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Barron's Booknotes-1984 by George Orwell-Free Book Notes
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1. A
2. B
3. C
4. C
5. A
6. B
7. C
8. A
9. B
10. C

Parts of the book you'll want to refer to in answering the essay questions are labeled One, Two, Three, with sections numbered I, II, etc. For example, One, IV means Part One, Section IV.

11. It seems clear that Orwell both envied the common people for their uncomplicated lives (we see this as Winston goes among them in One, VIII) and doubted their capacity to better themselves. In One, VI and VIII and Two, VII we see that Winston rather envies the proles because of their mindless, somewhat animal-like existence. By Two, IX, he's looking to them as the hope for the future. You can write about his encounter with the prole mob, remembered in One, VIII, and his talk with the old man in that same section. Looking carefully at his thoughts about the prole woman (after the Goldstein sections of Two, IX), will help you pull together your thoughts about how both the author and Winston are depressed and attracted by the lower classes.


A. You can write about Winston's fascination for O'Brien as shown in One, I, when Winston first thinks about him and remembers the dream, and in the last few lines of One, VII. Look at their meeting in Two, III to see what kind of hypnotic effect O'Brien has on Winston. The reasons for this fascination are demonstrated in Part Three.

B. You can write about O'Brien as a symbol of the totalitarian way of thinking by picking any of his and Winston's scenes in Three, especially Three, II.

C. Consider O'Brien as representing the upper classes to both Orwell and Winston as you look at Two, VIII. His luxurious apartment, his lordly manner and his effect on Winston all help demonstrate his position. Winston's attraction to O'Brien after he is captured (Three, II) indicates that he's happy to have an upper class person to talk to in spite of the torture.

13. You can find details in One, I and One, VIII that describe Winston's daily life and his surroundings. Look at his love affair in One, I, when he first sees the dark-haired girl; in One, III, when he dreams about her; and in Two, II and V, when their relationship develops. This will give you the necessary background to compare Winston's affair to the lives of lovers today. A comparative study of governments-theirs and ours- can be made after reading One, III and IV and Three, I and II. Look at One, I, III and most other sections for descriptions of the use of television (the telescreen), which you can compare to the use of TV today.

14. A. Write about Winston as a rebel, basing your opinions on material in One, I when he begins his affair with Julia; in Two, II, when he thinks of his affair as rebellion against the state; in Two, VIII, when he meets O'Brien and vows to overthrow Big Brother; and in Three, II, III and IV, when he tries to resist brainwashing.

B. Write about Winston as lover, using Two, IV to show his tenderness toward Julia, and Three, V-when they meet again after they've been brainwashed-to show how sadly the affair has ended.

C. Write about Winston as 20th-century intellectual man in conflict with the society by looking at his dialogues with O'Brien after he's captured in Three, II, III, IV.

15. WAR IS PEACE is explained in Two, IX, at the end of the first long section of the book by Emmanuel Goldstein that Winston is reading. So long as there is a limited war which nobody wins, everybody is safe.

FREEDOM IS SLAVERY is never fully explained in the novel. We are to assume that all Party members are living in a kind of slavery that frees them from having to make decisions.

IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH is explained at length in Two, IX and in the Appendix. The Party, we learn in Two, IX, in the second long extract from Goldstein's book, maintains power by keeping people ignorant both of the past and of other societies. What they don't know won't upset them. With no basis for comparison, they have no reason for discontent with the life the Party provides for them. The instrument for this is Newspeak, described at length in the Appendix. It is designed to limit the number of words people use, on the premise that if they can't express complicated thoughts they won't be able to have them.

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