George Orwell Quotes

Eric Arthur Blair, recognized by his pen name George Orwell, distinguished himself as an English novelist, essayist, journalist, and critic. His hallmark attributes include clear, lucid prose, incisive social critique, staunch opposition to totalitarianism, and advocacy for democratic socialism. Wikipedia

“It’s not so much staying alive, it’s staying human that’s important. What counts is that we don’t betray each other.” ~ George Orwell

“I hate purity, I hate goodness! I don’t want virtue to exist anywhere. I want everyone to be corrupt to the bones.” ~ George Orwell

“The nationalist not only does not disapprove of atrocities committed by his own side, but he has a remarkable capacity for not even hearing about them.” ~ George Orwell

“Freedom of the Press, if it means anything at all, means the freedom to criticize and oppose.” ~ George Orwell

“To survive it is often necessary to fight and to fight you have to dirty yourself.” ~ George Orwell

“It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen.” ~ George Orwell

“The choice for mankind lies between freedom and happiness and for the great bulk of mankind, happiness is better.” ~ George Orwell

“Don’t you see that the whole aim of Newspeak is to narrow the range of thought? In the end we shall make thoughtcrime literally impossible, because there will be no words in which to express it.” ~ George Orwell

“There is no swifter route to the corruption of thought than through the corruption of language.” ~ George Orwell

“The main motive for nonattachment is a desire to escape from the pain of living, and above all from love, which, sexual or non-sexual, is hard work.” ~ George Orwell

“The secret of a successful restaurant is sharp knives.” ~ George Orwell

“Thoughtcrime does not entail death: thoughtcrime is death.” ~ George Orwell

“If you want to know who rules over you, look at who you are not allowed to criticize.” ~ George Orwell

“Every record has been destroyed or falsified, every book rewritten, every picture has been repainted, every statue and street building has been renamed, every date has been altered. And the process is continuing day by day and minute by minute. History has stopped. Nothing exists except an endless present in which the Party is always right.” ~ George Orwell

“Perhaps a lunatic was simply a minority of one.” ~ George Orwell

“Orthodoxy means not thinking – not needing to think. Orthodoxy is unconsciousness.” ~ George Orwell

“If there is hope, it lies in the proles.” ~ George Orwell

“Freedom is the freedom to say that two plus two make four. If that is granted, all else follows.” ~ George Orwell

“The real test of character is how you treat someone who has no possibility of doing you any good.” ~ George Orwell

“If you want to keep a secret, you must also hide it from yourself.” ~ George Orwell

“The past was erased, the erasure was forgotten, the lie became the truth.” ~ George Orwell

“The enemies of intellectual liberty always try to present their case as a plea for discipline versus individualism. The issue truth-versus-untruth is as far as possible kept in the background.” ~ George Orwell

“Serious sport is war minus the shooting.” ~ George Orwell

“He who controls the past controls the future. He who controls the present controls the past.” ~ George Orwell

“In general, the greater the understanding, the greater the delusion; the more intelligent, the less sane.” ~ George Orwell

“In a time of deceit telling the truth is a revolutionary act.” ~ George Orwell

“In the face of pain there are no heroes.” ~ George Orwell

“Until they became conscious they will never rebel, and until after they have rebelled they cannot become conscious.” ~ George Orwell

“The fight against bad English is not frivolous.” ~ George Orwell

“I enjoy talking to you. Your mind appeals to me. It resembles my own mind except that you happen to be insane.” ~ George Orwell

“Rich people are poor people with money.” ~ George Orwell

“The greatest enemy of clear language is insincerity.” ~ George Orwell

“We know that no one ever seizes power with the intention of relinquishing it.” ~ George Orwell

“But it was alright, everything was alright, the struggle was finished. He had won the victory over himself. He loved Big Brother.” ~ George Orwell

“Doublethink means the power of holding two contradictory beliefs in one’s mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them.” ~ George Orwell

“The Party told you to reject the evidence of your eyes and ears. It was their final, most essential command.” ~ George Orwell

“The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which.” ~ George Orwell

“It’s a beautiful thing, the destruction of words.” ~ George Orwell

“We do not merely destroy our enemies; we change them.” ~ George Orwell

“A society becomes totalitarian when its structure becomes flagrantly artificial: that is, when its ruling class has lost its function but succeeds in clinging to power by force or fraud.” ~ George Orwell

“Advertising is the rattling of a stick inside a swill bucket.” ~ George Orwell

“History has stopped. Nothing exists except an endless present in which the Party is always right.” ~ George Orwell

“Writing a book is a horrible, exhausting struggle, like a long bout with some painful illness. One would never undertake such a thing if one were not driven on by some demon whom one can neither resist nor understand.” ~ George Orwell

“Reality exists in the human mind, and nowhere else.” ~ George Orwell

“We have now sunk to a depth at which restatement of the obvious is the first duty of intelligent men.” ~ George Orwell

“Power is in tearing human minds to pieces and putting them together again in new shapes of your own choosing.” ~ George Orwell

“Perhaps one did not want to be loved so much as to be understood.” ~ George Orwell

“And if all others accepted the lie which the Party imposed – if all records told the same tale – then the lie passed into history and became truth. ‘Who controls the past’ ran the Party slogan, ’controls the future: who controls the present controls the past.” ~ George Orwell

“The war is not meant to be won, it is meant to be continuous.” ~ George Orwell

“Real power is achieved when the ruling class controls the material essentials of life, granting and withholding them from the masses as if they were privileges.” ~ George Orwell

“Progress is not an illusion, it happens, but it is slow and invariably disappointing.” ~ George Orwell

