1984: A Book Report Essay, Research Paper
For this report I read the book 1984 by George Orwell. It is published by
Harcourt, Brace and Company incorporated and has a copyright date of 1949.
This book is a fictional novel, about a man named Winston and his life in the year
1984. Keep in mind that this book was written in 1949 and at that time 1984 was very far
into the future. The world is run by am autocratic leader known only as Big Brother.
Winston works for a government agency called the Ministry of Truth. He is responsible
for terminating all facts that could possibly hurt Big Brother or those involved with the
As this book runs its course, Orwell tries to envoke many different feelings in the
readers mind. I experienced a great disgust for Big Brother and those who followed his
ideas willingly. Winston evokes a feeling of hope in you by trying to remember a bright
spot in the dismal world he now lives in. Throughout the novel a sense of relief fills your
body and makes you thank God that we don’t live in a world like the one that Orwell
created for the young man, Winston Smith, in the year 1984.
I disliked Winston’s friend at the Ministry of Truth named O’Brien. He represented
everything that Big Brother wanted a comrade to be in the times that these people lived in.
He tells Winston of the developments of the new language, Newspeak, with much
enthusiasm over the abridgment of the human language. When O’Brien tells Winston of his
children out looking for spies and turning them into the thought police it makes you cringe
with the feeling that this man gets joy out of the killing of innocent people. Also, his
enthusiasm over the hanging of tried prisoners creates a strong tone of dislike for O’Brien.
I think that I can find similarities to myself in all of the characters in this book, but,
being an actor, this is my job. The one character that I believe I most resemble would be
Winston. He displays so much emotion and power without letting the constant watch of
the telescreen pick up on him. I think that I do this, and people, like the telescreen, don’t
pick up. Winston and I also share similarities of secret desires and wants in a world where
these things are unthinkable. Winston’s and I also share the trait of almost unbreakable
spirit in a world where gloom can shine on you at any time.
I feared for Winston like nothing else in this book. I didn’t want to see him lose
himself in Big Brother like his comrades had in this book. I wanted him to be strong until
the day he died and resist their autocratic ways. Another fear of mine was that Winston
would not be strong enough to control his desires and that they would weaken him to the
point of giving into the system that he lived in. Fears swarmed through me when other
people tried to step into Winston’s life that he had not known previously. I hoped that they
would not make him fall prey to Big Brother.
I have a few questions about the novel that I would only be able to find out from
Orwell himself. I am curious as to if this book was a prediction of the future that he told
through a fictional futuristic character or if this was just a way to entertain those willing to
read. Sometime during the reading of the novel I wondered how much of himself Orwell
put into his character Winston. I think that it would be hard to create such an in depth
character without using yourself as a working model.
I enjoy reading any book with as interesting of characters as the ones in this book.
Every page I read I put myself in Winston’s place and tried to feel what he would go
through. Orwell wrote this book with such passion, when I read the last hundred pages I
was scared to death that Winston would lose all of his will and become a zombie like the
rest of the people that he was surrounded with every day of his life. When Winston wrote
down in his journal flashbacks of things that happened to him from when he was just I boy
I loved the type of English that Orwell used telling how Winston felt.
I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a great page-turner. This
book kept me up until all hours of the night dying to know what would happen to
Winston. I know that there is a staged version of 1984 that I would love to get my hands
on to read. Should anyone be involved in the staged version I can bet that their director
would want them to have this book in their back pocket at all times. Winston is a great
character created by Orwell that anyone can see vividly. You could call this book science
fiction, and I am sure that science fiction readers would eat it up. But this book is a
monument in Orwell’s life and it will stand out for decades as “what could have