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Orwell in Spain: The Full Text of Homage to Catalonia, with Associated Articles, Reviews and Letters from the Complete Works of George Orwell
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Orwell in Spain: The Full Text of Homage to Catalonia, with Associated Articles, Reviews and Letters from the Complete Works of George Orwell

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  49,315 ratings  ·  2,783 reviews
The volume collects together, for the first time ever, Orwell's writings on his experience of the Spanish Civil War - the chaos at the Front, the futile young deaths for what became a confused cause, the antique weapons and the disappointment many British Socialists felt on arriving in Spain to help. ORWELL IN SPAIN includes the complete text of HOMAGE TO CATALONIA. ...more
Paperback, 416 pages
Published May 3rd 2001 by Penguin Classics (first published April 1938)
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Allan MacLeod Regarding the first part of your question: as somebody who had a few years of experience before the internet swallowed everything, my recommendation i…moreRegarding the first part of your question: as somebody who had a few years of experience before the internet swallowed everything, my recommendation is to get your book and isolate yourself in a library, cafe, or similar. Turn your phone on silent and leave it in your backpack while you read. Make regular meditation and mindfulness a habit so that you can take ten minutes to clear your mind of static when necessary.

Also, I find that my e-reader is a more comfortable and ergonomically pleasing way to read (especially for heavier volumes) that ultimately reduces distractions while I read and lets me read longer, more often, and in more places.(less)
Cameron In my version it has 12 chapters with two apendix chapters, the two other chapters are there two explain the political situation, with little or o nar…moreIn my version it has 12 chapters with two apendix chapters, the two other chapters are there two explain the political situation, with little or o narrative, they serve to explain the complex political situation within Catalonia and the situation of Orwell's POUM comrades(less)

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Start your review of Orwell in Spain: The Full Text of Homage to Catalonia, with Associated Articles, Reviews and Letters from the Complete Works of George Orwell
Emily May
“All the war-propaganda, all the screaming and lies and hatred, comes invariably from people who are not fighting.”

George Orwell is one of my favourite writers. 1984 and Animal Farm were game-changers for me when I first picked them up at 12 years old, and they fostered an interest in politics that would stay with me for the rest of my life. Homage to Catalonia never quite affected me in the same way, but I decided it was time to do a reread of it as an adult. In July, I will be visiting Cat
Bill Kerwin
Aug 15, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history, biography

This book is justly famous for its disillusioned account of how the Communist Party—in its eagerness to defeat Franco--betrayed the successful anarchist experiment in Catalonia for the sake of expedience, how it executed and imprisoned its anarchist and socialist comrades for the sake of a temporary alliance with the bourgeois.

I found all this very interesting, but have to admit that the real reason I liked the book so much was for its gritty account of war on the cheap, where guns are poor, ma
Aug 03, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
HEADLINE: For students, here the politics is explained.

For you students who have this great book imposed upon you in a syllabus, here is the best help I can give you with regard to Chapters V and XI, which are in some editions included only as Appendices.

It is interesting to note that at the outset Orwell himself was nonplussed by the alphabet soup of the political situation in Spain. At first he was at a loss when confronted with the idea of right wing communism as you probably are. It was only
Ahmad Sharabiani
Homage To Catalonia, George Orwell

Homage to Catalonia is George Orwell's personal account of his experiences and observations in the Spanish Civil War. The first edition was published in the United Kingdom in 1938.

The book begins in late December 1936. Orwell describes the atmosphere in Barcelona as it appears to him at this time. "The anarchists were still in virtual control of Catalonia and the revolution was still in full swing ... It was the first time that I had ever been in a town where t
"If you had asked me why I had joined the militia I should have answered: 'To fight against Fascism,' and if you had asked me what I was fighting for, I should have answered: 'Common decency."

Sometimes, when I get particularly frustrated with that strange idealist in me that chose to work with teenage education, I think of George Orwell and his fight in the Civil War in Spain. He knew at some point that the war would be lost, and that both sides in it had major issues, flaws and most of all a
Steven Godin
Always preferred Orwell as a writer of nonfiction, and Homage to Catalonia is most certainly up there with the best of it. Didn't think much of Animal Farm, and haven't even bothered to read 1984 yet, which, to be honest, doesn't really interest me anyway. What does interest me, a lot more, is his voice in the real world. I think now, having read this, Down & out in Paris & London, and some of his brilliant essays, he's simply a great writer. Didn't think I'd be saying that after Animal Farm. Wh ...more
Sep 26, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
1. Homage to Catalonia has the distinction of being on my mental to-read list for longer than any other book. I've wanted to read this book longer than any of the people who elbowed or punched me in the face this week have been alive. I figured after almost twenty and half years I should finally read it.

