Don Share <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>Like most folks, I've long heard that there are no extant audio recordings of
>George Orwell. We certainly haven't been able to locate any. I'd be grateful
>to hear thoughts from list members about whether this is accurate or the stuff
This is probably true. I don't think Orwell really had the money it
would have taken to hire a studio for a private recording until the
end of his life, when his deteriorating health made that impossible.
His radio lectures on the BBC were made during the early 1940s when
listeners at home had nothing on which to record them. Given the
BBC's lengthy track record of wholesale destruction of their archives,
recordings made there for rebroadcast (national broadcasts were often
recorded for shortwave rebroadcast) are not likely to have survived.
Most of Orwell's life was lived in rather a Spartan fashion. George
Orwell was always concerned with the human condition; Eric Arthur
Blair was a bit anitisocial and did not enjoy being around other
people. By the late 1940s when Nineteen Eighty-Four was being written,
Orwell was living in the Inner Hebrides in an unheated farmhouse with
no electricity. He did make money from that book (indeed, he bought
the farmhouse with proceeds from Animal Farm), but most of it went for
treatments for the chronic lung disease that took his life in 1950.