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1984 by George Orwell Discussion

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message 1: by Annie (new)

Annie | 14 comments This is a group discussion among Anika Ahmed, Jubayer Ahmed, Lena Elwafi, Gerardo Munguia & Nishat Shalshabil about George Orwell's "1984."

message 2: by Annie (new)

Annie | 14 comments George Orwell’s prominent novel “1984” remains one of the most powerful warnings ever issued against the dangers of a totalitarian society. This is primarily due to his experiences in Spain, Germany, and the Soviet Union when he witnessed the danger of complete political authority in an age of advanced technology. Considering his dwelling past, “1984” entails a rather frail man of thirty nine years named Winston Smith who works as a records editor in the Records Department at the Ministry of Truth. In this society, The Party is flawless in its widespread control over society, as evidenced by its ability to break even an independent thinker like Winston, and has mastered every aspect of psychological control, through technological developments such as the telescreen to their benefit. The three slogans of the Party expressed immensely are: War is Peace; Freedom is Slavery; and Ignorance is Strength. Oceania is heavily policed and monitored by these two-way telescreens, the Police Patrol and the Thought Police. An essential aspect in the Party's rule over Oceania lies in its exceptionally organized and effective propaganda machine. The Ministry of Truth is responsible for circulating all Party publications and information, being that the Party chooses what to tell the public, regardless of accuracy. The efficiency of this propaganda machine, which corrects old material to reflect the Party's current position on any subject ranging from chocolate rations to the loyalty of a specific individual, allows the Party to completely dominate the range of information proposed to the public. With regards to Orwell’s unpleasant past, the protagonist is described as rebellious due to his hatred upon the Party. He has a strong intention of limiting their power by committing several crimes such as an illegal love affair with young and beautiful Julia. These actions were because of his intense paranoia about the Party and the fear in which the Party will punish him for his misdeeds.

message 3: by Nishat (last edited Feb 02, 2017 05:31PM) (new)

Nishat | 15 comments The book "1984" by George Orwell is placed in a dystopian setting.

The protagonist, Winston, has a job that allows him to change the past, in a way. The job also allows him to change information to follow what is meant to happen the next day. While most see it as forgery, Winston is told to see it as a substitution. It was stated to be a substitution of one piece of nonsense for another. Winston's job is to make the work given to him change to what the Party wants him to say. This means that their history is actually based on what the Party wants to see and hear and have the truth destroyed.

Another factor that I thought was interesting was the fact that kids wanted to engage in the adult interests of the book. Two children were mentioned to BEG to see the hanging. It was not only children, but adult have been observed to enjoy hangings as well. I think it was around page 49 when someone said that they did not want the person being hanged have their legs tied up. Their reasoning was so that they could see their kicks and struggles. These actions and interests are exposed to children while they're young and growing up with it can influence you to believe that horrible actions such as hangings are the right to do or are "enjoyable."

From Winston's action and what the narrator tells us about his thoughts, it is clear that he is beginning to see his life and the way it is controlled in a different way. The narrator wants us to see the descriptions of his daily life and observe why this way of living is wrong. For example, why are their word divided into Oldspeak and Newspeak? This will also lead to a possible change resulting in the actions of Winston, later in the book.

message 4: by Jubayer (new)

Jubayer In George Orwell's book, 1984, the author mixes fantasy with reality in a dystopia where everything is controlled. In this dystopia every person has their thoughts and actions controlled. For example, Winston, the protagonist, says that the thought police controls them basically through everything, coins, television, you name it! The people have their actions controlled through the television, too. For example, Winston, wakes up from sleep to do an exercise that starts to be televised and does them even though it hurts him, as though something bad would happen if he didn't do it.

Going back to the start of the story, when the 2 minutes of hate come up at the enemy of the Big Brother (the leader of the people), the people who work with Winston start acting like savages and even go as far to throw objects at the television broadcasting the two minutes of hate. This unveils the fact that this world is a dystopia, since at an attempt to control everything the people see and to bring hate toward the enemy they have turned the people into savages.

Another important fact is the Newspeak (the new language of the people) where Oldspeak is the normal language of our time. In the story, the goal of Newspeak is to limit the vocabulary, and one of Winston's 'comrades' says that Newspeak is the only language of the world that reduces its vocabulary each year instead of expanding it. Wilson than thinks to himself that that the goal of Newspeak is to keep reducing until thought crime will be impossible.

This shows the fail at an attempt at a completely controlled society where everyone obey (utopia) since it is now becoming a totalitarian society where there is only one leader: BIG BROTHER.

message 5: by Lena (new)

Lena Elwafi | 13 comments Firstly, I would like to mention that I agree with all of my tablemates above that this novel is a great example of a dystopia since the people in this book are controlled by bureaucratic control.

