A 1949 Review of Orwell's 1984

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A 1949 Review of Orwell's 1984 Behold a world of horror. You are walking down a bleak London street, surrounded by huge, hostile buildings. The street is dirty and the buildings are falling apart. Missiles are incoming alongside you, people are screaming, children are crying. From every corner, every wall, two eyes are staring at you; dark eyes, with no expression; the mustached face of a man. That man is Big Brother. He is always watching you. In this world, there are two types of people: Party members and proles. If you are a Party member, you are a follower of the Party leaders. You will be wearing blue overalls, and will be living in a big apartment, with huge telescreens recording you every move. As for the proles, they are the "poor people." If you are one of them, you will be treated as a worthless being. However, "if there is hope, it lies in the proles" (Orwell 72). George Orwell introduces the readers to Winston Smith, a member of the Outer Party. Winston is different from his comrades, for he is not truly a Big Brother adherent. Winston has realized that the world is full of manipulation, conspiracy and brainwashing, so he tries to escape, even if it means breaking the rules. "Big Brother is watching you" (Orwell 3). He sees all. He knows that Winston has been making love to a woman, which was forbidden to Party members. The man falls in love with Julia, a mysterious dark-haired girl, who is also an anti-Big Brother person. Together, they meet secretly and devise plans on how to ruin the Party's rule. In the end, however, they fail, and the Party wins. Rules in Nineteen Eighty-Four are very harsh. Every law... ... middle of paper ... ...the presence of two controversial thoughts at the same time. The mind is even ready to agree with statements such as "War is Peace", "Freedom is Slavery", and "Ignorance is Strength" (Orwell 6). In this world of paradox, people are like brainwashed cattle; they would not react to Big Brother's tyranny, but simply do everything they are told, no matter how absurd it may be. Every novel should have at least a glimpse of optimism. In Nineteen Eighty-Four, there is no such thing. There are a few instances when one might say "Hooray!", but that happiness will soon be overthrown by a "No!". For every action, there is a reaction. Here, only the reaction is present. Read with caution. This book is meant to shatter our perception of reality and make us fear the future. George Orwell has created a horrible masterpiece.
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