He Loved Big Brother. My Experience of Reading 1984 Essay Example



“This is the last line of the first book we will be reading this semester”, my English teacher exclaimed as I sat with my head unenthusiastically slumped on my desk. Before she could provide more insight, the bell rang and my classmates and I filtered out the door, the grimace still set on my face.

As I booked it down the corridor, worried about being late to calculus, I couldn’t shake the feeling of dread at the mere thought of analysing literature for school. Surprisingly enough, I absolutely adored reading. If I could, I’d have spent every day head down with a copy of the latest New York Times Bestseller laying in my lap. I just couldn’t do it for school, I despised it.  If only I had known at the time it would be that one novel that caused both the expansion and collapse of my world all at once.

I remember the moment reading first popped up on my radar. I was only three when I first saw Mom curled up on the couch with what she called ‘a good book’. I wanted nothing more than to be the same as her so like any child, I begged for her to read to me. It took one night and a single chapter of Mom’s favorite, Harry Potter, and I was hooked. From that moment on, no one saw me without a book in hand.

And for years, that’s how it went. No longer had I finished a story that a new one had already begun. Literature wrapped its pages around my heart and instilled a passionate desire to learn and create. My stories came to be a second home, a safe haven from life’s issues. By fourteen, I had battled the dark wizard Voldemort, protected Olympus from the Titans, and defended the entire planet from a dangerous alien race.

Unfortunately school reading just wasn’t the same so after about a week of letting 1984 collect dust in my backpack, I finally forced myself to begin. I trudged across the pages of Winston Smith’s life while my classmates finished a trivial history assignment. I figured no story could be more boring than the details of Hitler’s dictatorship, something we’d learned about since primary school.

Winston’s depressing world view on Party ideology had just been written down into his diary and at that moment with my teacher’s voice droning on in the background, my body went rigid and an idea crept its way in. An understanding washed over me that didn’t arrive logically or with any thought at all. It hit like a truck, the epiphany of the century thundering around in my head at one hundred miles a minute. In a matter of seconds, I was completely and utterly new.

Slowly, I poked my head up out of the pages for what felt like the very first time again.