I've owned the book for over a decade.

I have no clue what book now currently holds the distinction book I've wanted to read for the longest time but haven't.

2. When I was a senior in high school
Page 127 the author states that while watching a “fat Russian” it was the first time that he had seen “ …a person whose profession was telling lies - unless one counts Journalists” I wonder what the sublimely brilliant writer of this observation, George Orwell, would think if he was seeing the accusations of fake news (lies) that is routinely hurled around today. He himself warns against his own bias while writing about his time in Spain. Trust nothing is the mantra. Indeed.

I first read Orwell
Amalia Gkavea
“The human louse somewhat resembles a tiny lobster, and he lives chiefly in your trousers. Short of burning all your clothes there is no known way of getting rid of him. Down the seams of your trousers he lays his glittering white eggs, like tiny grains of rice, which hatch out and breed families of thier own at horrible speed. I think pacifists might find it helpful to illustrate thier pamphlets with enlarged photographs of lice. Glory of war indeed! In war all solderies are lousy, at the le ...more
3 ½ stars.

Now, after many false starts …

In my first attempt at reviewing this, I began by saying “This is a first rate source for information … on the Spanish Civil War.” Wrong!!! It really is a very poor source of information on the SCW. Because it is on a very personal level, and is mostly seen from a very limited and narrow point of view, this is really an almost useless book for learning anything historically significant about the war.

So, let’s start over.

Why is this book so famous?

Sarah (Presto agitato)
I have always found the Spanish Civil War confusing. After reading Homage to Catalonia, I at least feel that I was justified in my confusion. On the surface, of course, it was a conflict between Franco’s Fascists and the democratic Republican government, but it was far more complicated than that. When Orwell arrived in Spain to fight on the Republican side with the P.O.U.M. militia, a P.S.U.C. position was pointed out to him and he was told “Those are the Socialists” to which he responded, “Aren ...more
May 09, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: politics
music: Durutti Column - "Street Fight"
(also because there's a small, POUM-hostile extremist-anarchist group called Friends Of Durruti mentioned in the book, who were used as part of false-information war by the government)

(my book has intros by Hochschild and Trilling, both very excellent. Two chapters of the book have been appendixed to the end, which I also think as a wise choice, since both are rather political side-comments 1: why and how Communists suppressed the smaller leftist groups 2: a
Roy Lotz
I have the most evil memories of Spain, but I have very few bad memories of Spaniards. I only twice remember even being seriously angry with a Spaniard, and on each occasion, when I look back, I believe I was in the wrong myself.

Autobiographies and memoirs are, I think, the best books to read on vacation. Not only are they light, easy, and entertaining, but they’re usually not hard to put down. This is important because, if you’re like me, you may end up spending your whole vacation with you
"The fact is that every war suffers a kind of progressive degradation with every month that it continues, because such things as individual liberty & a truthful press are simply not compatible with military efficiency" (p.172)

The opening chapters in particular lead me to imagine Basil Fawlty going abroad, or possibly the travel programmes of my youth, the accommodation is terrible, the way the food and wine are served is unhygienic, everything is disorganised and late, the Spaniards don't even s
Aug 01, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I found this memoir-like book surprisingly interesting and readable in terms of his direct experience in the Spanish Civil War. I think George Orwell didn't try to be a hero there since he himself was gunned down by a shot through his throat one morning. He simply wrote, "The whole experience of being hit by a bullet is very interesting and I think it is worth describing in detail" (Chapter X, pp. 143-4)

However, his valor didn't diminish and he still kept writing based on his political ideology
Jul 05, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Should anyone want to understand why George Orwell, a life long socialist, developed the antipathy to the Soviet Union which informed his best known novels Animal Farm and 1984, then this is the book to read.

When Orwell travelled to Spain in December 1936, intending to fight fascism and write about the Spanish Civil War, he stepped into a complex and murky political situation. The left-wing forces supporting the Republican government against the fascist forces led by Franco had different and co
Jan 06, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Orwell in Spain, the tall guy standing in the middle 1937
Another *FAQ* I wrote from back in the day in usenet for

Mr. Orwell has kindly granted me an interview regarding his book, Homage to Catalonia

B: There has been some talk about the Spanish Civil War lately, perhaps inspired by the recent movie El Laberinto del Fauno . This war was a labyrinth as well: sorting out the various factions and who did what to whom certainly is quite a chore.