George Orwell's "1984" is a dystopian novel that has all characters under one mind and leader, which is Big Brother. All over the place there are posters that say "Big Brother is Watching You" as a reminder to all citizens that they are ALWAYS under constant surveillance. There are camera's on T.V's, desks, tables and any house or office item that you can think of. It's creepy in the way that you know that there is someone always watching you, even when your home alone.
Another point I want to bring out is on the Ministries. In this novel, the city of Oceania has different Ministries: The Ministry of Love (which actually about hate), the Ministry of Peace (which is about war), the Ministry of Truth (which basically changes the past to make it seem like the government is always right and to make history seem more interesting) and lastly the Ministry of Plenty (which lets the poor starve and congratulate the rich with plenty of food). Furthermore, there is the Though Police which limits the thoughts of those and if they are thinking badly about the government or Big Brother they are sentenced to death. Who ever thought thinking was a crime?!
Little kids in the present world like dolls, trucks and cars and for fun they would like to go to the playground. However, in this text a treat to little kids is going to see a hanging at the park. If they didn't get to, they would get really upset and has a huge fit. This dystopian world is so intense that even young, innocent, sweet little children are raised as little devils loving war, killing and death.
An important detail in the text is on Oldspeak and Newspeak. Oldspeak is our regular typical English. Newspeak is a language created by Big Brother so that every year, the vocabulary of the human being is reduced. For instance, instead of saying "bad" or "horrid", Newspeak changes this to "ungood." The goal of this is to minimize the thoughts of someone and their vocabulary so much, that by the year 2050 no one would think or speak because all the words have been reduced to ... nothing.

The protagonist Winston is completely against all of this. He hates Big Brother, he hates the Thought Police, he hates everything. Winston works for a newspaper/magazine called TIME and he forces himself to write in Newspeak, even though he is fine with English (Oldspeak) just the way it is. Throughout the text, Winston has flash backs to when he was a little boy with his mother, father and baby sister. Those years were different because there wasn't really a Big Brother back then, however, everything changed. There was war; people died and lost loved ones, including Winston. I do not have enough information to how his family disappeared or to what happened to them, but I have a feeling everything will be revealed later on as we read.
This book seemed kind of boring at first, but its starting to get interesting as I read more. I hope to find out more about Winston's past and if he has any possible ideas/plans to stop the government and Big Brother.

message 6: by Gerardo (new)

Gerardo | 15 comments OOhh i like this one

Yea i Watched the Simpsons before i caught up and something clicked

Unhappy with his life, Winston turns to vices as a means of escape and self-medication. In Winston’s case, it’s alcohol and cigarettes. He drinks gin, the alcohol in this case, to sedate his paranoia, like that time he downs a shot or two before finally writing in his journal. He smokes cigarettes for a similar reason: to calm himself down. These common vices help Winston check his doubts and paranoia at the door.

OK, sure, that sounds great – but it’s really not that simple. Once again, we see some irony here. Winston’s "vices" aren’t personal decisions, nor are they small acts of individuality or rebellion. Rather, his vices have been assigned to him. Which kind of defeats the purpose of vices altogether.

There was a Simpsons episode where Marge tells Bart he can’t have vegetables until he finishes his ice cream. The result? Ice cream is not so enjoyable anymore. Same deal here.

message 7: by Lena (last edited Feb 06, 2017 05:05PM) (new)

Lena Elwafi | 13 comments Despite the fact we didn't read much since Thursday, there were multiple things I noticed. The government is brainwashing everyone making them do whatever Big Brother pleases. There is no democracy or freedom in this world. The government changes the past in texts and books to show that they were right the whole time and that if the people keep obeying them this will continue. There is no freedom of thought or speech and when somebody offers you something, its hard to refuse it because there could possibly be consequences. Its so creepy to have everything laid out for you by force, with no choices to make in life; it goes against the belief of freedom (which I think the people of Oceania don't believe it exists).

I have noticed that "Big Brother" is an analogy, because when you think about it, in life your older brother/sister are responsible of you and tell you what to do. However, in this text its a different case because Big Brother is literally controlling the citizens like they are brainless, little puppets.

In addition, we now know why Winston is lonely. He used to have a wife named Katherine and Winston says that she was one of the most ignorant people he has ever met. After a couple of years, they separated and then Winston started realizing that he hated Big Brother so the core. Now Winston writes a diary to show his experiences and hopes that the people in the future somehow find it and read it (even though he could be killed by doing so). This way, others in the present will know how life was like under Big Brother during the year 1984.

