The Hero in George Orwell's "1984"

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Winston Smith in George Orwell book “Julia 1984” is a hero. A hero in the classical literate has been described as the main character in any work who is likely to die in the course of fighting for the betterment of the general society. He combats adversity through ingenuity or bravery in the face of danger, and he is associated with the glory of the whole community.  In the historical manuscript, hero or heroin occupy the canter stage of war and uncertainty that the general population is likely to face and fights to the better end despite the outcome. According to the English dictionary hero any person who possesses characters such as strength and knowledge skills to lead other people to fight for universal right despite the likely outcome of the action taken. A hero sometimes can be tragic in the face of hostility and ends up in agony to save his soul in the hands of the oppressor due to silly mistakes that he/she is likely to make on the way to ‘liberation'. 

In the George Orwell book, ‘Julia 1984' Weston Smith is portrayed as both hero and tragic hero fighting the oppression from his party to its members.  He is a member of the Outer party living under a mask that he is loyal to his Big brother. This is due to the fear that those who do not follow his Big Brother are vaporized forever leaving no one with the courage to rebel or even think against him.  This kind of fear is facilitated by the Big Brother ability to watch everyone in and out of the government. The compromising situation that inhibits people from thinking on what they want is the driving force that pushed Winston to rebel against his Big Brother.

His journey of rebelling against the party exemplifies his heroic character although he failed in the end.  His rebellious attitude shows heroic character by doing what he thought was right, taking the war against the oceanic Law and perseverance in his rebellion till the end of the book. Although he didn't achieve what he fought for, Winston heroic character begun at the begging of the book when he rebelled against the unfair party laws that inhibited one's ability and interacting with ordinary people. He kept going to the Probe district and ordinary shop to buy past items that pleased him which was against the Oceanic law “……   party members were not supposed…….. go into ordinary shop…." (Orwell 6). Due to consistent spying, he could not do it publically but slip through the secret wall created by the spies and buy whatever he wanted. He did this often meaning he enjoyed rebelling against the law and usual societal order. Although this justifies him as rebellious, he justified his rebellion like a hero. 

As the story develops Winston, he embraces rebellion as it is the right thing to do to be free. He meets Julia and makes love to her even though they can be vaporized together. The sexual act performed between Winston and Julia was an of rebellion and sign of enticing other people to rebel against the oceanic law and societal norm. ‘’……even if it were only once in his life… was rebellious…” (Orwell 68). To aggravate his heroic character, he rented a room where he could continuously rebel with Julia. In the room, they committed crimes that could warrant them death sentence by the authority.

Winston open revolt according to literature and research present a sigh of heroism. It is not easy to fin ordinary people going against the set societal norm or doing anything to change. Hero strives to improve social decency despite the obstacle and fear of personal security from higher authority.   Although Winston effort to go against the party law and influence, other people didn't succeed it is enough to count for what a hero can do to his/her country/ society for a better future. Winston attained the speck of a real rebel and hero when he asked Obrien to join the brotherhood. ‘' ….there some conspiracy, some secret organization ………working against the party. We want to join it and work for it’’.  He soughs to join the brotherhood despite his sinful acts. He showed bravery by agreeing to be committed to the brotherhood despite knowing it is meaning and indented aim. The act of coming to the brotherhood shows him as a courageous hero by fighting the party with a heavier crime.  

Winston’s act of heroic rebellion started from thought which was secret, this was followed by opening the diary he bought which was followed by action in the ministry of love.  This made him being caught by the oppressive authority. Despite his in-capitation, he continued to rebel both mentally and physically. This was through the torture from O’Brien to initiate him into the brotherhood.  Despite being broken from the torture, he preferred to stay on the wrong side of the law. This showed his unwavering seal to fight his freedom which was paramount not only for him but the society.   The persistent torture from Obrien made him betray Julia due to the fear of the rats. Despite ones perseverance resentence to authority, love is easy to break such a bond hence betraying the loved one. Despite betraying Julia, he persevered in withstanding the torture from the Brotherhood and hating them, thus portraying his heroic character. 

Despite portraying the sustainable character of the hero throughout the book, Winston lived under fear which influenced any action he took. This defiles the meaning of hero and as a result, presents him as a tragic hero that capitalized on unwavering conditions for their advantage. The torture from O’Brien in room 101 made him shout to place the torture on Julia which is a coward act. This presents his as an ordinary person who sized the uncertainties created by the party a brotherhood and capitalized them for his physical and political mileage, but this alone cannot discredit his heroic character that was portrayed through the book as he strives to fight a rigid system that could vaporize anyone against it. Therefore at the end of the story is upon the reader to define a hero and decide whether Winston was a hero or an ordinary person who acted due to pressure from within.  This leave-on ins suspense on deciding the fate of Winston as the main character in the book and what position he had and contributed for the betterment of the future. 

Work cited

Orwell George. 1984,

San Diego, Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. 1977. Print

August 21, 2023




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