he is writing the diary, the Newspeak word "doublethink" comes to mind. He realizes that it is impossible for him to communicate with the future. The status quo will continue and no one will listen, or society will be completely different, and no one will care about his problems. Even so, he is attempting to communicate his thoughts to the future. This is an example of doublethink.
Newspeak 3: During "Physical Jerks," Winston thinks again about the idea of "doublethink," or in Oldspeak, "reality control." It means to be able to think two contradictory things at once without being aware of the contradiction. In other words, one is conscious of telling the truth while telling lies, forgetting whatever one needs to forget and then remembering it when needed, only to forget again. Doublethink is essential for political orthodoxy.
Newspeak 4: The Ministry of Truth uses a jargon constructed mainly out of Newspeak words for sending memos to employees. Winston also has to use Newspeak when working on leading articles for the Times, all of which are written entirely in Newspeak. For this he uses his Newspeak dictionary, the Ninth Edition.
Newspeak 5: Winston talks to Syme, a Newspeak expert. He concludes that most of his job is destroying words. Synonyms and antonyms are used to create shades of meaning, and are therefore useless. The aim of Newspeak is to narrow the possible thoughts a person can have to a point where thoughtcrime will be impossible because there will be no language in which to understand it.
They discuss the word duckspeak, inspired by a fellow worker in the cafeteria whose irritating conversation at the next table is like the quacking of a duck. Applied to someone you agree with, the word is praise; applied to an opponent, it is a term of abuse.
Newspeak 6: The Newspeak word for spending time on your own is ownlife, a negative term indicating individualism and eccentricity.
Newspeak 7: Winston uses the Newspeak word "goodthinkful" to describe his wife, a term for someone who is naturally orthodox and incapable of thinking anything that disagrees with the Party.
Newspeak 8: O'Brien congratulates Winston on his use of Newspeak and asks if he takes a scholarly interest in it. Newspeak is the opposite of dead languages like Latin and Sanskrit. Instead of a language of the past, it is a language of the future. Oceania is preparing for the day when everyone will speak only Newspeak. O'Brien tells Winston that in the new, tenth edition of the dictionary, there is a further reduction in the number of verbs, and therefore a reduction in the number of actions a person can take.
Newspeak 9: To write memos, the Ministries currently use a mixture of Newspeak and abbreviated English.
Newspeak 10: Just as Newspeak removes from the language incompatible with Party politics, such as freedom and dignity, it adds new words to define the twisted reality of Big Brother, such as doublethink, and blackwhite.
Newspeak 11: Newspeak has 3 distinct classes of words. The "A" vocabulary consists of the bare minimum of simple words needed for everyday life (dog, run, house). The "B" vocabulary includes words (usually compound) deliberately constructed for political purposes. Such words are difficult to use correctly without a full understanding of Ingsoc, and include words like crimethink (thoughtcrime) and goodthink (orthodoxy). The "C" vocabulary expands to include scientific and technical words.
To simplify grammar and eliminate shades of meaning, prefixes are added to simple adjectives. In Newspeak, "good, excellent, bad, and awful" are changed to "good, plusgood, doubleplus good, or ungood." "Goodful" would mean well. Instead of "very hot," a Newspeaker would use "doubleplusuncold."
Newspeak is designed to make it impossible to express any unorthodox thought. For example, one could attempt to attack the government by saying, "Big Brother is ungood." Because of the language of Newspeak, there would be no words to explain or back up this statement and it would be comprehended as illogical, similar to describing winter as hot.
The Proletariat 1: In his first diary entry, Winston describes spending the evening at the cinema watching war films. One of the films showed a ship full of refugees being bombed, including a mother in a lifeboat trying to shelter a child with her arms. There was a huge explosion as a 20-kilogram bomb was planted into the lifeboat, then a shot of a child's arm going up into the air. Everyone in the Party seats applauded, but a woman in the prole section of the house was upset and started shouting that it was wrong to show that kind of thing, especially in front of children. The police threw her out. As is mentioned throughout the novel, we see that the proletariat is much less politically orthodox and much more concerned with human emotions than Party members.
The Proletariat 2: Only prole women use make-up and perfume; only prole women are prostitutes, hence, Winston says he associates a painted face with fornication.
The Proletariat 3: Winston believes that only among the proles (85% of the population) can the force to overthrow the Party be generated. No one knows very much about them, and although the Party claims to have "liberated" the proles from the miserable lives they led under the capitalists, the Party also teaches that the proles are inferior and must be kept that way. They have a certain pattern of life:
"They were born, they grew up in the gutters, they went to work at twelve, they passed through a brief blossoming period of beauty and sexual desire, they married at twenty, they were middle-aged at thirty, they died, for the most part, at sixty. Heavy physical work, the care of home and children, petty quarrels with neighbors, films, football, beer, and, above all, gambling filled up the horizon of their minds." Part 1, Chapter 7, pg. 71
A few Thought Police agents keep a vague eye on them. Crime and sexual promiscuity are allowed to continue.
The Proletariat 4: The proles live in the slums of the city. On his walk, Winston sees many of them swarming in alleyways, male and female, old and young. As he passes, some of them pay no attention to him and some of them watch him cautiously. It is odd to see a blue-overalled Party member in this type of neighborhood.
The Proletariat 5: The proles spend a lot of their spare time in pubs drinking beer. One of their main preoccupations is the Lottery, and they all live in constant hope of winning huge prizes. Winston, like all Party members, knows that most of the prizes are imaginary and only small sums of money are paid out from time to time.
The Proletariat 6: The proles live much less complicated, less observed lives. The train Winston takes is full of proles; they are cheerful because of the sunny weather, something unimaginable among Party members. They are more family-oriented, often traveling in a group with everyone from the great-grandmother to the month-old baby. They are also less guarded. The family traveling in Winston's carriage openly admits to him that they are going to the country to see in-laws and to buy butter on the black market.
The Proletariat 7: Another example of the concessions made to proles is "Pornosec," the sub-section of the Fiction Department in which Julia once worked. Its nickname is "Muck House." The department produces pornographic booklets in sealed packets with suggestive titles, "to be bought furtively by proletarian youths who were under the impression that they were buying something illegal." Part 2, Chater 3, pg. 132
The Proletariat 8: A subsection of the Music Department composes popular songs especially for the proles, using a special machine, rather than human artistic talent. An especially popular number at this time is "It was only a hopeless fancy," sung by the woman who hangs her washing outside Wilson and Julia's room.
The Proletariat 9: The proles treat Hate Week very much as a festival. They are less aware of its sinister aspect. This is exemplified by the fact that they "take a fancy" to the terrifying Hate Song and go around singing it on the street, along with the mindlessly sentimental "It was only a hopeless fancy."
The Proletariat 10: The proles and their emotions are treated as malleable and insignificant.
"The proles, normally apathetic about the war, were being lashed into one of their periodical frenzies of patriotism." Part 3, Chapter 5, pg. 150
They can be manipulated to become vicious. For example, when a rumor is circulated that spies are directing the rocket bombs, a mob sets an old couple's house on fire because they suspect them of being "of foreign extraction." The old couple die of suffocation.
The Proletariat 11: One of Julia and Winston's dreams of escape involves them becoming proles, changing themselves so that they cannot be recognized, learning to speak with proletarian accents, and getting jobs in a factory somewhere, so that they can live together undetected.
The Proletariat 12: When Winston thinks about emotions and how the Party has removed them from life, he realizes for the first time he does not despise the proles, nor does he think of them as an inert mass that will one day rise against the Party. The proles still feel emotion, emotions that Winston must relearn how to feel. They are human beings. Party members are not.
The Proletariat 13: Goldstein's book suggests that technology is a great threat to the established social hierarchy and it could have removed the existence of the prole class, creating a society where everyone was equal.
"If the machine were used deliberately for that end, hunger, overwork, dirt, illiteracy, and disease could be eliminated within a few generations." Part 1, Chapter 9, pg. 190
The Proletariat 14: The woman hanging out washing is still singing "It was only a hopeless fancy." The tune has outlasted the popularity of the Hate Song.
