Orwell's Ghosts

Orwell's Ghosts

Laura Beers

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For the 75th anniversary of 1984, Laura Beers explores George Orwell’s still-radical ideas and why they are critical today.

George Orwell dedicated his career to exposing social injustice and political duplicity, urging his readers to face hard truths about Western society and politics. Now, the uncanny parallels between the interwar era and our own—rising inequality, censorship, and challenges to traditional social hierarchies—make his writing even more of the moment. Invocations of Orwell and his classic dystopian novel 1984 have reached new heights, with both sides of the political spectrum embracing the rhetoric of Orwellianism.

In Orwell’s Ghosts, historian Laura Beers considers Orwell’s full body of work—his six novels, three nonfiction works, and brilliant essays on politics, language, and the class system—to examine what “Orwellian” truly means and reveal the misconstrued thinker in all his complexity. She explores how Orwell’s writing on free speech addresses the proliferation of “fake news” and the emergence of cancel culture, highlights his vivid critiques of capitalism and the oppressive nature of the British Empire, and, in contrast, analyzes his failure to understand feminism.

Timely, wide-ranging, and thought-provoking, Orwell’s Ghosts investigates how the writings of a lionized champion of truth and freedom can help us face the crises of modernity.

Product details

ISBN-13: 9781324075080

Number of pages: 240

Format: Hardback

Imprint: WW Norton

English en