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Reader Comments: "1984" (George Orwell). Summary, plot, meaning

2 screen versions, publications in 60 languages of the world, 8th in the list of the best two hundred books by the Air Force version - all this is the book "1984". George Orwell is the author of the best anti-utopia novel, taking the place of honor among the already classic "We" Zamyatin and "451 degrees Fahrenheit" by Bradbury.

A little about the history of the book

Born in India, a former colonial servant George Orwell moved to Europe to become a writer. His creative activity became visible after the publication of the provocative book "Animal Farm" (or "Animal Farm"). Describing the caste inequality of the population, fighting for freedom of thought and condemning any enslavement of the freedoms of the common man, the writer expands the topic in the novel "1984". The book reveals the author's desire to show what a totalitarian regime is, how destructive it is for a person and the system as a whole.

Naturally, such a progressive view is unlikely to appeal to representatives of the ruling authoritarian government. The "farmyard" in the Soviet Union was called a "vile" parody of the social way of life, and Orwell himself became an opponent of communism and socialism.

Negation of any kind of enslavement of a person - physical and moral, condemnation of denunciations and infringement of the human right to free expression - is all as the basis received the book "1984". George Orwell finished work on the novel in 1948, and in 1949 it was already published.

A stormy reaction to the publication of the work did not take long. Among the approving exclamations, the beginning of the filming of the film, the translation of the book into other languages, there was also a charge of plagiarism!

The fact is that the novel "1984" George Orwell published after the publication of the work of Yevgeny Zamyatin "We", which is based on a similar idea of the totalitarian system of society and the pressure of politics on the personal life of man. The charge of plagiarism was lifted after the researchers were able to explain that Orwell had read "We" after the birth of his own idea of creating an anti-utopia.

Such processes, when different authors undertake to state similar ideas practically at the same time, are logically connected with global political and social changes in the life of society. The historical processes in Europe at the beginning of the twentieth century, the emergence of a new state of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, are proof of this.

The plot lines of the novel

In the novel "1984", we can conditionally identify the two main spheres in which the story develops-socio-political and moral-psychological. These two directions are so intertwined that it becomes impossible to imagine one without the other. The description of the foreign policy situation is shown through the prism of the experiences and thoughts of the main character. Relations between people are also a manifestation of the social structure of the state, which George Orwell describes in 1984. Analysis of the work is impossible without both directions.

The actions described in the book take place in Oceania, a superpower that was formed as a result of the split of the world into 3 main parts after the Third World War. Oceania personifies the union of the American states, Africa and Australia, headed by the center - Great Britain. The other two parts of the world are called Eurasia (the Soviet Union, the rest of Europe, Turkey) and Ostasia (the current countries of Asia).

In each of these states there is a clear hierarchical system of power and, accordingly, a caste division of society. The top of government in Oceania is the Inner Party. It is also called the Big Brother, who tirelessly "watches you". Simply put, the whole life of society is under total control over the rules of the Party in the name of "common good". The elder brother controls everything - the work, the person's personal life, as well as his thoughts, feelings and emotions. The one who becomes a "thought criminals" (who does not think in the way the Party "permits") is faced with a severe punishment ...

By the way, love and a sense of affection for loved ones are the same as the thought of crime. Anyone who is a fan of love topics in literature will find for himself another storyline. The line of the main character's relationship with the beloved. Certainly, original. Love under the relentless, gaze of Big Brother ...

A crime, a police of thoughts and a TV screen

In "1984" author Orwell George shows how much ideology penetrates the personal life of a person. Control over all spheres is made not only in the workplace, in the dining room, shop or street event. Party watches and at the dinner table in the circle of relatives, and day and night.

This is done with the help of a so-called telecran - a device similar to a TV set placed on the streets and in the homes of party members. Its purpose is double. Firstly, round the clock to broadcast false news about the victories of Oceania in the war, about how much better it became to live in the state, to glorify the party. And secondly, to be a camera for tracking a person's personal life. The TV can be turned off for only half an hour a day, but this did not guarantee that he does not continue to monitor all the actions of the citizen.

Control over compliance with the "norms" of life in society was carried out by the police of thoughts. She was obliged, in case of disobedience, to immediately grab the criminal's mind and do everything possible to make the person realize their wrongness. For a more complete understanding: even an expression of a person that is objectionable to the elder brother is a kind of thought crime, a crime.

Doublethink, Newspeak and Ministry

"War is the world," "black is white," "ignorance is power." No, this is not a list of antonyms. These are the slogans existing in Oceania, which show the whole essence of the ruling ideology. "Doublethink" - this is the name of this phenomenon.

Its essence lies in the belief that one and the same can be described in opposite terms. These characteristics can exist simultaneously. In Oceania, there is even such a term as "white-black".

An example of doublethink can be the state of war in which the state lives. Despite the fact that there are military operations, the state of the country can still be called peace. After all, the development of society does not stand still in time of war.