Looking out at her, Winston realizes that her huge fifty-year old body is beautiful. He feels again that hope must lie in the proles. In the end, even if it takes a thousand years, they must awake and spread the human vitality they have not lost throughout the world. Everywhere, in London, Europe, Asia and America, women like this exist:
"[E]verywhere stood the same solid unconquerable figure, made monstrous by work and childbearing, toiling from birth to death and still singing." Part 2, Section 10, pg. 222
The Proletariat 15: The proles in the prison where Winston is first taken, behave completely differently from the silent, terrified Party prisoners. They are rowdy and don't seem to care about any attempts to restrain their behavior. They insult the guards, fight attempts to impound their belongings, write dirty words on the floor, smuggle in food, and shout down the telescreen when it chastises them. Some of them even seem to be on good terms with the guards and know them. They talk about the forced-labor camps where most of them expect to be sent, and reveal that in the camps the common criminals are treated very differently from the Party political prisoners, who have to do all the dirty jobs. One woman comes in drunk. Like Winston, her name is Smith and after their meeting, she says sentimentally, "I might be your mother." Winston reflects that she might be. She is about the right age and build. Presumably, people change after 20 years in a forced-labor camp.
The Proletariat 16: O'Brien informs Winston that his old dream of the proles rising to overthrow the Party is ridiculous. The proles, O'Brien maintains, are not human--humanity is the Party. The proles are helpless, like animals.
Reality Control 1: "Doublethink" is the major way the Party controls its members. Through "doublethink," people consciously accept anything the Party tells them, even if it contradicts something they already know. Furthermore, they consciously suppress any thought or information that goes against anything the Party says. To complete the cycle, they must forget that they have even used doublethink. For example, Oceania is continually at war with either Eurasia or Eastasia. In April of 1984, Oceania is at war with Eurasia; citizens must force themselves to "remember" that they have always been at war with Eurasia, despite the fact that Oceania was allied with Eurasia only four years before. Failure to control their thoughts using doublethink, would result in thoughtcrime.
Reality Control 2: A lot of Winston's job in the Records Department deals with reality control. He changes reports of the past so that every record of a past event the Party wants to suppress completely disappears. In many cases, the records he changes were fictitious in the first place. He can also, as in the case of Comrade Ogilvy, create an entirely new past and imagine events which then become historical "fact." Essentially, the Party creates a fake past according to what it wants to be true; the real past is completely forgotten and unrecorded.
Reality Control 3: While Winston is in the cafeteria, the telescreen makes an announcement stating that production output is higher than ever, and that people have been engaging in spontaneous demonstrations all over the state to show their gratitude to Big Brother. Many demonstrations were staged to thank Big Brother for raising the chocolate ration to twenty grams a week. Winston remembers that only the day before, the telescreen announced that the ration was being reduced to twenty grams from thirty. Everyone else in the cafeteria swallows this information, like Parsons, with blank stupidity, or like Symes, in a complex way involving doublethink. Winston wonders if he is the only person in the world that actually has a memory.
Reality Control 4: Winston is frustrated by the impossibility of knowing what is and what is not a lie. For all he knows, it might be true that the average human being is better off under the Party than before the Revolution. His only evidence is that he instinctively feels that his standard of living is unbearable and that at some other time in history, things must have been better.
The reality of life under the Party (poor, dirty, and hungry) is completely different to the image of life according to their propaganda (efficient, futuristic, and mechanical). Even so, everyone appears to swallow the propaganda and believe they are living the great life they see in posters and on films.
Reality Control 5: Winston is shaken by indisputable evidence that The Party has lied. He has always suspected that the confessions of the "traitors" that are purged are not true, but now he has proof. Unfortunately, he does not know what to do with it. There is no way to publish it or show it to the world. His discovery does him no good. Winston is upset because he does not understand why the past is faked in this way. It is obvious that the Party wants to appear consistent, but in the long run, what is their motive?
Reality Control 6: Winston is disturbed by the fact that Julia does not seem to care about the Party's reality control. To her, it doesn't really matter that they've lied or that Winston could have proved it. None of this makes any difference in her day-to-day life. Winston tries to explain that the past is being destroyed, but she does not see value in the past. He responds:
"History has stopped. Nothing exists except an endless present in which the Party is always right." Part 2, Section 5, pg. 156
Reality Control 7: By asserting reality and denying the Party's reality control in a single sentence, O'Brien turns himself and Winston into conspirators. The Party has created a reality in which Syme, and other vaporized people, never existed. When O'Brien denies the Party's reality by referring subtly to Syme, he commits a crime.
Reality Control 8: The Party's power, Winston realizes, lies in its control of reality. They can remove you from recorded history, but to people living before the Party, this would not have been the most important thing. The Party's true destructiveness lies in it's mission to destroy individual human feeling and emotion.
Reality Control 9: The moment it is announced that Oceania is at war with Eastasia, Winston and the other Ministry of Truth employees automatically head to work, even though it is around eleven at night. Although they are supposed to make themselves believe that Oceania has always been at war with Eastasia, and there has been no change, according to doublethink, they also know that a lot of records have to be altered.
In his frenzy of work, Winston is not even troubled by the fact that he is forging documents. He takes it as an intellectual exercise and is as anxious as anyone else that the faking should be perfect.
Reality Control 10: Goldstein's book explains the mental gymnastics Party members have to go through to ensure total reality control. Consider Newspeak words crimestop, blackwhite, and doublethink. "Crimestop" means to stop a train of thought instinctively before it can become dangerous, a form of protective stupidity. Other examples would include not understanding an argument if it is against Ingsoc, not seeing something obvious, and not catching a logical error, perhaps getting bored (like Julia) or repelled by any discussion that could become unorthodox. "Blackwhite" refers to a self-brainwashing process, where being loyal means being willing to say that black is white or that two plus two is five if the Party demands it. This is similar to "doublethink," a concept essential to Ingsoc. A party member can tell deliberate lies while believing in them at the same time. You forget that you used doublethink by an act of doublethink, and then forget that again by using doublethink, in a never-ending chain.
"the essential act of Party is to use conscious deception while retaining firmness purpose that goes with complete honesty." Part 2, Section 9, pg. 215
Reality Control 11: O'Brien discusses with Winston the nature of the past. O'Brien gets Winston to agree that the past does not have a solid physical existence, or a place in material reality. He asks Winston, where the past exists, and Winston answers that it exists in records and in human memory. O'Brien then declares that since the Party controls all records and all memories, it controls the past. Winston points out that the Party has not controlled his memory, but O'Brien argues that Winston failed to control his own memory and that this has made him a lunatic, and in the minority. Reality is never objective; it exists in the human mind, but not in the individual mind, which is fallible and prone to mistakes. True reality exists only in the mind of the Party, which is collective and immortal. Hence, to be sane and see true reality, one must destroy the self and see the world only through the eyes of the Party.
Reality Control 12: O'Brien teaches Winston of the Party's omnipotence through control over the mind. If O'Brien wanted to float off the floor like a soap bubble, he could do it. The Party makes the laws of Nature. He and Winston argue. Winston points out that there is a whole universe - stars, seas and fossils of ancient creatures. O'Brien denies these things are real. If the Party wished, it could blot out the stars and the seas, declare the sun goes around the earth, the earth is flat, and that Oceania is the whole universe. For certain purposes, of course, such as navigation, they may want to say the earth is not flat and the earth goes round the sun, but that is the whole point of doublethink. Winston is immensely frustrated by these arguments but does not know quite how to combat them.
Reality Control 13: Once Winston begins to practice reality control, he realizes that absolutely anything can be true if he (or, more importantly, the Party) wishes it so. Reality is what he makes of it. As O'Brien explains, reality happens in the mind.
Reality Control 14: As Winston's mind becomes completely accepting of reality control, he labels thoughts such as the memories of his mother as "false memories" and completely dismisses them. His emotions mirror his controlled thoughts, as when he meets Julia and is repulsed by the idea of having sex with her.
Surveillance 1: The Party constantly watches all citizens for any sign of rebellion or thought-crime, but tries to appear kind and concerned rather than ruthless and invasive. It adopts the protective, reassuring persona of 'Big Brother' and the slogan:
"BIG BROTHER IS WATCHING YOU" Part 1, Section 1, pg. 3
Surveillance 2: One of the most important ways that the Party keeps citizens under surveillance is through the telescreens. They are found in all rooms belonging to Party members, and in public places. No one knows how often the Thought Police tap into any individual wire, it is therefore possible that they watch all screens all the time. Outer Party members can dim the sound and picture coming from their telescreen, but the screen never turns off. Only senior members of the Inner Party have the power to turn off the telescreen, but can only do so for short periods of time. Very few proles have telescreens, mostly because members of the Inner Party do not feel they pose a threat. For the proles who do own one, the telescreen is an expensive item that they might buy for the entertainment value.
