1984 Research Paper
1984 research paper
[Name of the Institution]
The novel 1984 written by George Orwell is one of the American’s classics that helps to explore human intention and ideology in terms of Utopian society that is guided by control, power, and corruption. In this novel, different characters especially Winston is used in a manner that his character proposes that power is actually granted to the government for the welfare of society but this welfare can be considered negatively or it is automatically turned into corruption or becomes corrupt when there are several attempts that are made to force all the people to face a single and set standard. The novel also highlights social conflict in terms of class structure and the attitude of different people towards that structure with a notion that the government that is corrupted will automatically attempt to distort and deconstruct the mental as well as physical framework of the society which is not aligning with their set beliefs, eliminating the opportunity of attaining a Utopian society. The novel 1984 is a detailed account of criticism on political and economic structure that distorts social structure and destruct enslave minds of people, by making them dependent on bourgeoisie.
George Orwell wrote the novel 1984 that is also termed as a legendry as well as a terrifying glimpse into the future. The novel presents an ultra-repressive state with an omnipresence that is deeply rooted in the world events of time of Orwell. The novel depicts how the government attempts to control the mind as well as the bodies of the people who are living in that particular society in the form of character Winston Smith. There are different methods presented and quoted that are practiced by the government with an aim to tilt the beliefs of the people towards themselves and direct people to assimilate their ideologies with theirs (of the corrupt government) 1. The novel infers the division of world into three states, Eurasia, Oceania and Eastasia that are presented in a harsh battle with each other. This world structure is followed by a nuclear war that is localized and traced back to 1950. In the state of Oceania, a revolution results in the rise of a figure also called Big Brother, along with a secretive group of individuals who are called "The Party". Under the impact of this regime, there are different freedoms of thought and expression given with an aim to support the infallibility and omnipotence of The Party as well as its pronouncements2. In a nutshell, this novel presents Orwell’s strict attention to the realistic details and description of the world thirty-five years ahead of his own validity to 1984 along with a shadowy and bleak forewarning of what might occur in future.
The novel, 1984 is a third-person account that is used to show both internal and external experiences of living under a totalitarian government. The novel reflects Fascist ideology, one of the major and critical feature of the Italian Fascism that was an attempt to eliminate the essence of class struggle from the society by using nationalism as a strong support, Orwell has tried to incorporated and let the readers analyze the features of totalitarian government, how they control citizens to maintain the monopoly of the upper class, where lower class is doomed to live in illusions and abstractions1.
The novel comprises of several schools of thought in the form of Winston Smith’s memories and thoughts. Also, Orwell has used a third-person account for Winston rather than the first person referring to Winston as observer. The author has simultaneously described Winston's thoughts and feelings while he commented on them. The novel circulates about the views of Winston, taking into account he hoped to destroy the Party. This hope to destroy the Party is actually a call to awake and unite the overwhelming mass of proles against the Big Brothers1. Proles are a group of people. These proles are the collective characters as they are not presented as individuals. They are also termed as nameless and mindless mass. The functions of proles are very simple they just have to work and breed. Also, they are shown as someone who are caring very little about everyone other than family and home, they are only engaged in quarreling with the neighborhood, bear, films, lottery tickets as well as circuses and bread. Taking into account the function of inner as well as outer Party members, the proles are given complete freedom. As per Winston, “Proles and animals are free”2 Also, it is highlighted that proles are not under the watchful eye of the Party and they are given the freedom to maintain and have sexual contact with each other. All these aspects are considered beneath any kind of suspicion. There are very few people who are vaporized and captured by the Thought Police and there is no single reason that is left for the member of the Party to question them. Orwell has presented Proles as subhuman also the primitive beings who are entirely or completely unconscious of the position that they are given in the society1. At the beginning of chapter 7, Winston has given a single reason for the Proles, being considered as hope for a successful revolution. He is of the view that about 85% of the population belongs to or makes up the proles. Also, there are many of them who are apparently large enough to have the “force to destroy the Party”1.
