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Ioni Adela-Carmen

Seria 3, Grupa 10

Love as Rebellion
(Nineteen Eighty-Four)
-essayAs Orwell's publisher, Fred Warburg, said I cannot but think that this book could only have
been written by a man who himself, however, temporarily, had lost hope. The setting for Winston and
Julia's symbolic relationship is a dystopian world which had lost any trace of beauty or freedom, a
world which promises nothing but terror, insanity and death.
Even from the beginning of the novel one can tell that Winston Smith, the protagonist, is deeply
dissatisfied with the totalitarian regime: he turns down the volume from the telelscreen, he sais one
cannot hide from its continual surveillance, he tries to put on an expression of quiet optimism which it
was advisable to wear when facing the telescreen. His name is a very suggestive one: Smith is the
most common name in English language, symbolising the everyman, and Winston is a direct
refference to Winston Churchill, the exalted leader of wartime England , the intention being to make
the readers view him as an ordinary man who makes a valiant effort in extraordinary circumstances .
he is so real and common that readers can easily identify with him and imagine themselves in his
situation. His feelings are the feelings of every human being, thus giving hope to the reader that things
will change for the better.
Winston is an idealist. He seeks signs of unorthodox thinking in people's expressions and clings
to any small gesture, or look. Thus is born his strong being drawn to O'Brien, a member of the inner
Party: Something in his face suggested it irresistibly.[...] he had the appearance of being a person that
you could talk to, if somehow you could cheat the telescreen and get him alone. Winston primarly
only rebels in thought but one day he decides to put on paper the interminable restless monologue that
had been running inside his head, literally for years. His hopes and dreams of overthrowing the Party
are fueled by his dim nostalgia of a hazy, long-forgotten past, when people led better lives.
He tried to squeeze out some childhood memory that should tell him whether London
had always been quite like this [...] But it was no use, he could not remember: nothing
remained of his childood except a series of bright-lit tableaux, occuring against no
background and mostly unintelligible.

But his life is forever changed the moment when Julia, a coworker from the Fiction Department
whom he both feared and despised for her seeming clean-mindedness, subly passes him a note saying
I love you. Afterwards they manage to meet in secret and have intercourse on a fairly regular basis,
given the circumstances. Thus is born the dammned relationship that will lead to their ruin. Julia
introduces Winston to a new form of rebellion : the act of sex. Only emotionless intercourse was
allowed, with the sole purpose of conceiving children who will grow up to serve the interests of the
Party, the duty to the Party as Winston's former wife would call it.
The aim of the Party was not merely to prevent men and wome from forming loyalties which it might
not be able to control. Its real, endeclared purpose was to remove all plasure from the sexual act. Not
love so much as eroticism was the enemy [] Sexual intercourse was to be looked on as a slightly
disgusting minor operation, like having an enema.
The Party was trying to kill the sex instinct, or, if it could not be killed, then to distort it and dirty it.

In constrast with Winston's intellectual rebellion, Julia was only a rebel from the waist
downwards. She doesn't want to overthrow the regime, only to break the rules, and quench her own
desires. In this aspect, her rebellion is selfish, as opposed to Winston's who wishes for the benefit of
future generations rather than himself. She does not do this to destroy the Party but to quench her own
desires, and that is the fundamental difference between Winston and Julia. His rebellion is as much for
future generations as it is for himself; her rebellion is purely incidental to her own desires. Although,
her lack of interest in a revolution is understandable: she is too young to have experienced another way
of life. She thinks life was always like this and it will always be like this. She can't imagine how a
better life would look or be like. Julia grew up in a world successfully controlled by the regime, the old
ways surviving, barely, only in the memory of Winston and maybe other few like him, as all the
historical accounts of the past had been either erased or modified as to serve the Party's interest.
Winston, who is working at the Ministry of Truth and spends his working hours manipulating written
history, is one of the few who know that the population is utterly misinformed.
Life as she saw it was quite simple. You wanted a good time; they, meaning the Party, wanted to stop
you having it; you broke the rules as best you could. She seemed to think it just as natural that they
should want to rob you of your pleasures as that you should want to avoid being caught. She hated the
Party, and said so in the crudest words, but she made no general criticism of it. Except where it touched
upon her own life she had no interest in Party doctrine [...] She had never heard of the Brotherhood, and
refused to believe in its existence. Any kind of organized revolt against the Party, which was bound to be
a failure, struck her as stupid. The clever thing was to break the rules and stay alive all the same. He
wondered vaguely how many others like her there might be in the younger generation people who had
grown up in the world of the Revolution, knowing nothing else, accepting the Party as something
unalterable, like the sky, not rebelling against its authority but simply evading it, as a rabbit dodges a

Also, Julia completes Winston, as she possesses elements of humanity he lacks: pure sexuality,
cunning and survival. While Winston simply manages to survive, Julia is a true survivalist, using any
means necessary to conduct her self-centered rebellion. Her demeanor is that of a zealous Party
follower, but just under that thin surface is an individual with unchecked human desires and a willful
spirit, which ultimately results in her capture. She is also far more intuitive and realistic and
understands the world they live in and how the Party works.While Winston is emotional about the
Party and its potential downfall, Julia feels his wishes are merely fantasy and is apathetic to the Party's
dogma. She busies herself with getting around the Party, unlike Winston, who wishes to attack the
Party at its center. . She thinks that repressed sexuality is used by the Party to manipulate the masses,
to have them tensed and histerical. Also the constant hunger, dire living conditions, the perpetual terror
of the war and lack of basic items for everyday living make the popolation so preoccupied with merely
surviving that very little time is left for thought and emotion. However, Julia only emphasises the first:
When you make love youre using up energy; and afterwards you feel happy and dont give a damn for
anything. They cant bear you to feel like that. They want you to be bursting with energy all the time. All
this marching up and down and cheering and waving flags is simply sex gone sour. If youre happy
inside yourself, why should you get excited about Big Brother and the Three-Year Plans and the Two
Minutes Hate and all the rest of their bloody rot?

