Orwell's diaries in blog form

The Orwell Prize will mark the 70th anniversary of the Orwell Diaries by serializing them, one day at a time, on a blog -- reminiscent of the way that Phil Gyford syndicated Pepys's Diary.

From 9th August 2008, you will be able to gather your own impression of Orwell’s face from reading his most strongly individual piece of writing: his diaries. The Orwell Prize is delighted to announce that, to mark the 70th anniversary of the diaries, each diary entry will be published on this blog exactly seventy years after it was written, allowing you to follow Orwell’s recuperation in Morocco, his return to the UK, and his opinions on the descent of Europe into war in real time. The diaries end in 1942, three years into the conflict.

What impression of Orwell will emerge? From his domestic diaries (which start on 9th August), it may be a largely unknown Orwell, whose great curiosity is focused on plants, animals, woodwork, and – above all – how many eggs his chickens have laid. From his political diaries (from 7th September), it may be the Orwell whose political observations and critical thinking have enthralled and inspired generations since his death in 1950. Whether writing about the Spanish Civil War or sloe gin, geraniums or Germany, Orwell’s perceptive eye and rebellion against the ‘gramophone mind’ he so despised are obvious.

Orwell Diaries (via Memex 1.1)



  1. Greatest. Writer. Ever. (in the English language) :-)

    Note that all of these have been available in print in the “The Complete Works of”, a 20-volume compendium published in the 90’s.

    I bought an ex-review set in a Cambridge (England) bookshop at the time for (ISTR) £250, must post a pic of them on flickr one of these days.

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