George Orwell's, 1984: Oppression in Oceania

Pages: 4 (1396 words) Published: February 25, 2013
1984 Final Essay

Oppression is defined as: prolonged or unjust treatment or control; the state of being subject to such treatment or control. An example of this in history would be the Japanese Internment camps in Canada in the 1940's, during World War Two. Totalitarian government is a form of government in which the leaders claim complete dominance of all individuals and institutions. An example of a totalitarian dictator in history is Stalin of Russia. In George Orwell's 1984, the district of Oceania is dictated through the physical and mental oppression caused by the totalitarian government, Big Brother. The protagonist of the novel Winston Smith suffers the oppression by Big Brother controlling his every movement. The telescreen as a method of surveying Oceania by Big Brother is an additional force and representation of the totalitarian government. Finally, through creating, designing, and rigging the setting of Oceania Big Brother is able to furthermore assert his control. The citizens of Oceania are manipulated by the government’s constant presence and force of oppression which is shown through characters, symbols and setting in Orwell's 1984.

Winston Smith is not a happy chap, to say the least. His life is not his own, and has never been. His every waking moment is affected by Big Brother and the Party. The control over Winston’s life was in effect soon after he was born, but the earliest memory of being under the reign of the Party was that whatever he ate was monitored by the government. Winston remembers, “One day a chocolate ration was issued...He remembered quite clearly that precious little morsel of chocolate,” (Orwell, 169). The government was sneaky in their methods of control; they didn't directly put restrictions on diets of the citizens, but rather limited the availability of food. In addition to the control of food in Oceania, the Party decided who Winston would marry, did not allow for divorce, or to re-marry. Winston thinks...

Cited: Orwell, George. 1984. London: Penguin Books Ltd., 2008.
Protherough, Robert. "George Orwell: Overview." Twentieth-Century Young Adult Writers. Ed. Laura Standley Berger. Detroit: St. James Press, 1994. Twentieth-Century Writers Series. Literature Resource Center. Web. 13 Apr. 2012.
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