What is the Inner Party in 1984?

In 1984, the Inner Party is the small group that runs Oceania. They live in great privilege with all of life's amenities at their disposal, possessing luxuries that even Outer Party members have never laid eyes on. The Inner Party deliberately keeps the rest of society in poverty in order to maintain its control.

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The Inner Party in 1984 is the small group within the Party that runs Oceania and has control over the rest of the society. They are the oligarchs Goldstein discusses in his book about oligarchic collectivism.

O'Brien is a member of the Inner Party. Although he walks around in overalls...

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The Inner Party in 1984 is the small group within the Party that runs Oceania and has control over the rest of the society. They are the oligarchs Goldstein discusses in his book about oligarchic collectivism.

O'Brien is a member of the Inner Party. Although he walks around in overalls like the rest of the Party members and acts as if he is an ordinary person, Winston and Julia catch a glimpse of his life when he invites them to visit.

Unlike them (and the rest of the Outer Party members), O'Brien leads a comfortable, gracious life. He has a servant in his well-appointed flat, where everything works. He is able to offer Winston and Julia a glass of wine, something Winston has heard of but never tasted. O'Brien's life is not one of broken elevators, bad smells, Victory Gin, foul food, and misery. To the great shock of both Julia and Winston, O'Brien's telescreen is off: he is not, as they are, under constant surveillance, although O'Brien mentions it is unwise to turn off the telescreen for more than thirty minutes or so.

We also learn from Julia, who sometimes sleeps with Inner Party members, that they have access to the real coffee that it is almost impossible for Outer Party members to obtain.

As Goldstein's book explains, all of this is by design. The Inner Party enjoys knowing it has total power over the rest of society and believes the only way it can know it has this power is by making other people do what they don't want to do, which is suffer. More importantly, keeping the vast bulk of the people in society living with the bare minimum of what they need makes them easier to control. Rather than spend money on the people, the Inner Party wastes it in endless, pointless wars. Its goal is to keep the bulk of the population down so that it can maintain power forever.

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