In the storyline of 1984, proles are the proletariat also called the working class of Oceania. The word proles is also derived from the Latin word “proletarians” that is terms as the lowest members of the society. In the novel, proles refers to workers and uneducated people finding minimal jobs for earning their living. The overall description of the proles is mentioned as a population that is carefree in all the manners of life, taking into account that their ignorance appears to be giving a bliss rather than their futile and dire circumstances. The proles are caught on their so-called emotional desires and those desires have made them absent to the realities of life. According to Winston, “If there is hope, “it lies in the proles” Winston is of the view that the Party cannot be overthrown from its inner attires and structure2. He is of the view that the future of Oceania can be reformed only with help of proles. Winston asserted his ideology by sharing different incidents that strengthened his trust such as, that of the market place, the expression, and reaction of different people around and then the style of life that is followed by the people. Also, it is highlighted that for the protagonist, Winston Smith, proles are the fate designers of Oceania because all the members both Inner and Outer Party are under the constant observation of the telescreen in both personal as well as the private life in contrast to proles who are not observed by anyone because no one considered it important to observe them.
Proles are not required to express or show any kind of support for any of the parties except for some specific event such as occasion or some other patriotic fervor. The Party itself creates sources of distraction for the proles in the form of songs, entertainment, novels and event pornography which is all written with the help of machines. As proles avail, all such freedom, another or a different vision assert that they are the ones who are free from any kind of the control or check and balance. It is one of the few reasons that the protagonist Winston finds them as the symbol of hope. Also, they are considered as free human beings because they have maintained all the flavors and the sense of life that is actually required of a free human being. Also, proles are seen and defined as someone who have human emotions in the form of adherence to language3.
Although the author has proposed his strong hope in the proles which is one of the controversial statements because proles are presented as leeches who will stay in the way they are until they are not equally fed by the people or the Party. Here, another role that is played by Proles in Oceania is to sustain their life and fulfill their desires that are highly emotional and sometimes social, far from the political ideologies and visions. The notion that humans have got feelings, they can think and act and it is the only difference that no only differentiated proles from the inner and outer Party members but also from the animals. Under this essence, the proles are the only happy people such as the old woman who is singing while her doing the households. It would not be wrong to say Winston’s view of the paroles is the product of freedom that he has observed in their lives. Another view highlights that the Proles are better than the other beings in the same land because they are the ones who have the potential to do something that is very hard to imagine to be done by the other members of the same society2.
it is highlighted that the notion of free-living is something that is one of the most appealing thing when a comparison is made with the other people who are living the life of prisoners and someone who is nothing other than a robot, someone who has to ask for permission and be accountable for his actions in all the terms of his life. This framework by Winston is two dimensional, it can be taken in two dimensions, firstly it is a question mark on the lives of the people who are living in that society and they are called proles. This notion criticizes the pointless ambitions of life along with the idea that “life for life sake” and “eat, drink and be merry” is something that is expected of animals1.
There is no doubt that Winston has praised proles in terms of their freedom that they can practice in terms of their life decisions and the approach towards life. Still, it is a major idea of consider that a novelist who is struggling with the classification of classes affecting life and the underlying ideology of life will never incorporate a protagonist who is too low to change his perception of life and associate “hope” with idleness and the amount of leisure they have. On the same discussion platform, it can be considered that the proles are living a far better life as compared to the other people, as they are not fearful of someone who is continuously spying on them and having a look on them regarding their life decisions3. If the central theme of “resolution” and “promotion” is considered, then proles are one of the best beings in that society because they have full freedom to do what they want to, although they are termed as people drenched in themselves still if they are given the knowledge and hope, they can play a central role in changing the savages and robots into human beings. Also, another major factor of relying on hope in that population is their quantity because proles make up 85% of the total population. The majority of the people is also one of the signs of revolution and progress and the same anthology is applicable in the case of 19843.
This novel is also a description of the proletariat social class”. If history is considered, or present is analyzed the same situation can be found. It is evident that proletariats are more like salt in flour because they are not considered as the lively and important section of the society. One of the strong and important points of view is expressed by Karl Marx in his social theory, highlighting that the proletariats are always oppressed by the capitalist system. In Roman times, this specific class lived in sheer poverty, either they have less or no resources of living and no one even bothered to think about them. If the modern era is analyzed, Karl Marx has presented his theory of social class out of injustice and frustration that he saw in society. It also highlighted that the modern era is again victimizing proletariats in terms of their rights and their position in society. Another reflection of this injustice can also be observed in the form of growing trends such as modernism and renaissance3.
