1984 Reading Log
Tuan Shridhar

Part 1 Sections 1 & 2

Summary: In Chapter 1, the main character Winston is introduced as a man with ankle problems and a job in the Ministry of Truth. He finds himself doing something that would be illegal if there were laws, but since there are none, he goes ahead and starts a diary. Winston makes the first page of his diary a piece of utter rubbish, but then makes eye contact with another person and somehow managed to confirm the fact that his feelings are shared with someone else. The chapter concludes with Winston telling himself that he supports the movement that wants to take down the leader of the almighty party.

Important quote: "Winston knew-yes, he knew!-That O'Brien was thinking the same thing as himself. An unmistakable message had passed" (Orwell 41).

Discussion Questions: Why would Winston support the take-down of the party leader?

In his time and era, how would writing a journal seem illegal given everything else that is happening?

Learning Station #2

What would be prsent in a Utopia?

Happiness, Peace, and properity would all be evident in a Utopian environment, as well as pure communism. Everything would be solved through diplomacy, and everybody would be free to do whatever they might dream to do.

War, taxes, discrimination, racism, segregation, pain, unhappiness, disease, obesity, junk food, and poverty would not appear.

I would feel rich and as happy as I could ever be. Such a world isn't possible because the balance of life requires a degree of bad that must always accompany good.

What would be present in a Dystopia?

There would be no peace, no freedom, no happiness, and continuous war between all people. Nobody would ever get anything done.

Happiness, Peace, and properity would all be missing in a Dystopian environment, as well as pure communism. Everything would not be solved through diplomacy, and nobody would be free.

Living in a Dystopia would feel terrible and degrading to one's moral.

Dystopia is always possible since there is so much bad in the world that can cause the world to degrade into a state of pure evil.

Sections 3-6: Response to reading
(Dreams)

Winston's nocturnal thoughts gave us background on his life and also provided a "foundation" from which he was able to think about other things. More often than not, I find that my dreams give me inspiration. I often feel elated after realizing that something I have dreamed about is actually possible. Although that idea might be irrelevant or not tangible, it certainly remains indelible and sticks in my head for the rest of the day. When dreaming, one might consider the brain to be quiscient. However, the brain is never so, shown by Winston and his thought process as he dreamed about his past life.

Sections 7 - 8: Discussion Questions

1. How the the government effectively controlling the proles and preventing rebellion, and why is it so effective?

2. How might the proles be the key to overthrowing the Party, and what are the problems involved with that idea?

Answer: The proles make up the majority of the population, causing Winston to believe that the secret of freedom lies in the proles. This idea makes sense, but the proles will never realize their power until they are free. Winston emphasizes this idea when saying, "Until they become conscious, they will never rebel, and until after they have rebelled they cannot become conscious" (Orwell 82).

3. How is the pub setting important to Winston's character development?

Short Paragraph - Sections 1-3 (Part 2)

Why are Winston and Julia drawn to each other?

Winston has shown his dislike for the party in ways that Julia appears to agree with. After seeing that Julia dislikes the party almost as much as Winston does, he decides that he instaneously likes her. For example, when Winston says, “The more men you’ve had, the more I love you" (Orwell 138), he implies that he loves Julia because she has had sex with plenty of men. Though a slight bit vulgar, the knowledge that Julia has made out with many other men is a clear indication to Winston that she dislikes the party, ultimately bringing the two of them together.

Quotes for Discussion

Section 4: “She had become a physical necessity, something that he not only wanted but felt that he had a right to. When she said that she could not come, he had the feeling that she was cheating him"(Orwell 152).

Section 5: “And when he told her that aeroplanes had been in existence before he was born, and long before the Revolution, the fact struck her as totally uninteresting. After all, what did it matter who had invented aeroplanes? It was rather more of a shock to him when he discovered from some chance remark that she did not remember that Oceania, four years ago, had been at war with Eastasia and at peace with Eurasia” (Orwell 167).

Section 6: “He had accepted it. The end was contained in the beginning. But it was frightening: or, more exactly, it was like a foretaste of death, like being a little less alive. Even while he was speaking to O’Brien, when the meaning of the words had sunk in, a chilly shuddering feeling had taken possession of his body. He had the sensation of stepping into the dampness of a grave, and it was not much better because he had always known that the grave was there and waiting for him" (Orwell 173).

Section 7: “The terrible thing that the Party had done was to persuade you that mere impulses, mere feelings, were of no account, while at the same time robbing you of all power over the material world. When once you were in the grip of the Party, what you felt or did not feel, what you did or refrained from doing, made literally no difference” (Orwell 179).

Section 8: “The members of the Brotherhood have no way of recognising one another, and it is impossible for any one member to be aware of the identity of more than a very few others. Goldstein himself, if he fell into the hands of the Thought Police, could not give them a complete list of members, or any information that would lead them to a complete list" (Orwell 190).

Big Brother is Watching: The Summary

After many Japanese were reported missing, North Korea became the prime suspect, though they constantly denied kidnapping anyone from Japan. The truth was unveiled after Kim Jong Il publicly admitted that Korean spies had kidnapped Japanese people. Washington D.C. put Korea at the top of their bad guy list when finding a Korean phone book that contained every contact number in the country. Such a phone book was only accessible to high officials, giving good insight into the way Korea worked. The comparison between Big Brother and Kim Jong Il was made after the it was deduced that Kim Jong Il controlled his people. The country of North Korea is the best example of an isolated dystopia.

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