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Is Winston Smith a stereotype in 1984?

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mariah22 | eNotes Newbie

Posted January 12, 2013 at 5:36 PM via iOS

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Is Winston Smith a stereotype in 1984?

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gpane | College Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted January 13, 2013 at 7:32 PM (Answer #1)

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Winston cannot be called a stereotype. Stereotypes are generally flat, one-dimensional characters, in which one quality is exaggerated at the expense of others. They are not realistically portrayed, they are not well-rounded, psychologically convincing characters. However Winston certainly is. We are shown all his good points and his bad points, and we get a constant insight into his thoughts, dreams and fears, the motives and reasons behind his behaviour. He appears as a realistic, well-fleshed out character therefore. He is physically quite weak, but he is courageous in his fight against the Party even if he is ultimately overcome. Orwell thus shows that heroic qualities can exist in the most unassuming and ordinary kind of person - you don't need to be a stereotypical strong, superman type to be a hero.

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