In addition to telescreens, the police (not the Thought Police) also have patrols of survellience helicopters that fly around peering into people's windows.
Surveillance 3: The Party uses children to keep tabs on their parents. Through the Spies, children are trained to be devoted Party followers. The children are ferocious towards thought criminals and most adults over the age of thirty are afraid of their own children. Children are encouraged to eavesdrop and most weeks there is a story in the Times about a child hero who has denounced his family.
Surveillance 4: Winston thinks about how dangerous it is to allow your thoughts to wander when you are in public or facing the telescreen. Your facial expressions are watched closely and the wrong expression can have dire consequences. For example, looking disbelieving when a victory is announced would be facecrime.
"Your worst enemy, he reflected, was your own nervous system. At any moment the tension inside you was liable to translate itself into some visible symptom." Part 1, Section 6, pg. 64
Surveillance 5: The Party supervises all marriages, so as to avoid sexual desire between Party members. A committee has to approve a marriage, and they refuse permission if the couple give the impression of being attracted to each other.
Surveillance 6: Surveillance of the proles is limited. The Thought Police track down and eliminate the few proles who seem capable of becoming dangerous to the Party.
Surveillance 7: Even when Winston is at his desk at work, he is closely watched by the telescreen. When he finds the photograph, he must force himself to control his facial expressions and breathing. He even worries the quickness of his heartbeat will be picked up by the telescreen. When Winston was at the Chestnut Tree Café years ago and saw Jones, Aaronson and Rutherford, there was a sudden half a minute when something happened to the telescreens and they started playing a mocking piece of music, as if jeering at the three men.
Surveillance 8: A Party member's attendance at the Community Center is carefully checked. It is dangerous to spend any significant time alone. Party members are not supposed to have any spare time, and should alone be alone when sleeping.
It is dangerous for Winston to walk in the prole area. If a patrol were to see him, they would stop and question him to check his papers, perhaps even reporting it to the Thought Police.
Surveillance 9: Winston is tempted to read the piece of paper while he is in the bathroom, but there is no place the telescreens watch closer than the toilet stalls.
Surveillance 10: All letters sent by mail are opened and checked by the mail service. There is no such thing as private mail.
Surveillance 11: In the open country there are no telescreens, obviously, but there are hidden microphones by which your voice can be picked up and recognized. Making a journey by oneself also tends to attract attention. Patrols freely hang around railway stations to check the papers of any Party members they find and interrogate them. To go a hundred kilometers or more, you need to get your passport endorsed.
Surveillance 12: O'Brien offers to lend Winston the dictionary as a way to give him his address. Although the government keeps an eye on everyone's movements, ordinary citizens know very little about where other Party members live. There are no directories; the only way to find out where someone lives is to ask them. O'Brien develops this plan and then gives Winston his address openly, in order to avoid suspicion. He writes the address on the paper right in front of a telescreen, where anyone watching can read what he is writing.
Surveillance 13: Winston and Julia realize that the one thing the Party cannot control is what people feel inside. The one thing they have not discovered is how to monitor what other people think. Winston thinks that within the walls of the Ministry of Love this may be different. He suspects they may use torture, drugs, or electrical instruments to record nervous reactions. They could wear people down by depriving them of sleep, solitary confinement, or interrogation. But even if they find out what you feel, they still cannot alter it.
Surveillance 14: Winston and Julia are amazed when O'Brien, an Inner Party member, is able to turn off the telescreen. Despite this privilege, O'Brien remarks that it is still dangerous to leave it turned off for more than half an hour.
Surveillance 15: O'Brien reveals several very sophisticated strategies that the Brotherhood uses to avoid the surveillance of the Thought Police. No member can recognize more than a few others, and any knowledge must be spread slowly. Members may die, or it may be necessary for them to become different people, with different faces. He tells them it is important to change hiding places frequently.
Surveillance 16: The Party constantly researches new ways to find out what people are thinking - the scientist is "a mixture of psychologist and inquisitor, studying with extraordinary minuteness the meaning of facial expressions, gestures and tones of voice, and testing the truth-producing effects of drugs, shock therapy, hypnosis, and physical torture." Section 2, Part 9, pg.194
Surveillance 17: In the Ministry of Truth, surveillance of the prisoners is extremely close. There are four telescreens to a cell, one in every wall. The telescreens are very invasive and the voices command the prisoners harshly, making sure, for example, that Winston does not put his hands in his pockets.
Surveillance 18: Parsons is arrested for thoughtcrime because of his little daughter. She listens at the keyhole, hears him saying, "down with Big Brother" in his sleep and runs to get a patrol. Parsons is actually proud of her for this; he was completely unconscious and unaware of doing anything of the kind, and thinks that it is terrible that he could have unknowingly harbored these evil thoughts. He says that when he goes up against the tribunal he plans to thank them for saving him before it was too late.
The telescreen yells at Winston for covering his face when Parson uses the lavatory pan in their small cell.
Surveillance 19: Winston realizes that for seven years the Thought Police have watched his every act, word, and thought with far more subtlety than he would ever have imagined. They even replaced the whitish speck of dust on the corner of his diary so that he would not think it had been disturbed. They have soundtracks and photographs of absolutely everything he has done.
The setting is London in April of 1984. The novel, first published in 1949, imagines a post World War II future in which conflict has led to mass warfare and the formation of super-states. The governments of these super states control every aspect of life. The story opens with the central character, Winston Smith, returning to his flat in Victory Mansions. He is on lunch break from his job at the Records Department in the Ministry of Truth. To reach his post, Winston has to climb seven flights of stairs; on each landing he reads a huge poster of Big Brother with the caption:
"BIG BROTHER IS WATCHING YOU" Part 1, Section 1, pg. 3
Topic Tracking: Surveillance 1
Inside his flat, Winston dims his telescreen and peers out his window at the streets of London. The landscape is grimy and bleak, full of rubble and nineteenth-century houses that are falling apart. Twenty to thirty rocket-bombs are launched at the city each week. It is the chief city of Airstrip One, the third most populous province of Oceania. He can see the Ministry of Truth towering over the landscape, and the three engraved Party slogans:
"WAR IS PEACE
FREEDOM IS SLAVERY
IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH." Part 1, Section 1, pg. 6
Winston can also see the three other huge Ministries - the Ministry of Peace, Ministry of Plenty and the terrifying Ministry of Love.
Topic Tracking: Surveillance 2
Topic Tracking: Newspeak 1
Winston goes to his tiny kitchen and downs some Victory Gin. He sits in the alcove, where he can avoid detection by the telescreen, and takes out a pen and book he has bought in a junk-shop. He has decided to keep a Diary. Should the authorities discover this, he would likely be killed or sent to a forced-labor camp. He writes the date, and then goes blank. He feels helpless and panicked. Winston doesn't know to whom or for what he is writing. Perhaps for the future? He starts writing about a film he saw the previous night.
Topic Tracking: Newspeak 2
Topic Tracking: Proletariat 1
Winston, realizing why he decided to begin the diary today, stops writing. That morning, just before the Two Minute Hate, two unexpected people visited the Records Department. One was a dark-haired girl from the Fiction Department, (in part 2 we discover her name is Julia). The other was O'Brien, a member of the Inner Party. Winston hates the dark-haired girl and suspects she is an agent of the Thought Police. During the Two Minute Hate, Winston realized why he hates Julia; he is sexually attracted to her, but can never have her. After the Hate everyone began to hypnotically chant "B-B" (short for Big Brother). Winston felt both disgust and horror. He caught O'Brien's eye during the chants, and for a moment knew that O'Brien felt the same way. This incident shook him and renewed his hope that others might be enemies of the Party and that the Brotherhood, a rebel movement, might actually exist.
Winston, his thoughts returning to the blank page of his diary, suddenly writes "DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER," over and over until he fills half a page. Realizing he has committed thoughtcrime, Winston knows he could sooner or later be vaporized. Through this act of rebellion, he is already a dead man; the only question is when they will catch him. He decides to keep writing. There is a knock at the door. Winston is terrified, but it is only Mrs. Parsons, his neighbor and wife of Mr. Parsons. Her kitchen sink is blocked. Winston follows her to the Parsons' flat and removes the clot of hair that is blocking the sink. The Parsons children, a boy, nine, and girl, seven, pretend he is a traitor and they are arresting him. They wear the uniform of the Spies. The children become upset that they can't go to the public hanging of prisoners from Eurasia. As Winston is leaving, the boy shoots him in the back of the neck with a catapult.
