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Literature Study Guides1984Book 3 Chapter 4 Summary


George Orwell

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Book 3 | Chapter 4

Course Hero's video study guide provides in-depth summary and analysis of Book 3 | Chapter 4 of George Orwell's novel 1984.

1984 | Book 3, Chapter 4 | Summary



Winston has been made more comfortable in his cell. He can eat and bathe, and the painful varicose ulcer he's had since Book 1 has been dressed. He's trying to reeducate himself. After reading Goldstein's manifesto, he had decided that sanity was not statistical. Now he agrees that it is and that it's just a question of accepting the Party's "truth"—until it changes, of course. "The past was alterable"; however, it has never been altered. Doublethink.

Even so, occasionally some thought comes into his head that needs to be pushed away. "Crimestop" is the Newspeak term. But something bursts through, and Winston finds himself calling aloud for Julia. O'Brien comes into his cell and tells him that intellectually he's "cured" but emotionally he isn't. Always able to detect a lie, he asks Winston what his true feelings are toward Big Brother. Winston tells him, "I hate him." At that, O'Brien tells the guards to take him to Room 101.


Winston has changed. He's capitulated. He's started to believe the Party's truth. Before being arrested it was enough to pretend to go along with the Party. Now he has surrendered his mind to it. Winston will now believe what he is told to believe, and this is the ultimate character transformation. This change should be enough to make the Party happy, but, when he calls out for Julia, he shows that he's keeping his heart unspoiled, independent. He knows that he'll be punished but prefers to be in the wrong. "To die hating them" is the freedom Winston now seeks. But this is before he's taken to Room 101.

O'Brien tells him it's not enough to capitulate in his mind. He has to capitulate in his heart. He has to love Big Brother. Readers start to believe that, whatever will happen in Room 101, it will be enough to cement the transformation of Winston from rebel to Party loyalist.

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