Letter from Orwell to Sir Richard Rees (3 March 1949)

Letter from Orwell to Sir Richard Rees (3 March 1949)

Cranham 3 March 1949 Dear Richard, Thanks so much for your letter, with the cuttings, which I thought gave quite a good exposition of C.P. policy. I always disagree, however, when people end by saying that we can only...
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Letter from Orwell to David Astor (5 September 1949)

Letter from Orwell to David Astor (5 September 1949)

U.C.H.1 5 September 1949 Dear David, Thanks ever so for sending those beautiful crysanths & the box of peaches that actually met me on my arrival here. I feel ghastly & can’t write much, but we had a wonderful journey...
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Three Years of Home Guard: Unique Symbol of Stability (May 1943)

Three Years of Home Guard: Unique Symbol of Stability (May 1943)

The Observer, 9 May 1943 It is close on three years since the eager amateurs of the L.D.V. doctored shotgun cartridges with candle-grease and practised grenade-throwing with lumps of concrete, and the value of the Home Guard as a...
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Letter from Eric Blair to Leonard Moore suggesting George Orwell as a pseudonym (1932)

Letter from Eric Blair to Leonard Moore suggesting George Orwell as a pseudonym (1932)

Sat.1 “The Hawthorns” Church Rd. Hayes  Mdx. Dear Mr Moore, Many thanks for your letter. I sent off the proof with the printer’s queries on it yesterday. I made a few alterations & added one or...
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Appeal by Freedom Defence Committee (7 September 1948)

Appeal by Freedom Defence Committee (7 September 1948)

Issue 7 of the Freedom Defence Committee’s Bulletin, Autumn 1948, draws to its readers’ attention a letter sent to the press for publication ‘early in September.’ A copy of the actual letter sent to The New Statesman and Nation...
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Arthur Koestler interviewed about his friend George Orwell

Arthur Koestler interviewed about his friend George Orwell

Arthur Koestler (1905-83), novelist, journalist, critic and philosopher, had covered the Spanish Civil War for the News Chronicle between 1936 and 1937, and was imprisoned by General Franco. After his release he served in the French Foreign Legion for...
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The Politics of Starvation

The Politics of Starvation

Tribune, 18 January 1946 A few days ago I received a wad of literature from the “Save Europe Now” committee, which has been attempting—without much encouragement from the Government or help from the Press—to increase the supply of food from...
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Bloodstained scarves worn by Orwell during the Spanish Civil War sold at auction

Bloodstained scarves worn by Orwell during the Spanish Civil War sold at auction

A collection of four scarves and neckerchiefs belonging to George Orwell were sold by Bloomsbury Auctions (London) in October 2013 for £4,500. The scarves had been worn by Orwell in May 1937 when he was shot during a battle...
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Review of “Lest We Regret” by Douglas Reed and “I Sit and I Think and I Wonder” by Sidney Dark

Review of “Lest We Regret” by Douglas Reed and “I Sit and I Think and I Wonder” by Sidney Dark

The Observer, 7 November 1943 It seems strange to look back five years and remember Mr. Douglas Reed as a Cassandra figure warning a heedless world that the Nazis were dangerous. And it is even stranger to think of...
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Eric Blair’s reply to BBC regarding broadcasting to India as George Orwell (October 1942)

Eric Blair’s reply to BBC regarding broadcasting to India as George Orwell (October 1942)

B.B.C. Internal Memorandum From: Eric Blair, Indian Section Subject: Weekly News Commentary To: Eastern Service Director CONFIDENTIAL 15 October 1942 With reference to the suggestion that I should write and broadcast the weekly news review in English over my...
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Catastrophic Gradualism

Catastrophic Gradualism

C. W. Review, November 19451 There is a theory which has not yet been accurately formulated or given a name, but which is very widely accepted and is brought forward whenever it is necessary to justify some action which...
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My favorite Amazon customer reviews for George Orwell’s 1984

My favorite Amazon customer reviews for George Orwell’s 1984

These are real reviews for Orwell’s 1984 from Amazon.com customers. Spelling, grammar and punctuation — all uncorrected. Enjoy! ◊ ◊ ◊ ◊ ◊ Number of reviews: 1,645 Average rating: Customer Reviews 5 of 70 people found the following review...
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Letter to Penguin Books (8 March 1943)

