Who said: "On the whole, human beings want to be good, but not too good and not quite all the time"

BookBrowse's Favorite Quotes

"On the whole, human beings want to be good, but not too good and not quite all the time" – George Orwell.

George OrwellGeorge Orwell was born Eric Arthur Blair on 25 June 1903 in India. Like many of the children of the British army and colonial civil service, he was educated at boarding school in England, in his case at Eton. His family could not affprd a university education for him, so he joined the Indian Imperial Police in Burma, then a British colony. He resigned in 1927 with the aim of becoming a writer and moved to Paris in 1928, publishing his first book, Down and Out in Paris and London, five years later which recorded his years working menial jobs to support himself as a writer. Shortly after this, he took the name George Orwell, publishing Burmese Days in 1934.

An anarchist in the late 1920s, by the mid 1930s he considered himself a socialist. In 1936 he was commissioned to write an account of poverty among unemployed miners in northern England, which was published as The Road to Wigan Pier (1937). In 1936 he traveled to Spain with the intent of fighting for the Republicans against Franco's Nationalists, but he fled in fear of his life in the face of Soviet-backed communists who were suppressing revolutionary socialist dissenters - this experience turned him into a lifelong anti-Stalinist.

Between 1941 and 1943, he worked in the BBC's propaganda department, before becoming literary editor of the Tribune, a weekly left-wing magazine.

1945 saw the publication of Animal Farm; Nineteen Eighty-Four was published four years later. Although the former is a political fable based on Stalin's betrayal of the Russian Revolution and the latter is set in an imaginary totalitarian future, Emma Larkin's Finding George Orwell in Burma notes that all three books resonate with the people of Burma who say that Orwell did not write just one book about their country, but three: Burmese Days, Animal Farm and Nineteen Eighty-Four.

He died of tuberculosis in January 1950 at the age of 47.

More Quotes

This quote & biography originally ran in an issue of BookBrowse's membership magazine. Full Membership Features & Benefits.

Join BookBrowse

Become a Member and discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten.

Find out more


Today's Top Picks

  • Book Jacket: Shadows of Berlin
    Shadows of Berlin
    by David R. Gillham
    David R. Gillham's latest novel, Shadows of Berlin, opens in New York City in 1955. Rachel, a young ...
  • Book Jacket: Trust
    Trust
    by Hernan Diaz
    Hernan Diaz's Trust is a work of fiction that is itself comprised of four very different works ...
  • Book Jacket: Let's Not Do That Again
    Let's Not Do That Again
    by Grant Ginder
    We have all dealt with inescapable, insufferable family members at some point, and the ones who say ...
  • Book Jacket: Atomic Anna
    Atomic Anna
    by Rachel Barenbaum
    If you had the opportunity to prevent one of the world's most horrific disasters, would you? What if...

Book Club Discussion

Book Jacket
The Book Woman's Daughter
by Kim Michele Richardson
A mesmerizing and beautifully rendered tale of strong women, bravery, and resilience.

Readers Recommend

  • Book Jacket

    Metropolis
    by B. A. Shapiro

    "An ingeniously plotted hybrid social/suspense novel. Shapiro hits it out of the park."
    —Shelf Awareness

Who Said...

If there is anything more dangerous to the life of the mind than having no independent commitment to ideas...

Click Here to find out who said this, as well as discovering other famous literary quotes!

Wordplay

Solve this clue:

T S's T Limit

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends the best in contemporary fiction and nonfiction—books that not only engage and entertain but also deepen our understanding of ourselves and the world around us.