In 1984, why does Winston Smith hesitate to write in his diary?

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In totalitarian states like Oceania, privacy is virtually nonexistent. The government seeks to control not just how people behave, but also their thoughts. The totalitarian state will not allow any spheres of privacy for the individual. This makes it easier for the state to subject all citizens to constant surveillance. Given the purported omniscience of the state, starting a journal is a very risky thing for Winston to do. If caught, he runs the serious risk of being vaporized. It is not in the least bit surprising that he hesitates before writing in his diary.

In Winston's world, setting down one's thoughts in written form is not a simple...

(The entire section contains 2 answers and 344 words.)

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