Topic Tracking: Surveillance 3
Winston picks up his pen and recalls a dream he had seven years ago. He was in a dark room and heard a voice say:
"We shall meet in the place where there is no darkness." Part 1, Chapter 2, pg. 27
The voice was O'Brien's, although Winston cannot recall if he had the dream before or after meeting O'Brien. Winston feels completely alone,
"The past was dead, the future was unimaginable." Part 1, Chapter 2, pg. 28
The telescreen strikes fourteen and Winston knows he must leave soon to get back to work. He finishes his diary entry, washes the telltale ink off his hands, and puts an unusual speck of white dust on the diary cover, so that he will know if someone has moved it.
Later that night, Winston has a dream about his mother, who disappeared when he was ten or eleven. He is standing watching her and his baby sister being sucked down into dark waters. He has the feeling that their lives have been sacrificed for his own. Suddenly, the dream changes; he is standing in the Golden Country. The dark-haired girl approaches from across the field, and with one fluid movement, she flings off her clothes. The gesture overwhelms him:
"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." Part 1, Chapter 3, pg. 33
The telescreen thrusts Winston out of his dream state with a loud whistle; it's time to get up. An instructor on the telescreen leads everyone through their morning exercises, known as the Physical Jerks. As he exercises, Winston tries to remember his childhood. He remembers hiding in a subway station with his mother and father during an air raid, early in the 1950's. Since then, the country has continually been at war and everything has changed. The telescreen instructor yells at him to exercise harder and he stops daydreaming.
Topic Tracking: Newspeak 3
Topic Tracking: Reality Control 1
After his exercises, Winston goes to work. He enjoys the intellectual challenges of his job, namely, to change the facts of old newspaper articles for the purpose of government propaganda. He deals with some routine tasks, first aligning the text of a speech by Big Brother to sound as if he accurately predicted events in the manner they occurred, and second, changing initial production estimates for the year to ensure the actual production figures exceed the estimates. Once completed, Winston faces a more tricky job. A previous order given by Big Brother in 1983, dealt with someone who had been vaporized and is now considered an 'unperson'. To get rid of this reference to an 'unperson', Winston makes up an order in which Big Brother praises a (fake) dead war hero called Comrade Ogilvy. Winston becomes somewhat disturbed by the Party's power to change the past:
"'Who controls the past', ran the Party slogan, 'controls the future: who controls the present controls the past.'" Part 1, Chapter 3, pg. 37
Topic Tracking: Newspeak 4
Topic Tracking: Reality Control 2
Around midday, Winston goes to the canteen for lunch and sees Syme, a co-worker from the Research Department. Syme asks if Winston has any razor blades, a commodity currently hard to find, and Winston lies, saying he doesn't. They get their lunches and Victory Gin to help them stomach the bad food. They discuss Newspeak, Syme's specialty. Mr. Parsons joins them and asks Winston for a subscription to Hate Week. Parsons is the treasurer in charge of decorating Victory Mansions. Winston spots the dark-haired girl (Julia) at the next table, looking at him. He wonders again if she is a Thought Police spy.
Topic Tracking: Reality Control 3
Topic Tracking: Newspeak 5
Topic Tracking: Surveillance 4
At home, Winston writes in his diary about a prostitute that he once picked up. Visiting prostitutes, called proles, is dangerous but not a life threatening crime. The Party prefers prostitution to real sexual relationships.
"Sexual intercourse was to be looked on as a slightly disgusting minor operation, like having an enema." Part 1, Chapter 6, pg. 69
The Party views marriage as a vehicle for producing children to serve the Party. Erotic desire is rebellion. Organizations like the Junior Anti-Sex League are encouraged.
Topic Tracking: Proletariat 2
Topic Tracking: Surveillance 5
Winston thinks about his wife, Katharine. He does not know where she is now. They were together for about fifteen months, almost eleven years ago. She married him in order to have a child, "our duty to the Party," but hated sex and left him when they were unable to have a baby.
Another diary entry:
"If there is hope, wrote Winston, it lies in the proles." Part 1, Chapter 7, pg. 72
Winston believes that only among the proles is there enough force to destroy the Party. They make up about 85 percent of the population and the Party doesn't really pay any attention to them. But the only thing he has ever seen a group of proles get upset over is a shortage of tin saucepans.
"Until they become conscious they will never rebel, and until after they have rebelled they cannot become conscious." Part 1, Chapter 7, pg. 74
Topic Tracking: Proletariat 3
Topic Tracking: Surveillance 6
Winston copies some passages from a child's history textbook he has borrowed from Mrs. Parsons. It is filled with propaganda on the evils of capitalism and the horrible conditions before the Revolution that put the Party in power. He reflects on the Party's claim to have improved everything, but there is a big difference between the world the Party describes,
"a nation of warriors and fanatics, marching forward in perfect unity, all thinking the same thoughts and shouting the same slogans, perpetually working, fighting, triumphing, persecuting - three hundred million people all with the same face" Part 1, Chapter 7, pg. 77
and the world in which Winston resides, where buildings are falling apart and there are shortages of everything.
Topic Tracking: Reality Control 4
Winston is becoming increasingly afraid and frustrated; there is no way to know the truth, everything he knows is only what the Party wants him to know. He remembers the one time in his life when he had physical proof the Party had lied. In a batch of documents that landed on his desk, he found a photograph of three Party leaders, Jones, Aaronson and Rutherford, who were later exposed as traitors. The photograph showed them at a Party conference in New York, at a time when they had confessed to being on Eurasian soil, thus betraying their country. Winston was too afraid to keep the photograph and he dropped it down the memory hole to the furnace.
Topic Tracking: Reality Control 5
Topic Tracking: Surveillance 7
Winston begins to ponder the reasons behind the Party's mind control. Big Brother, if he wanted to, could make two and two equal five. At times, Winston feels alone in his thoughts, bordering on the insane. He again wonders why he writes in the diary, his prose becoming a letter to O'Brien. As if speaking to O'Brien, he writes:
"Freedom is the freedom to say that two plus two make four. If that is granted, all else follows." Part 1, Chapter 7, pg. 84
On another day after work, Winston, rather than going to the Community Center as usually directed by the Party, impulsively decides to take a walk in the slums.
Topic Tracking: Surveillance 8
Topic Tracking: Newspeak 6
Topic Tracking: Proletariat 4
As Winston walks, a rocket bomb lands in the street, destroying a group of houses. In the wreckage, Winston notices a bloody, severed human hand, the skin colored white with plaster dust. Winston kicks the appendage into a gutter.
Topic Tracking: Proletariat 5
Later he notices an old man of about eighty walking down the street. Realizing he is one of the few human beings alive that can tell him the truth about the past before the Party, Winston follows the old man into a prole pub, (an unwise thing for a Party member to do). He buys the man a beer, the only alcoholic beverage proles are allowed to drink, and attempts to question him about the past. Unfortunately the old man's memory is "a rubbish-heap of details" and he can't seem to remember anything useful.
Winston walks out of the pub and wanders near the junk-shop where he bought the book for his diary. It is very risky for him to have returned to this area, and he goes inside the shop so that he will be less obvious. He meets the owner, Mr. Charrington, and buys a glass paperweight. Mr. Charrington shows him a cozy, old-fashioned room above the shop, and Winston reacts with emotion:
"It seemed to him that he knew exactly what it felt like to sit in a room like this, in an armchair beside an open fire with your feet in the fender and a kettle on the hob: utterly alone, utterly secure, with nobody watching you, no voice pursuing you, no sound except the singing of the kettle and the friendly ticking of the clock." Part 1, Chapter 8, pg. 100
In the room is an engraving of St. Clement's Dane. It reminds Mr. Charrington of an old rhyme which he repeats, and which sticks in Winston's mind:
"Oranges and lemons, say the bells of St Clement's, You owe me three farthings, say the bells of St Martin's" Part 1, Chapter 8, pg. 103
On his way out of the shop and home, Winston sees the dark-haired girl. She runs away when he spots her. He cannot come up with a possible explanation for her being here, other than to spy on him. Winston is struck by an acute sense of terror.
