15 Facts About George Orwell’s Famous Dystopian Novel “1984”


World famous author George Orwell presents the oppressive and totalitarian characteristics of the modern states in his masterpiece “1984.”

Orwell foresaw today’s privacy concerns of citizens being under constant surveillance and the propaganda mechanisms being used to manipulate the masses years ago.

We’ve collected the most interesting facts that you've probably never heard about both George Orwell and his novel "1984."

1. 1984 might as well have been written by P.S. Burton, Kenneth Miles, or H. Lewis Allways.


I can almost hear you say “WTF??” George Orwell was one of the pen names the author used. His real name was Eric Arthur Blair.

2. The title of the book was first considered to be "The Last Man in Europe"


3. Orwell wasn’t sure about the narration time either. Instead of 1984, he also considered to locate the story in 1980 and 1982.


4. While he was working on the book, Orwell was also dealing with tuberculosis in the meantime.


First he started writing 1984 in a farmhouse in Scotland peacefully, then he got sick and was taken to a sanatorium.

5. Orwell survived a drowning incident at the time he was working on the book.


In 1947, when he went swimming in Scotland with his son and nieces, Orwell nearly drowned as he wasn’t wearing a life-jacket. Fortunately, both him and his family were rescued, but this accident shook him up badly.

6. Orwell had worked as a propagandist at BBC before he started writing “1984,” which is a novel criticizing the propaganda mechanisms harshly.


7. Throughout the period he was writing the novel, Orwell was actually under surveillance.


The English government kept him under surveillance because of his earlier works.

In the intelligence reports, he was regarded as having “advanced communist views” and was dressing “in a bohemian fashion both at his office and in his leisure hours."

8. Orwell was inspired by real-life governments from around the world while writing about oppressive politics.


Although he was a socialist, he was against the Stalin regime and criticized many of its policies.

Besides, the “Thought Crime” concept in the book was drawn from Kempitai’s actions. (It was the military police arm of the Imperial Japanese Army from 1881 to 1945.)

9. "2+2=5" was an actual slogan used by the Communist Party.

The first five year plan of the Soviet Union began in 1928 was called “2+2=5: Arithmetic of a counter-plan plus the enthusiasm of the workers."

10. Orwell named the torture chamber “Room 101” in the book after his office’s door number at BBC, which was actually 101.


Well, what was the office look like? Rachel Whiteread captured its internal dimensions and made a piece of art in 2003.

11. Rumor has it that Orwell took his second wife, Sonia Brownell, as a model while developing the character of Julia.


12. Orwell died only seven months after "1984" was published.


Although he was already famous with “Animal Farm,” he couldn’t get to see how popular 1984 got. He died on 21 January 1950, seven months after the book was published.

13. He held the most translated author record with both “1984” and with “Animal Farm” for almost 40 years.

Both novels were translated to 65 languages.

14. The asteroid discovered in 1984 was named after Orwell.


The asteroid called "11020 Orwell" was discovered by astronomer Antonin Mrkos on 31 July 1984.

15. Stephen King, David Bowie, Mel Gibson and the Game of Thrones star Kit Harington are just a few of the many celebrities who say that their favorite novel is 1984.


Well, do you think Orwell turned out to be right about his views on the state system and social mechanisms?

Yes, he was right.
I have no idea.
No, he was wrong.
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