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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.
George Orwell died in London in January 1950. A few days before, Desmond MacCarthy had sent him a message of greeting in which he wrote: ‘You have made an indelible mark on English literature . . . you are among the few memorable writers of your generation.’
One of the most renowned classics of all time was brought to us by George Orwell in 1949. A compelling, striking nightmarish vision of a dystopian world, this remains one of the most chilling yet favourite books I've ever read and one of the best openings of a book ever: "It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen" So much of it has entered our language, becoming an integrated part of our common cultural inheritance, that I'm sure many people don't even realise their beginnings. It is the year 1984 and the world is divided into three superstates each at war with eachother. Britain is Airstrip One ruled by the Party and led by Big Brother, the symbolic face of totalitarianism. Even love is considered subversive and we follow the story of Winston Smith who works in the Ministry of Truth where his job is to rewrite the past to fit the present. Depicting everyman, Winston begins to subtlely rebel by writing a secret diary, a deadly thought crime in a society where the actions and thoughts of the people are strictly controlled through propaganda, secrecy, constant surveillance, and harsh punishment. Where will it end? This book will stay with you, and will never be forgotten.
When the downtrodden animals of Manor Farm overthrow their master Mr Jones and take over the farm themselves, they imagine it is the beginning of a life of freedom and equality. But gradually a cunning, ruthless elite among them, masterminded by the pigs Napoleon and Snowball, starts to take control. Soon the other animals discover that they are not all as equal as they thought, and find themselves hopelessly ensnared as one form of tyranny is replaced with another.
Winston Smith works for the Ministry of Truth in London, chief city of Airstrip One. Big Brother stares out from every poster, the Thought Police uncover every act of betrayal. When Winston finds love with Julia, he discovers that life does not have to be dull and deadening, and awakens to new possibilities. Despite the police helicopters that hover and circle overhead, Winston and Julia begin to question the Party; they are drawn towards conspiracy. Yet Big Brother will not tolerate dissent - even in the mind. For those with original thoughts they invented Room 101. Nineteen Eight-Four is George Orwell's terrifying vision of a totalitarian future in which everything and everyone is slave to a tyrannical regime.
January 2012 Guest Editor Simon Lelic selects Nineteen Eighty-Four... Not exactly an original pick, I realise, and some (irrationally, in my mind) would dispute its literary merits. On the other hand, it has proved almost Shakespearean in its impact on the English psyche – and certainly on mine. I read it first for GCSE English, and I still have the copy I should probably have returned to my teacher at the end of the school year. Which makes me worry now that perhaps I have deprived someone else of the pleasure. I’m including it here as penance, but also because I couldn’t not. The Lovereading view... Chosen by the public through a survey to coincide with the 10th birthday celebrations of World Book Day 2007, this title is one of ‘the ten books the nation can’t live without’. Have you read them all? Below are links to each title and position on the list. 1. Pride and Prejudice Jane Austen 2. The Lord of the Rings JRR Tolkien 3. Jane Eyre Charlotte Brontë 4. Harry Potter JK Rowling 5. To Kill a Mockingbird Harper Lee 6. The Bible 7. Wuthering Heights Emily Brontë 8. Nineteen Eighty-Four George Orwell 9. His Dark Materials Philip Pullman10. Great Expectations Charles Dickens
Much of George Orwell's best writing, brought together in this comprehensive collection, is concerned with England, a country that he found both endearing and frustrating. In the brilliantly perceptive The English People, he lists the national characteristics as 'suspicion of foreigners, sentimentality about animals, hypocrisy, exaggerated class distinctions, and an obsession with sport'. The Road to Wigan Pier, his blistering account of poverty in the north of England, and his essays on class and the horrors of life at private school violently attack what he famously called 'the most class-ridden country under the sun'. Yet other writings here also ruminate on the merits of cricket, gardening, roast dinners, pubs, cups of tea and seaside postcards, showing Orwell's attitude to Englishness in all its lively complexity.
This comprehensive collection brings together the best of George Orwell's powerful political essays and journalism with his timeless satire on totalitarianism, Animal Farm. They show the vast range of his political interests, with articles expressing his views on subjects from corrupt political language to the oppressive British Empire; his masterly wartime Socialist polemic; 'The Lion and the Unicorn'; a wry review of Mein Kampf; a defence of Nineteen Eight-Four; and extracts from his controversial list of 'Crypto-communists'.
The vivid, impassioned writings collected together in this powerful volume chronicle Orwell's first-hand experiences of life among the underclass of the 'two nations' of rich and poor. Down and Out in Paris and London is the young Orwell's memoir of his time as a struggling, often penniless writer, living among the destitute and dispossessed. Here he exposes a world unimaginable to most of his readers, one of vile doss-houses, hunger, squalor, and desperate poverty -- of 'going to the dogs'. There are also articles and letters on sleeping rough in Trafalgar Square, being arrested for drunkenness, on the poverty Orwell witnessed in Morocco and India, and his shocking essay, 'How the Poor Die'.
The volume collects together Orwell's writings on his experience of the Spanish Civil War - the chaos at the Front, the futile young deaths for what became a confused cause, the antique weapons and the disappointment many British Socialists felt on arriving in Spain to help. Orwell in Spain also includes the complete text of the nonfiction masterpiece Homage to Catalonia.