At work one morning, Winston leaves his cubicle to go to the bathroom. In the corridor, he sees the dark-haired girl (Julia) again. She falls on her right arm, which is already injured and in a sling. When Winston helps her up she slips a small piece of paper into his hand. He tries not to look surprised; they are standing in front of a telescreen.
Topic Tracking: Surveillance 9
Winston returns to his desk. After waiting eight minutes, he finds a way to read it without rousing too much suspicion. He reads "I love you." Winston is stunned and it is difficult for him to work for the rest of the day. After work, he goes to the Community Center as is normal, and attempts to conceal his boredom.
"At the sight of the words I love you the desire to stay alive had welled up in him, and the taking of minor risks suddenly seemed stupid." Part 2, Chapter 1, pg. 110-11
He decides the best place to contact her without arousing suspicion would be in the middle of the cafeteria, not too near the telescreens, where a buzz of voices should drown out their voices.
Topic Tracking: Surveillance 10
After a week of failed attempts, Winston, by tripping up another man who is heading for her table, manages to sit at a table alone with Julia. Without looking at each other and conversing in low voices, they arrange to meet in nineteen hours at Victory Square, where the crowd will hopefully shelter them from the telescreens.
When they meet in the square, a huge crowd rushes to watch a convoy of Eurasian prisoners passing by. Winston pushes through the crowd until he is next to the girl; their shoulders and arms are pressed together and he can almost feel the warmth of her cheek. Softly she tells him to get Sunday afternoon off and describes a place in the country where he can meet her. In the last moment before the crowd disperses, she briefly squeezes his hand.
He takes the train into the country and meets her at the appointed spot.
Topic Tracking: Surveillance 11
Topic Tracking: Proletariat 6
She leads him to a clearing, where the trees are young and too small for microphones to be hidden. They kiss. The girl tells him her name - Julia. She already knows his. He admits that before she gave him the note he hated her and thought she might be a Thought Police spy. She is delighted that her disguise works so well. Julia explains that she takes part in all the Party activities as a cover, for safety. She pulls off her Junior Anti-Sex League sash and gives Winston some black-market chocolate.
Winston asks her why she is attracted to him. Julia responds that she could tell by his face he was against the Party. They wander together through the woods, speaking in whispers. They find a pasture that Winston recognizes; it is almost exactly like the Golden Country. They hear a thrush singing:
"by degrees the flood of music drove all speculations out of his mind. It was as though it were a kind of liquid stuff that poured all over him and got mixed up with the sunlight that filtered through the leaves." Part 2, Chapter 2, pg. 125
They kiss again.
They return to the clearing and Julia flings off her clothes. Winston kneels in front of her and asks her if she has done this before. She says she has, many times, with Outer Party members. He tells her that he hates purity and goodness, that the more corrupt she is the more he will love her.
"Not merely the love of one person, but the animal instinct, the simple undifferentiated desire: that was the force that would tear the Party to pieces." Part 2, Chapter 2, pg. 127
Winston and Julia have sex. They fall asleep on the grass. Winston wakes first and watches Julia. He reflects that what they have done is a political act.
When Julia awakens, she is businesslike and begins arranging their departure. She will leave first and Winston a half-an-hour later, both of them taking different routes home. They decide to meet again in four days' time, in a street where there is an open market, and she will blow her nose to signal it is safe to talk. She kisses him and leaves to go and hand out pamphlets for the Junior Anti-Sex League.
During the month of May, they meet nightly, often in the streets, a different place every evening. They walk through the crowds for up to half an hour, not quite next to each other and never looking at each other. They speak in low voices, starting and stopping their conversation depending on when they pass a Party member or telescreen. At times, when they reach a meeting place, they are forced to walk past each other without recognition because of a patrol or overhead helicopter. Because Winston and Julia both work long hours and Julia spends a lot of time in the evenings on volunteer work, their meetings are infrequent. Julia persuades Winston to take on additional Party responsibilities as camouflage, and he spends one evening a week doing boring volunteer work in a weapons factory.
One night as they are walking down a side street, a rocket bomb falls nearby and the blast knocks them down. Winston sees Julia's face next to his, her face, even her lips, completely white. He is terrified that she is dead, but when he reaches out for her he finds he is kissing a live, warm face. Both of them are completely covered with powdery white plaster dust.
Only once that month do they have time alone to talk and make love; they meet in the tower of a ruined church in the country. They talk for hours, sitting on the dusty floor. Unlike Winston, Julia understands why the Party discourages sex:
"What was more important was that sexual privation induced hysteria, which was desirable because it could be transformed into war fever and leader worship." Part 2, Chapter 3, pg. 134
Topic Tracking: Proletariat 7
Topic Tracking: Newspeak 7
Winston tells Julia of a community hike that he went on with his former wife, Katharine. They lost the rest of the group, and ended up next to a cliff. He tells Julia he was tempted to push her, and Julia says that she would have. Winston points out that nothing they do makes a difference.
"She did not understand that there was no such thing as happiness, that the only victory lay in the far future, long after you were dead, that from the moment of declaring war on the Party it was better to think of yourself as a corpse. 'We are the dead,' he said." Part 2, Chapter 3, pg. 137
Winston and Julia plan to meet again in the clearing, but the evening before she tells him that it won't be possible; she is having her period. He feels a moment of violent anger:
"The smell of her hair, the taste of her mouth, the feeling of her skin seemed to have got inside him, or into the air all around him. She had become a physical necessity" Part 2, Chapter 4, pg. 140
Winston realizes he has true affection for her. He wishes that they had a place to be alone together without feeling the obligation to make love every time they meet.
The next day he suggests that they rent the room above Mr. Charrington's junk-shop. She agrees, despite the knowledge that this decision is much too dangerous, and difficult to hide from the Party.
He rents the room, and Mr. Charrington takes it calmly when he realizes that Winston wants it for a love affair. There are a few pieces of furniture, including a double bed, ususally only found in prole homes. Julia has never slept in one before. As Winston waits for her in the room, he hears a woman singing outside as she hangs out her wash.
Topic Tracking: Proletariat 8
Julia arrives with her tool bag, from which she unpacks black-market goods: real sugar, white bread, jam, real coffee, and tea. She asks Winston to turn around for a few minutes, and when she tells him to look at her again, she has put on make-up and perfume. He is amazed by how pretty she looks.
After they have sex, Julia decides to make coffee. She spots a rat in a corner of the room and throws a shoe at it. Winston has a panicked reaction; he has a phobia about rats. She comforts him and they drink coffee and eat bread and jam. Julia looks at the glass paperweight and is fascinated by it. She notices the engraving of St. Clement's Dane - she knows another line to the "Oranges and lemons" church rhyme that Mr. Charrington recited about it. She declares that one day she will take the picture down and clean behind for bugs.
Syme disappears. Winston realizes that he has been vaporized.
It is very hot and London is full of preparations for Hate Week. The Ministry of Truth has a lot of extra work. The theme song for Hate Week, the "Hate Song," has been composed and is being played on the telescreens. Parsons is enthusiastically organizing the volunteers decorating Victory Mansions.
Topic Tracking: Proletariat 9
A frightening poster of a Eurasian soldier is plastered all over the city, and more rocket bombs than usual are falling, causing a lot of anger and frequent demonstrations.
Topic Tracking: Proletariat 10
Winston and Julia meet seven times in the month of June. Winston is drinking much less gin and is healthier and happier. He often stops to chat with Mr. Charrington on his way upstairs. Julia and Winston are both aware the love affair cannot last. They must die sooner or later for defying the Party in this way, and yet they somehow feel secure.
"So long as they were actually in this room, they both felt, no harm could come to them." Part 2, Chapter 5, pg. 152
They make impractical, daydreaming plans for the future:
"Even the one plan that was practicable, suicide, they had no intention of carrying out. To hang on from day to day and from week to week, spinning out a present that had no future, seemed an unconquerable instinct, just as one's lungs will always draw the next breath so long as there is air available." Part 2, Chapter 5, pg. 153
Topic Tracking: Proletariat 11
They talk about possible organized rebellion against the Party, but it seems impossible. Julia does not believe that the Brotherhood can exist. Winston tells her about the odd rapport he has with O'Brien, but she does not find it strange; she is used to trusting people based on their expressions.
