Ling AP Lit. and Comp. 2010-11 discussion

What is Truth? > What can/can't the Party control?

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message 1: by Catie (last edited Nov 07, 2010 05:33PM) (new)

Catie Cooper | 20 comments On page 137 Julia says, "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 of you." Is this true? Are the thoughts communicated by people the only things the Party can control?

I think Julia is wrong here. She says the Party can't make you believe anything you don't believe but that is what the Party does each day. They alter newspapers, pictures, history books, etc. so that any single thing that a person thought was true, can no longer be proved. Even if a person believed in something, if every shard of information and evidence of the event happening or the person being alive is destroyed, how is it possible for that person to believe what can't be proved or verified? But Julia and Winston both see and help the changes happen. Winston alters the newspapers so he does have a better grip on reality and would probably have an easier time sticking to his beliefs. The average person on the other hand, is much easier for the Party to penetrate.

message 2: by Ada (new)

Ada L | 22 comments Although the Party controls the information given out to the public, I do not think they can fully control what a person believes. The Party may tell people what to think and what to feel, for example in the Two-Minutes of Hate, but they cannot truly alter human instinct. I think it is this human instinct that Julia is referring to in the quote. People can be fooled as to what is actually happening in the world around them but the party can never truly eliminate the things that make humans human, for example love. Even though they try to suppress sexual desires and familial ties, it is impossible to truly eliminate these feelings. For example, before Winston met Julia, he was influenced by the Party and largely forgotten what "love" felt like. Yet, each time he saw Julia, he still had uncontrollable feelings of desire. Similarly, when he saw the video of the mother shielding her son while being shot at, he could not help but feel something for this act of love. It is this bit of humanity that the Party cannot take away, no matter how hard they try to influence public thinking.

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