“My best fishing-memory is about some fish that I never caught.” ~ George Orwell

“We shall meet in the place where there is no darkness.” ~ George Orwell

“Political language is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind.” ~ George Orwell

“Now I will tell you the answer to my question. It is this. The Party seeks power entirely for its own sake. We are not interested in the good of others; we are interested solely in power, pure power.” ~ George Orwell

“Preventive war is a crime not easily committed by a country that retains any traces of democracy.” ~ George Orwell

“It is a mysterious thing, the loss of faith – as mysterious as faith itself.” ~ George Orwell

“Never use a long word where a short one will do.” ~ George Orwell

“If you can feel that staying human is worth while, even when it can’t have any practical result whatsoever, you’ve beaten them.” ~ George Orwell

“Every generation imagines itself to be more intelligent than the one that went before it, and wiser than the one that comes after it.” ~ George Orwell

“Right thinking will be rewarded, wrong thinking punished.” ~ George Orwell

“The further a society drifts from truth the more it will hate those who speak it.” ~ George Orwell

“It’s frightful that people who are so ignorant have so much influence.” ~ George Orwell

“The essence of being human is that one does not seek perfection.” ~ George Orwell

“You must try harder. It is not easy to become sane.” ~ George Orwell

“The people will believe what the media tells them they believe.” ~ George Orwell

“All art is propaganda; on the other hand, not all propaganda is art.” ~ George Orwell

“Big Brother is watching you.” ~ George Orwell

“The most effective way to destroy people is to deny and obliterate their own understanding of their history.” ~ George Orwell

“If you have no money, men won’t care for you, women won’t love you; won’t, that is, care for you or love you the last little bit that matters.” ~ George Orwell

“Happiness can exist only in acceptance.” ~ George Orwell

“Four legs good, two legs bad.” ~ George Orwell

“People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.” ~ George Orwell

“If people cannot write well, they cannot think well, and if they cannot think well, others will do their thinking for them.” ~ George Orwell

“He was a lonely ghost uttering a truth that nobody would ever hear. But so long as he uttered it, in some obscure way the continuity was not broken. It was not by making yourself heard but by staying sane that you carried on the human heritage.” ~ George Orwell

“Every line of serious work that I have written since 1936 has been written, directly or indirectly against totalitarianism and for democratic Socialism as I understand it.” ~ George Orwell

“If you want a vision of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face – forever.” ~ George Orwell

“Nationalism is power hunger tempered by self-deception.” ~ George Orwell

“Being in a minority, even in a minority of one, did not make you mad. There was truth and there was untruth, and if you clung to the truth even against the whole world, you were not mad.” ~ George Orwell

“War is peace. Freedom is slavery. Ignorance is strength.” ~ George Orwell

“Sanity is not statistical.” ~ George Orwell

“He wears a mask, and his face grows to fit it.” ~ George Orwell

“To see what is in front of one’s nose needs a constant struggle.” ~ George Orwell

“Free speech is my right to say what you don’t want to hear.” ~ George Orwell

“However much you deny the truth, the truth goes on existing.” ~ George Orwell

“That rifle on the wall of the labourer’s cottage or working class flat is the symbol of democracy. It is our job to see that it stays there.” ~ George Orwell

“Threats to freedom of speech, writing and action, though often trivial in isolation, are cumulative in their effect and, unless checked, lead to a general disrespect for the rights of the citizen.” ~ George Orwell

“In philosophy, or religion, or ethics, or politics, two and two might make five, but when one was designing a gun or an aeroplane they had to make four.” ~ George Orwell

“This life we live nowadays. It’s not life, it’s stagnation death-in-life. Look at all these bloody houses and the meaningless people inside them. Sometimes I think we’re all corpses. Just rotting upright.” ~ George Orwell

“I understand HOW. I do not understand WHY.” ~ George Orwell

“Men can only be happy when they do not assume that the object of life is happiness.” ~ George Orwell

“In our time political speech and writing are largely the defense of the indefensible.” ~ George Orwell

“In real life it is always the anvil that breaks the hammer…” ~ George Orwell

“Sooner or later a false belief bumps up against solid reality, usually on a battlefield.” ~ George Orwell

“If you loved someone, you loved him, and when you had nothing else to give, you still gave him love.” ~ George Orwell

“Good prose should be transparent, like a window pane.” ~ George Orwell

“But if thought corrupts language, language can also corrupt thought.” ~ George Orwell

“All tyrannies rule through fraud and force, but once the fraud is exposed they must rely exclusively on force.” ~ George Orwell

“All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.” ~ George Orwell

“The very concept of objective truth is fading out of the world. Lies will pass into history.” ~ George Orwell

“Under the spreading chestnut tree I sold you and you sold me –.” ~ George Orwell

“War is evil, but it is often the lesser evil.” ~ George Orwell

“If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear.” ~ George Orwell

“At fifty everyone has the face he deserves.” ~ George Orwell

“If it is possible to cut a word out, always cut it out.” ~ George Orwell

“Journalism is printing what someone else does not want printed. Everything else is public relations.” ~ George Orwell

“Oceania was at war with Eurasia; therefore Oceania had always been at war with Eurasia.” ~ George Orwell

“When I sit down to write a book, I do not say to myself, ‘I am going to produce a work of art.’ I write it because there is some lie that I want to expose, some fact to which I want to draw attention, and my initial concern is to get a hearing.” ~ George Orwell

“High sentiments always win in the end. The leaders who offer blood, toil, tears and sweat always get more out of their followers than those who offer safety and a good time. When it comes to the pinch, human beings are heroic.” ~ George Orwell

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