Thoughts, observations, comments, and concerns regarding our readings and classroom discussions.
posted by annes @ 11:14 AM
I think I will just get her started here with a thought. It seems to me that it is quite possible that the Brotherhood is really part of the party. It could be that they recruit people into it who they know would turn to it anyway and thus are ahead of the game in capturing and reeducation thoughtcriminals. The book itself is also immensely interesting (no I'm not being sarcastic) because it tells us, the reader, that which we don't understand about the Oceanic society. It is, in essence, about the cold war. The book was written in the cold war and this section seems to say that if we don't quit this idiocy that we'll end up like poor Winston. Many other things popped up but I couldn't even begin to list them all. Hopefully they will come up in the discussion.
Excuse me... let's get this party started.
I thought that it was really weird that Mr. Charrington was actually part of the thought police. Why didn't he turn Winston and Julia in sooner? What was he waiting for, when he knew what was going on?
erin-I think Mr. Charrington was waiting for more solid proof of REALLY BAD crimes that could get them into a lot of trouble.
erin l- maybe he wanted to wait until he knew he could get information out of them. Maybe he just wanted to wait until he knew that they had control of Goldsteins book and, with the book, can eventually find out more membes of the brotherhood are.
Erin- I think Mr. Charrington wiated to bust them because he wanted to catch them possibly after they had a chance to meet with someone else against the Party. It's possible they saw Winston reading the book and wanted to go after him to get the most information possible.
Erin~I don't Mr. Charrington would want to turn in at first because if he gained Winston's trust he could get more information out of him.
lindsey, I disagree...They have already gotten copies of The Book. O'Brien said that the Brotherhood could hardly print books as fast as the ministry destroys them.
Erin, I think so. I think Mr. Charrington was probably waiting until the best possible moment to expose Winston and Julia. I think he probably knew all along that they were commiting thought crime and were agaist Big Brother, but he was probably waiting...I dont know what opportune moment he was waiting for, but obviously, once OBrien knew what Winston and Julia believed, then Mr. Charrington came after them. Why might he have waited for the time he did? Did he knew that they had met with OBrien?
Sarah, Isn't the fact that they were meeting with each other and talking about rebellion enough to get them killed?
I also found it interesting how neither of them really accepted the fact that Charrington could have been a bad guy. They were being ignorant. It says a lot about how active the government really is in 1984, and how they are eveywhere, even when people don't or least expect it.
Then why does Mr. Charrington own the shop? Is he just trying to set up a trap for people??
ty,yes, but continuing down the path gets them in more trouble, and gives them a chance to make things right on their own. But once they met with O'Brien, there was no turning back.
Lane, I agree with you. Coming up with a book that is all a hoax fits right in. it allows the party ot torture the thoughtcriminal even more.
I agree with Ty, pretty much anything that expressed the smallest idea of rebellion could get them killed.
erin,One of the first thoughts I had when i read that section was that Mr. Charrington was jsut there to trap betrayers...
sarah - yeah but if they had the book they can impersonate a member of the brotherhood and incriminate other people, we already know that they have tricked Winston when we found out that Mr. Charrington is a member of the thought police.
Erin: I think that a big part of the Party is demoralizing people so they don't have the heart or energy t o fight back. Mr. Charrington probably knew that if he waited until they had triumphed in joining the Brotherhood and felt good, he could arrest them then and they wouldn't be able to do anything about it because they were so stunned.
Kenna-I think that they trusted Mr. Charrington only because he appeared to be a prole and owned that little shop.
Erin- I agree with everyone else. He probably had to have some solid proof that Winston and Julia were performing really bad crimes before he could turn them in. The only fault I can find with this theory, though, is that in the society of 1984, is it really necessary to have proof, or is it an era of McCarthyism? If it is not necessary to have a lot of proof then it would not make sense for Charrington to have waited for so long.
lindsey, then why didn't they do that with all the other books they got?
Sarah-Where did you get that idea?
A DIFFERENT QUESTION!Is Charrington and Martin the same person?
Erin-- it would make sense that the government would be involved in areas where the proles are living. It would be the easiest thing to disguise. Make them look like the proles, and no one will think twice that they might be dangerous.
erinl... good question! I wondered that too! I think that he is trying to set up a trap for people because being a member of the ThoughtPolice seems like it would be very time consuming and nothing else matters. I think that is the only reason for him owning ands working at the shop.
