What makes us human is our curiosity and evolution over time. Abstract emotions including belief, creativity, and love are what make us human. To deny our own impulses is to deny the very things that manifest into humanity. In 1984, George Orwell Oceania as a dystopian society to show that if abstract emotions were to be terminated it would no longer be humankind instead it would be a community of simple primates surviving for the sake of survival. These oppressions of natural reactions cause problems for not only the main character but also society as a whole.
Nearly every of the society presented in 1984 is controlled, including the most natural of impulses sex and love. Orwell uses Winston and Julia’s relationship to show the power of these impulses. In the book Winston is a pessimistic man that has nothing but life itself to live for until he meets a love interest; Julia, Orwell iterates “at the sight of the word i love you the desire to stay alive has welled up in him, and taking of minor risks suddenly seemed stupid(91)”.
For a brief moment, Winston feels “the desire to stay alive” because he feels a glimmer of emotional love. He has completely changed his purpose of survival simply from the words “I love you”. Without this moment Winston would have to keep trying to survive with no means. Winston later then goes to say “The terrible thing that the Party had done was to persuade you that mere impulses, mere feelings, were of no account”(136).
Leading to the fact that the party convinces members of the community that personal emotions are nothing but mere feelings. The very emotions that are to separate humans from savages are of no account to the world.
Society is woven together by the needle of suppression and denial. Orwell proves that limiting creativity takes away from humanitarian ways. In the golden country, It Is Illustrated “but by degrees, the flood of music drove all speculations out of his mind … he stopped thinking and merely felt” (103). Winston is not used to different forms of art such as music. So he decides to relax and enjoy the music and sunshine, which shows beyond a doubt that he still has traces of humanity left in him. In a conversation with O’Brien Winston is informed that “we control matter because we control the mind”(218) Obrien then convinces Winston how he views the world is all a part of the Party’s plan and is only what they want him to see. Orwell created the language Newspeak with the purpose of purely dehumanizing Oceania, he explains that “the purpose of Newspeak was not only to provide a medium of expression for the world-view and mental habits … but to make all other modes of thought impossible”(246). The main goal of newspeak is to limit creativity by taking away the process of thought. Humans use languages to express themselves along with their ideas and opinions. Orwell uses the outer party member in this book to show dehumanization through mind control.
Winston in the end is nothing but a lifeless corpse with no meaning, the same as every other member of society. They leave no legacy to truth to carry into the future of Oceania. 1984 also tells that emotions can be manipulated through media to a point of mistrust, where even mothers and fathers cannot trust their own children. In which emotions are the most powerful weapon. And a sense of peace produced by suppression is neither natural nor desirable.
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