1984 is not just about totalitarianism; it makes us live through totalitarianism. The Party wants power for its own sake. The Party carefully monitors the behavior of all of its constituents. Morning group exercises are mandatory. The Party demands that all loyalty created in private be severed, and that the only acceptable loyalty is loyalty to the Party. The Party condemns sex, and brainwashes its constituents. The Party recognizes no concept of a "family" other than the collective family under rule by the Party. The Party controls everything – the past, the present, and the future – by controlling historical records, language, and even thought. The Party tortures and "vaporizes" those who harbor rebellious thoughts. The state suffers through constant warfare. The conditions are dilapidated, but the citizens do not know better. Classism exists everywhere, and different classes generally do not socialize with each other.
O’Brien’s description of power as "a boot stamping on a human face […] forever" is misguided, because power is more about influence and authority than victory over resistance. This is the Party’s fatal flaw in 1984.
1984 demonstrates that totalitarianism is a devastating political agenda, because it is necessarily dependent upon fear, classism, and physical torture. Without these elements, the Party would have no power.