Erin, that is a good thought. Why would he be so willing to befriend Winston and Julia? I think it could very well be a trap. We can see if it was a trap, it worked very well on Winston.I wonder, has Charrington always been a member of the thought police? Or has he just recently been added to the thought police? I ask this because Winston states all of the immediate changes in Charrington that he notices. Has he just recently undergone these physical changes, or has he been hiding them all along?
erin,I don't know, it just occured to me, esp. because he lied about the telescreen and worked hard to keep it hidden.
Why didn't Winston check for a telescreen?
Zach, Wintson trusted Mr. charrinton.
Madison,Make-up can do amazing things.
I find it strange that, like Kenna said, that the government may have people like Charrington trying to convict people of thought crime in areas where the proles live. In the book it said that the proles are just the lowest class, and that they arent really thought about too much because they arent necessarily that important. Why would the government have Charrington in the area where the proles live? Do they realize that the proles could eventually become a threat? I dont know, it just would seem hard to believe because the party always seems so sure of themselves, and they seem to have so much control over everything.
they might have, we have no way of knowing. they would have probably incinerated them all but wht if they gave the book to people like obrein to capture people like Winston and Julia
Just throwing a thought out there: Isn't the timing in this book interesting? Orwell decided to put the long, drawn out and slightly dull excerpt of Goldstein's book right in the middle of the story. After the reader has fallen asleep a few times while reading it, he surprises you with Winston and Julia's capture. In a sense, the reader is shocked by this sudden traumatic event after reading the long, dull and eventless book excerpt.
Madsion, maybe the government really thinks that someday the prole will rise up.
Zach~I don't Winston checked for a telescreen because he felt a false sense of security. He didn't think there was anyway there could be a telescreen in proles' area
Sarah: if that is true, then why did Winston really think he could trust Charrington in the first place? After all, Charrington is just some random guy who he happened to walk into his shop. I wouldn't want to trust someone who is intelligent, unlike the proles, lives in a prole neighborhood, doesn't care that they are breaking the "law", and has a bunch of odd artifacts that have failed to be destroyed by the Party.
zachf- Winston really should have checked for a telescreen considering the ThoughtPolice is just about everywhere. I don't think it occured to him that there would be one there, considering they were far away from the ministries and all the commotion of the city...
Zach- Supposedly there are few telescreens in the Prole area. However, because the one in the apartment was concealed, I wonder if there are more in the Prole area that are hidden?
I agree with Zach. After buying the paperweight, Winston seemed to have complete trust in Charrington. Also, a while ago in the book Julia was looking at the picture and talking about cleaning it. If she had ever gotton around to cleaning it, maybe the two could have escaped.
Wait- who is MartinMadison-I think that he might have just been added because someone from the thought police found the shop and was like WOAH what a great place to set a trap..if you know what I am saying. Remember how Winston bought that book from the same shop? Why didn't he turn him in then. I thought the ThoughtPolice only needed reasonable doubt..
Anna, that's similar to Winston's life, a boring reverie of repetition suddenly changed by an awakening.
zach- i think that since he did not see one, he had already "let open his doors" to anything and anybody. He had become so trustworthy as the book progressed that maybe he thought he was lucky to find such a free place
Dan,We have seen how much and easily Winston trusts people...
Good question Hannah, there has to be more telescreens in the prole area because the Party is smart enough to know they have to keep tabs on everyone.
Zach- That's a good question. Winston is overly trusting. This is suprising considering his fatalistic and pessimistic demeanor, but nevertheless he puts too much faith in things. He puts faith in people or ideas as he imagines them- He doesn't ever stop to consider that these ideas may or may not be trustworthy.
Emilya, I agree with what you said about Winston and the telescreens. I think he may have become to comfortable with the fact that he felt safe. I think he got almost too comfortable. He got acustomed to not having to worry about the thought police and the party watching him. I agree that he should have been more cautious, because he never could have been positive that there were no telescreens, he just assumed...
madison-- that was intense. It does seem hard to believe that the Party would feel threatened. But if you think about it, it would make sense, according to human nature, to be afraid of losing control, and being overthrown by the minority, even if the minority is not minor at all. They are scared of losing power, so they have placed people like Charrington to observe the minority.
tyc- you bring up a good point about the picture and how Winston was talking about cleaning it. This is definitley foreshadowing. I think Orwell likes to use foreshadowing in his book. What else do you think in this book could be foreshadowing?