I really want to know if Winston will try to stop Big Brother or if he will just continue with life the way it is. Will he make any new relationships? Will someone relate to him in terms of wanting to abolish Big Brother?

message 8: by Nishat (new)

Nishat | 15 comments Something I thought about was why the author had included Jones, Aaronson, and Rutherford in the story. These were survivors of the Revolution. Winston had said that seeing the three had made him feel a "terrified fascination" and he calls them relics of the ancient world. After informing the reader of what he had thought and how the three were the last great figures from the heroic days, Winston's thoughts were then turned negative. Jones, Aaronson, and Rutherford were called outlaws and enemies. The three were also mentioned to be "corpses waiting to sent back to the grave." If Winston had thought so highly of them, why does he also feel this negative way about them too? Why is this important and why did the author include it? Does it reveal something about Winston or the way the people in the book are controlled?

Continuing about Jones, Aaronson, and Rutherford, when "Under the spreading chestnut tree/ I sold you and you sold me:/There lie they, and here lie we/ Under the spreading chestnut tree" was said, why did Rutherford start crying? The song may have to do with the Revolution, but I'm not really sure. It may be about the war, as Rutherford was alive during that time. However, that still does not make it clear why he would cry.

I also wanted to mention how much power the Party has again and how it is affecting Winston. Winston had informed the reader that if the Party announced that 2 plus 2 was 5, everyone would have to believe it. However, soon after that Winston had started questioning himself with all sorts if questions. It was something like if 2+2 actually equaled 5 and how can we be so sure? The Party is just making Winston question everything and this may be one of the reasons why he dislikes this control.

From where we were reading, I think 70-80, it seems like Winton is really curious about the past. Winston had written that he understood How, but he did not understand why. What do think he is referring to? It could be the past as he mentions it to be constantly changed.

message 9: by Lena (last edited Feb 06, 2017 05:04PM) (new)

Lena Elwafi | 13 comments I agree with Nishat and I want to add on that Jones, Aaronson, and Rutherford are very important characters and that the author included them for a specific reason; which is that Winston really wants to know what actually happened in the past and not the past that was made up by the government. I also want know why and what is up with the heating tensions between Eurasia and Oceania. Is it about the past and what actually happened? Is Eurasia against Big Brother? Do they want to set the citizens free?
Do you guys have an idea on why the government hates Eurasia so much and why Jones, Aaronson, and Rutherford were sentenced to death just because they were associated with Eurasia? (And this is besides the possible fact that they hate Big Brother so much.)

message 10: by Annie (new)

Annie | 14 comments Essentially, my peers provide a valid perspective upon the dystopian totalitarianism of this novel. Further, as the story unfolds, I have uncovered that this dystopian novel is really a metaphorical satire of modern class structure. Winston Smith is simply a projection of George Orwell as an isolated individual facing almighty Big Brother’s totalitarian government. Due to this discovery, it has been abundantly clear that 1984 is a form of breaking news in which Orwell warns us against communist totalitarianism and the threat of dystopia in the predictable future. In pointing out the theme, Orwell also enhances the ideology of harsh class divisions in this society using the setting of a futuristic dystopia being that the upper class has dominance over the lower class. After doing personal research, I have discovered that Orwell draws symbolism between the Oceania regime and Stalin’s Soviet dictatorship in World War Two. Through the course of the novel, there are several parallels between Big Brother and Stalin such as, the physical beatings and sympathetic discussions, the frightening appearance of O’Brien, imbalance of control, torturing tactics. However, in this case, Big Brother wants power stable for the Party, while Stalin ceased power for himself. In addition, there are numerous methods in which Big Brother keeps the power under the Party stabilized. Everything from newspeak to telescreens to thought police to the Ministry of Love to double think to war to prostitution to alcohol to gambling to the lottery and to propaganda. All these menacing tactics are ways to keep society intact and onboard with a regulated lifestyle. According to the novel it is mentioned that “Vast strategic maneuver-perfect co-ordination-utter rout-half a million prisoners-complete demoralization-control of the whole of Africa-bring the war within measurable distance of its end-victory-greatest victory in human history…” This instance portrays that the Oceanic propaganda is broadened through a telescreen that enhances the concealed news of the Party in order to arise propaganda. To add on, newspeak is the language originated from the Party to restrain any unorthodox thought. Simplifying words and expressions to one meaning basically eliminates thoughts that are harmful to the Party. Newspeak is the easiest way that the Inner Party can communicate their insane views upon the lower classes as they literally would not be able to question any Party rules. The Inner Party is the driving force that utilizes all of the powers at their will in order to stay in control “the essential structure of society has never altered.”

message 11: by Nishat (new)

