George Orwell was born Eric Arthur Blair in
1903 in Motihari, Bengal, India. His father, Richard Walmesley Blair was a civil
servant for the British government. In 1904 Orwell moved with his mother and
sister to England where he remained until 1922. He began to write at an early
age, and was even published in college periodicals, but he did not enjoy
Orwell failed to win a university scholarship and without the opportunity to
continue his education he went to Burma and served in the administration of the
Indian Imperial Police from 1922 to 1927 when he resigned in part due to his
growing dislike of British imperialism. When Orwell returned to Europe he was in
poor financial condition and worked low paying jobs in France and England.
Finally, in 1928, he decided to become a professional writer. In 1933 he assumed
the name George Orwell by which he would become famous. It was Animal Farm that
made finally Orwell prosperous. His other world wide success was Nineteen
Eighty-Four, which Orwell said was written "to alter other people's
idea of the kind of society they should strive after." Sadly Orwell never
lived to see how successful it would become. He died in London on January 21,
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FARM (64 KB)
A satirical allegory of the Russian Revolution, particularly directed against
Stalin's Russia. Led by the pigs, the Animals on Mr Jones's farm revolt against
their human masters. After their victory they decide to run the farm themselves
on egalitarian principles. Inspired by the example of Boxer, the hard-working
horse, the cooperation prosper. The pigs become corrupted by power and a new
tyranny is established under Napoleon (Stalin). 'All animals are equal, but some
animals are more equal than others.' Snowball (Trotsky), an idealist, is driven
out. The final betrayal is made when the pigs engineer a rapproachement with Mr
Jones. The book was originally rejected for publication by T.S. Eliot in 1944,
but has gained since its appearance in 1945 a status of a classic. - Film
adaptation from 1955 was a faithful rendition of Orwell's original work, but
watered in the end the satire, and presented a socialist viewpoint: the system
is good, but the individuals are corruptible.
- NINETEEN EIGHTY-FOUR (232 KB)
In 1984, Winston Smith lives in London which is part of the country
Oceania. The world is divided into three countries that include the entire
globe: Oceania, Eurasia, and Eastasia. Oceania, and both of the others, is a
totalitarian society led by Big Brother, which censors everyone’s behavior,
even their thoughts. Winston is disgusted with his oppressed life and secretly
longs to join the fabled Brotherhood, a supposed group of underground rebels
intent on overthrowing the government. Winston meets Julia and they secretly
fall in love and have an affair, something which is considered a crime. One day,
while walking home, Winston encounters O'Brien, an inner party member, who gives
Winston his address. Winston had exchanged glances with O'Brien before and had
dreams about him giving him the impression that O'Brien was a member of the
Brotherhood. Since Julia hated the party as much as Winston did, they went to
O'Brien’s house together where they were introduced into the Brotherhood.
O'Brien is actually a faithful member of the Inner-Party and this is actually a
trap for Winston, a trap that O'Brien has been cleverly setting for seven years.
Winston and Julia are sent to the Ministry of Love which is a sort of
rehabilitation center for criminals accused of thoughtcrime. There, Winston was
separated from Julia, and tortured until his beliefs coincided with those of the
Party. Winston denounces everything he believed him, even his love for Julia,
and was released back into the public where he wastes his days at the Chestnut
Tree drinking gin.
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