Politics and the english language full essay

George Orwell’s: Politics and the English Language- Thesis and Analysis

One could keep all of them and still write bad Enghsh, but one could not write the kind of stuff that i quoted in those five specimens at the beginning of this article. These rules sound elementary, and so they are, but they demand a deep change of attitude in anyone who has grown used to writing in the style now fashionable.

As I have tried to show, modern writing at its worst does not consist in picking out words for the sake of their meaning and inventing images in order to make the meaning clearer.

Politics and the English Language

The point is that the process is reversible. I should expect to find — this is a guess which I have not sufficient knowledge to verify — that the German, Russian and Italian languages have all deteriorated in the last ten or fifteen years, as a result of dictatorship.

Modern Enghsh, especially written EngHsh, is full of bad habits which spread by imitation and which can be avoided if one is willing to take the necessary trouble. Except for the useful abbreviations i. When these images clash — as in The Fascist octopus has sung its swan song, the jackboot is thrown into the melting pot — it can be taken as certain that the writer is not seeing a mental image of the objects he is naming; in other words he is not really thinking.

You must stand up to people. When you think of something abstract you are more inclined to use words from the start, and unless you make a conscious effort to prevent it, the existing dialect will come rushing in and do the job for you, at the expense of blurring or even changing your meaning.

Never use a foreign phrase, a scientific word, or a jargon word if you can think of an everyday English equivalent. Where is there a place in this hall of mirrors for either personality or fraternity. Look again at the examples I gave at the beghming of this essay.

A scrupulous writer, in every sentence that he writes, will ask himself at least four questions, thus: Probably it is better to put off using words as long as possible and get one's meaning as clear as one can through pictures and sensations. It is at this point that the special connection between politics and the debasement of language becomes clear.

There is a long list of flyblown metaphors which could similarly be got rid of if enough people would interest themselves in the job; and it should also be possible to laugh the not un- formation out of existence 3to reduce the amount of Latin and Greek in the average sentence, to drive out foreign phrases and strayed scientific words, and, in general, to make pretentiousness unfashionable.

If you use ready-made phrases, you not only don't have to hunt about for the words; you also don't have to bother with the rhythms of your sentences since these phrases are generally so arranged as to be more or less euphonious. In our time, political speech and writing are largely the defence of the indefensible.

Never use a metaphor, simile, or other figure of speech which you are used to seeing in print. Foreign words and expressions such as cul de sac, ancien regime, deus ex machina, mutatis mutandis, status quo, gleichschaltung, weltanschauung, are used to give an air of culture and elegance.

It becomes ugly and inaccurate because our thoughts are foolish, but the slovenliness of our language makes it easier for us to have foolish thoughts. Orwell discusses the recurring tendency of bad writers to glorify shorter words with longer but not necessarily correct ones.

Except for the useful abbreviations i.

Politics and the English Language

In 4the writer knows more or less what he wants to say, but an accumulation of stale phrases chokes him like tea leaves blocking a sink. Orwell latter goes on to assert that language corrupts thought and vice versa.

A newly invented metaphor assists thought by evoking a visual image, while on the other hand a metaphor which is technically 'dead' e. So far as the general tone or spirit of a language goes, this may be true, but it is not true in detail.

George Orwell

So far as the general tone or spirit of a language goes, this may be true, but it is not true in detail. It is almost universally felt that when we call a country democratic we are praising it: As soon as certain topics are raised, the concrete melts into the abstract and no one seems able to think of turns of speech that are not hackneyed: Our civilization is decadent and our language — so the argument runs — must inevitably share in the general collapse.

Is not tliis the very picture of a small academic. Perfume descending from a balcony of cultivated flowers. The attraction of this way of writing is that it is easy. Stuart Chase and others have come near to claiming that all abstract words are meaningless, and have used this as a pretext for advocating a kind of political quietism.

For example, toe the line is sometimes written tow the line. The second contains thirty-eight words of ninety syllables:. Politics and the English Language George Orwell { Most people who bother with the matter at all would admit that the English language is in a bad way, but it.

Modern English, George Orwell argues, is full of bad habits. Politics and the English Language -Essay on psychology in Politics. Politics and the English Language - University of Washington.

Politics and the English Language George Orwell { Modern English, especially written English, is full of bad habits which spread by imitation and which can be avoided if one is willing to take the necessary trouble.

If one gets rid of these habits one can think more clearly, and to (Essay in Freedom of Expression) 2. Above all, we. Full text of "Politics And The English Language" See other formats HORIZON hands, Semi-Christian retribution, instead of im-Christian revenge?

For his own good my poHcy shall be. Nemesis. It's no good sacrificing yourself. You must stand up to people. Storm of mounting harmonies. Look! Those same white cliffs we saw when we arrived.

"Politics and the English Language" () is an essay by George Orwell that criticised the "ugly and inaccurate" written English of his time and examines the connection between political orthodoxies and the debasement of language.

Politics and the english language full essay
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Full text of "Politics And The English Language"