Taking into account the set pattern and the living standards of proles in 1984, they are no less than a profound narration or example of the proletariats because proles are nothing but useless masses. All the aspects of proletariats are applicable to the proles. Firstly, they are the satirical representation, who is employed in the industries and serving the Party. Within the industry, proles are nothing other than a worker who is working to earn wages that can help them earn a living and facilitate them in living life from hand to mouth. Also, it is highlighted that the vision and the ideology of the proles are guided by and made by the Party that is obviously operating in industries. An apparent understanding and tone of novel highlights that that Party is busy making the sources of entertainment for proles, Party is designing ways and means that can support the proles, but a critical insight assert that the Party is only trying to maintain their own power. There is no sound basis for the actions of the Party that is justified because there is no will of the proles1. In the novel, “Ingsoc” is the official ideology of Oceania and this ideology highlights the prevalence of “English Socialism" in society. In fact “Ingsoc” is an acronym of the prevalent and dominant English socialism. Also, in the basic storyline, it is found that the proletariat or the proles are just hypnotized people who are programmed to do what they are doing they are not motivated or even guided to do or participate in the major section of society, which can also be guided by the impression of majority. In fact, they are taught and behooved to stay as they are because it is one of the necessities for the Party to suppress the notion and attributes of Proles2. In real life as well, it is observed that the hands or the lower class people are not motivated or pushed to do something great. In fact, they are provided with the resources that can keep them in their set vision of doing labor. In the present time as well, 21 century the telescreen of the Party is seen in the form of social politics and propagandas that are impossible to turn off and change.
There are a lot of social and cultural connotations and associations that are prominent in the novel. One of the major association is controlling behavior. The prevalence of capitalism and their rules is controlling the behavior of proletariats by making them stick to the set ideologies of labor work. Along with it, they are continuously reminded of the fact that the bourgeois are working for their benefit and the upper-class people are giving lower class people a huge favor in the form of employment opportunities. Another major association is the friendly face of surveillance that has to enforce and paved the way for the building of "viewer society"3.
Toady society is also divided into class structure and division as found in the novel 1984 such as an elite Inner Party, an industrious outer Party and a row of uneducated proles. This uneducated group is then the one who is made to serve the higher classes out of the fear that enlightenment of proles can bring an end to the monopoly of the capitalist. It is also evident that in the present time, one of the most skilled class is that of the proletariat, the popularity of industries and huge marketers is just a tribute to the skill of the workers who have made the product, noting that their skill is never quoted or paid off. If this class is educated and brought to upheaval, whole of the economy will observe a massive shift because the major resource patterns will be aware of the worth of their skill, leaving the artificial skilled people behind in the black walls of society. Much like proles, the lower class, in fact, the most skilled population is made to struggle for bread and butter so that they can earn their living, this stance of earning a lively hood is made so hard that they don’t find time to think about the abilities they have and how their majority can reverse the social structure. In fact, they are realized that the upper-class people are ones who have hired them as a goodwill gesture else they would die of poverty. Also, it is a tradition that is set by history and the monopoly of the capitalist is so strong that the proletariat is never given the space to think and analyze, similar to the proles3.
1984, one of the classic narration by Orwell is critical and though-provoking account that connects society with political affairs by using history as a guide. This novel is a profound narration of class structure and how his division is maintained in the name of illusions that exist nowhere. 1984 is not just a political insight but a question mark on the legacy of capitalism and the authority of the upper class manipulating the proletariats. In addition, this novel also reflects how modern technology and industrialization, for which the world is blinded is playing a central role in strengthening the surveillance and the dynasty of class division. This novel not only teaches but pushes readers to analyze their thinking and understand social phenomena so that a sound conclusion can be made by a critical understanding of the major themes and characters. In a nutshell, the novel is not just a narration but a question paper with a summary of throwbacks guided by the thought-provoking approach to future aspects and future of coming generations as well.
Dale, John. If George Orwell were alive today…: on Nineteen Eighty-four and the thrust of Orwellian political satire. Australian Scholarly Publishing, 2019.
Orwell, George, and A. M. Heath. 1984. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2003.
Johnson, Joel A. "Oppressive Rhyming: George Orwell on Poetry and Totalitarianism." Perspectives on Political Science (2019): 1-8.
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