George Orwell: Socialism and Utopia (Critical Essay) By Utopian Studies

George Orwell: Socialism and Utopia (Critical Essay)

By Utopian Studies

  • Release Date: 2008-01-01
  • Genre: Religion & Spirituality

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Description

George Orwell is usually regarded as the prophet of false utopias. In Animal Farm and 1984, he warns us of the future possibilities of totalitarianism, and he remains skeptical of every version of the ideal society that isn't ultimately connected to ordinary life as we know it. Less well-known is Orwell's profound commitment to socialism as the only proper basis for the society of the future. This article will show how much of Orwell's work is informed by liberty, equality, and fraternity, or the basic values of socialism. Orwell was always suspicious of revolutionary millenarianism; but at the same time, he believed in the possibility of progress towards an ideal community of the future, and he thought that such a utopia could only be socialist in character. Before considering Orwell's own views, however, I shall look at the possibility of "ethical socialism," its relationship to Marxism, and the authentic meaning of liberty, equality, and fraternity. I