George Orwell: In front of your nose, 1946-1950

Front Cover
David R. Godine Publisher, 2000 - Biography & Autobiography - 555 pages
Considering that much of his life was spent in poverty and ill health, it is something of a miracle that in only forty-six years George Orwell managed to publish ten books and two collections of essays. Here, in four fat volumes, is the best selection of his non-fiction available, a trove of letters, essays, reviews, and journalism that is breathtaking in its scope and eclectic passions. Orwell had something to say about just about everyone and everything. His letters to such luminaries as Julian Symons, Anthony Powell, Arthur Koestler, and Cyril Connolly are poignant and personal. His essays, covering everything from "English Cooking" to "Literature and Totalitarianism," are memorable, and his books reviews (Hitler's Mein Kampf, Mumford's Herman Melville, Miller's Black Spring, Goldsmith's The Vicar of Wakefield to name just a few) are among the most lucid and intelligent ever written. From 1943 to l945, he wrote a regular column for the Tribune, a left wing weekly, entitled "As I Please." His observations about life in Britain during the war embraced everything from anti-American sentiment to the history of domestic appliances.
 

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George Orwell: the collected essays, journalism & letters

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This four-volume set, first published in 1968, covers 30 years of Orwell's nonfiction. Each volume is divided by year and intermixes his correspondence with news stories and discussions on numerous ... Read full review

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Don't hesitate should you see this book, just buy it. You will get more pleasure from it than you will from all but a few books to be found anywhere. The collection includes the "As I Please" articles he wrote weekly for the socialist newspaper Tribune. These are period pieces that reflect a lot of what is English about England, and Orwell himself. The unfolding of Orwell's opinions that reach full flower in '1984' can be watched because the essays are arranged chronologically. The leavening, like "A Nice Cup of Tea", an essay on junk shops, or Woolworths' climbing roses, is mixed in delightfully.  

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About the author (2000)

George Orwell was born Eric Arthur Blair on June 25, 1903 in Motihari in Bengal, India and later studied at Eton College for four years. He was an assistant superintendent with the Indian Imperial Police in Burma. He left that position after five years and moved to Paris, where he wrote his first two books: Burmese Days and Down and Out in Paris and London. He then moved to Spain to write but decided to join the United Workers Marxist Party Militia. After being decidedly opposed to communism, he served in the British Home Guard and with the Indian Service of the BBC during World War II. After the war, he wrote for the Observer and was literary editor for the Tribune. His best known works are Animal Farm and 1984. His other works include A Clergyman's Daughter, Keep the Aspidistra Flying, The Road to Wigan Pier, Homage to Catalonia, and Coming Up for Air. He died on January 21, 1950 at the age of 46.