Unforgiven: Consequences of Winston Smith’s Search for Reality in 1984

In George Orwell’s 1984, Winston Smith can not get away the state’s domination. Yet his failure is not just because of government power. Rather, even if he did have a chance to leave Oceania, his actions suggest that he would not have the personal convictions and character to do so. Both his lack of guts and Oceania’s absence of a clear “great” render it difficult for Winston to be successful over Huge Brother– and why, rather, he gives in.

Obviously, Winston does rebel versus the state. It is especially intriguing to note that Winston works at Ministry of Reality as a revisionist writer of historic fact which the very first act of disobedience he dedicates includes the act of writing. Driven by a sense of isolation from society, Winston acts the supreme act of remoteness: writing a journal. Not only is this a singular act, nevertheless, however it is also a relatively safe one. For Winston, the effects of honestly expressing heretical ideas is too dangerous; he wishes to exercise the contradictions and issues of his society, however he wants to do so in some measure of security.

Yet making a note of his thoughts is still a hazardous act. Although Winston’s initiation into disobedience might in the beginning seem tepid, in reality it is quite subversive: Merely the act of committing criticisms to paper gives an abuse sentence. Thus, although he may inform himself it is safe, intuitively, Winston senses that danger. Therefore, from that minute, Winston should weigh 2 factors to consider: the adventure and need of his disobedience, and his fear of being captured.

The tension that drives Winston’s actions through the rest of the story originates from this duality. A similar style of contradiction is emphasized through the place of Winston’s work, the Ministry of Fact. The title is, naturally, paradoxical: It signifies the absence of guts shared by all the members of his society. After all, when one is never particular of even accurate historical events, it is rather simple to forgive people for objection to express convictions. The genius of the state remains in developing a condition of continuous insecurity of the type that requires Winston into the unenviable state of catatonia. So ingrained and important is this incorrect truth in Oceania that even Julia adds to the uncertainty, confessing, “You believed I was a great party member, pure in word and deed. Banners, processions, slogans, games, community hikes all that things. And you believed that if I had a quarter of a chance I ‘d knock you as an idea criminal and get you killed off” (101 ). Even Winston, who belongs to the procedure that refashions and customizes history to keep it continuously “upgraded,” can distinguish between conscious memories and propaganda. He acknowledges, for instance, that “The party had developed aircrafts” is propaganda, not fact (127 ).

The state’s blurring (and blotting out) of truth make Winston fearful, resulting in his deep self-hate and muted hostility– which are, paradoxically, changed into a dispassionate love for Huge Brother. Pushed into treachery, Winston is rejected by O’Brien had the party. O’Brien enlightens Winston by notifying him that is merely a blip on the radar. As in any authoritarian political class structure, Winston’s bold to rebel versus what the leaders think about a completely well balanced paradise can not be endured. The threat of torture by the minions of Huge Sibling is a punishment, of course, however it is also an instrument of browbeating. “You will be hollow. We will squeeze you empty and then we shall fill you with ourselves” (200 ). O’Brien is the personification of authoritarian guideline, symbolizing the very essence of a coercive and repressive system that uses brainwashing techniques to control citizens’ ideas and actions.

Winston Smith can not perhaps be redeemed, due to the fact that just axiom can make redemption possible. Yet in a society like Oceania, universal truth can not be specified– a minimum of not as anything besides what the state requireds. Hence, it is the indefinite nature of Oceania that rises to challenge Winston Smith’s capability to hang on to his convictions. As Syme explains, “It’s a stunning thing, the damage of words … You have not a real appreciation for Newspeak, Winston … Don’t you see that the entire goal of Newspeak is to narrow the range of thought? In the end we will make thoughtcrime literally impossible, because there will be no words in which to reveal it” (46 ). In a constantly altering paradigm of fact where all universals are reduced and ruined, there is no opportunity of redemption or salvation. Those elements that redeem one day may be utilized to crucify you the next. Redemption is impossible on Oceania.

Yet nevertheless, Winston can not be excused. By giving in, by sobbing out his wish that they abuse Julia rather of him, Winston sheds the last remaining vestige of his dignity and humanity. What separates Winston from a compadre in the fight against the authoritarian state is not the extremity of his scenario, but rather the reality that he gives in to injustice. Although Winston starts by questioning the truth and strategies of Big Sibling, the truth that he has concerned like Big Bro by the story’s end is a testament to his extremely inability to express the truth that lay at the core of his remaining in the book’s opening pages.

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