In connection with this ideology, the names of the Ministries in which the members of the Outer Party (the middle link in the hierarchy of the society of Oceania) seem not so absurd seem. So, the Ministry of Truth was busy disseminating information to the public (by copying old and embellishing it), the Ministry of Abundance - with economic issues (for example, the supply of products that were always in short supply), the Ministry of Love (the only building without windows, in which, apparently , Torture was carried out) - protection of order, the Ministry of Education - leisure and entertainment, and the Ministry of Peace - of course, issues of war.

Among the population abbreviated names of these Ministries were used. For example, the Ministry of Truth was more often referred to as the Ministry of Justice. And all because in Oceania a new language developed - newspeak, which implied the exclusion of all objectionable Party words and the maximum reduction of word combinations. It was believed that everything that does not have its own term can not exist at all. For example, there is no word "revolution" - there are no corresponding processes.

Summary of the novel

Actions take place in the capital of Great Britain - London - and its surroundings, as George Orwell writes in "1984". The brief content of the novel should begin with an introduction to the main character.

From the very beginning of reading it becomes clear that the main character - Smith Winston - works in the already well-known Ministry of Truth just by those who "edited" the news. The whole life of the protagonist is reduced to visiting the workplace, lunch in the ministerial canteen and returning home, where he is waited by the relentless telekran and the bright news of Oceania.

It would seem that a typical representative of the middle class, a philistine, what millions. Even his name is ordinary, unremarkable. But in fact, Winston is the one who has not reconciled with the existing social system, who is oppressed by totalitarianism, who still notices the boredom and hunger in which London lives, sees how the news is being replaced and who is tormented by what ordinary people are turning into. He is a dissident. He is the one who, under the guise of a citizen who is satisfied with everything, hides true desires and intentions from the Police of thoughts.

In "1984" George Orwell plot unfolds just from the moment when the main character can not withstand the pressure of oppressive thoughts. He buys in the area of residence of the proletarians (the proletarians, the lowest caste living in Oceania) a notebook and begins to write a diary. Not only is writing itself a crime, but the essence of the written lies in hatred for the Party. For this behavior can only wait for the highest degree of punishment. And this is far from deprivation of liberty.

At first, Smith does not know what to record. But then he begins to outline everything that comes to his mind, even excerpts from the news he has to face at work. All this is accompanied by fear of being caught. But to keep their thoughts in the only safe place - their own mind - no more strength.

After a while, Winston begins to notice that someone is following him. This is his colleague, a young girl named Julia. The first logical thought of the hero was that she follows him at the behest of the Party. Therefore, she begins to feel mixed feelings of hatred, fear and ... attraction for her.

However, an accidental collision with her and a secret note transmitted to him put everything in their place. Julia is in love with Winston. And I admit it.

The girl turns out to be the one who shares Smith's views on the current state of affairs in society. Secret meetings, walks in the crowd, where they had not to show that they are familiar, bring the heroes closer even more. Now this is a mutual feeling. Mutual forbidden feeling. Therefore, Winston is forced to secretly rent a room for meetings with his beloved and pray that they will not be caught.

A secret novel eventually becomes known to Big Brother. Lovers are placed in the Ministry of Love (now this name sounds even more ironic), and then they are faced with a hard pay for their relationship.

What ends the novel, George Orwell tells in 1984. No matter how many pages of volume this book could make, it's worth spending time on it.

The relationship between people in the novel

If you know how to relate to the senses in Oceania, the logical question arises: "Then how do families exist there at all?" How does "1984" tell about this? " The book clarifies all these points.

The party "brought up" the denial of man's love and freedom since his youth. Young people in Oceania joined the antipole union, in which the party and virginity were revered, and all the free, including the expression of feelings, was considered unacceptable for a real citizen.

Marriage relations were built only on the consent of the Party. There was no hint of sympathy between partners. Sexual life was limited to the birth of children. Winston himself was also married. His wife, who supports the Party's installations, was disgusted with physical intimacy and, after unsuccessful attempts to get a child, left her husband.

As for the children, they were a reflection of the relationship between the parents. Rather, the complete indifference of family members to each other. From the very early age, children were inculcated with fanatical devotion to the ideals of the party. Each of them was set up in such a way that he could be ready to convey to any person, if he commits a thought crime. Even if their mother or father turns out to be dissidents.

The book "1984", George Orwell: description of the characters

On the main character of Winston Smith, you can add that he is 39 years old, he is a native of London at the beginning of the 40s. The family in which he grew up consisted of a mother and sister and was poor. However, like most of the inhabitants of Oceania middle and lower class. In the adult age of Winston often felt a sense of guilt, connected with the fact that he selected the most delicious foods from a younger ill sister. The secret disappearance of his relatives once in his childhood, Smith associated with the work of the Party.

Beloved Winston Julia in the story is younger than him - she is 26 years old. She is an attractive brown-haired woman, who also hates the Elder Brother, but has to carefully hide this. Like the relationship with Smith. To break all the rules accepted in the state to it the rebellious nature and courage, unusual to anybody of friends of Winston allows.

Another important character, which has not been mentioned yet, is O'Brien, an official familiar to Winston. This is a typical representative of the ruling elite, who, despite his awkward, plump figure, has refined manners and even a good mind. Winston at some point begins to take O'Brien for "his", not even suspecting that he is from the Police of thoughts. In the future, it will play a cruel joke with the main character.

