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Orwell: The Lost Writings Hardcover – Sep 1985

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George Orwell is one of England's most famous writers and social commentators. Among his works are the classic political satire Animal Farm and the dystopian nightmare vision Nineteen Eighty-Four. Orwell was also a prolific essayist, and it is for these works that he was perhaps best known during his lifetime. They include Why I Write and Politics and the English Language. His writing is at once insightful, poignant and entertaining, and continues to be read widely all over the world.

Eric Arthur Blair (George Orwell) was born in 1903 in India, where his father worked for the Civil Service. The family moved to England in 1907 and in 1917 Orwell entered Eton, where he contributed regularly to the various college magazines. From 1922 to 1927 he served with the Indian Imperial Police in Burma, an experience that inspired his first novel, Burmese Days (1934). Several years of poverty followed. He lived in Paris for two years before returning to England, where he worked successively as a private tutor, schoolteacher and bookshop assistant, and contributed reviews and articles to a number of periodicals. Down and Out in Paris and London was published in 1933. In 1936 he was commissioned by Victor Gollancz to visit areas of mass unemployment in Lancashire and Yorkshire, and The Road to Wigan Pier (1937) is a powerful description of the poverty he saw there.

At the end of 1936 Orwell went to Spain to fight for the Republicans and was wounded. Homage to Catalonia is his account of the civil war. He was admitted to a sanatorium in 1938 and from then on was never fully fit. He spent six months in Morocco and there wrote Coming Up for Air. During the Second World War he served in the Home Guard and worked for the BBC Eastern Service from 1941 to 1943. As literary editor of the Tribune he contributed a regular page of political and literary commentary, and he also wrote for the Observer and later for the Manchester Evening News. His unique political allegory, Animal Farm was published in 1945, and it was this novel, together with Nineteen Eighty-Four (1949), which brought him world-wide fame.

It was around this time that Orwell's unique political allegory Animal Farm (1945) was published. The novel is recognised as a classic of modern political satire and is simultaneously an engaging story and convincing allegory. It was this novel, together with Nineteen Eighty-Four (1949), which finally brought him world-wide fame. Nineteen Eighty-Four's ominous depiction of a repressive, totalitarian regime shocked contemporary readers, but ensures that the book remains perhaps the preeminent dystopian novel of modern literature.

Orwell's fiercely moral writing has consistently struck a chord with each passing generation. The intense honesty and insight of his essays and non-fiction made Orwell one of the foremost social commentators of his age. Added to this, his ability to construct elaborately imaginative fictional worlds, which he imbued with this acute sense of morality, has undoubtedly assured his contemporary and future relevance.

George Orwell died in London in January 1950.

Product Description

A look at some of the 'Lost' writings of George Orwell.

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Amazon.com: 2 reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Orwell from the archives 3 Aug 2009
By logosapiens - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
A collection of archived BBC material dating from the period when Orwell headed the BBC India Service consisting of internal memos, letters and radio plays.

Some of the memos hint of Ministry of Information (MOI) censorship of Orwell's views on the British Empire,and especially India. Did the MOI and the BBC experiences became the Ministry of Truth and censorship in "1984?" Orwell ultimately saw the India Service as a waste of time.

One radio play was interesting because it was written and read by multiple authors, starting with Orwell, in serial form with each author continuing where the last left off. Another play features a biology student, the son of a workingman, being kicked out of university for honestly admitting fault on a small matter...classic socialist early Orwell.

During Orwell's period with the BBC, C.S. Lewis was reading his "Mere Christianity" on the radio (it was later made into the book). They were both famous and working for the BBC at the same time. Orwell made contemptuous remarks about Lewis' writing in one memo and another essay "silly religous books." Lewis, on the other hand, complimented "Animal Farm". I often wonder what the relationship between them was at the BBC.

It is good that these writings have been published to perserve BBC history, but most...not all...are only of value to historians and make for tedious reading. The historical value of the collection gives the book five stars.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Orwell: The Lost Writings 24 Feb 2012
By R. Barrell - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
An excellent read. I enjoy reading Orwell's writings of all kinds. Delighted to add this volume to my collection of his works.Orwell: The Lost Writings
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