Women Characters in Orwell’s Novel and Miller’s Play

1984 is a dystopian novel written in 1949 by George Orwell. This novel talks about the story of Winston Smith and presents the world in the year 1984, after a global atomic war. This novel is placed in Airstrip one, a province of Oceania ,where everything is controlled by Great Brother and his party,and shows a cruel and degraded society. Winston is a civil servant working for the party and we can see his gradual development, his intellectual rebellion and his illicit romance with Julia which consequently cause his imprisonment, interrogation, torture, and re-education by the thought police.

A View from the Bridge is a play by American playwright Arthur Miller first staged on 29 September 1955. It is set in 1950s America, in an Italian American neighbourhood near the Brooklyn Bridge in New York. The main character in the story is Eddie Carbone, an Italian American longshoreman, who lives with his wife, Beatrice and his orphaned niece, Catherine. Nothing seems really outstanding up to here,but everything changes when Catherine’s cousins come illegally to live with them. The thing is that both writings have as a main character a man but the importance of the women in it is critical.

Academic anxiety?
Get original paper in 3 hours and nail the task
Get your paper price

124 experts online

They can be considered as the catalyser element in, both, the novel and the play. Both authors make of women a complex character who things, acts and feels. The role on women after WWII was similar to that before the war. Women experiences wonderful job growth during the war, but once it ended their employers expected them to quit and return to their domestic lives. Employers held onto this belief; even though statistics showed that 47 to 68 percent of both married and unmarried women wanted to continue working.

A great number of women did quit, or were fired, though some did decide to stay and were lucky enough to keep their place in the work force. Those that remained in the factories faced incredible sexism and were barred from joining many labor unions. Despite these odds, the power of women has increased since then steadily and George Orwell and Arthur Miller show that in their round female characters in the novel and the play. In his novel 1984, George Orwell depicts an idealistic totalitarian utopia through the main character Winston’s life.

The novel begins by introducing Winston Smith, a thirty nine year old man who works at the Ministry of Truth, where history can be rewritten. Orwell assigns women to play key roles in his novel to develop Winston’s character. The three most important women who affect Winston’s life are his mother, his wife Katherine, and his coworker Julia. Through their similarities and differences in characteristics, these three women encourage Winston to commit thought crimes and allow him to experience temporary freedom from Big Brother’s despotic control.

Winston’s mother was a tall, statuesque, rather silent woman with slow movements and magnificent fair hair. Winston rarely has memories about his mother since she disappeared when he was ten or eleven years old. “He could not remember what had happened, but he knew in his dream that in some way the lives of his mother and his sister had been sacrificed to his own. ” Winston felt guilty since he thought that he was the reason his mother and sister disappeared. He felt that his mother’s disappearance was somehow caused by his higher social status. He was out in the light and air while they were being sucked down to death, and they were down there because he was up here. ” Winston’s longing for his mother still exists even thirty years after his mother’s death. In the mean time, he also dreams of a romanticized past where there was still basic freedoms like privacy, love, and friendship. “Tragedy, he perceived, belonged to the ancient time, to a time when there were still privacy, love, and friendship, and when the members of a family stood by one another without needing to know the reason. ” However, in Orwell’s utopia, such virtues are alien to Winston.

Regardless Winston fantasizes about them and questions them, and consequentially begins to resent his society where there is no longer love and care in families. It was when Winston got married to his wife, Katherine, that Winston finally recognized the Party’s ideologies about sex more clearly. Katherine is a tall, fair-haired girl who has a bold, aquiline face. Although she was physically attractive, Winston realizes that she does not have any sexual instincts or attributes that can give him satisfaction. “To embrace her was like embracing a jointed wooden image. ” She was dispassionate and a model or the Party’s ideals as she upheld their virtues of emotionless sexual relationships. “She had two names for it. One was ‘making a baby,’ and the other was ‘our duty to the Party’. ” Katherine was so loyal to the party that she was cold even in making love. Winston is often annoyed by a thought that all women of the party are all alike: the promiscuity and indiscriminateness was distasteful and boring to him. “ And what he wanted more even than to be loved, was to break down that wall of virtue, even if it were only once in his whole life. The sexual act, successfully performed, was rebellion.

