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The life of Winston Smith is very strange, from the Party watching his every moveto having an affair that is completely illegal in Oceania. Winston Smith is a low-ranking member of the ruling Party in London. The Party watches Winston everywhere he goes and everything he does, through the telescreen. Winston works in the Ministry of Truth, where he alters historical records to fit the needs of the Party. He is troubled by the Party’s control of history, the Party claims Oceania has always been allied with Eastasia in a war against Eurasia, but Winston seems to remember when this was not true. Winston dislikes the Party because of all of the rigid control of the Party, which prohibits free thought, sex, and any expression of individuality. Winston illegally purchased a diary in which he writes his criminal thoughts in. He has also become fixated on a powerful Party member named O’Brien. Winston and Julia’s affair was illegal in Oceania because the party put up a law where you can’t have sexual intercourse. So when Winston received a note from Julia that said “I love you” on it, he couldn’t resist so they began a covert affair. They rented a room above a second hand store where they made love, and kept the affair a secret.
There are two parts to the Party the Inner Party and the Outer Party, there also the Proles.
The Inner Party is commonly known as “The Party” and they are the upper class. The Inner Party only makes up 2% of the population of Oceania, they are also the rulers. They have privileges different than any other such as being able to temporarily turn off their telescreens, living in comfortable homes; have good food and drinks, having personal servants and access to helicopters and automobiles. No other class may enter Inner Party neighborhoods without a very good reason. Despite all this, the Party is not immune to the rigid thought and behavior imposed on it, even though it originates within their own ranks. If an Inner Party member gets out of line they are dealt with the same as any other member of society, mainly through torture, imprisonment and/or being erased from history.
The Outer Party is given state administrative jobs and are composed of the more educated members of society. Winston is part of the Outer Party. They are responsible for the direct implementation of the Party’s policies but have no say. They are the “artificial middle class” and have strict rules applied to them. They are allowed no vices other than cigarettes and Victory Gin. They are spied on via telescreens and other means of surveillance, including being encouraged to spy on each other for any suspicious activities. According to history, the middle class is the most dangerous–their intellectual ability with limited power means they are more likely to start a revolution against the upper classes. The Outer Party is required to have a constant patriotic frenzy for the Party, following blindly every order from them. They live in rundown neighborhoods and are subjected to rations to an almost ongoing state of starvation. They are also required to abstain from sex unless it’s for procreative purposes.
So the Outer Party is like most of us in the world. The lower class of workers that perform the majority of menial tasks and labours. They are in the poorest of conditions but are the most free of any of the classes in that the Party does not spy on them, thinking they aren’t worth it. The Party keeps them entertained with alcohol, gambling, sports, and fabricated novels and pornography, called “prolefeed”. They are kept uneducated and are considered unable to gain any sophisticated views of their lives or the society they live in. They are considered harmless, nothing more than animals. Some members of the Thought Police wander around the prole neighborhoods to see if any of them are displaying intelligence and if so they are taken away and vaporized. The Proles make up 85% of the population. In his diary Winston writes, “If there is any hope, it lies with the Proles.”
Now let’s talk about Big Brother. Big Brother is the leader of Oceania. He is kind of like the Prime Minister or the President, but worse so basically Donald Trump. The Party spies on the Outer and Inner Party. They especially watch Winston very closely. They watch Winston’s every move, so Winston has to be careful on what he does and says. They watch everybody in Oceania through telescreens, but only the Inner Party can turn them off.
The Brotherhood is the name of the secret organization whose job is to bring down the Party. The leader of the Brotherhood is Emmanuel Goldstein. Whether or not the Brotherhood really exists is not 100% clear, but it is doubtful that it exists. More than likely, the brotherhood, as well as Goldstein are made up by the government or the Party of Oceania as means of trying to seek out revolutionaries and anarchists. Also by letting people believe that this person and or organization really exists and then by showing people the terrible fate that will happen to those who join or associate with this organization. This might be how the Party keeps people in line. People sometimes see or hear about the tortures carried out against anyone who tries to go against the Party and their fear of that happening to them keeps them from going against the Party. In the story, Winston tries to join the Brotherhood and that is how O’Brien traps Winston and Julia who eventually are tortured into liking Big Brother and the Party. Essentially then, the Brotherhood is merely bait dangled by the Party to catch those who might want to overthrow the government.
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