List several of the ways the Party use psychology to control people.

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mstultz72 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Big Brother and the Telescreens: He represents the ubiquitous God of the society: omnipresent, omnipotent.  The telescreens are his vigilant eye.  Does he exist?  Is he always watching?  Obviously, the state hides behind him.  He is a scapegoat, a figurehead, a power psychological tool of intimidation.  Surveillance and profiling are powerful psychological methods of maintaining social order and deterrents against rebellion.

The 4 Ministries: their jobs are to spread propaganda, conscious lies.  The most powerful of the four, the Ministry of Love, is a mystery.  No one has entered and exited the same person.  What's in Room 101?  It is Winston's greatest fear.  O'Brien takes Winston there to be tortured.  There, Winston becomes an unperson.

Constant war: not knowing if Oceania is fighting Eastasia or Eurasia is a power means to keep the masses weak and uninformed.  Psychologically, the state can use the war effort as means to starve, to increase production of labor, and to spread lies against the enemy.  Constant war is all the excuse the state needs to justify its deplorable treatment of its citizens; it is a scapegoat, like Big Brother, as a means to an end.


pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

There are lots of ways that they do this.  I will list a few here:

  • They use the posters to give people the sense that the Party is omnipresent.  Just the sheer number of posters is important and so is the message (especially "Big Brother is Watching You.")
  • They use the Two-minutes Hate very effectively.  By channelling the people's emotions in one direction (which is chosen by the Party) they are able to control people.
  • The Party uses Newspeak and its paradoxical slogans to control people as well.  It gives them only a specific set of words that they can use and it defines reality for them by teaching them that whatever the Party says is true, even if it doesn't make sense.