Ty, I don't think Julia and Winston would have gotten away if Julia had cleaned the pic. I think they just would have been caught sooner...
What if the proles are really more supportive of the party. If that one telescreen was hidden, then there could certainly be more. They could also be hidden and the proles know about it and are trying to catch people or something.
Ok, I found a link to the whole poem.http://www.bbc.co.uk/dna/h2g2/alabaster/A696125
I agree Kenna, I think the government and the party is probably extremely paranoid about losing power--they are obsessed with it. I think that is why they go to extreme measures to keep everyone free of thought crime, and then they vaporize the people they feel are suspicious. I think that ultimately, everything they do could be fueled by their fear of losing their power.
emily, that's goes back to what Orwell wanted to call the book originally: "The Last Man In Europe"
I agree with Ty, if they looked, even if they trusted Charrington they definitely had to be on edge because what they were doing is so illegal. You can relate this to today, if your were a drug smuggler and had a friend you trusted would you let him know about even if you knew he could turn you in?
If there was a telescreen behind the painting the whole time, why did Mr. Charrington offer to sell it to Winston?
For those of you who have not read ahead (the few of you, I assume): What do you all think the significance of O'brien's confirmation of the "place where there is no darkness" part of Winston's dream will mean in the future?
Ok at the bottom of the link: It says"Here comes a chopper to chop off your head - the 'head' referred to is the 'maidenhead' (virginity)." Is this a refrence to Julia and Winston's affair.
hannah, that goes back to the theory that Mr. charrington is a trap for rebelers
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Anaa: I think that the fact that he seems unperterbed when Winny says this shows that he has obviously been spying on Winny. How else would he know?
Hannah- Maybe the reason that the Proles are left alone by the Party for the most part is because they have Thought Police like Mr. Charrington just in case anyone is conspiring.
As I was going though these previous blogs, Erinl's comment struck me just as much as it appeared to strike my classmates. Erinl's comment is copied and pasted below:Then why does Mr. Charrington own the shop? Is he just trying to set up a trap for people?? In my opinion, Mr. Charrington is set up by the Thought Police in an antique store in order to catch people who think too much about the past. Most likely he got a really good feel of Winston's character, and played up his "old man," his "remembering the past," and his "nice, willing to lend the room" side of his "personality."In addition, I believe that Orwell is mainly focusing on the deceptive side of men. How we (as men) are fully capable of deceiving others and being deceived ourselves. It all goes back to spying to better one’s self or one’s group or cause.
Dan- That's a very good point!Michelle- I agree with what you said about Charrington's shop being a trap. Orwell was mostly focusing on the deceptive side of man, and Charrington embodies that. And so will someone else, as we go farther in the story! (Gasp! Foreshadowing!)
I agree with Sara that Mr. Charrington was waiting for Winston and Julia to do something really bad. i alos think that they wanted to know more about Winston's beliefs so they can be prepared for other "Winstons" in the future.
I like what Kenna said about them being to ignorant to think of Mr. Charrington as a member of the Thought Police. They put so much trust in him and they didn't even know him. I think this definitely shows how smart the Party is for picking someon like him to work for them.
Erin asked why Mr. Charrington owned the shop and it might just be an undercover set up, but I was thinking that maybe after Winston bought the diary in the first place from him, they immediately approached Charrington and turned him into a Thought Police so he could bust Winsotn the next time(since I'm sure they knew there would be a next time).
Hannah's comment about ther possibly being other hidden telscreens among the proles really struck me because up until this point, we had assumed that because the Party didn't enforce the same rules on the Proles that they did on the Party members that they didn't care about what the Proles do and don't see them as a threat. This means that maybe The Party is afraid that theProles might turn.
I have one question, when Winston first went to into Mr. Charrington's room, Mr. Charrington sort of made a big deal about the picture of the Church. Why would he do that when the telescreen is hidden behind it? I mean that could give something away. Was it just so he could tell Winston the rhyme which was his punchline at the end of the telescreen conversation or did Charrington secretly want Winston to find out?
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