Letter to Penguin Books (8 March 1943)

10a Mortimer Crescent London NW6 8 March 1943 Dear Sir,1 With reference to your letter dated 5.3.43. I am not absolutely certain without looking up my contracts how I stand about the rights in my books, but I am almost...
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The Orwell Reader (Part 2)

The Orwell Reader (Part 2)

A collection of some of George Orwell’s best essays: The Spike (1931) Bookshop Memories (1936) Spilling the Spanish Beans (1937) Charles Dickens (1940) Boys’ Weeklies (1940) The Art of Donald McGill (1941) Mark Twain — The Licensed Jester (1943)
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Orwell shot through throat by a sniper (20 May 1937)

Orwell shot through throat by a sniper (20 May 1937)

George Orwell (Eric Blair) was shot through the throat by a sniper on 20 May 1937. He discusses the incident in Homage to Catalonia. His wife (Eileen Blair) sent a telegram from Barcelona at noon on 24 May 1937...
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Letter from Eileen Blair in Barcelona to her brother Dr. Laurence (‘Eric’) O’Shaughnessy (May 1937)

Letter from Eileen Blair in Barcelona to her brother Dr. Laurence (‘Eric’) O’Shaughnessy (May 1937)

10 Rambla de los Estudios, Barcelona. 1 May 1937 Dear Eric, You have a hard life. I mean to write to Mother with the news, but there are some business matters. Now I think of these, they’re inextricably connected...
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Letter from George Orwell at the BBC to E. M. Forster (14 April 1942)

Letter from George Orwell at the BBC to E. M. Forster (14 April 1942)

14 April 1942 Dear Mr. Forster, Many thanks for your letter. As to the questionnaire by the BBC which you mention,1 I don’t think it ever bore much fruit, but I am finding out what replies did come in...
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Common Lodging Houses (September 1932)

Common Lodging Houses (September 1932)

The New Statesman and Nation, 3 September 1932 Common lodging houses, of which there are several hundred in London, are night-shelters specially licensed by the LCC.1 They are intended for people who cannot afford regular lodgings, and in effect...
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Telling the Russians about Orwell

Telling the Russians about Orwell

Gleb Struve (1898-1985), a scholar and specialist on Soviet literature, was at the School of Slavonic Studies, London University, in 1944. He wrote to Orwell and congratulated him on his piece in the Tribune column about Soviet falsification of history....
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Through a Glass, Rosily

Through a Glass, Rosily

Tribune, 23 November 1945 The recent article by Tribune’s Vienna correspondent provoked a spate of angry letters which, besides calling him a fool and a liar and making other charges of what one might call a routine nature, also...
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Announcement of Orwell’s engagement to Sonia Brownell (September 1949)

Announcement of Orwell’s engagement to Sonia Brownell (September 1949)

17 September 1949 The Star reported: A specialist’s verdict will decide whether fair-haired Miss Sonia Brownell,1 engaged to novelist George Orwell, will have a bedside wedding in hospital. Mr Orwell who has been ill for two years is now...
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Orwell’s notes for essay on Evelyn Waugh (1949)

Orwell’s notes for essay on Evelyn Waugh (1949)

These notes for an essay on Evelyn Waugh were written by Orwell in his last Literary Notebook. The ellipses seen below are Orwell’s. He said: “I hope it’s dipsomania. That is simply a great misfortune that we must all help...
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Unfinished essay on Evelyn Waugh (1949)

Unfinished essay on Evelyn Waugh (1949)

It has not proved possible to date precisely when George Orwell prepared the first part of the typescript of his essay on Evelyn Waugh, nor to date exactly the notes he wrote in his last Literary Notebook, though all...
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Doublethink

Doublethink

Doublethink, a word coined by George Orwell in his dystopian novel Nineteen Eighty-Four, describes the act of simultaneously accepting two mutually contradictory beliefs as correct, often in distinct social contexts. It is related to, but distinct from, hypocrisy and neutrality. Its opposite is cognitive dissonance, where the two beliefs...
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Night Attack on the Aragon Front (1937)