Nishat | 15 comments To answer Lena: I'm not sure why Eurasia and Oceania dislike each other, but I think it may be discussed further in the book. It could be because of power, since countries and powers always argue about that. I also wanted to mention that in the book, the period of great purges or the Revolution had Big Brother as the only leader left. If he was the only leader and the last leader of the war, he must have felt pretty powerful. Having another power like Eurasia could make Big Brother angry. I also agree with your reasoning on why the three characters were included, Winston seems to still be deciding on what he wants to do. Winston wants to know about the past, but then does not much about it since it is being changed. He knows the three as great figures, but as the Party tell him, they are criminals.

message 12: by Annie (new)

Annie | 14 comments In response to Lena's statement, Big Brother is essentially an immense aspect of this totalitarian society. Although Big Brother may seem harsh and dominating, he tends to focus the power on the Party. Yes, the Party has manipulated the citizens of Oceania in such a way that they are completely blinded by the corrupt regime, but this novel implies a simplified version of what Orwell had personally experienced.

message 13: by Gerardo (new)

Gerardo | 15 comments Kinda cool how this is like now.

I don't know

What if Trump will be the next Big Brother?

Anyway, this is what if gathered about Weird Winston

Winston is a man of the future. Unfortunately, the future isn't all that great. Rather than possessing bionic arms and super-senses (COOL!), Winston is frail and thin(No gainz...). He wears blue overalls, like all the time, and eats gross-sounding synthetic foods like black bread, bitter chocolate, and fake saccharine. I'm not sure if we should be impressed or concerned that all three of these foods exist today. I hate that at that time there is no protein Winston needs a protein shake for gainz, i like food, imaging eating that everyday.

Winston is an Outer Party member, which is basically this story's version of a middle class. As a records editor at the Ministry of Truth, his job is to literally rewrite history, revising old newspaper articles so they're in line with the Party's current vision of the truth. That's actually cool, they CHANGE history, and brainwash with false facts and propaganda The original articles are tossed in an incinerator, never to be seen again. We wonder what the Party would be so worried about people learning that they'd go to this length to cover their tracks, but then again, freedom of the press isn't exactly the norm in a dystopian society.

message 14: by Jubayer (last edited Feb 08, 2017 11:08AM) (new)

Jubayer In 1984 an interesting thing that happened was the fact that the inner Party has all the 'good' food (basically the normal food that we eat everyday,I.e. jam, coffee, tea,etc) This was interesting because the normal people of the country need to get these normal food in the black market or in the 'slums' known as the proles.

Julia one of Winston's romances, has a interesting view on the Party. The war that is going on is thought to be with the enemy; however Julia thinks that the Party is the one who is actually dropping the bombs on the city. She thinks this is so the people remain scared of the Party.

In response to Gerardo's comment, the Party want's to limit the peoples freedom of speech so that the people do not rise up against them. By controlling the past and future they limt the amount people know so they can't use it against them and they only know what the Party want them to know.

message 15: by Gerardo (new)

Gerardo | 15 comments Jubayer wrote: "In 1984 an interesting thing that happened was the fact that the inner Party has all the 'good' food (basically the normal food that we eat everyday,I.e. jam, coffee, tea,etc) This was interesting ..."


yeah i like that

Norman people need to eat like victiory foods, what these are i dont know.

We still need to find out who the heck is Big Brother, is he a dictator, is he evil, or is he really a guy with good intentions,

message 16: by Annie (new)

Annie | 14 comments In essence, I strongly agree with my peers' thoughts and annotations. To further engage this discussion, I would like to provide my perspective upon the empowering quotations in this novel.

To commence, the official slogans of Oceania "War is peace. Freedom is slavery. Ignorance is strength," are written in a widely emphasizing manner on the Ministry of Truth for the citizens of Oceania to digest. By eliminating the independence and strength of individuals’ minds and forcing them to live in a constant state of propaganda-induced fear, the Party is able to force its people to accept anything it decrees, even if it is completely illogical. This is apparent when the Ministry of Peace is in charge of announcing war, the Ministry of Love is in charge of political torture, and the Ministry of Truth is in charge of handling historic books to reflect the Party’s ideology. Moreover, this slogan is primarily incorporated for convincing the people that a war against another region keeps the people of Oceania united and working together to maintain dominance of their international status; freedom is slavery is key because a man who is independent will essentially end up crawling on his knees seeking redemption; ignorance is strength because the inability to pinpoint the government's devious thinking will prevent "unnecessary" exposure.

