posted on Sep, 23 2010 @ 02:55 PM
Huxley had nothing on Orwell.
Orwell lived a hell of a life from his own choosing and mapped out the differences in society by going out there and seeing for himself. He roughed it
from Paris and all the way through to the northern counties of England. He was a class rebel and became a misfit witness to all the social
classes...accepted by none and refusing acceptance on his own terms.
He could have been an empire nobody in India, but his conscience for social justice led him elsewhere. In one of his essays, he describes a public
hanging in India. He relates a small man walking towards his death, wearing only a loin cloth...bare-footed. As he approached the gallows, there was a
small pool of mud. The man side-stepped the puddle and was executed. Knowing he was moments from death...he still avoided the mud.
What struck Orwell was the meaningless dignity of that final action. He saw some intrinsic value in human life and recognised his own position as an
interloper in India and agent of that empire. He resigned and returned to England with the profound sense of what it means to be an outsider.
Orwell lived the life of an alienated witness to events and society...he became a commentator and journalist of all that was wrong with early 20th
Century life. Spanish civil war, Paris kitchens, coal mines and the open road...he was an uncomfortable adventurer. He wandered the byways as a
homeless man and lived amongst the poorest in society. I've read his books and diaries and the accounts of people who met him. He was an outsider
His name is forever associated with Animal Farm and 1984 and neither of these books come close to what a great man he was. He had a BBC radio
broadcast and not one of them has survived. He supported Victor Gollancz' Left Book Club that created libraries and clubs to educate working class
men. Eventually the government legislated against them.
Orwell is one of the greatest 20th Century champions of social justice and equality, in my opinion.