1984 by George Orwell: Character Sketch

by Jeffrey Bowerman.


The two main characters in 1984 are Winston Smith and Julia. Winston has his
beliefs. It is very hard to make him believe in someone else\'s ideas or lies.
He is a little paranoid about people watching him. In the story 1984, people can
be watched through TVs (telescreens). Because of this paranoia, he found a
place in his apartment were he could sit without being seen. He spends much of
his time sitting in this corner writing in his diary. In his diary, he writes
things that could easily have him killed. Winston is a quiet person who has a
few friends. He has a strong feeling about how the world is and a stronger
feeling about how it should be.
Here is my example from the book that shows Winston\'s character:
"Just now I held up the fingers of my hand to you. You saw five fingers. Do
you remember that?"
"Yes."
O\'Brien held up the fingers of his left hand, with the thumb concealed.
"There are five fingers there. Do you see five fingers?"
"Yes."
And he did see them, for a fleeting instant, before the scenery of his mind
changed. He saw five fingers, and there was no deformity. Then everything was
normal again, and the old fear, the hatred and the bewilderment came crowding
back again. But there had been a moment – he did not know how long, thirty
seconds, perhaps – of luminous certainty, when each new suggestion of O\'Brien\'s
had filled up a patch of emptiness and had become absolute truth, and when two
and two could have been three as easily as five, if that were what was needed.
It had faded out before O\'Brien had dropped his hand; but though he could not
recapture it, he could remember it, as one remembers a vivid experience at some
remote period of one\'s life when one was in effect a different person.
Earlier in that section O\'Brien had tortured him into believing two plus two
equals five.
Julia\'s feelings are not nearly as strong as Winston\'s. She is somewhat
sneaky, and she is very good at eluding The Thought Police. Julia is quiet, and
she likes to think of the future and the past rather than the present. She
enjoys small things that are old and simple. Julia is somewhat interested in
the way the world is turning. She enjoys nature and animals.
Here is my example from the book that shows Julia\'s character:
She fell to her knees, threw open the bag and tumbled out some spanners and a
screwdriver that filled the top part of it. Underneath was number of neat paper
packets. The first packet that she passed to Winston had a strange and yet
familiar feelings. It was filled with some kind of heavy, sand-like stuff which
yielded wherever you touched it.
"It isn\'t sugar?" he said.
"Real sugar. Not saccharine, sugar. And here\'s a loaf of bread – proper
white bread, not our bloody stuff – and a little pot of jam. And here\'s a tin
of milk – but look! This is the one I\'m really proud of. I had to wrap a bit
of sacking round it, because———"
But she did not have to tell him why she had wrapped it up. The smell was
already filling the room, a rich hot smell which seemed like an emanation from
his early childhood, but which one did occasionally meet with even now, blowing
down a passage-way before a door slammed, or diffusing itself mysteriously in a
crowded street, sniffed for an instant and then lost again.
"It\'s coffee," she murmured, "real coffee."
Julia had more interesting things in her bag after the coffee, this example
shows her interest in old and simple things.
If Winston had a flat tire, he would probably sit in his car for a while.
After maybe one half hour, he would get out of the car and deal with it. When
he was dealing with it, he would not think about the work very much. Winston
would definitely write a lot about it in his diary.
In 1984, all the dish washing is done by the cooks. If Winston had to do
the dishes, he would probably not be very good at it. He would take a long time.
He probably would not break very many dishes. If he had the option to use a
dishwasher, he would definitely do it. Winston would probably