Additionally, the quote "Who controls the past controls the future. Who controls the present controls the past," is an important slogan in which the Party uses an immoral tactic to extend artificial information to manipulate the citizens' individuality. Control of the past guarantees control of the future, because the past can be treated as a set of conditions that encourage future plans. In other words, if the past was blissful, then people will act to re-create it. However, if the past was detrimental, then people will act to avoid such circumstances from happening again. The Party creates a past that was a time of misery and slavery from which it claims to have liberated the human race, thus compelling people to work toward the Party’s goals. The only reason the Party is able to maintain this sort of dictatorship is by maneuvering each individuals' mind. Every history book reflects the government's perspective of a restricted lifestyle, and individuals are forbidden from keeping mementos of their own pasts, such as photographs and documents. Therefore, the citizens of Oceania have a very short memory, and are willing to believe just about anything the Party tells them. Futher into the novel, O’Brien tells Winston that the past has no existence and only real in the minds of human beings.

message 17: by Gerardo (new)

Gerardo | 15 comments Annie wrote: "In essence, I strongly agree with my peers' thoughts and annotations. To further engage this discussion, I would like to provide my perspective upon the empowering quotations in this novel.

To com..."

Yeah i agree with you

And they're not wrong either,

If you think about it, war DOES keep you united and working together, just like we're learning in SS, everyone contributes to the cause. That's where the "Victory" everything comes into play, just like the "Victory" GIN, I think...

It is humorously ironic that, Winston, who knows more about the TRUE history Oceania than anyone else, is tasked with the profession of DELETING that history, so

Kudos right?

message 18: by Nishat (last edited Feb 14, 2017 03:10PM) (new)

Nishat | 15 comments I do no think Winston knows that much about the past and this is the reason why is questioning himself so much. I said before that Winston is confused, he wants to know the past, but then he does not know what the Party says is true and what is false. My example from before is that Winston wants to believe Jones, Aaronson, and Rutherford are great heroes, but also sees them as criminals because of what the Party says. However, I do agree that he would know more than others. This would be the result of his job and having to change the past.

It was repeated again in the book that Winston knows how, but does not know why. Why do you think the author keeps bringing this up? Winston is seen questioning himself several times and is uncertain about his thoughts and actions. It is clear that Winston is against the Party, but he also believes in some of what they say.

What is Winston really trying to find out? He wants to know about the past and is against the Party, but how will this help him achieve whatever goal Winston has? I want to know how this knowledge will help Winston because he hasn't really done anything to display his disapproval. What does Winston want to achieve?

There was a flashback in the book where Winston describes stealing chocolate from his sister. Was this added to show a change in Winston's character or more of how the Party had controlled them? Since there were still rations then, it seems as if the Party or the rules and way of control have not changed.

message 19: by Lena (new)

Lena Elwafi | 13 comments We can all agree that Julia is important in this novel and in Winston's life. She has revealed a perfect example of rebellion by playing two roles at once. She is a person who wants the public to think one thing but she is the exact opposite, revealing her two sides. One side shows her crazy, risky and ruthless actions and on the other side she is business like, the governments favorite and respectful gal.

When Winston has first payed eyes on her he fell in love with her and wanted her badly, but surprisingly she played the first move into their relationship. Now the two meet up in secret places, because if they were seen in public, then they would automatically be killed for two reasons:
1- Winston is already married and you cannot separate our cheat on your spouse.
2- Julia is way too young and part of the "Anti-Sex League" for young women.
Despite knowing that they would be killed on the spot if caught, both characters cannot resist being apart for a long time, resulting in meeting up.

Julia has opened up Winston's eyes and showed that the whole world is corrupt. The government, Oceania, the people are ALL CORRUPT. Winston now doesn't feel against rebelling anymore, because before meeting Julia, he was a really unsure person. She kind of showed Winston that sometimes change in life is good.

I have a feeling that both characters get caught, because even the best tricksters will get caught.

message 20: by Annie (new)

Annie | 14 comments Nishat wrote: "I do no think Winston knows that much about the past and this is the reason why is questioning himself so much. I said before that Winston is confused, he wants to know the past, but then he does n..."

Agreeing with your interpretation, I would like to say that everything goes down in the following chapters of this intriguing novel. Winston and Julia arrive at O’Brien’s luxurious flat when O’Brien turns off the telescreen in the room which is a privilege only Inner Party members are eligible to perform. Winston declares that he and Julia desire to work in the Brotherhood.

The four individuals discuss Goldstein, the conspiracy, and the underpinnings of the workings of the rebellious forces. Then, O’Brien asks several questions of Winston and Julia testing their loyalty to the Brotherhood.

Later on, Winston thinks about the switch-a-roo on the 6th day planned by the Party on which a speaker announced that Oceania was at war with Eastasia, and not Eurasia.

