Extended essay george orwell
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Join the conversation You can post now and register later. Reply to this topic Insert image from URL. Go To Topic Listing. It will be carried out with the same energy as it was in the Soviet Union. The POUM and the anarchists believed that the war could be won only by continuing and deepening the revolution: in practice this meant that any power, or position or property the masses had seized they must remain in control of.
The orthodox communists - for the moment at least - backed the position of moderate socialists and democrats in the government that the essential purpose of the war was to save the Republic and that if there was to be any hope of achieving that it must be prosecuted with efficiency, an efficiency which ran counter to far-leftist and anarchist modes of organisation, or disorganisation. The communist smearing of the POUM, he wrote,. It is not a nice thing to see a Spanish boy of fifteen carried down the line on a stretcher, with a dazed white face looking out from the blankets, and to think of the sleek persons in London and Paris who are writing pamphlets to prove that this boy is a Fascist in disguise.
This is strong writing, and the themes and tone are of course familiar, with the contrast between the shivering soldiers on the front line and the sleek persons intellectuals, no doubt with merrily burning coal fires who are writing lies about them from their comfortable metropolitan studies. Colls, however, contends that in relation to the Spanish war Orwell, and the extreme leftists, simply had it wrong.
Many historians of the war would back this analysis. The Trotskyist thesis that the war could have been won if the revolution had not been sabotaged was probably false. To nationalize factories, demolish churches, and issue revolutionary manifestoes would not have made the armies more efficient. No political strategy could offset that. In spite of this later revision, the political attitudes that the Spanish conflict had awoken in Orwell were to remain strong for several years.
They were both about 60, both very short, pink, and chubby, and both hatless. One of them was obscenely bald, the other had long grey hair bobbed in the Lloyd George style.
They were dressed in pistachio-coloured shirts and khaki shorts into which their huge bottoms were crammed so tightly that you could study every dimple. Their appearance created a mild stir of horror on top of the bus.
George Orwell bibliography - Wikipedia
The appearance of these two grotesques in Letchworth at this time can have had only one explanation: they were there to attend the summer school of the Independent Labour Party, a ginger group just to the left of the official Labour Party. In a long article in The Adelphi in December he strongly criticised Labour for being half-hearted in its resistance to what he saw as the inexorable drift towards war with Germany, urging it, instead of colluding in British rearmament, to make stronger appeals to the German working class to resist Hitler.
If the war were to be fought, he believed, it would be little more than an ignominious scrabble for markets between Britain and France on the one hand and Germany and Italy on the other. The only blessing would be that, given the power of aerial bombing, it would certainly be over very quickly. But declaration of war and attempted conscription and mobilisation would also give to the working classes of each of the belligerent countries the chance to stage a revolution.
Something quite marvellous happened in summer , and as is so often the case it was announced in a dream. However, on the night before the Russo-German pact was announced August 23rd, , he dreamed that the war had started it in fact started, for Britain and France, on September 3rd. He had been educated, and well-educated, in upper middle class patriotism and now that England was in a jam he would have no option but to heed the call. Only revolution can save England, that has been obvious for years, but now the revolution has started, and it may proceed quite quickly if only we can keep Hitler out.
Within two years, maybe a year, if only we can hang on, we shall see changes that will surprise the idiots who have no foresight. I dare say the London gutters will have to run with blood. All right, let them, if it is necessary. But when the red militias are billeted in the Ritz I shall still feel that the England that I was taught to love so long ago and for such different reasons is somehow persisting. Once the war got going Orwell had no difficulty in identifying wholeheartedly with it. Still, the prosecution of the war and the prospect of revolution remained intimately linked in his mind.
Eventually however, the penny seemed to drop: in January he wrote, again for his American audience, that.
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Yet even in this sudden lurch towards pessimism he was to be somewhat off the mark, as the Labour landslide in the general election of July would show. Many British people did apparently feel, after all they had been through, that they were in it together and they had no wish to go back to the Tory normality of the s, with millions unemployed. How one feels about this may depend to a degree on how one feels about Britain or even England. Robert Colls is a professor of cultural history and the author of a well-received study, Identity of England, and one may assume that he is not unduly embarrassed by the celebration of his native land.
Orwell himself, however, recognised that what he saw as the natural gentleness and deep-seated hostility to dictatorship or even the military mindset characteristic of his compatriots was achieved at the cost of a certain hypocrisy: either they were unaware of what their empire was up to or they simply chose to ignore it. Orwell has often been credited with having elevated political writing to an art the phrase appears with great regularity in blurbs. The judgment, which is in essence a sound one, is usually made with more of an eye on the essays, reviews and occasional journalism than on the major fictions of the final decade, Animal Farm and Nineteen Eighty-Four, in which Orwell honed his vision of totalitarianism in general and Soviet communism in particular.
Indeed if he had taken to betting on the basis of his political forecasts he would have been bankrupt several times over. And this is so even when they seem arbitrary, ridiculous or simply plucked from the air.
Here, for example, is Orwell on England:. Few Europeans can endure living in England, and even Americans often feel more at home in Europe. In no country inhabited by white men is it easier to shove people off the pavement. Indeed there is little doubt that the typical Orwellian form of polemic was a conscious construction, since almost all who knew him agreed that personally he was a rather shy and gentle man. But was he, as they tend to suggest, in his final decade on an inexorable journey to the political right? Would he, if he had survived into old age, have ended up cheerleading for Thatcher?
The question is, of course, unanswerable.
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But was he already in his lifetime becoming a renegade? Much has been made of his supplying, in , the names of people he suspected of being communist fellow travellers to his friend Celia Paget, who worked for the Information Research Department, a branch of the Foreign Office whose brief was to write anti-communist propaganda for use in continental Europe in the immediate postwar era. And what exactly is wrong with not wishing to abet communists in dissolving liberal democracy and civil freedoms?
It certainly derived to some degree from guilt about his own fairly comfortable upbringing, his education and the role he had played as an enforcer for British imperialism in the Burmese police. Certainly his oddities often infected his political judgment and made him a particularly unreliable guide to what the future might hold.
At the same time they seem to have been the fuel that drove his magnificent prose writings, which, in perhaps a very English way, can be wildly eccentric, hilarious, perverse or brilliant. It is from VS Pritchett:.
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Mr George Orwell has many of the traits of the best English pamphleteers: courage, an individual mind, vehement opinions, an instinct for stirring up trouble, the arts of appealing to that imaginary creature the sensible man and of combining original observations with sweeping generalization, of seeing enemies everywhere and despising all of them. And like the two outstanding figures of our tradition of pamphleteering, Cobbett and Defoe, both of whom had his subversive, non-conforming brand of patriotism, he writes a lucid conversational style which wakes one up suddenly, like cold water dashed in the face.
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