The Traits of Winston and Julia from Orwell’s 1984
Throughout one’s life, there are people whose similar and contrasting personalities help one to learn more about themselves. In George Orwell’s 1984, Orwell demonstrates a character foil between the protagonist Winston and his love-interest Julia. Although Winston and Julia’s views on life, and the Party are different, they are similar in their hopes to rebel against the Party, leading to their overall downfall and doomed relationship. Throughout 1984, Orwell contrasts Winston and Julia’s views on life. Winston is concerned with the future of Oceania.
He analyzes all hope for the future and finds that it lies in the Proles. He begins to see beauty in everything free, for he longs to be free himself. This is shown when he finds beauty in the old Prole woman. “It had never occurred to him that the body of a woman of fifty […] could be beautiful. ” Although her appearance may have not been completely attractive, Winston sees that her beauty within was great. He has an appreciation for her and the freedom that she signifies. Winston saw the true beauty within the woman, as opposed to Julia. Julia could find nothing beautiful about the woman.
This is shown when in sight of the woman Julia says, “She’s a metre across the hips, easily”. Julia only sees things as they appear and cannot find a deeper meaning for the important things in life. As well, Julia is young, as opposed to Winston, therefore she has less experience about how the world works. This is thought of by Winston after a conversation about Winston’s wife, Katharine. “She was very young, he thought, she still expected something from life, she did not understand that to push an inconvenient person over a cliff solves nothing”.
Julia is naive and believes that when there is a problem it is best to be fixed the easiest way possible. Julia and Winston both recognize their different views on life. As the conflict rises in the novel, one sees how Julia and Winston have different levels of intellect and on their thoughts towards the Party. Winston is a very intellectual man and he thinks his decisions over thoroughly. He knows that his actions have consequences. This is shown when he says, “We are the dead. ” He has experienced what happens to those who commit crimes and he knows it is only a matter of time until both Julia and he are killed.
He sees life only as the little time he has left and is constantly living in the past, and regretting the bad things he had done. Julia on the contrary is a carefree woman and can be impulsive at times. She simply lives in the moment. This is shown when she says, “Don’t you enjoy being alive? Don’t you like the feeling: […] I’m real, I’m solid, and I’m alive! ” She is also naive because she does not think about the repercussions of her actions. She doesn’t understand what will happen to her once she is caught by the Thought Police and she focuses on enjoying life while she can.
Winston and Julia’s views on the Party became an obvious difference in their relationship. Throughout 1984, one sees how Winston and Julia both demonstrate the possession of a rebellious trait. Although they both make it their goal to rebel against the Party, both characters do it in different ways. Firstly, to other Party members Julia appears to be completely orthodox. She is a member of the Junior Anti-Sex League and appears to love Big Brother, but in reality Julia rebels against the Party by having illegal sexual affairs with other Party members, leading her to Winston.
As well she has a great amount of hatred for Big Brother. Her entire character is a contradiction. This is shown when Julia says to Winston, ‘You thought I was a good Party Member. Pure in word and deed […] It’s this bloody thing that does it’ she said, ripping off the scarlet sash of the Anti-Junior Sex League and flinging it onto a bough. ” The act of her throwing off the Anti-Sex League sash, demonstrates her ability to rebel and deceive the Party. As Julia allows Winston to see her form of rebellion, Winston begins to believe it is healthy and normal to rebel against Big Brother.
Winston rebels by keeping a secret diary in which he writes messages against the Party and his hopes for the future. He eventually devotes his life to the Brotherhood and commits thoughtcrimes against the Party. This is shown when Winston writes, “DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER DOWN WITH BIG BROTHER”. His thoughtcrime focuses on the downfall of the Party and the end of totalitarianism. One sees that both characters aim to rebel against the Party, while Julia rebels on a personal level, only doing so from the waist down and Winston commits his crimes by hoping to make an impact on the Party and change for the future.
In conclusion, Winston and Julia’s relationship is formed through their similar need to rebel against the Party, while their different views on the Party and life strengthens the particular character Orwell portrays them to be. Although both characters chose to rebel, they each do it in a different way. Winston finds beauty and appreciation in freedom , while Julia is blinded by her own needs. As well Julia lives in the moment while Winston is constantly remembering his past. The personality traits of a person can depict their future, including their achievements and downfalls.