10 January 2018
The other Saint George: George Orwell's nuanced and ambivalent views's on Religion
Anyone who browses for an hour or so in Peter Davison’s 20-volume edition of George Orwell’s Complete Works is liable to emerge with half a dozen instances of what a supremely odd character its author was. Curiously enough, this oddity tends to declare itself not in flights of polemical fantasy but in off-the-cuff generalising remarks – his conviction, say, that every nurse wears a set of Union Jack buttons, or that “all tobacconists are Fascists” – and it becomes odder still in the field of religion. One might note, for example, a letter sent in 1949 to his friend Malcolm Muggeridge about a magazine advert portraying Zeus in a pair of Wolsey socks and captioned “fit for the Gods”. “I think you will agree that it is in its way really blasphemous,” Orwell lamented.
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