Nineteen Eighty-Four features a number of named characters, but only a few play major roles in the story.
Winston Smith is the main character, whose point of view the narrator focuses on throughout the story. Julia also plays an important role, though she is most directly present in Part II of the story. Finally, the mysterious O’Brien shows up throughout the story, but plays a particularly significant role in Part III.
We will give you detailed characterisations of these three major characters, and then briefly move on to talk about secondary characters such as Winston’s mother, Mr. Parsons, Winston’s wife Katharine, and Mr. Charrington.
Finally, we will spend some time discussing the relationships between some of the central characters.
When working with the characters of the story, it is important to note that Winston’s limited point of view sometimes causes him to make wrong assumptions about other characters. Therefore, the way a character is first presented may not reflect their true identity. For example, Winston is mistaken about Julia in Part I, and mistaken about Mr. Charrington and O’Brien in Part II.