Night Attack on the Aragon Front (1937)

The New Leader, 30 April 1937 This article was headed by the statement ‘The whole of this story is in the words of the men who took part in it. It consists entirely of extracts from letters to John...
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The Orwell Reader (Part 1)

The Orwell Reader (Part 1)

A collection of some of George Orwell’s best essays: A Hanging (1931) Shooting an Elephant (1936) Rudyard Kipling (1942) Looking Back on the Spanish War (1942) In Defence of P. G. Wodehouse (1945) Politics and the English Language (1946)...
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Oysters and Brown Stout

Oysters and Brown Stout

Tribune, 22 December 1944 G. K. Chesterton said once that every novelist writes one book whose title seems to be a summing-up of his attitude to life. He in­stanced, for Dickens, Great Expectations, and for Scott, Tales of a...
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William Makepeace Thackeray – A Little Dinner at Timmins’s (1848)

William Makepeace Thackeray – A Little Dinner at Timmins’s (1848)

Punch, 27 May–29 July 1848 Table of Contents I – II – III – IV – V – VI – VII ◊ ◊ ◊ ◊ ◊ I. Mr. and Mrs. Fitzroy Timmins live in Lilliput Street, that neat little street which runs at right angles with the Park and Brobdingnag Gardens. It...
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Wall Game

Wall Game

College Days, No. 3, 29 November 1919. Probably by Orwell. If you can keep your face, when all about you Are doing their level best to push it in. If you can swear (though, swearing, all men doubt you) It...
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Orwell meets Henry Miller in Paris

Orwell meets Henry Miller in Paris

Alfred Perles (1897–1990), a friend and companion of Henry Miller the novelist, wrote this fascinating account of an odd encounter in Paris. Orwell had reviewed Miller’s Black Spring and written to him about his admiration for Tropic of Cancer....
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Literature and the Left

Literature and the Left

Tribune, 4 June 1943 “When a man of true genius appears in the world, you may know him by this infallible sign, that all the dunces are in conspiracy against him.” So wrote Jonathan Swift, two hundred years before...
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Letter from Eileen Blair in Barcelona to Leonard Moore (12 April 1937)

Letter from Eileen Blair in Barcelona to Leonard Moore (12 April 1937)

Seccion Inglesa, 10, Rambla de los Estudios, Barcelona. 12 April 1937 Dear Mr. Moore, I hope you received my message of thanks for sending out the two copies of Wigan Pier when it was first published. Now I wish...
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From Animal Farm to Nineteen Eighty-Four (Recollections of George Orwell)

From Animal Farm to Nineteen Eighty-Four (Recollections of George Orwell)

George Woodcock (1912–1995) was a Canadian writer and scholar. He met Orwell during the war while Orwell was at the BBC and when Woodcock was active in the peace movement, working with British Anarchists and libertarians. They became good friends. This is the text...
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Publication of “The Road to Wigan Pier” on 8 March 1937

Publication of “The Road to Wigan Pier” on 8 March 1937

The Road to Wigan Pier was published by Victor Gollancz Ltd on 8 March 1937, less than twelve weeks after Orwell had delivered the typescript to his agent. It was not proofread by either Orwell or Eileen. It appeared...
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French election will be influenced by the fact that women will have first vote (April 1945)

French election will be influenced by the fact that women will have first vote (April 1945)

Manchester Evening News, 16 April 1945 No date has yet been fixed for the General Election, but it has been officially stated that the municipal elections will take place at the end of this month provided that the date...
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Pictures of George Orwell’s Spain

Pictures of George Orwell’s Spain

Photos taken by Joel VanderWerf in October 2004. Text by Martha Bridegam. Security camera notice, Plaça de George Orwell (Barcelona) “… I did not make any of the correct political reflections. I never do when things are happening …”...
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Letter to Eileen Blair from hospital in Monflorite (April 1937)

Letter to Eileen Blair from hospital in Monflorite (April 1937)

Handwritten; undated. Dearest, You really are a wonderful wife. When I saw the cigars my heart melted away. They will solve all tobacco problems for a long time to come. McNair tells me you...
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