Though these instances are nothing but deceit, Winston feels at peace in assisting the Party with its deliberate lie, because he has the book in his possession, which is his tool in manipulating the Party.

Ironically, the manifesto has its titles lifted from Party slogans (the ones introduced in Chapter One). More or less tracing the political theories underlying capitalism, socialism, and the two nations beside Oceania, the manifesto discusses classism, the necessity of ignorance, poverty, and warfare, as well as power structures in government.

message 21: by Jubayer (new)

Jubayer To answer Nishat I actually want to disagree, because Winston DOES know about the past; however, not in the way we would normally look at it.

To assess whether or not Winston know's about the past we have to look at it in the Party's point of view (or Big Brother).

Basically, Winston knows TOO much in a sense, in the fact that he works with the Ministry of truth.

Let's go to the part [SPOILER ALERT] where the party (lets call it Oceania now) gives an 'emergency' announcement or more like a plain order that they were never at war with Eurasia, they were at war with Eastasia. After that Winston notes how the parade of hate hasn't been stopped the object of hate had just been changed, and the people basically went with the flow.

After that all the Ministry of Truth workers are called away to change years' worth of documents about the war (books, newspapers, magazines, etc.)

Nishat wrote/asked earlier, "Continuing about Jones, Aaronson, and Rutherford, when "Under the spreading chestnut tree/ I sold you and you sold me:/There lie they, and here lie we/ Under the spreading chestnut tree" was said, why did Rutherford start crying? The song may have to do with the Revolution, but I'm not really sure."


This quotation is EXTREMELY important because when Winston is tortured and interrogated, he is forced (actually he says it of his own will) he says to do the torture to Julia, his partner (in a romantic sense), he is betraying her. Later at the very end he see's Julia again and they basically say that, yes, we betrayed each other, and after that we really cant be together'. When the song says, "Under the spreading chestnut tree/ I sold you and you sold me" and THIS is basically what happened to Winston. Jones, Aaronson, and Rutherford were subject to the same torture as Winston at a placed called Room 101 where your greatest fear was used to torture you. This is where the betrayal that Winston, Jones, Aaronson, and Rutherford committed happened. That is why Jones, Aaronson, and Rutherford burst to tears when the song came up since they basically sold each other.

This book is extremely saddening but in a sense is true since at the end you wont have a non-human like hero this totalitarian government will win eventually. The book, being very pessimistic actually outlined the events and results of a society that is like this dystopia like Big Brother.

This book leads on to the discussion of President Trump being like this Big Brother...

message 22: by Nishat (new)

Nishat | 15 comments Sorry, I did not mean that Winston does not know about the past. I meant to say that he is confused with it and is not sure about what he should believe. I had also mentioned why I think Winston does know a lot about the past which agrees with Jubayer and Gerardo.

message 23: by Gerardo (new)

Gerardo | 15 comments Julia is Winston Smith’s Juliet. Is the name a coincidence? Probably not. A duplicitous and whimsical creature, her sexual allure inspires Winston to start the rebellious writings (because he fantasizes about her...HeHe). She then acts as Winston’s ally in active rebellion, although her idea of revolt is more in-your-arms than up-in-arms. Julia is a dark-haired, twenty-six-year-old employed as a machine operator in the Fiction Department at the Ministry of Truth. Looking like a zealous Party member, she wears an (ironic) Anti-Sex sash around her waist, and always participates passionately during the Two Minutes Hate.

message 24: by Annie (last edited Feb 16, 2017 05:35PM) (new)

Annie | 14 comments In 1984, it is expressed that language is of central importance to human thought because it shapes and limits the ideas that individuals are capable of expressing themselves and how they feel about society. If control of language was centralized in a political agency, it could possibly interfere with the structure of language making it inevitable to even conceive of rebellious thoughts, because there would be no words left to be said. This theory has been rationalized as Newspeak, which is the party's alternative for English. The Party is constantly perfecting Newspeak, with the intention that no one will be able to do something that might question the Party’s absolute power.

"To know and not to know, to be conscious of complete truthfulness while telling carefully constructed lies, to hold simultaneously two opinions which cancelled out, knowing them to contradictory and believing in both of them, to use logic against logic, to repudiate morality while laying claim to it, to believe that democracy was impossible and that the Party was the guardian of democracy, to forget whatever it was necessary to forget, then draw it back into memory again at the moment when it was needed, and then promptly to forget it again: and above all, to apply the same process to the process itself. That was the ultimate subtlety: consciously to induce unconsciousness, and then, once again, to become unconscious of the act of hypnosis you had just performed. Even to understand the word 'doublethink' involved the use of doublethink."

