"1984" by George Orwell: Themes, Dialogue, Symbolism
"1984" by George Orwell: Themes, Dialogue, Symbolism
A certain theme that stuck out a lot in this book was the "Physical control" of the bodies of its subjects. Winston, is followed and looked over by the Party, everywhere he goes. They constantly watch to see if he makes any sign of disloyalty, so that if he does, they would arrest him. The Party forces their members to go through tough, heavy morning exercises, called Physical Jerks. After that, the members would work long grueling days at the government agencies, and would be in the state of exhaustion. The Party brutally beats and tortures the humans if they manage to defy the Party.
On Page 245, there is a scene showing how O'Brien has physical control over Winston. "That was forty," said O'Brien. You can see that the numbers on this dial run up to a hundred. Will you please remember throughout our conversation, that I have it in my power to inflict pain on you at any moment and to whatever degree I choose. If you tell me any lies, or attempt to prevaricate in any way, or even fall below you usual level of intelligence you will cry out with pain, instantly. Do you understand that? " Through that quote, you can see that O'Brien has total control.
He can inflict pain to Winston any time he wants, even if Winston is telling the truth. This is the power of physical control. It's kind of similar to what Saddam Hussein did to his people, the Iraqis. If anyone was caught talking about the government, they would be persecuted. The more physical control you have, the more abilities you have with that control. O'Brien can do anything with Winston if he wanted to. He can beat him, kill him, starve him, torture him, etc. This is why physical control is so dangerous, and the book does a good job showing that.
After Winston goes through the period of being tortured and beaten, he realizes that that nothing is more powerful that physical pain. With the physical torture, the Party can make the humans believe in what they want them to. They can make them believe that 1+1=44 and anyone that objects on that would be beaten. Overall, Brave New World did a great job handling themes. Use of Symbolism The use of symbolism in this book is pretty good. "Big Brother," is a symbol throughout this book and shows us an abstract meaning. All over London, there are posters everywhere stating that "BIG BROTHER IS WATCHING YOU. Big Brother, is the face of the Party. The citizens are made to believe that Big Brother is the ruler or the nations and head of the Party. Big brother symbolizes the Party in its public manifestation; he is a reassurance to most people, but he is also an open threat. By this, I mean that Big Brother is kind of two faced. You see that the good thing about Big Brother is that his name suggests his ability to protect the people from other outside forces. But the other side is his bad side, in which that no one can escape his gaze, so that if you do something wrong, you'll be caught by the Big Brother.
On Page 282, O'Brien says: "You hate him. Good. The time has come for you to take the last step. You must love Big Brother. It is not enough to obey him; you must love him" This is what Big Brother is basically. You can't hate, you must love him. Obeying isn't enough for the Big Brother. Big Brother can be basically described as God in this book. He always sees you, and has more than enough ability to protect his people. As you can see in the quote, O'Brien is trying to make Winston love Big Brother, and when Winston gives in and stars loving him, he'll see Big Brother as a one faced man.
Winston won't have to worry about the Party watching him, because if he loves Big Brother, he can't say anything bad about him. Big Brother also symbolizes the vagueness with which the higher ranks of the Party present themselves. No one really knows who rules Oceania. The Party seems as if as they are the leaders of the nation, but Big Brother is the ultimate ruler of Oceania. You can't determine who ranks where and how much power they have. We don't know how much power O'Brien has or where he's ranked in the Party. Dialogue In this book, there isn't much dialogue as there would be in other books. 984 is more of book using the 3rd person view, describing the actions. The characters don't talk as much, and the emotions is felt through the presence of the setting. For example, on Page 106, Julia hurts her arm and that's when Winston starts a conversation with her, asking if she was hurt. In this scene, the dialogue ends here: "It's nothing," she repeated shortly. "I only gave my wrist a bit of a bang. Thanks, comrade! " After that, the next time you see dialogue is on Page 112, which means through 6 pages, there was no dialogue and only the description of the action between the characters.
Although there wasn't a lot of dialogue in this book, the plot was moved along through the book very well. The scenes come alive in the book through the dialogue of the characters. Form Page 259 to 260, O'Brien gives Winston the opportunity to ask him questions about anything he would like to know. As I read that scene, it felt like a real action scene taking place, with two people having a one on one conversation and the good guy is asking the questions while the bad guy answers them.
The scene comes alive at that point, and you can feel the emotions in the scene. O'Brien, with his cold feelings, is making Winston feel shameful and stupid while Winston is feeling the need to know more. Overall, the dialogue in this book was pretty good, and George Orwell did a good job of inserting dialogue into the book. Language Use Overall, I thought that George Orwell did well in his usage of language in this book. Some words I didn't understand in the book and had to look up, but overall the whole book made sense to me.
The word choice was great in the book. A lot of the words I didn't have to look up because the meaning stuck out in the sentence. For example, on Page 145, I found a word I didn't know but figured out what it meant by the sentence. It is: "The smell that rose from the saucepan was so powerful and exciting that they shut the window lest anybody outside would notice it and become inquisitive. " The word inquisitive, is an unknown word to me. However, after reading the sentence word by word twice, I found out that it meant something like suspicious or curious.
Reading it, it says that the smell of the coffee was "so powerful and exciting" and they "shut the window lest anybody would notice it... " They close the window so that people can't smell the coffee and that the people won't search for where the "exciting" smell was. The language used by the author was between simple and elaborate, for it was very simple to read with some difficult words. The language use was not a distraction to me while I was reading this book, and George Orwell did a great job promoting my understanding and appreciation of the book.