1984 Book Review

1984 is a great novel for students in high school, that also serves as a warning.


Nathan Plunk

George Orwell’s novel, 1984, is set in a dystopian society where “Big Brother is Watching You.”

By Nathan Plunk, Staff Writer

George Orwell’s novel, 1984, takes place in a dystopian society. At the time, which is believed to be 1984, three Super States were at war. Eastasia, Eurasia, and Oceania are all battling for what is essentially Africa. Oceania is where the novel focuses around, and the government (known as the Party), controls all information going in and out. The people live in fear, due to the saying “Big Brother is watching you.”

War Is Peace, Freedom Is Slavery, Ignorance Is Strength.”

— George Orwell's 1984

The main character is Winston Smith, who works in the records department of the Ministry of Truth. His job is to rewrite articles in the past, to make them look like they correctly predicted the future. The Party is never supposed to be wrong, and anyone who disagrees becomes “vaporized.”

The man vs society conflict is shown, when Smith realizes the corruption of the Party. The novel is then focused on how he deals with that, when his whole job is focused on rewriting history and working for the Party.

Overall, the novel serves as a warning. The novel centralizes around the fact that if human’s don’t change the course of humanity, then we will lose are most human qualities. Orwell was also warning against a totalitarian government, and showing the outcome of one. The novel was written in 1948 after WWII when tensions were still high, which only supported the tension in the novel.

1984 was a good book, with an even better message. Although some parts were boring, it was worth it to see the end. It’s a great book for high school students, and is sure to evoke thoughtful discussions both in and out of the classroom.