Language ought to be the joint creation of poets and manual workers.
George Orwell

George Orwell: Why I Write

George Orwell: Why I Write

May 25, 2019-- When George Orwell was sixteen, he discovered the joy of words while reading Paradise Lost. In this essay, Orwell considers his motivations for writing. In general, he believes writers are motivated by four reasons-- sheer egoism, aesthetic enthusiasm, historical impulse, and political purpose. It is the age in which a writer lives that provides the reason. By 1936, Orwell was firmly grounded in political purpose: "Every line of serious work that I have written since 1936 has been written, directly or indirectly, against totalitarianism and for democratic socialism." He explains this is not "wholly public-spirited," but the drive by "some demon" and while he cannot be certain which of the motivations is actually stronger, it is only when his motivation is political that his books are alive and have meaning. (2451 reads)


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