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What is the meaning of this quote? "Freedom is the freedom to say that two plus two...

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pewter039 | Student, College Freshman | eNotes Newbie

Posted December 13, 2009 at 10:07 AM via web

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What is the meaning of this quote? "Freedom is the freedom to say that two plus two make four. If that is granted, all else follows."

How is it related to the "2+2=5"

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted December 13, 2009 at 10:13 AM (Answer #1)

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In the book, the party is trying to force people to see it as the only source of truth.  It manipulates and changes the truth so that people don't have any way to know what's real.  It's in this context that you need to think of this quote.

The quote comes at the end of Part 1, Chapter 7.  Winston is thinking that the Party is too strong for him to oppose.  But then he thinks that as long as he can hold onto a truth like 2+2=4 then he has a foundation of reality and can resist the Party's attempts to tell him lies.

The connection to the other equation is that later on when Winston is being tortured, he is reminded of this diary entry and is tortured to try to push him toward being able to see that 2+2=5 (which would mean that he would be giving up any hope of having an independent mind).

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acompanioninthetardis | TA , Undergraduate | Valedictorian

Posted July 30, 2014 at 3:12 AM (Answer #2)

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Because 2+2=5 is what the party says and if you believe anything else you're always wrong and are punished for rebelling against the party. the truth to the matter is that 2+2 is obviously 4 but that is what is called freedom..the ability to express the truth, freely.

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