1984: Character Analysis of Winston Smith

Character Analysis Of Winston Smith Winston is the main character in this novel and he seems to be separated from all of the other characters in the book by his thoughts. It is Winston’s uncommon character that we see unfolding as we read through the novel.

He seems to be the only one set apart from the rest of the characters. Through Winston’s eyes and thoughts, the reader gains an idea of the new society, which has no place for freedom, truth, or human emotions. The uncommon Winston makes the reader hate the society that he is living in.

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In fact, the reader is made to empathize with all of his thoughts and feelings about the Party and the society created by it. The reader recognizes that Winston is different than most of his peers. He stubbornly holds on to his human spirit, the thing the Party most wants to break in him, while everyone else is brain-washed to believe whatever they are told.

In a society where everyone is merely existing and fulfilling the Party’s wishes, Winston continues to think, question, love, and feel like all free human beings should.

Through Winston Smith, Orwell portrays a common man’s struggle to retain his identity, sanity, and natural rights in a society that is filled with fear, loneliness, and insecurity. Winston is portrayed as a man who just wants to satisfy his natural urges and find peace. He is able to do this for a short while, through Julia, but the feeling of happiness cannot continue because it is forbidden to Big Brother. As a result, Winston is arrested, imprisoned, and tortured.

Orwell’s skill makes the reader identify with Winston’s pain, torture, and brainwashing in prison.

He reacts much like any common man would react, and in the end, he appears to be totally broken and defeated. After he is declared “healed” by the Party and “freed” to the outside, Winston sees Julia again and realizes, in spite of his brainwashing and declarations to the Party, he still feels love for her. Such emotion cannot be tolerated by Big Brother; as a result, the Party kills Winston.

In Winston Smith, Orwell has created a combonation of the common and uncommon in mankind. Every reader is able to identify with him and experience his pain and agony, caused by living in a society where life is controlled like any other machine and where all thoughts and actions are controlled by the Big Brother. He is also a tragic figure, who suffers beyond endurance and faces total failure in the hands of Big Brother.