Scarlett HawpeMrs. N FinleyE209-W2-1984 Website Project Group #924 January 2018 SummaryBook IThe novel is set in a dystopian future, in the year1984. In this world, Big Brother, a tyrannical overruling force, controlseverything. Telescreens are everywhere, watching everything and everyone.
Ifyou do anything suspected to be against Big Brother, you will be vaporized.Winston Smith is a member of the Outer Party, working in the Records Departmentin the Ministry of Truth. His job is to rewrite history and any evidence thatgoes against Big Brother’s claims. To escape Big Brother’s rule by fear andconformity, Winston writes in a diary, an act punishable by death. Winstonwants to live his own life in this lifeless world, but his every move iswatched.
No place is safe. Winston is at the Two Minute’s Hate one day when henotices two distinct faces. He exchanges glances with O’Brien, an inner partymember, and has an unexplainable feeling that he also hates Big Brother.Winston also sees a dark-haired woman who he immediately takes hatred towards.He suspects that she is his enemy, and she wishes for his demise.
Book IIA few days later, the dark-haired woman, Julia,secretly hands him a note that reads, “I love you.” Winston eventually goes to seeJulia, and she develops a complex plan, so they can be alone. After their first meeting, Winston and Julia meet inthe countryside and make love, starting their allegiance against Big Brother.Winston manages to rent out a room above a shop without a telescreen, whereJulia and Winston can be alone. Eventually, Winston and Julia admit to O’Brien thatthey hate the Party and Big Brother. They both believe that O’Brien is a memberof the Brotherhood, a secret organization that aims to bring down the Party.
O’Brien welcomes them into the Brotherhood with questions and arranges forWinston to be given a copy of “The Book,” the Brotherhood’s core book writtenby their leader, Emmanuel Goldstein, who used to be an ally of Big Brother, buthe turned into an enemy. Winston receives “The Book,” and reads it with Juliasleeping at his side. Not too long afterward, they discover a hidden telescreenbehind a painting! The Thought Police seize both Julia and Winston. Winstonfinds himself alone in a cell deep within the Ministry of Love, a kind ofprison with no windows. Book IIIFinally, O’Brien comes. Initially, Winston believesthat O’Brien has also been caught, but he soon grasps the O’Brien is there totorture him. The Party had been aware of Winston’s “crimes” all along. In fact,O’Brien has been observing Winston for the past seven years.
O’Brien spends months torturing Winston. He is tryingto make him obey all orders, including the order to believe whatever Big Brothersays. O’Brien wants Winston to use doublethink, a way of thinking in which onecan believe in two conflicting ideas at one time. Winton is resilient, but sois O’Brien. Eventually, O’Brien takes Winston to room 101.
Thisroom in the most feared room, where prisoners meet their worst fear. ForWinston, his greatest fear is rats. O’Brien puts a wire mesh mask on Winstonand threatens to release rats on Winston’s face. Winston screams, “Do it toJulia!” With this, he surrenders his last trace of humanity. Winton is changed.
He sits in the Chestnut Tree Café,watching the telescreens and reflecting on the results of daily battles. He sawJulia again. She is also changed, seeming older and less attractive. Sheconfesses that she also betrayed him. In the end, there is no doubt, Winstonloves Big Brother. BiographyEric Arthur Blair was the son of a British civilservant. He spent his first days in India, where his father was stationed. Hismother brought him and his older sister, Marjorie, to England when he was abouta year old.
He didn’t really know his father until he retired from the servicein 1912, but the pair never formed a strong bond. According to one biography, Blair’s first word was”beastly.” Although a sick child, he began to write at a young age and aspiredto be a writer. He was sent to boarding school, where he noticed that theschool treated the richer students better than the poorer ones. Even though hewasn’t known to be popular, he won scholarships to Welling College and EtonCollege. After his schooling, he joined the India ImperialPolice Force. He spent five years in Burma, and then resigned his post andreturned to England.
Although he intended to become a writer, he struggled toget his career off the ground. His first book revealed brutal truths about thelives of the working poor. Not wishing to embarrass his family, he publishedunder the pseudonym George Orwell. Despite several sicknesses, Orwell took on variouswriting assignments to support himself.
Orwell got a job with BBC as aproducer. He loathed the “useless” work and resigned after two years. Orwellmarried Eileen O’Shaughnessy, and adopted a son, Richard Horatio Blair. He wasraised by Orwell’s younger sister, Avril, after Eileen’s death. Shortly before his death, he proposed to SoniaBrownell, who inherited Orwell’s estate. She made a career out of managing hislegacy.
