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What happens to Julia? In Part 3 of 1984, at the end?

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cvw | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted March 30, 2009 at 3:39 AM via web

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What happens to Julia? In Part 3 of 1984, at the end?

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sagesource | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Associate Educator

Posted June 21, 2009 at 1:25 PM (Answer #1)

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At the end of George Orwell's novel 1984, when Winston Smith is sitting in the Chestnut Tree Cafe, he recalls meeting Julia by accident after their release from the Ministry of Love, "in the Park, on a vile, biting day in March,...." Due to the psychological after-effects of his torture, culminating in his "betrayal" of her when faced with the cage of rats, Winston Smith almost passes her by without recognition, but at the last moment he turns to follow her. She is even more unresponsive than he is, and merely tolerates his presence. She seems to have become physically coarser as well as less responsive. Finally, they find seats and sit down to talk:

'I betrayed you,' she said baldly.
'I betrayed you,' he said.
She gave him another quick look of dislike.
'Sometimes,' she said, 'they threaten you with something -- something you can't stand up to, can't even think about.....'

It is plain that she has been treated the same way that Winston Smith has been, and has also been sent to Room 101, though what her ultimate fear was is never made plain. They admit to each other that their feelings are no longer the same, and even though their last words are a promise to meet again, it is certain that any future meeting will not be on their initiative. They have entirely lost interest in each other.

Julia disappears in the crowd after this, and her ultimate fate is not clear. However, since we know that Winston Smith is marked down for trial and execution some time in the future (perhaps the very near future, since at the end of the novel he has finally managed to love Big Brother), we can plausibly speculate that Julia is being preserved to be a witness or a co-defendant at that future trial, and will be executed after it, just as Winston Smith will be.

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