She’s a young woman Winston Smith first sees during the Two Minutes Hate at work. She works in the same building and for the same ministry as he does. The revelation that she hates the Party the way he does changes his life. Their relationship develops after Julia passes him a note that reads, “I love you.”
The two are an unlikely match. Winston is far older than she is and, to an outsider, would have little to offer her. But, what Julia wants is someone who sees the Party in the same way she does and will engage in a discussion of what life could be like outside the Party. The two even briefly contemplate running away together.
Who is Julia?
Julia was Winston Smith’s love interest in 1984. She’s a young woman who represents all the allures of a world outside the Party infrastructure; this includes sex, beauty, and freedom. She’s never given a last name or any familiar in-depth details. Julia was 26 years old when she was introduced, presumably having been born in 1958.
Readers quickly learn that she’s overtly sexual, feeling no shame regarding the number of men she’s slept with. In one interesting moment, Winston even admits to her that the more men she’s been with, the more interested he is in her because she represents such a strong will to rebel.
One of the ways that Julia ensures that the Party overlooks her misdeeds is her involvement with the Junior Anti-Sex League, a group of young people who use propaganda to further the Party’s control over everyone’s bodies.
As Winston gets to know her, he learns more about who she is and what she wants for the future. She understands the Party in a way that he does not. She appears smarter and more clever than he, having gotten away with much more serious misdeeds than Winston would ever dare engage in.
Towards the novel’s end, Julia and Winston’s relationship takes another step. The two fall in love with one another, an extreme form of rebellion in Oceania that ultimately leads to the final chilling chapters of the novel.
Personality and Character Traits
Julia is intelligent and aware of the Party’s totalitarian control, unlike most of the other characters in the novel. She’s cunning and willing to take risks, seen through her involvement with the Junior Anti-Sex League and her many affairs with men. Julia is also dangerous for Winston Smith, who, after meeting her, becomes more and more willing to break the rules.
Julia is also quite optimistic. She sees a future in which she can escape the Party and lead a relatively normal life, something that Winston has a far harder time imagining.
Here are a few important quotes from Julia in 1984 that reveal more about her beliefs and character:
It was something in your face. I thought I’d take a chance. I’m good at spotting people who don’t belong. As soon as I saw you I knew you were against THEM.
These lines are included in Winston and Julia’s conversation once she reveals her hatred of the Party to him. Her feelings shocked him as he was convinced that she was just another young, beautiful woman scorning sex and completely brainwashed by the Party. She’s attracted to Winston because he doesn’t belong, as she doesn’t.
And do you know what I’m going to do next? I’m going to get hold of a real woman’s frock from somewhere and wear it instead of these bloody trousers. I’ll wear silk stockings and high-heeled shoes!
Here, readers hear more of Julia’s form of rebellion. She’s not interested in taking up arms and leading a revolution. Julia wants a far simpler and easier way of rebelling. She wants to live freely, wear women’s clothing, and put on makeup.
If they could make me stop loving you—that would be the real betrayal. They can’t do that…They can make you say anything—anything—but they can’t make you believe it.
This chilling quote focuses on what the Party plans to do or will do to Winston and Julia once they’re arrested. Getting found out isn’t something that “could” happen for the two lovers; they know it’s going to happen. It’s only a matter of time before Big Brother arrests them.
As this quote reveals, Julia feels the party can’t stop her from living in Winston. It can’t get inside her and change her mind or her heart. This is proven to be very much untrue by the end of the novel.
Is Julia good in 1984?
Yes, Julia is a good character in the novel. She’s an ally of Winston Smith and hates the Party with as much, or perhaps more, vitriol than Winston does. But it’s mostly because of his relationship with her that he suffers as much as he does.
What happens to Julia in 1984?
Julia is arrested, as Winston is, towards the end of 1984. She is, presumably, put through a similar treatment to Winston’s which results in an alternated mental state. On his end, he’s tortured with his worst fear until he finally gives in, telling O’Brien to take the rats away and “Do it to Julia” instead.
Does Winston sleep with Julia?
The fact that Winston Smith and Julia slept with one another in 1984 is important. The act of sex is one that thePartyy would if it could completely get rid of. But, even more, important than their sexual relationship is that they fall in love with one another.