Individuality In A Dystopian Novel 1984

302 Words2 Pages
In his dystopian novel 1984, George Orwell presents the dismal quality of life under a totalitarian government to illustrate the lack of control individuals have over their existence. Individuality is controlled and influenced by society as a whole. The pervasive influence of societal expectations blurs the line between personal desire and expected aspirations perpetuated by cultural norms. This places a strain on Winston’s relationship with his wife Katharine, as he struggles with her contradictory attitude towards sex. He recalls how “as soon as he touched her she seemed to wince and stiffen,” and describes her as “a jointed wooden image”(Orwell 66). He would rather remain celibate than experience the horror and embarrassment of her…show more content…
She continually subjects herself to regular “performances” because “they must produce a child” (Orwell 67). Katharine eagerly ignores her obvious discomfort in order to fulfill her duty to the Party, incapable of distinguishing between her personal wishes and societal expectations. The illusion of freedom of choice is often masqueraded as unimpeded freedom.Society relies on conformity to succeed and maintain order-as much as uniqueness and individuality is praised, it creates conflict and discomfort. Revolution and change are wholly dependent on standing apart from the crowd-something that would be blatantly obvious within the uniform world of Oceania. During the Two Minutes’ Hate, Winston’s mind wanders, as it often does, to the history of the Party and life before Big Brother. While he asserts that he participates in the daily chanting, saying “it was impossible to do otherwise,” there is a moment he is vulnerable, when “his eyes might have
Open Document