In Nineteen Eighty Four, Winston Smith reflects on the erasing of people.
“…people who had incurred the displeasure of the Party simply disappeared and were never heard of again. One never had the smallest clue as to what had happened to them. In some cases they might not even be dead. Perhaps thirty people personally known to Winston, not counting his parents, had disappeared at one time or another.”
Shortly after, Winston Smith is required to obliterate the existence of a man now declared an ‘unperson’. An unperson means one who never existed.
When there is a report in a newspaper about someone who is declared an ‘unperson’ Winston Smith uses his talent. This is the part of the job he loves. Being required to use his imagination.
To erase the existence of a person now declared an ‘unperson’ Winston creates an imaginary man called ‘Ogilvie’.
Big Brother had spoken highly of a man called Withers who now, being declared an unperson, no longer exists. Winston replaces reference to the once celebrated Withers with his imaginary Olgilvie.
Smith went on, proudly creating this fabrication, sure one of his co-workers had been given the same job, and just as sure his fabrication would be the successful one.
Winston Smith, despite his personal feelings, despite his recognition that much of what he is told is lies, is able to become that perfect ‘politically correct’ drone in the system.