George Orwell - Decline of the English Murder and other Essays

Reading these essays about obscene postcards, Rudyard Kipling and 'nationalism' (including other –isms such as Zionism or Trotskyism) is rediscovering Orwell. I'd read "1984" but had almost forgotten the author's political and social intelligence. In this volume, he rises above left-wing or right-wing, avoids sensationalism, and writes clear, well-thought-out arguments. Talking about, say, Dickens, he observes that the writer was not the catalyst of social change he's often made out to be; but he doesn't think Dickens was a bad writer. Orwell proves that being nuanced doesn't mean being spineless, noncommittal or even intellectualistic –-it means intelligence, honesty and open-mindedness.
Posted by cronopio at 10:40 PM, May 27, 2004