The Penguin Essays Of George Orwell 1984

So Stansky and Abrahams usefully supplement Crick's biography... Bernard Crick has achieved an extremely readable and straightforward account of Orwell's life...a fascinating and erudite biography which illuminates Orwell's own writings and helps the reader to understand the complexities of his life and friendships. (An account by a close friend upholding Orwell as a secular saint and arguing that in Nineteen Eighty-Four, out of his private nightmare he produced a book prophetically related to the public problems of the age.Symons characterizes Orwell as a man struggling to overcome childhood neuroses, who became a better person by sheer effort.

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It is particularly valuable for its insight into the Blair family background at Henley and Shiplake and for the evidence it offers of Orwell's early literary ambitions.

There is much interesting material on his boyhood reading and on the literary influences which helped to shape his distinctive style and approach.

However, essays included in these main collections are cross-referenced by the following abbreviations (the first publishing year in brackets): “London Letter.” A regular column for the Partisan Review from January 1941 to Summer 1946.

The letters discuss the implications of the changing political and military situation for Britain and America. Titled entries are alphabetized by title, and untitled entries are alphabetized by periodical name.

Pritchett's sympathetic and insightful obituary, which appeared a week after Orwell's death, was extremely influential in establishing the personal reputation of the tall emaciated man with a face scored by the marks of physical suffering.

Pritchett mentions his masochism, says he had gone native in his own country, and calls him a kind of saint, the guilty conscience of the educated and privileged man. Potts emphasizes his kindness, independence, courage, integrity, Englishness, and recalls his capacity for hard work, his taste in food, his conversation, and his hobbies.

Orwell used individualism as an antidote for totalitarianism.

He portrayed a society where the power of the governing `Party' only gives "the individual [...] power in so far as he ceases to be an individual." The Party views individualism as a disease, as a malfunction in the individual's mind to control their memory and thought impulses - a failure "in humility, in self-discipline." 1984 is told from the perspective of Winston Smith, a Party member who works in the Ministry of Truth; he is neither a particularly heroic character, nor is he blessed with any extraordinary traits, so why would Orwell choose such an average man to be his protagonist? ...n truly liberated presenting individualism as an observed, controlled experiment of the Party. `Inside the Whale' Inside the Whale and other essays Penguin Books Ltd.

Powell captures many physical aspects of Orwell: his voice, carefully controlled not to sound “public school”; his clothes, always shabby corduroys and tweeds.

Powell describes his persecution mania and his solemnity; his fondness for Victorian atmosphere in places he lived; his devoted care of his child.


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