Julia does not believe the war is real. It is simply made up by the Party to keep people frightened. In her opinion, the Party fires bombs on London themselves. But Winston finds that in many cases she does not care about finding the real truth:
"she only questioned the teachings of the Party when they in some way touched upon her own life. Often she was ready to accept the official mythology, simply because the difference between truth and falsehood did not seem important to her." Part 2, Chapter 5, pg. 154
Topic Tracking: Reality Control 6
Winston is in the Ministry of Truth, walking down the corridor where Julia first slipped the note into his hand. O'Brien is walking right behind him and coughs to get his attention. He compliments Winston's use of Newspeak in a recent article and mentions that he was recently speaking to 'a friend' of Winston's who agreed that Winston uses Newspeak well. This is clearly a reference to Syme, who is now an "unperson." In mentioning him, O'Brien has committed thoughtcrime. Winston realizes this comment must be a kind of signal. O'Brien offers to lend Winston the latest edition of the Newspeak dictionary and gives him his address. Winston's reaction to this incident is an ambivalent one. On one hand, he has evidence of an organized rebellion against the Party. On the other, he fears for his life:
"He had the sensation of stepping into the dampness of a grave, and it was not much better because he had always known that the grave was there and waiting for him." Part 2, Chapter 6, pg. 160
Topic Tracking: Reality Control 7
Topic Tracking: Newspeak 8
Topic Tracking: Surveillance 12
Winston has a dream about being inside the glass paperweight, as if the world was inside the glass dome. His dream revolved around a single protective gesture of his mother's arm. The dream brings back a memory of the last time he saw his mother. He was about ten or twelve, his father had already disappeared, and there were many air raids and never enough to eat. His mother moved slowly and was very quiet; she spent a lot of time nursing his young sister who was always ill. They would often fight over food. She was always ready to give him the biggest portion, but no matter how much she gave him he would aggressively demand more.
"He knew that he was starving the other two, but he could not help it; he even felt that he had a right to do it. The clamorous hunger in his belly seemed to justify him." Part 2, Chapter 7, pg. 163
When a chocolate ration was issued for the first time in a long time, he took the entire chocolate bar, stealing the piece his mother gave to his sister. Feeling guilty, Winston wandered the streets for a long time before returning home. He found his mother and sister gone. His last glimpse of them, his mother sitting on the bed with his sister clutching her, reminded Winston of the dream of the two of them on a sinking ship.
Winston remembers his mother as a noble person who lived according to her own private standards and remained true to her emotions. In the world of the Party there is no room for emotions.
"The terrible thing that the Party had done was to persuade you that mere impulses, mere feelings, were of no account, while at the same time robbing you of all power over the material world." Part 2, Chapter 7, pg. 165
He realizes only the proles have remained human, by attaching importance to their feelings.
Topic Tracking: Proletariat 12
Topic Tracking: Reality Control 8
Winston and Julia discuss the inevitability of their capture. If caught by the Thought Police, they must not betray each other. Both understand they will be made to confess and say anything the Party wishes, but as long as they do not stop loving each other, they will not have truly betrayed each other. The Party cannot make you stop loving someone.
"It's the one thing they can't do. They can make you say anything - anything - but they can't make you believe it. They can't get inside you." Part 2, Chapter 7, pg. 167
The thought that the Party cannot change your feelings comforts Winston and gives him confidence.
Topic Tracking: Surveillance 13
Julia and Winston go to see O'Brien at his home. They are amazed by the difference in the way the Inner Party lives. The flats are rich and spacious, smelling of good food. They have servants; everything is clean, well run, and silent.
O'Brien's servant, Martin shows them in. They are nervous and intimidated. O'Brien is dictating a memo as they enter. Winston suddenly worries that he may have made a mistake. What if O'Brien is simply a normal law-abiding Party member? O'Brien walks towards them, and as he passes the telescreen, he switches it off.
Topic Tracking: Newspeak 9
Topic Tracking: Surveillance 14
Julia and Winston are amazed that O'Brien has the power to turn off the telescreen. He starts to break into a smile and asks, "Shall I say it, or will you?" Winston tells him that they have come because they believe there is some kind of rebellious conspiracy against the Party and they would like to join. O'Brien calls in Martin, whom he says is one of them, and pours them all wine, which Winston and Julia have never seen before. He tells them that the Brotherhood and Goldstein exist. He asks them if they would be willing to perform acts of murder, sabotage, or terrorism in service to the Brotherhood. They are willing to do anything except separate from one another. O'Brien informs them of the secret nature of the organization and the futility of their personal survival.
"You will work for a while, you will be caught, you will confess, and then you will die... There is no possibility that any perceptible change will happen within our own lifetime. We are the dead." Part 2, Chapter 8, pg. 177
Topic Tracking: Surveillance 15
He tells Julia to leave first, in order to appear less suspicious. He arranges with Winston to get a copy of the Book to him. He speaks of their meeting again, and Winston spontaneously suggests, "In the place where there is no darkness?" words from his dream. O'Brien shows no surprise but appears to recognize the allusion and agrees.
He knows the last line of the "Oranges and lemons" rhyme and tells it to Winston. Winston leaves and sees O'Brien about to turn the telescreen back on. Even for Inner Party members, he tells them, it is dangerous to leave the screen off for more than half an hour.
Winston is exhausted. Like all Ministry of Truth workers, he has worked more than ninety hours in the last five days. On the sixth day of Hate Week, it became public knowledge that Oceania was at war with Eastasia, not Eurasia. Thus, it was necessary to alter all war records to prove Oceania had never been at war with Eurasia.
Topic Tracking: Reality Control 9
When the change occurred, Winston was at a demonstration in a central London square. It was nighttime, and a speaker was whipping the crowd into a frenzy. A messenger delivered a note to the speaker and he changed the name of the enemy in mid-sentence. Chaos erupted as people tore down the incorrect posters of Eurasian soldiers that had been placed "mistakenly" in the square. While this was happening, a stranger slipped a briefcase containing the Book into Winston's hand. For six days he has waited for some time off to look at it. Finally he gets fifteen hours off and Winston heads for the room above the junk-shop.
Winston begins to read. The first chapter, entitled "Ignorance is Strength," divides society into three distinct strata: High, Middle and Low. He skips ahead, knowing he will have plenty of time to read and re-read the book. He starts reading Chapter 3, entitled "War is Peace."
The chapter describes how the world has been divided into three super-states: Oceania, Eurasia and Eastasia. The states have been continually at war for the last 25 years, battling over control of the same regions: northern Africa, the Middle East, southern India, and Indonesia.
The states are too evenly matched and have built defenses too formidable for any one to be conquered by the others even in combination. According to Goldstein, The reason behind waging war has changed completely. The super-states do not fight to conquer or defeat one another.
"The primary aim of modern warfare (in accordance with the principles of doublethink, this aim is simultaneously recognized and not recognized by the directing brains of the Inner Party) is to use up the products of the machine without raising the general standard of living." Part 2, Chapter 9, pg. 189
If the general standard of living were to be increased, wealth could be evenly distributed and there would be no need for a hierarchical society. Hence, for the privileged minority to maintain their position, they need to make sure that the standard of living for the masses remains low.
Topic Tracking: Proletariat 13
Economic scarcity is artificially created to magnify the differences between the classes. War helps people to accept the existence of this social and economic hierarchy.
"the consciousness of being at war, and therefore in danger, makes the handing-over of all power to a small caste seem the natural, unavoidable condition of survival." Part 2, Chapter 9, pg. 192
Technological development under the Party is virtually nonexistent; scientific breakthroughs require creative thought, a concept outlawed by the Party. The Party wishes to first conquer the whole surface of the Earth and remain in power by killing any form of independent thought. Scientific research is limited to finding new ways of killing large numbers of people without warning, and finding new ways to control the mind of an individual.
Topic Tracking: Surveillance 16
The super-states already have the atomic bomb, a weapon more destructive than any other yet discovered. The nuclear war of the Fifties convinced the ruling classes of the super-states that a larger nuclear conflict would mean the end of society. Hence, there is a tacit understanding between the states that no nuclear weapons will be used..
The fighting takes place within the central territories. The governments of the super-states do not want to occupy territory and allow citizens to come in contact with each other. For example, If Oceania occupied France and Germany, and Oceanians met the people of France and Germany, they may realize the French and Germans are not much different from themselves. The government trains its citizens to hate and distrust foreigners as monsters. They do not want this illusion destroyed. In reality, life in the three super-states and the philosophies of their respective governments are very similar. War functions only as the mechanism keeping the government in power.
Winston stops reading for a moment. The book fascinates him.
