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In Chapter 8 of 1984, what is Winston's first reaction when he sees the dark-haired...

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xmichelleliang | Student | eNotes Newbie

Posted November 28, 2009 at 9:19 AM via web

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In Chapter 8 of 1984, what is Winston's first reaction when he sees the dark-haired girl on the street and what action does he consider?

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted November 28, 2009 at 9:35 AM (Answer #1)

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In Chapter 8, Winston sees the dark haired girl (who is, of course, Julia) on the street.

His first reaction to her is real fear.  He is sure that she has been sent to spy on him by the thought police.  He imagines that her presence is proof that they are "on to" him.

When he sees her what he does is to consider killing her.  He wonders if the piece of glass he is carrying will be heavy enough to do the job.  In the end, of course, he figures that he wouldn't be strong enough to kill her easily, so he doesn't try.

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scarletpimpernel | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted November 28, 2009 at 9:37 AM (Answer #2)

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Previous to Chapter 8, Winston already suspects the dark-haired girl of spying on him.  So, when he sees her after he has been in the prole's shop and already feels uneasy, he suspects that she is following him so that she can report his suspicious behavior and actions to the Party.  As he hurries down the street, he considers picking up an object and smashing in her brains, and when he returns to his dingy quarters, he thinks about committing suicide before she turns him in to the Party and they send someone to vaporize him.

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