In part two of the novel, “1984” through figurative language Orwell evokes that there’s no such thing as a perfect society and that each person has a different definition of a perfect world depending on their situation. In his community, it is illegal to have relationships or sex with anyone. The protagonist Winston is having a conversation with Julia about how many affairs she’s been. Julia told him that she’s been in many affairs with other men from the party. Winston thought to himself “Who knew? Perhaps the party was rotten under the surface, its cult of strenuousness and self-denial simply a sham concealing iniquity” (Orwell, 125). Winston was really surprised with the idea that many other men who pretend to be so perfect and portray themselves as the best epitome of leaders who follow Big brother’s ideas have also broken the rules. The party can’t be rotten under the surface as Orwell mentioned but he’s referring to how corrupt the system in Oceania is. The phrase “rotten under the surface” represents people’s ideas of willing to go against the Party’s beliefs without getting caught. This shows that many other men aren’t afraid to break the rules implemented by Big Brother. Those men were only willing to break the rules for their benefit, to benefit their good which was their desire to be with a woman. What the author is trying to hint the audience is that if there are other men who have violated the rules just like Winston did, then this simply shows they have something in common with Winston. At some point in their lives, they were all willing to break the norms, perhaps for different reasons but, them breaking the rules indicates that they don’t like government’s system. The phrase “its cult of strenuousness and self-denial” represents the struggle that was for people to assimilate into Big Brother’s system. The word “cult” is referring to the type of culture Big Brother has created ever since the revolution, a culture where everyone has resigned to injustices by pretending to feel any contentment towards the government’s beliefs. The words “Self-denial” evokes how people in Oceania ignore what they want by accepting the life they’ve been given. In this case, all of those men who’ve been with Julia knew that they wanted to be with a woman, but all of them were too afraid to show the community that they were willing to go against the government.
A Negative Utopia by Luz is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.