SUCH, SUCH WERE THE JOYS AND OTHER ESSAYS
Collected from 1939 on, these are essays and autobiographical pieces, which while contemplative in tone, are not contended and should be welcomed by the audience Orwell has claimed. There are definitions of political orientation, declarations of personal beliefs, examinations of contemporary loyalties and perverted thinking, of the presence of anti-Semitism in England, consideration of radio as a vehicle for poetry, a critique of Henry Miller and his predecessors, a review of the results of the Spanish War and a long reflection of his years as a poor boy at an expensive school. This last is a holding picture of English schooling and of children caught in a system without pity or kindness and gives a very human touch to the book. People, places, events and attitudes- are all caught and observed with honesty and a distillation of meaning that gives these 11 inclusions their appeal.