George Orwell, pen name of Eric Arthur Blair

George
Orwell, pen name of Eric Arthur Blair
1903
1950

English Author and Journalist, known for books "Animal Farm", and "Nineteen Eighty Four"

Author Quotes

To write or even speak English is not a science but an art. There are no reliable words. Whoever writes English is involved in a struggle that never lets up even for a sentence. He is struggling against vagueness, against obscurity, against the lure of the decorative adjective, against the encroachment of Latin and Greek, and, above all, against the worn-out phrases and dead metaphors with which the language is cluttered up.

War is peace. Freedom is slavery. Ignorance is strength.

We of the sinking middle class may sink without further struggles into the working class where we belong, and probably when we get there it will not be so dreadful as we feared, for, after all, we have nothing to lose.

What matters above all is that the meaning governs the choice of words, and not the reverse. In terms of prose, the worst thing one can do with words is surrender to them. When you think of a concrete object, you do not need words, and if you want to describe what you view, you will probably be put in search terms that will seem most appropriate. When you think of an abstract concept, you are more inclined to use the words immediately, so unless a conscious effort to avoid this through the existing jargon is essential to you and makes your work Instead, the risk of blurring or even alter the direction of your thinking. No doubt it is better to refrain, to the extent possible, to use abstract terms and try to speak clearly through the image or sensation. Then we can choose - not simply accept - formulations that hem closer thought, then change perspective and see what impression they could have on others. This eliminates any mental effort or inconsistent reshuffled, all prefabricated phrases, needless repetition, and generally blur and dressing images.

When you meet anyone in the flesh you realize immediately that he is a human being and not a sort of caricature embodying certain ideas. It is partly for this reason that I don't mix much in literary circles, because I know from experience that once I have met and spoken to anyone I shall never again be able to feel any intellectual brutality towards him, even when I feel I ought to - like the Labor M.P.s who get patted on the back by dukes and are lost forever more.

Within certain limits, it is actually true that the less money you have, the less you worry.

You sleep safe in your beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do you harm.

Today there were fear, hatred, and pain, but no dignity of emotion, no deep or complex sorrows.

War is war. The only good human being is a dead one.

We saw that freedom is to die a hated.

What now strikes as remarkable about the new moneyed class of the nineteenth century is their complete irresponsibility; they see everything in terms of individual success, with hardly any consciousness that the community exists.

While freely conceding that the Soviet regime exhibits certain features which the humanitarian may be inclined to deplore, we must, I think, agree that a certain curtailment of the right to political opposition is an unavoidable concomitant of transitional periods, and that the rigors which the Russian people have been called upon to undergo have been amply justified in the sphere of concrete achievement.

Writing a book is a horrible, exhausting struggle, like a long bout of some painful illness. One would never undertake such a thing if one were not driven on by some demon whom one can neither resist nor understand.

You think—I dare say that our chief job is inventing new words. But not a bit of it We’re destroying words—scores of them hundreds of them every day. It’s a beautiful thing the destruction of words. Of course the great wastage is in the verbs and adjectives but there are hundreds of nouns that can be got rid of as well. It isn’t only the synonyms there are also the antonyms.

Totalitarianism, however, does not so much promise an age of faith as an age of schizophrenia. A society becomes totalitarian when its structure becomes flagrantly artificial: that is, when its ruling class has lost its function but succeeds in clinging to power by force or fraud. Such a society, no matter how long it persists, can never afford to become either tolerant or intellectually stable. It can never permit either the truthful recording of facts or the emotional sincerity that literary creation demands. But to be corrupted by totalitarianism one does not have to live in a totalitarian country. The mere prevalence of certain ideas can spread a kind of poison that makes one subject after another impossible for literary purposes. Wherever there is an enforced orthodoxy — or even two orthodoxies, as often happens — good writing stops. This was well illustrated by the Spanish civil war. To many English intellectuals the war was a deeply moving experience, but not an experience about which they could write sincerely. There were only two things that you were allowed to say, and both of them were palpable lies: as a result, the war produced acres of print but almost nothing worth reading.

War, it will be seen, is now a purely internal affair. In the past, the ruling groups of all countries, although they might recognize their common interest and therefore limit the destructiveness of war, did fight against one another, and the victor always plundered the vanquished. In our own day they are not fighting against one another at all. The war is waged by each ruling group against its own subjects, and the object of the war is not to make or prevent conquests of territory, but to keep the structure of society intact.

We shall abolish the orgasm. Our neurologists are at work upon it now. There will be no loyalty, except loyalty towards the Party. There will be no love, except the love of Big Brother. There will be no laughter, except the laugh of triumph over a defeated enemy. There will be no art, no literature, no science... There will be no curiosity, no enjoyment of the process of life. All competing pleasures will be destroyed. But always - do not forget this, Winston - always there will be the intoxication of power, constantly increasing and constantly growing subtler. Always, at every moment, there will be the thrill of victory, the sensation of trampling on an enemy who is helpless....

What was happening was only the working-out of a process that had started years ago. The first step had been a secret, involuntary thought, the second had been the opening of the diary. He had moved from thoughts to words, and now from words to actions. The last step was something that would happen in the Ministry of Love. He had accepted it. The end was contained in the beginning.

While the game of deadlocks and bottle-necks goes on, another more serious game is also being played. It is governed by two axioms. One is that there can be no peace without a general surrender of sovereignty: the other is that no country capable of defending its sovereignty ever surrenders it. If one keeps these axioms in mind one can generally see the relevant facts in international affairs through the smoke-screen with which the newspapers surround them.

Writing a book is like having a very long illness.

You wanted a good time; they, meaning the Party, wanted to stop you having it; you broke the rules as best you could.

Traditions are not killed by facts.

We are in a strange period of history in which a revolutionary has to be a patriot and a patriot has to be a revolutionary.

Whatever goes upon two legs is an enemy. Whatever goes upon four legs, or has wings, is a friend.

Author Picture
First Name
George
Last Name
Orwell, pen name of Eric Arthur Blair
Birth Date
1903
Death Date
1950
Bio

English Author and Journalist, known for books "Animal Farm", and "Nineteen Eighty Four"