Dickens, Dali, and Others by George Orwell

Aside from a couple of masterpieces that everyone is familiar with, most of Orwell’s fiction is not very good. His essays, however, are nothing short of brilliant. Most of these were written shortly before, during, or shortly after World War II, and even though the subjects are mostly literary his arguments are quite political, in keeping with his belief that all writing is ultimately political. Although a conservative can quote Orwell to his purpose, most conservatives conveniently forget that Orwell was a committed socialist, and he is as critical of capitalist exploitation and establishment hypocrisy as he is of totalitarianism. This collection of essays shows him at his best, and I will look for more such works in the future.

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