Reader Reviews: "1948", George Orwell

Most often, readers refer to "1984" as a terrible, excellent book, which warns about such events. It strikes the credibility with which the author describes the logical end of all totalitarian systems. This is a textbook of democracy. Everything is so carefully thought out in the plot that when you try to create another ending in the history of Winston in your imagination you fail. This novel can not be considered simply a literary work. It would be short-sighted and, in truth, just stupid. Even to supporters of Stalinism and other authoritarian control systems, this story is able to show the other side of the coin. The most inveterate ideological followers of totalitarianism are able to feel the wrong. This is another strength of the work - the strongest psychologism. As in Dostoevsky. The mental torments of Winston Smith are similar to the experiences of the fugitive Raskolnikov system. Recommend "1984" to all those who are fans of the work of Fyodor Mikhailovich.

Many readers do not agree that only George Orwell wrote about "communism and the USSR" in "1984". Criticism often calls the writer a hater of Soviet power, and the work itself is a "stone in the garden" of the then system of government. Readers believe that there is a clear denial of any enslavement of a person by the system. Sometimes exaggerated, but the exaggeration in the literary work still has not been canceled. The fact is that many countries are now following this path of development. And this sooner or later ends with the collapse of both the whole system and the personal tragedy of an individual, as shown in "1984" George Orwell. The point is to look more broadly at the idea of this work, not to be limited to one vivid example of the Soviet Union.

Emotional testimonials say that the blood in your veins simply becomes cold when you read. An excellent symbolism that can be traced in the everyday world is the correspondence of history, the substitution of concepts, the adjustment of the opinion and way of life of a person to the requirements of the system. After reading - wide-open eyes and the feeling that I had taken a cold shower.

There are more critical remarks. They basically say that the book is clearly overestimated in that it changes consciousness. They do not agree because there is a strange feeling - either the reader is a pessimistic pessimist who does not need to read the book to see the imperfections of the world, or the book is created for those who live in pink glasses.

The following is also an extended opinion: the book can be rightfully considered historical. And very modern. Who changed the world? The one who was not afraid to die for the idea. The one who was more afraid to live in such an unhappy society. Not most of the townsfolk who only survive, but only individuals.

Often contradictory, but always alive were and there are reader reviews. "1984", George Orwell as a writer has never caused one - indifference. And no wonder - in this book everyone can find something for themselves. But to pass by and not even to ask what caused such an excitement around this work, no book-lover can.

The screen version of the work

A large number of laudatory reviews was the impetus for the filmmakers to film the novel "1984". George Orwell did not live 6 years before the release on the big screen of his offspring. The first film appeared at the box office in 1956.

Its director was Michael Anderson, who, along with screenwriter Templeton, emphasized the film in the most totalitarian society. The story of the main character, played by Edmond O'Brien, departs in the film in the background. This was done in order to simplify, to create a film more accessible to a wide audience. But it gave the opposite result. Especially for those who were previously familiar with the phrase "George Orwell," 1984. The review of the viewers was unambiguous - the film does not hold out to the book on emotional loading, the novel in the original is more dynamic and exciting.

Interesting fact - the surname of the actor (O'Brien) coincides with the name of the character from the book (a party employee who collaborated with the Police of thoughts). Therefore, it was decided to replace it in the plot on O'Connor.

Next, who ventured to make a film for "1984", was another Michael, only now Radford, a British filmmaker. His picture came out in a year that coincided with the events of the book - in 1984. The main role was made by actor John Hurt, his beloved Julia was played by Susanna Hamilton. Also this picture was the last in his career and in the life of the famous actor Richard Burton, known for "The Taming of the Shrew," "The Longest Day," and others.

This time the screen version became more successful - all the main plot lines of the book were transferred, the images of the heroes were fully revealed. But even here spectators' reviews were divided. "1984", George Orwell himself as an author liked the readers so much that they could not feel with the adaptation of the emotional tension, the heat transmitted by the book.

For today it is known that one more, the third screen version of the novel-dystopia is planned. Under the direction of director Paul Gringrass. He became famous for working on the paintings "Bourne Supremacy", "Bloody Sunday". While about the cast, the date of the filming and release of the film is not known. But to participate in the process of the birth of the picture will be the company Sony Pictures and producer Scott Rudin, which already stirs interest in the future film based on "1984" (George Orwell). The screen version promises to be more modern and qualitative.

General impression of reading

Of course, the most honest, unbiased characteristics of the work are real testimonials. "1984", George Orwell and the whole world created by him found a response in the hearts of millions of readers. Places touching and sincere, sometimes tough, uncompromising and frightening - this book, like life itself. Maybe that's why it seems so real.

"Freedom is an opportunity to say that twice two is four," says George Orwell of 1984. Quotations from this book are known even by those who did not read it. To get acquainted with her is really worth it. And not only because of her praise reviews. "1984", George Orwell, may become the book and author who will find their place of honor on the bookshelf and in the heart next to other masterpieces of literature.

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