"It was the product of a mind similar to his own, but enormously more powerful, more systematic, less fear-ridden. The best books, he perceived, are those that tell you what you know already." Part 2, Chapter 9, pg. 201
Julia arrives and flings herself into his arms. He tells her that he has the book, but she is not very interested and goes to make coffee. After they have been in bed for half an hour, Winston returns to the subject of the book. He starts reading it to her. She is clearly not paying much attention.
He starts with Chapter One. Throughout history the High group in society has tried to keep its privileged position, while the Middle has periodically overthrown them with the help of the Low, who together believe they are fighting for liberty and justice, only to have the Middle become the new High. The Low group remains downtrodden. The political theory of Socialism, once aiming at creating a utopia based on equality, became increasingly totalitarian, moving away from the goals of liberty and equality. Ingsoc, the Party philosophy, also wanted to switch the Middle group for the High, but the new rulers would then keep their power permanently.
"Even the Catholic Church of the Middle Ages was tolerant by modern standards. Part of the reason for this was that in the past no government had the power to keep its citizens under constant surveillance. The invention of print, however, made it easier to manipulate public opinion, and the film and the radio carried the process further. With the development of television, and the technical advance which made it possible to receive and transmit simultaneously on the same instrument, private life came to an end." Part 2, Chapter 9, pg. 206-7
In some ways the Party did carry out the Socialist agenda. Nothing in Oceania is owned individually; everything is owned by the Party, able to dispose of things as they see fit.
Oceanian society is defined by three classes in a pyramid structure, with Big Brother, the face of the Party, at the top. No rebellion is possible. The Party members are completely controlled and the proles are not educated enough to realize that the world could be any different.
The Party members live under the watchful eyes of the Thought Police. Law as we know it does not exist. Arrest or torture by the Thought Police is not punishment for crimes, it is the active removal of people who are suspected of independent thought dangerous to the ideals of The Party. Major mental training is required, starting in childhood, to ensure political orthodoxy. By dislocating the sense of reality, the Party may well be able to hold onto its power forever.
Topic Tracking: Reality Control 10
Topic Tracking: Newspeak 10
Winston finishes reading and notices Julia has fallen asleep beside him. He still has not learned the major secret - why the Party does all these things. He understands how, but not why. After reading The Book, he is not mad, even if he may feel part of a minority. He falls asleep beside Julia.
When Winston and Julia wake and dress, they go to the window and watch the woman hanging her washing out below; bearing children has thickened her body. For obvious reasons, the two of them can never have children. In As Winston watches the woman, he is comforted by the sheer number of human beings out there living under Party rule. He will pass on the secret of The Book to his generation and spark the rebellion. Eventually the revolution must come, perhaps when their lives are long past. "We are the dead," he says. "We are the dead," repeats Julia behind him. Suddenly an iron voice declares behind them, "You are the dead."
Topic Tracking: Proletariat 14
The telescreen was behind the St. Clement's Dane Engraving all along. The police surround the house and break into the room. One of them smashes the glass paperweight; they kick and punch Julia and Winston. Mr. Charrington comes into the room, oddly changed in his appearance. He appears to be in his mid thirties, his hair is black, and he is no longer wearing his spectacles. Winston realizes he was an agent of the Thought Police from the beginning.
Winston finds himself alone in a cell, probably within the walls of the Ministry of Love. Before bringing him to the cell, Winston was detained in an ordinary prison, along with a diverse group of proles and political Party prisoners. He heard two Party women whisper quickly to each other about something called "Room 101."
Topic Tracking: Surveillance 17
Topic Tracking: Proletariat 15
Winston is hungry and frightened, knowing he will be facing physical abuse and possible torture. Conscious thoughts of Julia are not necessary. He instinctively feels love for her and will not betray her; these feelings do not require conscious thought. His thoughts are of O'Brien. Winston wonders whether the Brotherhood will smuggle a razor blade in to him. He thinks of what it would be like to cut into his veins and wonders if he could do it.
"It was more natural to exist from moment to moment, accepting another ten minutes' life even with the certainty that there was torture at the end of it." Part 3, Chapter 1, pg. 232
He does not know the time of day, for the lights are always on. His cell is "the place where there is no darkness."
The steel door opens and Ampleforth, one of Winston's co-workers, is thrown into the cell. They talk. After about an hour, an officer comes and takes Ampleforth to Room 101.
Much later, Parsons is brought to the cell. Winston is surprised. Parsons reveals he was incarcerated for thoughtcrime; he is afraid and feels terribly guilty.
Topic Tracking: Surveillance 18
Parsons is taken away and other prisoners come and go, including a woman who is sent to Room 101. She crumples in fear as the orders are given.
Opposite Winston is a man with a chinless, toothy, rodent-like face. Another prisoner, a skull-faced man, is brought into the cell. The other prisoners notice he is starving to death, and the chinless man finds a dirty piece of bread in a pocket and holds it out to him. The telescreen voice roars and guards break into the cell and beat up the chinless man until his face and mouth are bruised and swollen and blood is oozing from his mouth and nose.
An officer comes to take the skull-faced man to Room 101. He howls and clings to the bench, but eventually they drag him away.
A long time passes. The door opens and O'Brien comes in. Winston is shocked and cries, "They've got you too!" O'Brien replies, "They got me a long time ago." and steps aside to let in a guard who hits Winston's elbow with a truncheon, knocking him down.
This is the first of a series of beatings. Guards kick Winston, and beat him with their fists, truncheons, and steel rods.
"There were times when it went on and on until the cruel, wicked, unforgivable thing seemed to him not that the guards continued to beat him but that he could not force himself into losing consciousness." Part 3, Chapter 2, pg. 244
He later realizes that this is part of the routine. Every person who is brought in to the Ministry is first tortured and forced to confess to a variety of crimes such as espionage, sabotage, or worse.
Gradually the beatings subside and the interrogation begins. The interrogators constantly keep Winston in slight pain, pulling his hair, and shining glaring lights in his eyes, to keep him in a state of discomfort. Their real weapon, however, is the continuous questioning and abuse. After hours of this, Winston is completely broken and willingly confesses anything and everything to which he is accused.
All the time, Winston strangely feels O'Brien's presence, as if he were watching and controlling what is happening to him. Suddenly, he finds himself in a cell, flat on his back on a surface resembling a high camp bed. Somehow he is held down completely immobile. At one side of him is O'Brien, at the other is a man in a white coat holding a syringe.
Beneath O'Brien's hand is a dial. As he turns it, a wave of pain floods through Winston's body. After the pain subsides, O'Brien informs Winston of a conversation they will be having. If Winston attempts to lie in any way or does not think with intelligence, he will use the dial again. He tells Winston that he has become deranged and his memory has become defective. Winston must make the effort to cure himself. O'Brien refers to things like the war against Eastasia, and mentions the photograph Winston once 'hallucinated' of Jones, Aaronson and Rutherford. He pulls the photograph out, prompting a cry from Winston, then puts it down the memory hole to the incinerator. He tells Winston the photograph never existed and that he does not remember it. This is an example of doublethink.
They speak about the nature of reality. O'Brien holds up four fingers and asks Winston how many fingers he is holding up. Winston answers four. O'Brien asks what were to happen if the Party said five. Winston replies that he would still be holding four. O'Brien turns up the dial on the pain machine until Winston can no longer even see the fingers.
Topic Tracking: Reality Control 11
Afterwards, Winston begins to cry like a baby, clinging to O'Brien. The man in the white coat injects him with something that takes the pain away.
"The old feeling, that at bottom it did not matter whether O'Brien was a friend or an enemy, had come back. O'Brien was a person who could be talked to... O'Brien had tortured him to the edge of lunacy, and in a little while, it was certain, he would send him to his death. It made no difference." Part 3, Chapter 2, pg. 255-6
O'Brien tells Winston why the Party brings its enemies into the Ministry of Love. It is important not to destroy enemies, but to change them. He tells Winston he is here so that they can "cure" him and "make him sane." To avoid making martyrs out of their enemies, The Party forces all to confess their thoughtcrime before being killed. Their minds must be purified and aligned to the ideals of Big Brother before they are eliminated. O'Brien speaks of the breaking down of Jones, Aaronson and Rutherford.
