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Facing Unpleasant Facts: Narrative Essays

Facing Unpleasant Facts: Narrative Essays Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

George Orwell was first and foremost an essayist, producing throughout his life an extraordinary array of short nonfiction that reflected--and illuminated--the fraught times in which he lived. "As soon as he began to write something," comments George Packer in his foreword, "it was as natural for Orwell to propose, generalize, qualify, argue, judge--in short, to think--as it was for Yeats to versify or Dickens to invent."

Facing Unpleasant Facts charts Orwell's development as a master of the narrative-essay form and unites such classics as "Shooting an Elephant" with lesser-known journalism and passages from his wartime diary. Whether detailing the horrors of Orwell's boyhood in an English boarding school or bringing to life the sights, sounds, and smells of the Spanish Civil War, these essays weave together the personal and the political in an unmistakable style that is at once plainspoken and brilliantly complex.

Review:

"Best known for his late-career classics Animal Farm and 1984, George Orwell — who used his given name, Eric Blair, in the earliest pieces of this collection aimed at the aficionado as well as the general reader — was above all a polemicist of the first rank. Organized chronologically, from 1931 through the late 1940s, these in-your-face writings showcase the power of this literary form. The range of subjects is considerable, from 'Shooting an Elephant' to remembrances of working in a bookshop ('The combines can never squeeze the small independent bookseller out of existence...'); from recollections of fighting in the Spanish Civil War to culinary oddities such as a 'Defence of English Cooking' and 'A Nice Cup of Tea'; to the broad-stroke masterwork of boarding-school irony, 'Such, Such Were the Joys.' New Yorker contributor Packer (The Assassins' Gate) keenly assembles and introduces this selection, bringing into high relief Orwell's range of experience and committed humanism, showing how, as Orwell put it, 'to make political writing into an art.'" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Synopsis:

Whether detailing the horrors of Orwell's boyhood in an English boarding school or bringing to life the sights, sounds, and smells of the Spanish Civil War, these narrative essays weave together the personal and the political in an unmistakable style that is at once plainspoken and brilliantly complex.

About the Author

GEORGE ORWELL (1903–1950) served with the Imperial Police in Burma, fought with the Republicans during the Spanish Civil War, and was a member of the Home Guard and a writer for the BBC during World War II. He is the author of many works of nonfiction and fiction.

GEORGE PACKER is a staff writer for the New Yorker and author of The Assassin's Gate: America in Iraq and other works. He lives in Brooklyn.

 

Table of Contents

contents

Foreword by George Packer • vii

Introduction by George Packer • xv

The Spike • 1

Clink • 11

A Hanging • 23

Shooting an Elephant • 29

Bookshop Memories • 38

Marrakech • 44

My Country Right or Left • 52

War-time Diary • 59

England Your England • 109

Dear Doktor Goebbels—Your British Friends

Are Feeding Fine! • 139

Looking Back on the Spanish War • 143

As I Please, 1 • 167

As I Please, 2 • 172

As I Please, 3 • 175

As I Please, 16 • 180

Revenge Is Sour • 184

The Case for the Open Fire • 189

The Sporting Spirit • 193

In Defence of English Cooking • 198

A Nice Cup of Tea • 201

The Moon Under Water • 205

In Front of Your Nose • 209

Some Thoughts on the Common Toad • 214

A Good Word for the Vicar of Bray • 219

Why I Write • 224

How the Poor Die • 232

Such, Such Were the Joys • 245

Notes • 296

Product Details

ISBN:
9780151013616
Publisher:
Mariner Books
Subject:
Essays
Editor:
Packer, George
Compiled:
Packer, George
Author:
Orwell, George
Author:
Packer, George
Subject:
Censorship
Subject:
English, Irish, Scottish, Welsh
Edition Description:
Trade Cloth
Series:
Complete Works of George Orwell
Series Volume:
11
Publication Date:
20091014
Binding:
Electronic book text in proprietary or open standard format
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
336
Dimensions:
8.25 x 5.63 in

Related Subjects

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Facing Unpleasant Facts: Narrative Essays
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Product details 336 pages Harcourt - English 9780151013616 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Best known for his late-career classics Animal Farm and 1984, George Orwell — who used his given name, Eric Blair, in the earliest pieces of this collection aimed at the aficionado as well as the general reader — was above all a polemicist of the first rank. Organized chronologically, from 1931 through the late 1940s, these in-your-face writings showcase the power of this literary form. The range of subjects is considerable, from 'Shooting an Elephant' to remembrances of working in a bookshop ('The combines can never squeeze the small independent bookseller out of existence...'); from recollections of fighting in the Spanish Civil War to culinary oddities such as a 'Defence of English Cooking' and 'A Nice Cup of Tea'; to the broad-stroke masterwork of boarding-school irony, 'Such, Such Were the Joys.' New Yorker contributor Packer (The Assassins' Gate) keenly assembles and introduces this selection, bringing into high relief Orwell's range of experience and committed humanism, showing how, as Orwell put it, 'to make political writing into an art.'" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Synopsis" by ,
Whether detailing the horrors of Orwell's boyhood in an English boarding school or bringing to life the sights, sounds, and smells of the Spanish Civil War, these narrative essays weave together the personal and the political in an unmistakable style that is at once plainspoken and brilliantly complex.
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