1984 is a novel written from the point of view of Winston Smith, a citizen of London, Oceania, where a new kind of government has taken over. In this new system, any kind of rebellion or freedom is restricted, including sex, free speech, or even free thought. No one is pemitted to speak badly or against the government. Although the consequences that come with breaking these rules could be fatal, Winston still rebels. He purchases a journal to write down all of his illegal ideas even though he could be killed if it is found. Winston continues to rebel against the Party thoughout the book, as he engages in an affair with a woman named Julia and continues to write in his journal. Eventually, he and Julia are caught by the Thought Police, and Winston finds that people he believed to be against the Party actually work for it. For example, a man named O'Brian was thought to be a part of the Brotherhood, a group of indivuals headed by the infamous Emmanuel Goldstein, who rebelled against the Party. However, once Winston and Julia are caught, it is revealed that O'Brian is actually a member of the Party and he eventualy tortured Winston in the hauntingly unknown Room 101. By the end of the novel, Winston has become completely brainwashed and has dedicated himself to the Party and its leader, Big Brother.
1. People sometimes think that the government has too much control over what the people of its country do. Do you think this holds true in America? Consider things that affect kids our age (drinking age, driving age, curfew, etc) and explain why think so.
2. In your opinon, is it better to have an extremely strict government that keeps order or a loosly thrown together government that lets havoc occur without interfering?
3. At the end of the novel, O'Brian tortured Winston in Room 101. O'Brian tells Winston he plans to face him with his worst nightmare - rats - by strapping a cage of them to his face and letting them eat it off. Winston, however, begs that O'Brian does this to Julia instead. If you were in this situation, would you have faced your worst fears or would you have sold out someone you loved to avoid them?