What did Orwell die of?

George Orwell

George Orwell is considered the most influential English writer of the 20th century. His novels "Animal Farm" and "Nineteen Eighty-Four" ("1984") made him world famous.

George Orwell was born on June 25, 1903 under the name Eric Arthur Blair in Motihari, Bengal, the son of a British colonial official. He spent his childhood and youth in England, where he attended the renowned Eton College from 1917 to 1921.

In 1922, the 19-year-old joined the colonial police in Burma in Southeast Asia (today: Myanmar). His critical attitude towards British colonial rule and health problems prompted him to return to Europe in 1927.

He spent the following years in England and France, where he got by with odd jobs. He processed his experiences in the book Down and Out in Paris and London, which he published in 1933 under the pseudonym George Orwell.

George Orwell's aversion to any form of imperialism and oppression shaped his early works. He was a contentious outsider among British left-wing intellectuals. Always looking for the right understanding of socialism, he did not shy away from any debate and did not spare criticism of his political comrades.

In the Spanish Civil War, Orwell fought not only on the actual front, but also against the Stalin supporters within the republican camp. He described his experiences in the reports that were summarized in 1938 under the title "Homage to Catalonia" ("My Catalonia").

Badly wounded, Orwell returned to England, where he learned of the Stalinist purges and show trials in Russia. Thereupon he distanced himself clearly from communism, but remained committed to the idea of ​​socialism throughout his life. During the Second World War, Orwell wrote for various magazines and later for the BBC on a variety of subjects while working on his great novels.

In 1945, Animal Farm was published, a grim satire on the Russian Revolution. According to Orwell, all failed revolutions and visions of the working masses can be summed up in one sentence: "All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others."

Orwell's work "1984", his dystopia of a total surveillance state, appeared in 1948 and is part of the canon of world literature. The quote "Big brother is watching you" or the term "Newspeak" have found their way into everyday language.

Orwell had suffered from tuberculosis since his youth and succumbed to the disease on January 21, 1950 at the age of only 46.

Biography of Synopsis.de. © Inhalt.de.
Published June 9, 2011.
Last updated on April 23, 2021.