What is the Party's attitude toward love and marriage in 1984?

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thanatassa's profile pic

thanatassa | College Teacher | (Level 3) Educator Emeritus

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Love and marriage are extremely important to the Party, in a negative sense. In other words, they see love and the sort of marriage based on love as inherently subversive forces and attempt to regulate them and suppress them. They want the full force of people's emotions directed in ways that directly benefit the Party, first as love for Big Brother and second as rage and hatred directed against opponents of the Party. As O'Brien says:

There is no loyalty but loyalty to the Party. There is no love except love of Big Brother. All competing pleasures we will destroy.


Thus the Party destroys the family, trying to ensure that parents and children have no affection for each other and forbids sex for any purpose but procreation. O'Brien even lets slip that they are working on a way to prevent people from experiencing orgasms, as that sort of intense physical pleasure might be something people would strive for in a way that would interfere with single-minded loyalty to the Party. Winston's affair with Julia is thus viewed as treasonous and subversive.

ladyvols1's profile pic

ladyvols1 | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

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The novel 1984, by George Orwell, discusses the relation between the concepts of "Big Brother," Comrads," and the Party. The Party has specific guidelines for all of the people who live within its control. Winston is one of the characters under the control of the Party. In chapter 6 Winston tells us about his interaction with a prostitute. He mentions that he is married but hasn't seen his wife in 11 years. The Party does not encourage marriage except for the purpose of procreation and raising "little comrads."  The Party believes that people should devote their whole lives to the Party and its causes.

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