Interestingly enough, Orwell experienced thesurveillance he wrote about. The Soviet Union had an undercover agent spying onOrwell, and the police in his own country paid attention when Orwell visitedcoal miners in 1936 while gathering information for The Road to Wigan Pier(1937). ?Links toHistorical Background• https://www.
wikizero.com/en/Labour_Party_(UK)The Labour Party became the main opposition to theConservative Party in the early 1920s, forming minority governments underRamsay MacDonald in 1924 and from 1929 to 1931. This party sparked conflict,and many suspected Orwell to have sided with one Party over the other, receivingclose watch from the other opposing Party. • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_Union_of_FascistsThe BUF emerged in 1932 from the British far-right.Although met with popular support initially, the party became increasinglyradical.
The party’s embrace of Nazi-style anti-Semitism led to increasinglyviolent clashes with opponents. Orwell was suspected to be a left-sympathizer,which caused trouble for him. This radical conflict intensified the suspiciontowards him, causing secret surveillance and some hatred toward his works.
• https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gresford_disasterThe Gresford disaster occurred on 22 September 1934 atGresford when an explosion killed 266 men and boys. Its cause was never proved,but some say that failures in safety procedures and poor mine management werecontributory factors. Gresford is one of Britain’s worst coal mining disasters.These harsh conditions in the mines inspired Orwell’s The Road to Wigan Pier(1937). Orwell was reportedly seen visiting coal miners to gather informationfor this book. ?References inContemporary Culture• https://en.
wikipedia.org/wiki/Bedazzled_(1967_film)#ReferencesNear the end of Bedazzled (1967), when Stanley, thecharacter played by Dudley Moore, is shown his private room at the convent, hesees a poster above his bed. On the poster is a photograph of Peter Cook, underwhich reads the caption, “Big Sister Is Watching You.” This is aclear reference to the “Big Brother is Watching You” posters featured inOrwell’s 1984. • https://en.
wikipedia.org/wiki/THX_1138George Lucas’s THX 1138 features an undergroundcivilization under heavily surveillance and by containing any form of emotion,including love. This references Big Brother’s surveillance and control. Thesociety was described as eliminating the emotions of everyone, includingWinston and Julia’s love for each other.?• https://en.
wikipedia.org/wiki/THX_1138In SCTV’s 1984: Big Brother episode, the fictionallocal TV channel turns into a telescreen at the stroke of midnight, January 1,1984, and its programming becomes “Orwellian;” it’s revealed to be a nightmareexperienced by station manager Edith Prickley. This reflects the strictlyplanned telescreens in Orwell’s novel, which drill false information intoeveryone’s minds. Worst of all, they can never be turned off.Compare/Contrastto the Truman ShowSIMILARITIES:The principle characters of both 1984 and the TrumanShow are strictly monitored by a central authority force. In both the Truman Show and 1984, human beings arecontrolled in a way that makes them robotic.
Each main character does the samethings each morning before work, like everyone in their society. This strictsociety of conformity is shared in both mediums. In each case, 1984 and the Truman Show, no one can betrusted. That is because in the book anyone can turn anyone in for thoughtcrime. In the show, everybody is an actor and even Truman’s friends couldn’t betrusted, due to the fact that he obeyed what the director advised him to do, sohe might obey the director instead of his friends.
Both governments rule by fear. In the book, theauthorities purposely bomb parts of the metropolis, and the Ministry of Lovepunishes all who might be against the party. Within the show, when Truman triesto break out, the director and creator do everything to scare him to make himstop trying to leave.
Inside the show and in the book, no one was permittedto move away. In the show, when Truman tries to book a flight to Fiji, they donot allow him to do so. In 1984, if someone attempted to leave the they wouldget tortured, killed or put in jail for it, since almost everything is againstthe law there.
?DIFFERENCES:Truman had better living conditions than Winston. Hehad a pleasant house in a nice neighborhood. Truman wasn’t as lonely as Winston. He had a bestfriend, and he had a spouse that the directors assigned to him. Winston waslonely, and the one he loved was taken from him.
?In the Truman Show, there was no thought crime.Something that the director did not like could be corrected without everyonenoticing. However, in the book, if an act against the Party was committed, theman or woman might get punished or even killed.