George Orwell
“Selected Essays”

[Selected Essays - Cover page]

Bibliographical Note:

‘Inside the Whale’ first appeared in the book Inside the Whale (1940), ‘Down the Mine’ in The Road to Wigan Pier (1937), ‘England Your England’ in The Lion and the Unicorn (1941). All three essays were included in the selection England Your England (1953).

‘Shooting an Elephant’ first appeared in New Writing First Series No. 2 (Autumn 1936), ‘Lear, Tolstoy and the Fool’ in Polemic No. 7 (March 1947), ‘Politics vs. Literature: An Examination of Gulliver's Travels’ in Polemic No. 5 (September 1946), ‘Politics and the English Language’ in Horizon No. 76 (April 1946), ‘The Prevention of Literature’ in Polemic No. 2 (1945/6); these five essays were included in selection Shooting an Elephant (1950).

‘Boys' weeklies’ first appeared in Horizon No. 3 (March 1940), was included in Inside the Whale (1940) and Critical Essays (1946).

By Penguin Books:

George Orwell (whose real name was Eric Arthur Blair) was born in India in 1903, and was educated in Eton. From 1922 to 1928 he served in Burma in the Indian Imperial Police. For the next two years he lived in Paris and then came to England as a school-teacher. Later he worked in a bookshop. In 1937 he went to Spain to fight for the Republicans and was wounded. During the World War II he was a member of the Home Guard and worked for the B.B.C. In 1943 he joined the staff of Tribune, contributing a regular page of political and literary commentary, As I Please. He later became a regular contributor to the Observer for which newspaper he went as a special correspondent to France and Germany. He died in London in 1950.

His publications include Down and Out in Paris and London and Burmese Days, The Road to Wigan Pier, Homage to Catalonia and Inside the Whale. Orwell's name became widely known with the publication, in 1945, of Animal Farm. Nineteen Eighty-Four had a similar success.


  1. Inside the Whale, 1940
  2. Down the Mine, 1937
  3. England Your England, 1941
  4. Shooting an Elephant, 1936
  5. Lear, Tolstoy and the Fool, 1947
  6. Politics vs. Literature: An Examination of Gulliver's Travels, 1946
  7. Politics and the English Language, 1946
  8. The Prevention of Literature, 1946
  9. Boys' Weeklies, 1940

Penguin Books in association with Secker and Warburg
A book 1185 — ‘Selected Essays’
This selection first published in Penguin Books 1957.
Reprinted 1960.
Made and printed in Great Britain by
The Whitefriars Press Ltd.
London and Tonbridge
OCR: Mikhail V. Chernyshev
E-mail: [email protected]

Orwell's photo by Vernon Richards

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