free booknotes online

Help / FAQ


printable study guide online download notes summary


<- Previous | First | Next ->
Barron's Booknotes-1984 by George Orwell-Free Book Notes
Table of Contents | Message Board | Printable Version

SECTION V

Here is where Winston has been heading all along: to the room that contains that which he fears most. Remember how horrified he was at Mr. Charrington's, when Julia chased a rat?

Ever since 1984 was published people have argued whether the horrors of Room 101 are really horrible or only anticlimactic. Orwell used what he thought was the grossest and most disgusting image imaginable, because he was trying to communicate Winston's state of mind, and the ultimate horror of totalitarian methods.

The experience in Room 101 is supposed to destroy Winston's last shred of resistance. In trying to understand his reaction, it's useful for you to think how you would respond to a similar kind of torture.


Winston is strapped in a chair with his head clamped so it can't move. O'Brien comes in. On the table is a cage with a handle and a mask at one end. O'Brien knows that Winston's worst fear is rats. He reminds Winston of his nightmare, in which everything was black and there was something terrible on the other side of the wall. Since pain alone has not done the job on Winston, O'Brien will rely on Winston's instinct for survival. Faced with the rats, Winston will do what O'Brien wants. He doesn't have to be told what that is.

O'Brien is going to put the cage with the rats on Winston's head and let them eat his face. He clicks the first lever. Winston fights panic and at the last minute loses his reason in the desperate urge to save himself. He shouts, over and over: "Do it to Julia! Not me!"

This is the final betrayal of self that O'Brien wants, and Winston is released.

Table of Contents | Message Board | Printable Version


<- Previous | First | Next ->
Barron's Booknotes-1984 by George Orwell-Free Book Notes
Google
Web
PinkMonkey

Google
  Web PinkMonkey.com   
Google
  Web Search Our Message Boards   

All Contents Copyright © PinkMonkey.com
All rights reserved. Further Distribution Is Strictly Prohibited.


About Us
 | Advertising | Contact Us | Privacy Policy | Home Page
This page was last updated: 5/9/2017 9:51:28 AM