It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen. The year is 1984, and life in Oceania is ruled by the Party. Under the gaze of Big Brother, Winston Smith yearns for intimacy and love - thought crimes that, if uncovered, would mean imprisonment, or death. But Winston is not alone in his defiance, and an illicit affair will draw him into the mysterious Brotherhood and the realities of resistance. Nineteen Eighty-Four has been described as chilling, absorbing, satirical, momentous, prophetic and terrifying. It is all these things, and more. The Authoritative Text. With an introduction by Robert Harris. *This stunning edition of Nineteen Eighty-Four features period artwork by Elizabeth Friedlander, one of Europe's pre-eminent 20th-century graphic designers. Look out for complementary editions of Orwell's essential works Animal Farm and Down and Out in Paris and London.*
All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others. George Orwell's fable of revolutionary farm animals - the steadfast horses Boxer and Clover, the opportunistic pigs Snowball and Napoleon, and the deafening choir of sheep - who overthrow their elitist human master only to find themselves subject to a new authority, is one of the most famous warnings ever written. Rejected by such eminent publishing figures as Victor Gollancz, Jonathan Cape and T.S. Eliot due to its daringly open criticism of Stalin, Animal Farm was published to great acclaim by Martin Secker and Warburg on 17 August 1945. One reviewer wrote 'In a hundred years' time perhaps Animal Farm ... may simply be a fairy story: today it is a fairy story with a good deal of point.' Seventy-five years since its first publication, Orwell's immortal satire remains an unparalleled masterpiece and more relevant than ever. The Authoritative Text. With an introduction by Christopher Hitchens. *This stunning edition of Animal Farm features period artwork by Elizabeth Friedlander, one of Europe's pre-eminent 20th-century graphic designers. Look out for complementary editions of Orwell's essential works Nineteen Eighty-Four and Down and Out in Paris and London.*
'Orwell was the great moral force of his age' Spectator You can live on a shilling a day in Paris if you know how. But it is a complicated business. When he was a struggling writer in his twenties, George Orwell lived as a down-and-out among the poorest members of society. In this early memoir, he recounts shocking experiences working as a penniless dishwasher in Paris, pawning clothes to buy a day's worth of bread and wine, sleeping in bug-infested bunks, trading survival skills and cigarette butts with fellow tramps, and trudging between London's workhouse spikes for a few hours' sleep and tea-and-two-slices. With sensitivity and compassion, Orwell exposed the hardships of poverty and gave readers an unprecedented look at life lived on the fringes of society. His vivid account is an enduring call to support the world's most vulnerable people and exemplifies his belief that 'The greatest of evils and the worst of crimes is poverty.' The Authoritative Text. With a new introduction by Kerry Hudson. *This stunning edition of Down and Out in Paris and London features period artwork by Elizabeth Friedlander, one of Europe's pre-eminent 20th-century graphic designers. Look out for complementjary editions of Orwell's essential works Animal Farm and Nineteen Eighty-Four.*
The first ever graphic novel version of Animal Farm - a Times Book of the Year Animal Farm is the story of what happens when the downtrodden animals of Manor Farm overthrow their master, and how their revolution goes horribly wrong. Now George Orwell's dark, timeless fable has been turned into a graphic novel for the very first time, illustrated in full colour by the renowned Brazilian artist Odyr to bring us a whole new work of art. 'This brightly coloured homage to Orwell's timely allegory is heartbreaking and elegant. Odyr's images of animals casting off their bonds and then living with the results of their revolution are painterly and evocative, both loose and illuminating' The New York Times
Penguin Readers is an ELT graded reader series for learners of English as a foreign language. With carefully adapted text, new illustrations and language learning exercises, the print edition also includes instructions to access supporting material online. Titles include popular classics, exciting contemporary fiction, and thought-provoking non-fiction, introducing language learners to bestselling authors and compelling content. The eight levels of Penguin Readers follow the Common European Framework of Reference for language learning (CEFR). Exercises at the back of each Reader help language learners to practise grammar, vocabulary, and key exam skills. Before, during and after-reading questions test readers' story comprehension and develop vocabulary. Visit the Penguin Readers website Exclusively with the print edition, readers can unlock online resources including a digital book, audio edition, lesson plans and answer keys. Winston Smith re-writes history for the Ministry of Truth in Oceania. Big Brother and the Thought Police watch everyone for signs of Thought Crime. But when Winston falls in love with Julia, he begins to have new ideas and hopes. Winston and Julia start to question the world that they live in - but Big Brother does not like independent thought.
Penguin Readers is an ELT graded reader series for learners of English as a foreign language. With carefully adapted text, new illustrations and language learning exercises, the print edition also includes instructions to access supporting material online. Titles include popular classics, exciting contemporary fiction, and thought-provoking non-fiction, introducing language learners to bestselling authors and compelling content. The eight levels of Penguin Readers follow the Common European Framework of Reference for language learning (CEFR). Exercises at the back of each Reader help language learners to practise grammar, vocabulary, and key exam skills. Before, during and after-reading questions test readers' story comprehension and develop vocabulary. Visit the Penguin Readers website Exclusively with the print edition, readers can unlock online resources including a digital book, audio edition, lesson plans and answer keys. Animal Farm tells the story of a rebellion and how it goes wrong. The animals' lives on the farm are terrible - there is not enough food, the work is hard, and animals are dying. One day, the animals kick out the farmer and start to run the farm. Soon, a group of animals - the pigs - becomes more and more important, but things are not better for most of the animals. Life for them is the same as before.
'The feeling that the very concept of objective truth is fading out of the world ... this prospect frightens me much more than bombs' On the 70th anniversary of George Orwell's death, a new collection of his brilliant essays written during the Second World War Fascism and Democracy collects five brilliant examples of Orwell's writing during the darkest days of World War Two. Grappling with the principles of democracy and the potential of reform, the meaning of literature and free speech in times of violence, and the sustainability of objective truth, Orwell offers a compelling portrayal of a nation where norms and ideals can no longer be taken for granted. Like the best of Orwell's writing, these essays also serve as timeless reminders of the fragility of freedom.
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