1984 Short Sample Answers
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Table of Contents
1984 is full of images and ideas that do not directly affect the plot, but nevertheless attain thematic importance. What are some of these symbols and motifs, and how does Orwell use them?
Some of the most important symbols and motifs in 1984 include Winston’s paperweight, the St. Clement’s Church picture and the rhyme associated with it, the prole woman singing outside the window, and the phrase “the place where there is no darkness.” In addition to unifying the novel, these symbols and motifs represent Winston’s attempts to escape or undermine the oppressive rule of the Party. Winston conceives of the singing prole woman as an incubator for future rebels; she symbolizes for him the eventual overthrow of the Party by the working class.
The St. Clement’s Church picture is a double symbol. For Winston it symbolizes a stolen past, but it also symbolizes the Party’s complete power and betrayal of humanity, since the picture hides th...