Newspeak is the official language of Oceania and its purpose is to fulfill the demands of Ingsoc. In 1984 no one employs Newspeak as the only means of expression, but it is expected that Newspeak will have replaced Oldspeak around year 2050.

Then there's the Thought Police who have telescreens in every household and public area, as well as hidden microphones and spies to catch potential thought criminals who could endanger the Party's consistency. Children were carefully brainwashed from birth to report any suspected thought criminal, even their parents.

Charges of Newspeak are sometimes advanced when a group tries to replace a word/phrase that is politically unsuitable like "civilian casualties" or offensive "murder" with a politically correct one like "collateral damage." Some maintain that to make certain words or phrases 'unspeakable' restrains what ideas could be stored and is essentially against all the basics of humanity. Others believe that eradicating terms that have fallen out of desire or become insulting will make people less likely to hold outdated or offensive views. The intent to alter the minds of the public through changes made to language illustrates Newspeak perfectly.

Either way, there is a connection between political correctness and Newspeak, even though some may feel that they differ in their intentions. Newspeak is instituted to enhance the power of the state over the individual; on the other hand, is said by supporters to free individuals from "stereotypical preconceptions caused by the use of prejudicial terminology." The main distinction is that politically correct language is often inspired only by politeness, while Newspeak has a more explicit limiting political motivation.

message 25: by Jubayer (new)

Jubayer One important thing about this society is this thought crime. Thought crime is what got many people caught including Winston and Julia. Thought crime is the major way Oceania 'cleanses' the population (much like the Holocaust with Hitler, Jews, Gypsy's, and deformed people were mass murdered) and then passes on this type of thought to children. What I mean is that what's the need in having the thought police regularly check when the kids are already in the mindset; the mindset being Big Brother being their 'lord and savior and saying anything against him is horrible.

The Party brings up the children as mini thought police. The children want to see the hangings of criminals and other savage things.

Ironically, in the beginning of the book when Winston writes 'Down With Big Brother' and visits his neighbor to help unclog their sink, the two children scream at him saying that he's a thought criminal and hits him (they actually didn't know if he was one or not).

Another major thing is the actual cleansing. For example a person will be subject to different types of 'cleansing. A person can become 'cleansed' (tortured into loving Big Brother), or become a non-person (in Newspeak) meaning non-existent or in simpler terms just pretending the person was never there (also known as killing off the person and saying they don't exist-like what?!).

An example, of a non-existent person would be Syme who had great knowledge on Newspeak. Winston was thinking that Syme would soon be killed since he had TOO MUCH knowledge even though he blindly followed the Party. Soon he did become non-existent [sad :( ].

message 26: by Nishat (new)

Nishat | 15 comments I would like to add on about the children and thought crime. It was previously stated that children were noted to have given in their parents for crime, even if they are family. However, when it happened to Parsons, he looked at it (sort of) in a different way.

Parsons had said something like, " 'It was my little daughter,' said Parsons with a sort of doleful pride. "She listened at the keyhole. Heard what I was saying, and nipped off to the patrol the very next day. Pretty smart for a nipper of seven, eh? I don't bear her any grudge for it."

No one would really want to caught while doing crime or have someone close to them give them away. In this case, Parsons is actually proud of his daughter and is very glad for her doing. He said it with "doleful pride" showing that he was pretty down, but happy at the same time. He instead takes this action as an exhibit of how he brought her up and took care of her. Parsons uses this to show that he is a good father and putting her in "the right spirit", even if it did lead to his arrest.

I also found it surprising on how people were being punished. They only care about the thoughts the person had had and not any of the real crimes. The Thought Police want to change their way of thinking and believing things to fit their desires.

message 27: by Lena (new)

Lena Elwafi | 13 comments I agree with Nishat on the thought police idea. Parsons was so happy and proud that his own daughter snitched on him to the Thought Police. Firstly, it's creepy and sad that little children has no sympathy for their parents. Secondly, why would you be proud of your daughter that ratted you out into jail? I know that there would be many people very angry if their own little angels told them out, since:
1-It's a highway to torture.
2- You spent your life caring and raising these children; you sacrificed so much for them and this is how they repay you.

"Sometimes, Winston. Sometimes they are five. Sometimes they are three. Sometimes they are all of them at once. You must try harder. It's not easy being sane."-O'Brien. I found this interesting because when they were torturing Winston and trying to make him "sane", O'Brien mentions this. I find this a a source of brainwash. They are literally making Winston believe that 2+2 is 5 but Winston knows it's 4. He states that how can he any that there are five fingers when there are only 4. In addition, they are trying to make Winston forget about his past, forget about history, forget about the truth. This is the governments way of brainwashing those who know the truth; which is painful suffering and agony.

