The Free Choice for Absurd Rebellion in Nineteen Eighty Four

Nabil A. Jalil, Arbaayah Ali Termizi


Underneath the heavy political cover, which Nineteen Eighty Four was
written to criticize, there is an image of a man living in an absurd world.
Winston, the protagonist, finds himself in a situation he did not wish to be in
and with no way to get out. He lives in an absurd world that defies his
common sense every day, so he decides freely to challenge the situation by
rebelling against it. Even though he knows that his decision will take him to
his doom, Winston chooses freely to do what is forbidden to justify his
existence and individuality as a human. While the whole novel has a
political atmosphere, the philosophy behind Winston's actions is on the same
stance as that of Jean-Paul Sartre and Albert Camus. These two philosophers
have identified the individual's need for feeling his/her existence against the
absurdity of his/her situation in life. Thus, this paper aims to examine the
novel Nineteen Eighty Four in the light of selected concept from Sartre's
philosophy (freedom of choice and bad faith). And two concepts from
Camus' philosophy (absurdity and absurd rebellion).

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