By Omar Bihmidine
By Omar Bihmidine
Morocco World News
Sidi Ifni, Morocco, April 10, 2012
As I bury my head into any works by George Orwell, I always feel that I am reading something which I have never read before and which so few or rather no authors have already discussed. It is merely the fact that this author was remarkably realistic about different aspects of his everyday life, including his writing style, his daily obstacles, his critical attitudes towards society and so on and so forth.
Frankly speaking, I can not help reading his essays one after another, as I have found that they help me a lot to become familiar with some harsh realities of life. This is in fact what some other authors have overlooked or ignored, especially when it comes to talking frankly and candidly about their writing styles and the stages they went through to ultimately become distinguished writers. It is here where I have come to the conclusion that George Orwell, for me, is somewhat dissimilar from the rest.
To begin with, as I have noticed in most of his articles touching on the development of his writing style, I believe that he is one of the rarest authors who addressed his reading public very objectively. For instance, in “Why I Write”, he talked about his childish attempts at writing and his parents’ and teachers’ reactions to them. He always looked down on his efforts and thought that writing creatively and originally was a most difficult and stultifying job at the time.
I suppose that the authors whose works I have read never dared discuss this crucial and formative part of their writing careers, despite this period being the pinnacle of every writer’s development. The part of the essay that actually attracted my attention was the one detailing the motives lying behind every single writer ‘s ambition to become a writer. It is principally due to this that I have admired his writings more and more. Personally, I share with him the same motives and I believe that it is not always easy for any writer to admit these motives, though no one can escape the latter.
George Orwell believes that before anyone sets out to write a piece, he or she must seek to be talked about, to be honored posthumously, and to take revenge on those who used to look down on us during our troubled childhoods. No one of us, I strongly believe, can deny this for one reason or another; I must admit that the latter motive has been the one affecting me the most. I have always wondered what authors have already discussed this part of their development and which one of them is willing to admit this to their readers.
Here lies the secret behind considering George Orwell as totally different from distinguished authors, in general, and from novice ones in particular. Moreover, scientists, politicians, and other people holding notable positions are without exception in this case. Though not interested primarily by money, appearances and trivial worldly concerns, authors are always deemed selfish, vain and more importantly self-centered. Actually, I could not agree more when Orwell described them in this manner.
With regards to “Such, Such were the Joys”, another essay in which this author recounts plainly and without frills his painful experiences as a neglected, funny student, I have found appealing this story for quite some time. I have always wanted to write something similar to it, but haven’t yet made up my mind on how to do so. This amazing essay, some might argue, has been a very genuine account of Orwell’s schooldays. Reading it from top to bottom makes me wonder how the author dared to divulge some secretive and very personal information about himself and his personality at large.
One of these secrets which struck me in the extreme was the fact that in the dormitory where he lived, he never woke up without having wet his bed. Rarely do we find authors relating such ignominious situations about themselves. I am not of course encouraging that they should be revealed. Quite the contrary, I am simply claiming that this is exactly what made me fall passionately in love with all of Orwell’s works ranging from novels to essays. “No one can look back on his schooldays and say with truth that they were altogether unhappy, “said Orwell in the aforementioned essay.
Here, I would like to make reference to the authors who in their biographies make the positives outweigh the negatives. However, if each one of us looks back on his past, we will surely find that we experienced sadness more than happiness and failures more than successes.
Apart from other works by the same author, such as 1984, Animal Farm, etc., I would like to add that having authors who recount their experiences as they exactly happened will not necessarily distort their image in front of the reading public. On the contrary, the latter would certainly appreciate these harsh facts for one simple reason. It is that all of us have at one point in our lives gone through the same moments and when somebody mentions these moments to us, we feel precariously placated. And this is the attribute which has made me believe that George Orwell is totally different from other authors.
Omar Bihmidine is high school teacher of English. He obtained his Associate Degree at Choaib Eddoukali University in 2008. His writings take the form of short stories, poems and articles, many of which have been published in Sous Pens magazine, in the ALC magazine in Agadir, and in the late Casablanca analyst newspaper.
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