Questions tagged [1984]

A dystopian fiction novel written by George Orwell in 1949, it describes the world of the year 1984 as a nightmarish authoritarian state where "Big Brother" is always watching.

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Did George Orwell know Ronald Syme (and/or was his character Syme in 1984 in some way based on him)?

This is a question I have for those trained in the classics and have read the novel, 1984. One of the minor characters in the novel is a man called Syme, who works on Newspeak. He waxes eloquently ...
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4answers
559 views

Why Are The 1984 Ministries In London?

In the book Nineteen Eighty-Four, Winston Smith works in the Ministry of Truth, a ministry whose primary job was not to reconstruct the past but to supply the citizens of Oceania with newspapers, ...
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8answers
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Why does the Party allow playing chess in Orwell's 1984?

At the end of Orwell's 1984, Winston was a regular customer of the Chestnut Tree Café. He would go there every day, and the waiters would always bring him a chessboard and the current issue of the ...
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3answers
961 views

Why does Oceania not want to achieve victory over Eurasia and Eastasia?

The novel stresses that while all three powers (Oceania, Eurasia and Eastasia) are in a perpetual war against each other, none of these three powers believes that victory is possible nor wants to ...
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1answer
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Is Ender's game inspired by 1984?

I read Ender's Game recently and found that Ender reminded me of Winston in 1984. I was wondering if this was a coincidence or not.
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How can Winston edit people's personal copies of books?

In George Orwell's 1984, if my understanding is correct Winston Smith's job is basically to find items in printed works that disagree with the Party's current ideology and edit/remove them - (e.g. ...
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3answers
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In Orwell's 1984, why does 'the book' even exist?

During the third part of 1984, O'Brien states that he is in fact one of the authors of Goldstein's book (I think we can assume this to be true). I don't understand why the book was even created. At ...
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1answer
323 views

How do you compare two things in Newspeak? [closed]

Let's say one thing is good, but the other thing is better. In Newspeak they would be would be "good" and "doubleplusgood". So how do you compare two things in Newspeak?
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Is there any evidence George Orwell intended the ending of 1984 to be ambiguous?

In this other question I ask about what happens to Winston Smith at the end of 1984. Without going into spoilers, arguments can be made for two different endings. Much of that is based on a ...
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0answers
239 views

How many lights did Gul Madred show to Picard? [duplicate]

I have seen a few people discussing this, and I was wondering if anyone thought it was possible that in the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode, Chain of Command, the Cardassian interrogator Gul ...
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2answers
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In 1984, is the political ideology Death Worship (Obliteration of Self) related to eastern religions/philosophies?

At some point In 1984 by George Orwell, O'Brien gives a copy of Emmanuel Goldstein's book to the protagonist Winston. In the book the official political ideology of the Eastasian Government is called ...
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6answers
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Is there an actual army in 1984?

I just finished my first read of 1984. It was a fantastic book. While reading, I kept wondering if there was any army fighting the war. I don't recall seeing anything about anyone from the Party or a ...
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How is one to interpret OBrien's wisdom in 1984? [duplicate]

In 1984, we see that O'Brien is a human being, and he is obviously an intelligent quick-witted individual who has a rich understanding of human psychology and philosophy. There are occasions, however,...
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2answers
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Why didn't Winston know what Room 101 was?

In 1984 by George Orwell, the protagonist Winston is taken to the Ministry of Love and put in a cell there. When causing trouble, prisoners in the cell are threatened with 'Room 101', or told to sit ...
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1answer
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Why did David Bowie's proposal for a musical version of Orwell's “1984” fall through?

In honor of the late, great David Bowie, who died on January 10, 2016 As many people are aware, David Bowie's album Diamond Dogs contains several references to George Orwell's classic dystopian ...
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2answers
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What did Julia do to Winston in 1984?

In "1984", in room 101, Winston was forced to betray Julia by asking them to "give" the rats to her. She also says that "sometimes...they threaten you with something – something you can't stand up to, ...
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2answers
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Why was Charrington running a shop?

One particularly glaring absurdity in Nineteen Eighty-Four is that Charrington, the owner of the shop that Winston accidentally stumbles upon, purchases a glass snow globe from, and later rents a room ...
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How come there are so many obese people in 1984 if most of them live in poverty?

In 1984 by G. Orwell, there are many people that are described as obese, especially among proles. If the population of Oceania lives in poverty, then how come they have enough food to become ...
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2answers
730 views

Was O'Brien just doing his job?

The interpretation that Wikipedia gives is that O'Brien was intentionally planted there to root out any thought-criminals. In truth, O'Brien is an agent of the Thought Police, and is completely ...
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5answers
15k views

Why doesn't Mr. Charrington turn Winston in earlier?

Mr. Charrington, owner of the junk shop in the novel 1984, turns out to be a member of the thought police. Why didn't he arrest Winston for just walking in the door? Why did he wait for Winston to ...
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5answers
22k views

Is Big Brother an actual person in the novel 1984?

I understand that Big Brother represents the Party, and is considered the leader of Oceania. Posters of Big Brother are everywhere, depicting him as a man with a mustache, and the Party expects people ...
27
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4answers
41k views

Why is Oceania only at war with one other nation?

Eastasia and Eurasia have both, at times, been at war with both other nations. Oceania, however is always at war with only one. Why is this so?
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3answers
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Were there mind reading devices in 1984?

How was it that O'Brien could read Winston's mind so well in 1984? Is it possible the Party had a mind reading device?
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3answers
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Multiple Room 101's in 1984

Would there be more than just one Room 101 in the Ministry of Love? It seems entirely possible given that the building itself is said to be very large. I just think it wouldn't make much sense if they ...
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22answers
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What happened to Winston Smith at the end of George Orwell’s “1984?”

If you haven’t read George Orwell's 1984 this question contains potential spoilers regarding the ending of the book so you might want to stop reading now. At one point, Winston is told that the Party ...
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9answers
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What is the symbolism of rats in George Orwell's “1984”?

Why are rats used as Winston's greatest fear? What do they represent?