In 1949, the British writer George Orwell published the first edition of 1984. The novel presents what we now call dystopia, the opposite of the idealization of utopia, being set in a Great Britain completely reconfigured in somewhat perverse ways.
Since the first day of the year 2020, the work is part of the list of novels available in the public domain, since Orwell’s death turned 70 recently – a rule established for these books.
That way, whoever wants to publish it again in more modern editions will be able to do it without having to pay any kind of right for the original text. However, although the author’s works are in the public domain, this does not mean that the translations known and published in Brazil are also in the public domain.
George Orwell: author of 1984 and The Animal Revolution
George Orwell was born under the registered name of Eric Arthur Blair in Motihari, India, at the time still a British colony. However, when he was just 1 year old he went to live in England. The writer was a student of Aldous Huxley and entered Eton College on a scholarship, as his parents were unable to afford it.
As much as his novels are well known among readers, Orwell had a great career as a journalist, acting with a strong presence in the English press. In 1934, he published Burmese Days, his first novel.
However, his most famous works came in his last years.
George Orwell’s 1984 book
1984 is considered his masterpiece. The story takes place after several world wars, when the government of the Airstrip No. 1 is able to observe all the steps of each of the individuals that inhabit it, besides having sufficient control and power to manipulate the order of everything that is required.
The inhabitants live in the midst of a totalitarian regime, in which they have to deal with the sovereignty of the infamous Big Brother, a figure who tries to give a good image to everyone in the government, ensuring the maintenance of a true cult of his personality. However, this character is a great mystery.
The work delves into showing several issues related to this exacerbated surveillance, making strong criticisms of authoritarian regimes, both fascist and communist, as the author himself noted in a letter addressed to Francis A. Henson, a member of the United Union United Auto Workers, June 1949.