"There was nothing left in them except sorrow for what they had done, and love of Big Brother. It was touching to see how they loved him. They begged to be shot quickly, so that they could die while their minds were still clean." Part 3, Chapter 2, pg. 259
To further prove the point, O'Brien has the man in the white coat give Winston shock therapy, a few seconds after which, Winston will believe anything O'Brien tells him, even that he is holding up five fingers when there are only four. After Winston recovers from the effects of shock therapy, O'Brien allows Winston to ask a few questions.
Winston asks where Julia was taken, and O'Brien responds that she had betrayed him immediately and converted to The Party completely. He asks if Big Brother exists and O'Brien simply responds that Big Brother will never die. He asks if the Brotherhood exists, and O'Brien says Winston will never know. He asks what is in Room 101, and O'Brien tells him that everyone already knows what is in Room 101. The man in the white coat sedates Winston and he falls asleep.
The sessions with O'Brien continue. Gradually, Winston's bonds loosen and O'Brien uses the dial less. One day, O'Brien informs him of three stages of reintegration: learning, understanding and acceptance. It is time to enter the second stage.
O'Brien informs him of the why behind the mind control of The Party. The goal is pure power itself. The individual is mortal and can never have power alone, but when he destroys his own identity and relinquishes control to the Party, he will live and be powerful forever. The Party is omnipotent.
"We control matter because we control the mind. Reality is inside the skull." Part 3, Chapter 3, pg. 268
Topic Tracking: Reality Control 12
Power, O'Brien says, is defined by the ability to make other human beings suffer. Blind obedience is not enough, for unless someone is suffering, how do you know they are obeying your will and not their own? In order to maintain power, The Party must remove all pleasures of the individual. The vision of the future will be a boot stamping on a human face, forever. Heretics like Winston, rise only to be defeated, humiliated, and realigned by The Party.
Winston becomes violently upset, telling O'Brien The Party must be defeated. There must be something about life and the human spirit that will not allow what he outlines to continue.
Topic Tracking: Proletariat 16
In response to his outburst, O'Brien mocks Winston's moral superiority to The Party by showing Winston a mirror. Winston stares at his filthy, broken, emaciated body and weeps as O'Brien tells him that his mind is in the same condition, completely broken. Winston, searching for some evidence of strength, reveals to O'Brien that he has refused to betray Julia. O'Brien understands this means he still loves Julia, even though he has confessed everything about their meetings together.
In time, Winston regains his health, getting fatter and stronger. He is now in a slightly more comfortable cell, allowed to wash regularly and fed three times every twenty-four hours. They have also given him a white slate and a piece of pencil. He often sleeps or lies around, dreaming of the Golden Country, conversations in the sunshine with his mother, Julia, or O'Brien. Gradually, as his health improves, he begins small exercises and works his way up to doing push-ups.
Winston realizes that his attempt to rebel was frivolous; for seven years the Thought Police have watched his every action.
Topic Tracking: Surveillance 19
He begins making a conscious effort to re-educate himself. On the slate he writes the Party slogan, "Freedom is Slavery," followed by "Two and Two Make Five," and "God is Power." He re-remembers the past and accepts everything The Party declares. His education is very easy.
"It was like swimming against a current that swept you backwards however hard you struggled, and then suddenly deciding to turn round and go with the current instead of opposing it. Nothing had changed except your own attitude; the predestined thing happened in any case." Part 3, Chapter 4, pg. 280
Topic Tracking: Reality Control 13
He starts trying to teach himself Crimestop. He practices, wondering how long it will take (days? years?) before they decide to shoot him.
He has a dream in which he is walking down a corridor waiting for the bullet, feeling calm and joyful. It changes and he is in the Golden Country, following the track. Suddenly he has an overwhelming sense of Julia's presence; she seems to be not just with him, but inside him. He knows that somewhere she is still alive and needs his help. He wakes himself by crying out, "Julia! Julia! Julia, my love! Julia!"
He begins to panic. Winston knows he has been obeying the Party with his mind, but still, in the depths of his heart, he hates them.
"For the first time he perceived that if you want to keep a secret you must also hide it from yourself." Part 3, Chapter 4, pg. 283
One day they will shoot him. It is always unexpected, but a few seconds beforehand it should be possible for him to guess. In that time, the subconscious psychological barriers he has constructed would disintegrate and his hatred would consume him as the bullet hit. He would be free, finally, by dying hating The Party.
He hears boots and O'Brien arrives with the guards. He tells Winston it is stupid to try to deceive him. He asks him how he feels about Big Brother. Winston replies that he hates him. O'Brien replies it is time for the final step. He must love Big Brother. The guards take Winston to Room 101.
Winston is in room 101 of the Ministry of Love. He can see only two small tables straight in front of him, covered with green baize. He is strapped into a chair, so tightly that he cannot move a muscle. His head is gripped from behind by a kind of pad. O'Brien comes in and reminds him that he already knows what is in Room 101. Everyone knows what is in room 101; it is the worst thing in the world.
A guard enters and puts an oblong wire cage on the table further away from Winston. Fixed to the front is something that looks like a fencing mask, the concave side facing outward to be fitted on to someone's face. The cage is divided into two compartments, each containing a live rat.
O'Brien knows Winston's deepest fear. Winston is frozen in terror. O'Brien reminds him of the panic he used to have in his dreams, visions of something unimaginably terrible on the other side of a black wall. Pain, O'Brien says, is not enough; sometimes people will stand out against pain, but for everyone there is a terror they cannot withstand. Faced with the rats, Winston will have no choice but to give in to control by The Party.
O'Brien picks up the cage and brings it to the nearer table. The rats are huge. O'Brien speaks of how they eat flesh, attack babies and the sick or dying, leap onto the face and attack the eyes, or burrow through the cheeks to eat the tongue. Winston almost faints in fear. He can smell the foul, musty odor of the rats. The cage is coming nearer. O'Brien plans to attach the mask to Winston's head and open the interior cage door so that the rats can attack his face. As O'Brien approaches, Winston can only think of shielding himself from the rats with the living body of another person. O'Brien brings them closer and closer.
Suddenly Winston understands that there is one person in the world to whom he can transfer his punishment. He shouts frantically over and over,
"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!" Part 3, Chapter 5, pg. 289
He feels as if he is falling from a great distance, and he hears O'Brien closing the cage door instead of opening it.
After being released, Winston is sitting in the Chestnut Tree Café. It is almost empty and it is three o'clock in the afternoon. Now and again he glances up at the vast poster of Big Brother facing him from the opposite wall. A waiter brings him more Victory Gin with cloves.
The telescreen is showing news about the war. Excitement flares in Winston, only to fade away. Nowadays he can only focus his mind on any one subject for a few minutes at a time. He has gotten fatter since they released him, his nose and cheeks a deeper shade of red. He spends most of his time in the café, playing chess with himself and following current events written in "The Times." Winston ponders different strategies to win the war. When not drinking large amounts of gin, he occasionally shows up to do a little work on a sub-committee of a sub-committee, where he has been give a pointless job.
Almost unconsciously, Winston traces in the dust on the table, "2+2=5."
Topic Tracking: Reality Control 14
Julia had once said, "They can't get inside you." She had been wrong.
"There were things, your own acts, from which you could not recover. Something was killed in your breast; burnt out, cauterized out." Part 3, Chapter 6, pg. 293
By chance, he met Julia in the park. They had almost passed each other, when Winston turned and followed. She walked to a clump of shrubs and stopped. Her face was sallow and there was a scar across her forehead and temple. He clasped his arm around her waist, which seemed thick and stiff. She made no response.
They walked back to the grass and sat in iron chairs. Admitting their betrayal in Room 101, Winston and Julia looked at each other with indifference. They did not see each other again.
Suddenly, as Winston sits in the café, a trumpet call draws attention to the telescreen. Victory is announced. Winston is moved to tears. He sits in a blissful dream-state, feeling the final change in himself. He imagines himself in the Ministry of Love - innocent, where all is forgiven. He imagines himself walking down a corridor, the long-hoped-for bullet entering his brain.
"But it was all right, everything was all right, the struggle was finished. He had won the victory over himself. He loved Big Brother." Part 3, Chapter 6, pg. 300
Newspeak is devised to meet the ideological needs of English Socialism (Ingsoc).
"The purpose of Newspeak was not only to provide a medium of expression for the world-view and mental habits proper to the devotees of Ingsoc, but to make all other modes of thought impossible." Appendix, pg. 303
It is scheduled to be finally adopted for all speech and writing by 2050.
Topic Tracking: Newspeak 11