What are three different settings from 1984 with supporting quotations?
In the opening scene of the novel, Winston Smith is at his dingy apartment in the complex named Victory Mansions. The Victory Mansions are a decaying complex in need of repair with leaky roofs and broken amenities. In Winston's brief moment of privacy, he writes his first rebellious thoughts about the government. Orwell gives a description of Winston's apartment:
"He [Winston] went back to the living-room and sat down at a small table that stood to the left of the telescreen. . . For some reason the telescreen in the living-room was in an unusual position. Instead of being placed, as was normal, in the end wall, where it could command the whole room, it was in the longer wall, opposite the window" (8).
Throughout Winston's dreams, he imagines a tranquil landscape far from the city, away from the telescreens, pollution, and Thought Police. Winston and Julia's first sexual encounter takes place in the Golden Country, which is a pastoral setting. Orwell describes the Golden Country by writing,
"Winston looked out into the field beyond, and underwent a curious, slow shock of recognition. He knew it by sight. An old, close-bitten pasture, with a foot-path wandering across it and a molehill here and there. In the ragged hedge on the opposite side the boughs of the elm trees swayed just perceptibly in the breeze, and their leaves stirred faintly in dense masses like women’s hair" (155).
Another significant setting throughout the novel is the small room Winston rents above Charrington's antique shop. Winston and Julia continue to carry out their affair in this room. Unknown to Winston, there is a hidden telescreen in the room, and the Thought Police have been watching his every move. In the following excerpt, Orwell describes Winston's rented room above the shop by saying,
"Winston looked round the shabby little room above Mr Charrington’s shop. Beside the window the enormous bed was made up, with ragged blankets and a coverless bolster. The old-fashioned clock with the twelve-hour face was ticking away on the mantelpiece. In the corner, on the gateleg table, the glass paperweight which he had bought on his last visit gleamed softly out of the half-darkness" (172).
1984, like many dystopian novels, consists of three parts, and in each of those sections, Orwell creates and describes several significant settings.
1. Winston's apartment--In Chapter One of Part One, Winston wearily climbs the steps to his dismal apartment. Orwell relies upon dark, decayed phrasing to demonstrate the uniformity and dank nature of existence in Oceania. Phrases from Chapter One such as "an oblong metal plaque like a dulled mirror," "shut window-pane," and a hallway that smells "of boiled cabbage and old rag mats" contribute to the reader's overall sense of Winston's depression.
2.Mr. Charrington's rented room--In Chapter Four of Part Two, Orwell contrasts the freedom of a rented room with the control of the city. When Winston chooses to rent Mr. Charrington's upstairs room for his escapades with Julia, it represents an escape much like the country. The room with its "saucepan and two cups," "glass paperweight," and "battered tin oilstove" allows Winston and Julia to feel as if they are free from Big Brother's ubiquity. Similarly, the contents of their room are nonessential but indicative of comfort and warmth.
3.The Ministry of Love--In Chapter One of Part Three, the interior of the Ministry of Love contrasts sharply with the rented room. After being captured by the Thought Police, Winston opens his eyes and surmises that he is in the Ministry of Love. He observes its
"high-ceilinged windowless cell with walls of glittering white porcelain . . . concealed lamps . . . with cold light and . . . a low, steady humming sound . . . ."
There, Winston begins to question himself and everything he thought he knew. He cannot decipher memory from fiction and eventually relinquishes all freedom--even his thoughts--to the Party.