1984 by George Orwell

Section One, Part II Summary (pp. 20-29)

Winston is relieved to find his neighbor knocking on his door instead of the Thought Police, especially since he has left his journal open with the words "Down with Big Brother" clearly legible from across the room. His neighbor, Mrs. Parsons asks him to perform a minor repair in her apartment, a task Winston regularly does though not without irritation.

When Winston arrives at his neighbor's apartment, he encounters the Parson children—a boy and a girl—who are aggressive and seem to frighten their mother. They point at Winston, calling him a "traitor" and a "Thought-criminal". Mrs. Parsons tries to excuse their behavior saying, "They're disappointed because they couldn't go to see the hanging" (23). The boy even shoots Winston with a slingshot as he leaves. Winston ponders the savage nature the Party produces in children.

Back at his apartment, Winston remembers a dream he had about O'Brien, who spoke to him from the darkness saying, "We shall meet in the place where there is no darkness" (25). This is an important quote and appears frequently throughout the novel. Then, while listening to the telescreen propaganda and rocket bombs exploding in the distance, Winston contemplates the "sacred principles of Ingsoc", which are "Newspeak, doublethink, and the mutability of the past" (26). Winston thinks, "Nothing [is] your own except the few cubic centimeters inside your skull" (27).

Though certain no one will ever read it, Winston writes a greeting in his journal to a future reader from the age of "solitude", "Big Brother", and "doublethink" (28). Winston realizes he will surely die for his "Thought-crime", a realization that instills in him a renewed will to survive as long as possible.

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