In George Orwell's 1984, Winston notes that Mrs. Parsons often breaks off mid-sentence. Why do you think this observation may be important?

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In chapter two, Winston Smith visits his neighbor's shabby apartment in Victory Mansions to unclog their kitchen sink. Winston's neighbor, Mrs. Parsons, is described as an older-looking woman, who appears to be completely exhausted with life and wary about her violent, intimidating children. Winston mentions that Mrs. Parsons appears to...

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In chapter two, Winston Smith visits his neighbor's shabby apartment in Victory Mansions to unclog their kitchen sink. Winston's neighbor, Mrs. Parsons, is described as an older-looking woman, who appears to be completely exhausted with life and wary about her violent, intimidating children. Winston mentions that Mrs. Parsons appears to have dust in the creases of her skin and has a habit of breaking off her sentences in the middle. Mrs. Parsons's constant hesitations indicate that she is apprehensive about saying something that would be considered politically unorthodox. In Oceania, the citizens suffer from government oppression and are under constant surveillance. Something as a simple as an unorthodox comment can lead to a person's arrest. Mrs. Parsons also fears her maniacal children, who have been trained to spy on their parents and report any unorthodox behaviors or comments. Winston's observation is significant because it emphasizes the oppressive nature of the government and lack of freedom in Oceania.

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In George Orwell's novel 1984, Winston does observe that Mrs. Parsons often breaks off mid-sentence and fails to complete her thought.  This observation is important for a couple of reasons.  Citizens of Oceania are not free to act, say, or even think freely.  Mrs. Parsons is nervous about what she might say and she worries that she will be caught by the Thought Police saying something that is not allowed.  Her hesitation illustrates the invasion of the government on the people's lives at such an intimate level.  It also shows how afraid people are of the government.  Mrs. Parsons is not just scared of government officials.  She is actually afraid of her own children.  Children commonly turned in parents for violating rules, and Mrs. Parsons is scared of her children.  This foreshadows an event that occurs later in the novel.  The Parsons daughter overhears her father talking in his sleep and she does turn him in.

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