Desire was thought crime. ” This excerpt suggests Winston’s inability to understand the party’s doctrine and his disfavor for the party rules. Winston’s rebellious tendencies against the Big Brother Party become more evident after he meets a dark-haired girl who also works at the Ministry of Truth. Julia’s other side is much more interesting. She is a woman with raging hormones and a cunning spirit. A highly sexual being, she sleeps with Party members regularly to satisfy her own desires. Does she really mean it as rebellion, or does she just want to get it on?

You could argue either way. Winston would sure like it to be the former, and Julia does suggest that her acts are her own small rebellion. But still, she is generally uninterested in fighting the good fight. In fact, the reason she approached Winston with the “I love you” note was probably to start yet another illicit affair. She busies herself with community service and other orthodox activities so that she can escape the Party’s thoughtcrime radar At first, Winston thinks that dark haired girl is one of the members of Though Police and maintains a distance from her.

However, he quickly realizes that like him Julia shares common resentment against the Party. “I’m good at spotting people who don’t belong. As soon as I saw you I knew you were against them. ” It seems to Winston that she might be like him,although he is not completely sure because in the world of 1984 “nothing is what it seems”. However, Winston and Julia develop a relationship and secretly meet together and have an affair, a taboo in their society. “I hate purity, I hate goodness. I don’t want any virtue to exist anywhere. I want everyone to be corrupt to the bones. By saying is, Winston suggests that he has been waiting for a woman who does not care about party rules. At first, Winston wanted to have an affair because he wanted to rebel against party doctrine, but slowly Winston falls in love with Julia who is free-spirited and rebellious. “It was a blow struck against the Party. It was a political act . ” With presence of Julia, Winston becomes more idiosyncratic in his actions and begins to openly share his resentful thoughts against Big Brother. At the same time, Julia is not a reckless youth.

She is an intelligent and practical woman who is cautious in selecting the meeting places for Winston and herself and careful in not being seen in public with him. Like Winston, she is a government worker; unlike him, she is not bothered by her work. She simply does not think deeply about her employment or the Party, even though she has a better grasp of Ingsoc’s inner working than does Winston. Her superficial knowledge is all she wants; when Winston tries to talk to her more deeply about the Party’s methods or ideas, she responds by dozing off.

Orwell is demonstrating with this his support to the woman in the two societies, the 1984 one and the real life. He feels more intimate and connected with the character of Julia and so, he elevates his character and makes it such an important part on the novel. The three women who most affect Winston’s life are different, yet have similarities. Winston’s mother is an old woman who had no power; Katherine is a woman who is a party loyalist; and even though at the end of the story, Julia becomes cold like Katherine to Winston and loyal to the party, Julia is a girl who was rebellious to the party.

Despite of all these differences among them, each of them influenced Winston to change his attitude toward the Party. Winston’s longing for his mother and past encouraged him to desire a more liberal society; Katherine’s dispassionate sexual relationship with Winston caused Winston to further dislike the strict unsentimental doctrine of the party, and finally Julia’s rebellious character triggered Winston digress from the norm to commit crimes against the party and struggle for freedom.

This essay was written by a fellow student. You may use it as a guide or sample for writing your own paper, but remember to cite it correctly. Don’t submit it as your own as it will be considered plagiarism.

Need a custom essay sample written specially to meet your requirements?

Choose skilled expert on your subject and get original paper with free plagiarism report

Order custom paper Without paying upfront

Women Characters in Orwell’s Novel and Miller’s Play. (2017, Feb 17). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/women-characters-in-orwells-novel-and-millers-play/