George Orwell was a famous author who wrote many novels and essays. His real name was Eric Author Blair. He was born in Motihari near to Bengal, India on June 25 19031. He was born in a “Lower upper middle class family”2. A few years after Orwell’s birth his family moved to England, where he received conventional upbringing.3
In July 1936 George Orwell and his wife, Eileen Nee O’Shaugnessy joined in fighting for political beliefs in the Spanish Civil War. They joined a small Marxist group called P.O.U.M. Orwell wrote several books about the experiences that accrued during this time. These books are considered some of the most well documented writings of the war. When WWII came around Orwell enlisted in the British army, but was turned down. Instead of fighting on the front line he headed the Indian service of the Britinnica British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) 4.
In the spring of 1937, George Orwell was returning from the front line in Alcubierre with the BBC when he was wounded in the neck by a sniper bullet5. The wound left Orwell unable to talk, and partially paralyzed in one arm6. This was the beginning of Orwell’s decline in health, and the decline of his writing. A few years later he was diagnosed with tuberculosis, and died on January 21, 19507.
The first characteristic that is evident in George Orwell’s writing is the simplification in his writing8. Orwell is often given credit for writing in a way that everyone can understand and relate to something9. A perfect example of his simplicity is in the book Animal Farm. The characters in this book are barnyard animals that represent people in the Russian Revolution. Orwell’s reason for using the barnyard animals was to make it easier for the less educated people to know what happened in the Russian Revolution.
Another characteristic that is evident in Orwell’s writings is his sympathy for the working class. The book Coming Up for Air strongly stated Orwell’s views for the middle class people to revolt, and take over themselves10. The novel greatly emphasizes the need for the middle class to awaken from their “semi-anesthesia” and become aware of the political happenings around them11. This characteristic is also evident in Animal Farm. The farm animals (working class) are successful at overthrowing farmer Jones12.
Another evident characteristic in Orwell’s writings is his use of his own life experiences. In Such, Such Were the Joys, a long essay; Orwell described his childhood as he was growing up13. Orwell received much criticism from the people in the book, because the way he described their traits and personalities14. Another book that was written about his own life experience was Down and Out in Paris. In this book he describes his life when he lived in the slums of Paris. Orwell arranged it in such a way that it seemed like it was fiction to most readers, but in fact it was real15.
The book Animal Farm is a satire of the Russian reveloution16. The setting is in a small farm in England. The book starts with the eldest pig gathering all the other animals into a meeting, He talks about a dream of revolting against the farmer who is in charge. The animals lead a successful revolt, and then take charge of governing themselves. It starts off where all the animals are equal to each other. Then it changes to all animals are equal, but some are better than others. Finally it is changed to all animals are equal, but pigs are better than all of them. The symbolism in this novel is great, and every animal can be matched up to a key person in the Russian Revolution.
The aspect of simplification is very evident in the story Animal Farm. The whole plot of the story is describing what happened during the Russian Revolution17. Barnyard animals replace all of the characters. In this book Orwell shows the stupidity of some of the people involved. He also shows how easy it is to persuade people to believe in the things you want. The biggest aspect that Orwell puts through is that all revolutions fail, and there is always corruption18.
Another aspect of Orwell’s writing that is very apparent is his sympathy to the working class19. In the novel Animal Farm, Orwell wrote it in a way so that the less educated could understand it. In the book Down and Out in Paris he wrote vivid pictures to make people aware of life in the slums20. This book also encouraged people to help out the less fortunate. Orwell often spoke out against political officers, and their actions that took advantage of the lower class people. Again the book Animal Farm is a good example of this trait. The whole book is speaking out against the Russian Revolution. It shows what went on during this period so the people could prevent this from happening again.
One of Orwell’s most widely used style is taking his own life experiences and putting them into his stories. In an essay Such, Such Were the Joys is really describing the experiences he went through while he was in elementary school21. Another fine example of this trait is in Down and Out in Paris. In this book Orwell talks about the experiences he had while living in the slums of Paris22. The writing in this book is so vivid, that many people thought that it was fictional when they first read it.
Many people and critics do not think of Orwell as a serious author. They think of his work as fiction, and not meant to be taken literally. But due to Orwell’s use of simplification, sympathy for the working class, and using his own life experiences makes no doubt that he was one of the most unique author of our time.