Class Notes (3/28/2017)

Beginning of Class

Free Writing (Handed In) About the glass paperweight  Winston purchased From Mr. Charrington. The question that were asked about was, What it is, where it comes from, and what it symbolizes in the novel?



Debase (verb): to lower in status, esteem, quality, or character. Used in Sentence: The celebrity’s family tried to block the production of his biographical film because they felt it would debase his memory.

Convoluted (adjective): extremely complex and difficult to follow. Used in Sentence: The film is let down by a convoluted plot in which nothing really happens.

Anachronistic (adjective): a person or a thing that is chronologically out of place. Used in Sentence: Since there were not laptop computers during the Civil War, the presence of a portable computer in the history film is a definite anachronism.

Archaic (adjective): of, relating to, or characteristic of an earlier or more primitive time. Used in Sentence: The original Ford Model T car is considered archaic when compared to modern vehicles.

Pragmatic (adjective): dealing with things sensibly and realistically in a way that is based on practical rather than theoretical considerations. Used in Sentence: My mother is quite pragmatic in nature and never does anything without rationalizing it first


Class Discussion Topics

  1. Glass Paperweight
  2. Julia
  3. The Book (Will cover in Thursday class)
  4. O’Brian and The Brotherhood (Will cover in Thursday class)
  5. Hate Week (Will cover in Thursday class)


Glass Paperweight

Discussion on page 96: Before we talked about the paperweight, we went into detail about Mr. Charrington and how he was described by Winston when he first met him. The full description of Mr. Charrington is the last paragraph on page 96.

Discussion on page 97 & 98:  After analyzing the physical detail of Mr. Charrington, we moved on to a Winston description of the shop and the discovery of the glass paperweight. We discussed by Winston purchasing the paperweight, it shows another act of his rebellious streak against the party because purchasing this relic for its beauty is disrespectful to the party. At this point glass paperweight symbolize his rebellious nature.

Discussion on page 150: The classes discuss how the glass paperweight has evolved to symbolize the room above Mr. Charrington shop with Winston and Julia frozen in time. The room itself has become their sanctuary.

Discussion on page 230: The last few pages leading to page 230, we discussed the symbolism of glass paperweight scattering to pieces when it fell off the table, as when Winston and Julia was finally caught by the Thought Police for their actions.


The class discussed briefly about Julia and compare the differences between her and Winston. We bought how Julia lives in the present and Windows Lives in the past. Julia is also very pragmatic, street smart and care free but not book smart.

Home Work

Class Discussion #6: Nineteen Eighty-Four (one initial comment on Part Three (pp. 231-308) / Appendix: The Principles of Newspeak (pp. 309-323) by W 3/29 + two additional comments by F 3/31)

Extra Credit for the best comments! One comment picked by Professor Belli, one by the class. Click here to vote for your “People’s Choice” post! (due M 4/3)

One thought on “Class Notes (3/28/2017)

  1. Thanks Jay for these helpful notes (and for posting them so promptly!).

    Just a quick clarification: the freewriting was on the “glass paperweight” (not “featherweight”), and asked to consider what it is, where it comes from, and what it symbolizes in the novel.

    Finally, you have really thorough notes for the paperweight discussion, but if you could flesh out the Julia section a bit more (we discussed this a lot in class), that would be helpful [e.g., we also talked about passion, sex, desire, love in relation to her]. We also did discuss “hate” (Hate Week, two minutes hate) and its role in the novel, especially in relation to the hedonism of ‘Brave New World.’

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