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Winston Smith lives in a dilapidated, old apartment building known as Victory Mansions. Victory Mansions is a dingy, disgusting building in need of major renovations. At the beginning of the novel, Orwell describes Winston's apartment complex and flat. Throughout the halls of Victory Mansions, there is an overpowering smell...

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Winston Smith lives in a dilapidated, old apartment building known as Victory Mansions. Victory Mansions is a dingy, disgusting building in need of major renovations. At the beginning of the novel, Orwell describes Winston's apartment complex and flat. Throughout the halls of Victory Mansions, there is an overpowering smell of boiled cabbage and old rag mats. Winston is also forced to walk past giant posters of Big Brother hanging from the walls on the way to his seventh-floor apartment. Inside Winston's tiny apartment, there is a telescreen hanging on the right side of the wall. Unlike the setup of most apartments, the telescreen is not located at the end of the wall, where it has command of the entire room. There is also a shallow alcove next to the telescreen, where Winston writes in his diary without being seen. Later on in the novel, Winston begins to rent a small room above Mr. Charrington's antique shop. There is a bed, stove, and an antique chair in the room, as well as a hidden telescreen disguised as an old painting.

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Winston lives in Victory Mansions, an apartment for Outer Party members in what used to be London. He also rents a small apartment in the Proles area with Julia for the purpose of their meetings. 

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He lives in an apartment complex called Victory Mansions, which is ironic because they are anything but mansion-like. They are described as being run down and dingy. Winston feels that everything has a layer of dirt on it. He also says that anything that breaks never gets fixed so the conditions are always worsening. It smells bad, too. The apartments are located in a region named Oceania.

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Winston lives in Victory Mansions, which despite its name is not a luxurious place.

Winston lives in a totalitarian society where Big Brother is watching his every move.  Specifically, he lives in London, in Oceania.  There are only three warring countries, and Oceania is always at war with Eurasia and Eastasia. 

Winston’s apartment is in Victory Mansions, where the name is probably designed to make him feel like he is living in the lap of luxury when it is really a slum like apartment building.  The hallway smells like boiled cabbage and rag mats, the elevator doesn’t work, the electricity is cut off by the government to celebrate Hate Week, and the décor is an enormous poster of Big Brother.

Winston is fortunate enough to have a window.  He even has a television, sort of!

The voice came from an oblong metal plaque like a dulled mirror which formed part of the surface of the right-hand wall. … The instrument (the telescreen, it was called) could be dimmed, but there was no way of shutting it off completely. (Ch. 1)

The telescreen is Big Brother’s way of controlling the populace.  They can watch everyone through it, and avail them of boring news statistics the rest of the time.  Of course, outside of individual residences there are the helicopters and cameras to ensure that you are always watching the people.  The Thought Police will make sure that everyone is kept in line, and under control.

One of the things the Thought Police would not want you to say is that Winston’s apartment is horrible.  His building is terrible, it smells, and the elevator does not work.  Clearly, things are not perfect here in Oceania.  Of course, when you control what people think and say, and Big Brother is always watching, and children inform on their parents, no one is going to complain.  Therefore where Winston lives—the decrepit nature of his building and the ironic nature of its name—is symptomatic of a larger problem.

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