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George Orwell

RAF Men

Why do we cringe at the term ‘third class’?

20 October 2013 16:20

Alas, it looks like the return to third class travel won’t happen. The papers had got terrifically excited about what seemed like a rolling back of 56 years, when British Rail… Continue reading

61 Comments
King Rib supper, single smoked sausage, pickled onions, saltnsauce. My supper yesterday, actually.

George Orwell’s lesson for Jamie Oliver

27 August 2013 17:08

Jamie Oliver, eh, what a card? Why can’t Britain’s revolting poor eat better food? If they can afford televisions they can afford mussels and rocket too, don’t ya know? Something… Continue reading

65 Comments
'Big Brother' watches over Winston Smith (Edmond O'Brien) and Julia (Jan Sterling), during the filming of the 1955 adaptation of '1984'. Image: Getty

In defence of paranoid hysteria

22 June 2013 15:56

Compare a democracy to a dictatorship and world-weary chuckles follow. The last thing a citizen can do in true tyrannies is call them tyrannies. He or she has to pretend… Continue reading

17 Comments
The European media. Photo: Getty Images.

Every tabloid’s worst nightmare

25 January 2013 12:22

What would George Orwell write about today? asked the Guardian. Here’s our nomination: an EU report that recommends giving the EU more powers to sack hacks, regulate the press and… Continue reading

29 Comments
George Orwell: friend or foe of the New Statesman? Photo: PA

Down the memory hole for Orwell Week

24 January 2013 12:20

Amid much Twitter self-congratulation, the New Statesman has declared this ‘Orwell week‘. Oddly, however, it has yet to mention some of the most notable aspects of its relationship with the… Continue reading

11 Comments
Some literary '13's for 2013. Image: Getty

Some literary thirteens for 2013

10 January 2013 15:28

I suspect I might not be the only one who finds it unnerving to be at the start of a year that features, so prominently, the number thirteen. 2013 –… Continue reading

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Charlie Croker has a new book out. Image: Getty.

To take or not to take a pseudonym

18 October 2012 14:04

Literary pseudonyms have been on my mind lately, for a couple of reasons. The first is Salman Rushdie’s revelation that he chose ‘Joseph Anton’ as his cover name when in… Continue reading

2 Comments
Haruki Murakami's '1Q84' has been removed from bookshops in Beijing; George Orwell would have seen the irony. Image: Getty.

China bans Haruki Murakami’s ’1Q84′: George Orwell would have seen the irony

27 September 2012 9:01

Books – or lack thereof – are the latest manifestation of anti-Japanese sentiment in China. The escalating dispute over the Senkaku/Diaoyu Islands has provoked some Beijing bookshops to remove Japanese… Continue reading

4 Comments

Blogging Barbarossa

22 June 2011 10:21

Perhaps the most horrific battle of them all began 70 years ago today. Here’s Orwell: The Germans invaded the U.S.S.R. this morning. Everyone greatly excited. It is universally assumed that… Continue reading

5 Comments

Nick Cohen, George Orwell and Me

31 March 2009 23:09

I can’t stay silent on the issue of Nick Cohen’s intervention at the Orwell Prize shotlisting event earlier this week. But I can’t really say too much either as Nick,… Continue reading

17 Comments