Repression

A Thematic Look At 1984

Trying to make society limited to what one person, or group, believes as perfect can ruin the society.

Throughout the novel 1984, repression is what is constantly being the catalyst on how Winston drives towards rebellion. As the novel quotes, "The Party was trying to kill the sex instinct, or, if it could not be killed, then to distort it and dirty it. [Winston] did not know why this was so, but it seemed natural that it should be so. And as far as the women were concerned, the Party's efforts were largely successful." This shows that Winston has acknowledged that there is no explanation for killing the sex instinct, but he has to abide by the Party's rules. Later, the story states, "In the old days, he though, a man looked at a girl's body and saw that it was desirable, and that was the end of the story. But you could not have pure love or pure lust nowadays. No emotion was pure, because everything was mixed with fear and hatred. Their embrace had been a battle, the climax a victory. It was a blow struck against the Party. It was a political act." This realization in the novel suggests that now citizens are having sex as a form of rebellion and a way to divide themselves from the party. By repressing something that may be human nature, people will ultimately be bottled up by their limitations and step outside of their boundaries. Big Brother, or the group of people who make up Big Brother, limited these citizens to contain energy and be completely for the government, and taking away their freedoms made the pseudo utopia contained and controlled. As we read from 1984, however, many believe this society is flawed and unlivable, proof being the high amount of suicides and disordered way of mind control. Oceania's society was limited and controlled to what "Big Brother" believed as perfect, and ultimately ruined the definition of what perfect meant to it's citizens.
Is sexual repression leading to more rapes?