Christopher Hitchens

Why Orwell Matters

"Why Orwell Matters" is a lengthy essay by Christopher Hitchens that spans over 200 pages and was published in 2002. George Orwell was a famous British political writer and novelist that penned such classics as "Animal Farm" and "1984", oftentimes presenting a bleak future for humanity, primarily displayed through the usage of a dystopia. It is in this book that readers can get a glimpse at what Hitchens thinks of George Orwell, as well as what Orwell thought about a number of different subjects. In essence, it is a biography that covers much of the ideals held by Orwell during his relatively short lifetime. Towards the conclusion of the novel, Hitchens provides critiques on many of Orwell's novels and the legacy that he left to other authors that came after him and the world itself.

During the book, Hitchens explores the thoughts of George Orwell on such subjects as feminism, the United States, the liberal left, the conservative right, English conventions and the British Empire. It is in this novel that readers will discover Orwell's general ambivalence towards that of the United States, as well as how Hitchens believes that Orwell will matter in the future. Though Hitchens is largely praiseworthy of Orwell, he doesn't refrain from providing criticisms for the man that inspired him where they are needed. Readers and critics alike view the novel as a well-written success.