Rants & Ramblings

random commentary about culture, media, politics, technology and whatnot.

aug
11
2011

Literary Aside

I’m working through a book of George Orwell essays, Books v. Cigarettes, that I picked up at a shop in Victoria, B.C. A line in the essay “The Prevention of Literature” caught my eye this evening:

What is really at issue is the right to report contemporary events truthfully, or as truthfully as is consistent with the ignorance, bias and self-deception from which every observer necessarily suffers.

The essay as a whole is about journalism and literature in totalitarian regimes. But the line about a writer’s own intrinsic biases wouldn’t be out of place in modern media criticism. Interesting to see it in an essay from January 1946.