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Betrayal In George Orwell's 1984 Essay

997 words - 4 pages

Authors often use their works as a way to express their own opinions and ideologies. However, it is the skill of the author that determines whether these ideas are combined with the plot seamlessly, making a creative transition of ideas from the author’s mind, to the reader’s. There is no doubt that George Orwell is a masterful writer, and one of his most popular works, 1984, clearly expresses his negative views of the Totalitarian government. A common theme in the dystopian society in 1984 is betrayal: The Party is very intolerant towards any form of disloyalty, and anyone who plots against them or Big Brother will eventually either betray their own mind and accept Big Brother as their leader, or be betrayed and revealed to The Party by one of their so-called comrades. Overall, Orwell is using this constant theme of betrayal to show how alone and alienated the protagonist (Winston Smith) is in his quest against Totalitarianism, thus showing how flawed and hopeless the political system is.
One of the things that makes Oceania so dismal is the fact that no one has any friends, they have comrades. There is no true companionship in 1984. As the name comrade suggests, these people only consort with each other because they share jobs, and nothing more, there is no love, and there is no trust. This is another situation which leads to feelings of loneliness. The Party has trains the population to act as followers, even if they are the opposite. They have installed so much fear, that people will readily and without hesitation denounce their comrades as Thought Criminals in order to prove their own loyalty to Big Brother. A prime example of this loyalty through betrayal is when a man in the Ministry of Love is being taken to Room 101, and he is so scared that he points to another man saying: “He’s the one you want! Take him not me.” (Orwell 249). This friendless situation makes Winston and Julia desperate for allies, also explaining why they are so eager to trust O’Brien and Mr. Charrington at first, both of which turning out to be more dangerous than the people they work with in the Ministry of Truth. This betrayal reinforces the fact that no one can be trusted, that they have no allies, and that they are alone against an army of double thinkers.
In 1984, the ultimate form of betrayal is introduced when The Party causes Winston to betray his own mind and accept their views, and love Big Brother. It the beginning, Winston stresses the importance of keeping your own thoughts, in a world where other opinions and alternate accounts of past events are being forced upon the population. Winston points out that “Nothing was your own except the few cubic centimetres inside your skull.” and thoughts like this become important to the reader, who, as Winston does, believes that they are safe in his head as a facet of his character (Orwell...

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