In the dystopia, 1984, by George Orwell, repression of emotions depicts the human nature that is driven by the totalitarian regime of the Party. It symbolizes a society where individuals enjoy no freedom and love is viewed as absurd and meaningless among the people. The Party manipulates the people by controlling every aspect of their lives. In this novel, Winston and Julia have their emotions repressed, and love between them is viewed as disloyalty to the Party. Fear is instilled in them to condition their minds into loving Big Brother. The totalitarian regime of the Party involves Parson's children as junior spies to spy on disloyal adults in society. The use of fear by the Party conditions individuals into believing that their physical movement is monitored and emotional attachment is subdued as the Party believes that its stability is anchored in absolute loyalty towards its ideals. It should be noted that the absence of love and kindness which the Party attempts to suppress is what provides the foundation of an absolute totalitarian regime. Indeed, controlling the citizenry by breaking their relationship is always the priority of every totalitarian regime.
The regime led by Big Brother imposes strict rules in monitoring the people and suppressing their emotions. Winston strives to improve his condition in the society where everyone's life is closely monitored to ensure that they stay loyal to the Big Brother. The Party employs the use of telescreen that spies on every aspect of people's life. The government uses psychological manipulation and control of physical movement to identify any rebellious group in society. The Parson's children are used by the party to check on the behaviors of the adults that are viewed as detrimental to the Party. "More commonly, people who had incurred the displeasure of the Party simply disappeared and were never heard again" (Awan & Raza, 2016). This quote describes the fate of whomever who held different opinions as the Party. It further depicts how human nature of seeking better conditions of their lives is manipulated to suit the interest of the Party. O'Brien, who is one of the bosses in the totalitarian regime of the Party, subject Winston to extreme torture in room 101 where his condition deteriorates.
Moreover, the Party prohibits any love relationship between men and women, and the only love that is permitted is that towards the Party and Big Brother. "The aim of the Party was not merely to prevent men and women from forming loyalties which it might not be able to control. Its real, undeclared purpose was to remove all pleasure from the sexual act" (Awan & Raza, 2016). This illustrates how the government was committed to ensuring that any emotional connection between a woman and a man particularly Winston and Julia is destroyed as allowing love to thrive would destabilize the regime. "If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face" (Awan & Raza, 2016). These are words by O'Brien to Winston in the Ministry of Love, and this depicts the brutal plan of the Party towards the people. The use of ulcer symbolizes the representation of the identity of the people by the physical body. It depicts how the totalitarian rule by the Party represses people's emotions. The motif of Winston's deteriorating condition and getting better demonstrates the initial physical condition of Winston as a result of repression by the state. After meeting Julia, his physical body gets well again.The Party holds that marriage is purely for reproduction and not for the enjoyment of sex. Winston's wife Katherine is forced to separate with his husband because she is unable to bear children. Katherine only features in Winston's memory, and this depicts how the Party destroys sex and loyalty between couples. "Sexual intercourse was to be looked on as a slightly disgusting minor operation, like having an enema" (Awan & Raza, 2016. This is the memory of Winston on his wife, and it shows how the Party led by Big Brother represses every aspect of the lives of the people to control them devoid of any dissident. The Party brutally tortures Winston which makes him develop love towards Big Brother. Additionally, the Party establishes a system where the children in the society disobey and betray their parents which destroys the family bonds where parents always fear that they are being spied on by their children. This is depicted in the quote "it was almost normal for people over thirty to be frightened of their children" (Awan & Raza, 2016).
In conclusion, it is evident that individuals in society have their emotions repressed by the Party to crush any rebellious group against the Party. As depicted in the novel, love between men and women is prohibited, and Winston's about turn from being a rebel to loving Big Brother after being tortured in room 101 is a testament to that no emotional devotion, however strong it is, can withstand physical torture. Furthermore, the Party succeeds in destroying the relationship between parents and children by using junior spies to check on any disloyal adults. It is imperative to note that societies that are not subjected to repression by the government always make considerable progress in every aspect of their lives.
Awan, A. G., & Raza, S. A. (2016). The Effects of Totalitarianism & Marxism towards dystopian society in George Orwell's selected Fictions. Global Journal of Management and Social Sciences, 2(4), 21-37.
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