The way O’Brien breaks Smith is the combination of most if not all the Party’s methods of control. Discuss.
O’Brien breaks Smith with a combination of the Party’s methods of control, however he also tortures Winston with techniques that are definitely against the Party’s morals. O’Brien uses Winston’s fears against him, which include loosing Julia and Rats. O’Brien also gives Winston absolutely no freedom whilst he is in the Ministry of Love. Saying that however, one of the Party’s main objectives is to keep it’s civilians as ignorant as possible, Smith breaks Winston by letting him into the Party and telling him what is going to happen to him next. O’Brien also refers back to the history of the Party in order to destroy Winston, which is definitely against the Party’s principles.
O’Brien takes full advantage of Winston’s fear of Rats. This allows O’Brien to use fear against Winston and as a result break him as a person. Winston gets tortured by O’Brien in Room 101, “the worst thing”, where physical terror combines with physical torment, producing the perfect storm of domination. O’Brien is set the task of removing love from Winston’s heart and making him accept the Party. The Party find out Winston’s hatred of Rats through using their Telescreens. This proves that there is not one bit that the Party doesn’t know about Oceania. Winston uses the Rats against Winston by placing them in a cage and threatening to unleash the cage on Winston’s face, which would mean that the Rats would eat away at his face. This is ultimately makes Winston reach breaking point, he cannot take it anymore and betrays Julia, “Do it to Julia!” Winston fears both betraying Julia and Rats which consequently, causes him to break.
During Winston’s time in the Ministry of Hate, he is given absolutely no freedom what so ever. He is at all times being monitored by a Telescreen. All of Winston’s freedom has been taken away from him, for example he is now punished for saying the right thing. O’Brien asks Winston what two plus two is. Winston yells out four, which is obviously the correct answer, however he still gets punished with excruciating pain in Room 101. When Winston answers that two plus two equals five, it is an example of an “obviously false dogma one may be required to believe”, similar to other obviously false slogans by the Party in the novel. The one freedom that Winston. This then leads onto the more complex idea of double thing. Winston uses the phrase to wonder if the State might declare "two plus two equals five" as a fact; he ponders whether, if everybody believes it, does that make it true? As long as one controls their own perceptions to what the Party drives, then any physical act is possible, in accordance with the principles of doublethink. Flying for example, O’Brien says “If I say I can fly, you think I can fly, I can fly”. Winston has absolutely no freedom when O’Brien tortures and breaks him in the Ministry of truth, which is an exaggerated version of the Party’s freedom moral.
O’Brien doesn’t break Winston purely using the Party’s morals however, he goes against the Party’s morals by not keeping Winston ignorant. O’Brien goes into detail about what the Party is going to do to Winston, he explains how they won’t kill him, yet. They will break him first and then kill him so he dies loving the Party. The Party normally, doesn’t tell Oceania anything that they don’t need to know, which in a way is ironic because they are exposing Winston to something that he has never experienced before, which comes across as petrifying. It becomes evident that Winston for the first time ever, is being told his destiny, he is being told about what Big Brother is about and in a way, it definitely breaks him. To Winston’s credit however, he does put up a fight and says “they’ll kill me, I don’t care”, however in the end when O’Brien is stepping through what is going to happen, it is clear that Winston can no longer cope and gives up