Julia teaches Winston how to regain his humanity. After years of emotional isolation and the
constant scrutiny and terror of the Party, he doesn't know how to be intimate with a person. The wall he
built around himself in order to blend in with the rest of the society, avoid being detected by the
thought police and, ultimately, to survive had become such a great part of himself that he finds it
impossible to feel tenderness and desire or to truly express his sexuality.
He had pulled her down on to the ground, she was utterly unresisting, he could do what he liked with
her. But the truth was that he had no physical sensation, except that of mere contact. All he felt was
incredulity and pride. He was glad that this was happening, but he had no physical desire.
In the olddays, he thought, a man looked at a girls body and saw that it was desirable, and that was the
end of the story. But you could not have pure love or pure lust nowadays. No emotion was pure, because
everything was mixed up with fear and hatred. Their embrace had been a battle, the climax a victory. It
was a blow struck against the Party. It was a political act.

As their reletionship develops and they get more attached to one each other Winston starts to
develop feelings of possesion and tenderness unknown to him before meeting Julia.

During the month that he had known her the nature of his desire for her had changed. At the beginning
there had been little true sensuality in it. Their first love-making had been simply an act of the will. But
after the second time it was different. The smell of her hair, the taste of her mouth, the feeling of her skin
seemed to have got inside him, or into the air all round him. She had become a physical necessity,
something that he not only wanted but felt that he had a right to.
[...]a deep tenderness, such as he had not felt for her before, suddenly took hold of him. He wished that
they were a married couple of ten years standing. He wished that he were walking through the streets
with her just as they were doing now but openly and without fear, talking of trivialities and buying odds
and ends for the household. He wished above all that they had some place where they could be alone
together without feeling the obligation to make love every time they met.

Both their love and rebellion reach their climax when they rent the room above Mr. Charrington
junkshop and spend their free time toghther, enjoying black market products such as coffee, tea or jam.
The room has become their own private paradise of freedom and happiness, which seemed to protect
them from the hostile outside world. Winston dropped the toxic habit of drinking gin a all hours and his
health greatly improved. Also the fear of being caught subsided. At this point they only enjoy that they
have each other.[...]the process of life ceased to be intolerable:
Both of them knewin a way, it was never out of their minds that what was now happening
could not last long. There were times when the fact of impending death seemed as palpable as
the bed they lay on, and they would
cling together with a sort of despairing sensuality, like a
damned soul grasping at his last morsel of pleasure when
the clock is within five minutes of
striking. But there were also times when they had the illusion not only of safety
but of
permanence. So long as they were actually in this room, they both felt, no harm could come to
them. Getting
there was difficult and dangerous, but the room itself was sanctuary.

Their capture is only a matter of time. The episode in which they go to O'Brien's house and
swear allegiance to the Brotherhood is only meant to rise their hope as to make the fall more painful, as
he only pretends to be a rebel to set them a trap.What follows is only the natural flow of events in this
grim and hopeless world. The dystopian fall from paradise is tragical and unaviodable. All their hopes
and dreams are crushed by the cruel reality: the Party knows and controls everything. The process of
breaking Winston down is systematically carried out by O'Brien. However throughout the atrocititoes
he was subjected to he hadn't stopped loving Julia. His feelings for her are the last bastion of hope and
freedom. The spiritual connection they share is stronger than ever.
He had heard himself cry aloud:
Julia! Julia! Julia, my love! Julia!
For a moment he had had an overwhelming hallucination of her presence. She had seemed to be not
merely with him, but inside him. It was as though she had got into the texture of his skin. In that moment
he had loved her far more than he had ever done when they were together and free.

However, in Room 101 Winston is completely broken down while subjected to the rat-cage
torture. The terror he experiences exceeds his grimmest and darkest expectations.
[...]he had suddenly understood that in the whole world there was just ONE person to whom he could t
ransfer his punishmentONE body that he could thrust between himself and the rats. And he was
shouting frantically, over and over.
Do it to Julia! Do it to Julia! Not me! Julia! I dont care what you do to her. Tear her face off, strip her
to the bones. Not me! Julia! Not me!

Love is the only thing which gives human beings' the power to cope up with nearly everything,
that being the very reason the Party wants to erase every trace of it. After betraying Julia, there's
nothing left in his mind but utter submission and the love for Big Brother.There were things [...] from
which you could never recover. Something was killed in your breast: burnt out, cauterized out. He is
happy, his soul white as snow, and waiting the fevereshly anticipated bullet in the back of the head:
He gazed up at the enormous face. Forty years it had taken him to learn what kind of smile was hidden
beneath the dark moustache. O cruel, needless misunderstanding! O stubborn, self-willed exile from the
loving breast! Two ginscented tears trickled down the sides of his nose. But it was all right, everything
was all right, the struggle was finished. He had won the victory over himself. He loved Big Brother.

Orwell, George. Nineteen Eighty-four (The Annotated Edition)
2013. Penguin Books
Moustaki, Nikki, and Gilbert Borman. CliffsNotes on 1984. 31 May 2015