I also noticed that prisoners like Winston would rather see their children die before them, would rather starve to death, would rather by hanged and shot, than go to Room 101. Room 101 is where there are a series of painful injections and tortures that await you. They FORCE you to believe in the governments' ways and that they have been here since the beginning of time.

What do you guys think will happen in the end? What happens to Julia and Winston.

message 28: by Gerardo (new)

Gerardo | 15 comments heres what wevwe been talking aboot

message 29: by Gerardo (new)

Gerardo | 15 comments Gerardo wrote: "heres what wevwe been talking aboot"

in 1984 language is HUGE

and heres why
. The major proposition is that if control of language were centralized in a state, then the possibility of "rebellion" or disobedience would be eliminated with no possibility of activists. This book devotes significant time to examining the centrality of language – explicitly, through Goldstein’s manifesto, or contextually, as in when Syme and Winston speak of the Newspeak dictionary – to history, culture, life, behavior, thoughts, concepts, and power.

message 30: by Gerardo (new)

Gerardo | 15 comments 1984 presents warfare as a necessary tool and symptom of a totalitarian state. Oceania, one of the three superstates of the world, is in constant warfare with one of the other two. This is necessary, as warfare keeps citizens in constant flux and fear – they then WILLINGLY submit to the control of the Party. Only after this submission can the Party regulate supply and demand to ensure classism, and ultimately, power.

Even though we never visit the front lines, war is an ever-present force in this story, lurking in the background like a big angry hippo.

message 31: by Gerardo (new)

Gerardo | 15 comments So, what does any of this tell us about the book itself? Well for one, if it's still getting referenced in pop culture today, then it's gotta be crazy-influential—dare we say, iconic. And considering it was written waaay back in 1949, it's managed to stay pretty darn relevant to audiences here in the present. Its message? Something along the lines of, "Don't let the government have too much power or they will make your lives completely miserable and possibly torture you for extended periods of time."
Maybe this is Trump
nobody likes him
the Oscar were literally anti trump!
But the ending was cool!
here's a summary of the end

Julia And Winston-the two spend time in the country and find a secret room in the city where they can escape surveillance together. Maybe the future isn't so bad after all.

Not so fast.

The two become more resistant to party rule as the story progresses, until they're both found out by the Secret Police and taken to the Ministry of Love (which should be more accurately titled the Ministry of Torture and Brainwashing). We don't want to give away too much,, my classmates can explain i better than me but things go full Hostel-status and a cage of hungry rats is involved. Winston walks away a broken man.

message 32: by Lena (new)

Lena Elwafi | 13 comments I agree with Gerardo when he says "Winston walked away as a broken man." As I have mentioned before: even the greatest tricksters get caught; and that is exactly what happened.

I found it really horrifying how they made Winston believe that the Ministry is always right and that they always control what happens. They made Winston believe into their ways and that the Earth started with Big Brother and will nd with Big Brother. Long Live Big Brother...woo hoo...I felt bad for Winston because he always believed that the government was corrupt and that things should be changed, but sadly it was too much for him and he gave up. All the torture and brainwashing just made him surrender. However, this not only happened to him but to Julia who now submits to Big Brother as well.

Orwell made this book in a heartbreaking yet a wake up call for us. It's kind of creepy how lately things in this novel are actually happening today. Orwell is saying that we are the people and that we always have choices to what is right and what is wrong in life.

I want to connect this to Katy Perry's new song "Chained to the Rhythm" because in her music video it shows people being controlled and everyone is doing the same exact thing, like they are mind controlled. The lyrics state "Are we crazy/Living our lives through a lens/Trapped in our white-picket fence/Like ornaments/So comfortable, we live in a bubble, a bubble/So comfortable, we cannot see the trouble, the trouble." In addition, a part in the music video shows the year 1984. Like what Orwell is doing, Katy Perry is trying to give us nudge and say "Wake up, look at reality! Things need to change!!!" And change is what we need now in the world, especially during these times.

In summary, we can all agree that 1984 by George Orwell had a HUGE impact on society, not only when it came about but now too. I thing the book was overall interesting and shocking in the way how democracy and freedom are not present. Furthermore, it makes you feel thankful that you are living in a place that listens to the voices of the people ( which are a big deal). I though the ending was shocking and very sorrowful, because Winston gave up and is now like a lifeless zombie submitting to every word Big Brother says to do.

Two gin-scented tears trickled down the sides of his nose. But it was all right, everything was all right, the struggle was finished. He had won the victory over himself. He loved Big Brother”.-Winston (1984).

message 33: by Gerardo (new)

Gerardo | 15 comments eh ok
sooo do we creatye a new chat for a new book?

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