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: Razorblade Tears
    Razorblade Tears
    by S. A. Cosby
    Razorblade Tears, a thriller by S.A. Cosby, follows a pair of ex-convicts who team up to avenge the ...
  • Book Jacket: Once There Were Wolves
    Once There Were Wolves
    by Charlotte McConaghy
    In Charlotte McConaghy's second novel after her debut Migrations, environmental biologist Inti Flynn...
  • Book Jacket: The Secret Keeper of Jaipur
    The Secret Keeper of Jaipur
    by Alka Joshi
    Alka Joshi's The Secret Keeper of Jaipur is the sequel to her 2020 bestseller The Henna Artist and ...
  • Book Jacket: Seek You
    Seek You
    by Kristen Radtke
    In the first pages of Seek You: A Journey Through American Loneliness, Kristen Radtke's sophomore ...

Book Club Discussion
Book Jacket
In Every Mirror She's Black
by Lola Akinmade Akerstrom
An arresting debut for anyone looking for insight into what it means to be a Black woman in the world.

Readers Recommend

  • Book Jacket

    The Last Chance Library
    by Freya Sampson

    Fans of libraries and heartfelt, humorous fiction won't want to miss this one!

  • Book Jacket

    The Lost Notebook of Edouard Manet
    by Maureen Gibbon

    A sensual portrait of Manet's last years, and a vibrant testament of the artistic spirit.

Who Said...

Censorship, like charity, should begin at home: but unlike charity, it should end there.

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

Wordplay

Solve this clue:

Pull Y U B T B

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.