But first things first. Could you describe your ensemble - you are wearing some
A re-read for me of a book I first read in my early twenties. I recall it made a big impression on me at the time, due to its description of the infighting on the Government side during the Spanish Civil War.

Orwell was in his thirties when he went to Barcelona and had already been everything from a Police Superintendent in colonial Burma to a tramp sleeping rough back in Britain. You couldn’t say he was lacking in knowledge of life, but he arrived in Spain with an idealistic impression of a war
Apr 01, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: war
George Orwell fought in the Spanish Civil War,as part of the militia of a party,the P.O.U.M.

Ironically,the party was later declared illegal and after all his struggles on its behalf,Orwell had to flee Spain eventually,to avoid being imprisoned.

While Orwell,a foreigner,was taking such risks with his life in the war,a lot of people and places in Spain remained unaffected.As to why he was fighting in the war,Orwell gives his reason as "common decency."

The best part of the book describes the conditi
Oct 19, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
George Orwell struck me as an extremely honest and sincere recorder of his war experiences in Spain in 1937. He showed himself a brave and fearless warrior for the good cause, fighting the Franco troops in the desolate mountain region in the northern province of Aragon. This is what he writes on the last page of his account after he succeeded to escape to France from Spain, seriously wounded and a wanted man. “This war, in which I played so ineffectual a part, has left me with memories that are ...more
Oct 01, 2017 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Celebrity Death Match Special:
Homage to Catalonia versus 1984


No winner declared because match never took place
A wonderful book full of the stink and horror of war. The accounts of the Republic's assaults on the Falange, save for one instance, are pitiful and sickening. Descriptions, too, of Madrid during the conflict the likes of which I have not come across anywhere else. Exquisite and appalling. Read concurrently with Hugh Thomas' The Spanish Civil War. ...more
If there is a book to read on the Spanish Civil War, this is the one. It has the strength of testimony, and it wins support through the intensity of convictions. However; this history is older about the younger generations but the ideas, especially the generous ideas, endure and I cannot encourage curious minds too much to immerse themselves in this "homage" which is still current. ...more
Nov 18, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
George Orwell went to Spain to cover the civil war there and then actually joined the fighting, enlisting as a militia soldier fighting for a faction of the government against the fascist rebels.

This is an “on the ground” narrative as Orwell presents to us a soldier’s view of the war: from the trenches, standing cold watches, hungry, dirty, and always wanting cigarettes. He also explains to a reader almost a hundred years later about the complicated makeup of the republican government forces, co
John Wiswell
Jun 22, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Literary readers, history readers, humanitarians, people who are politically jaded
As important as Animal Farm and 1984 are, Orwell was probably a better non-fiction writer than a fiction writer. In telling true events he is moved to outright explain his feelings and beliefs in perhaps less quotable, but far more important fashion than his fiction. You almost have to read his descriptions of the Spanish people in this book to truly appreciate the coldness of 1984's characters. Dealing with real people and real struggle he wrote his truly most memorable passages - such as why h ...more
Mar 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Possibly my favourite book ever. I couldn't put it down. This will not be the case for everyone but as I have always had an interest in the Spanish civil war I found Orwell's account brilliant and much better than regular Spanish civil war books. Orwell conveys with great clarity the boredom, confusion, and lies of the Spanish civil war. I would recommend anybody who wants to learn about the Spanish civil war (an extremely complex subject) to first look to this book. ...more
Jan 15, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: z-fiction
[2020 Update of older reviews]:
--Political views need to be constantly tested and updated. Two of my early influences were both great admirers of Orwell: Noam Chomsky and Christopher Hitchens.
--Chomsky introduced me to anti-imperialism and propaganda (esp. Necessary Illusions: Thought Control in Democratic Societies). The latter topic should have brought up the following unsettling questions: how do we evaluate liberal imperialist miseducation's love for Orwell's Animal Farm and 1984 (prominen
George Orwell fought in the Spanish Civil War because he believed in democracy and was against fascism. He believed in the rights of the working class and human decency for all. His experiences in Spain only deepened these ideals.

In addition to Orwell's descriptions of his experiences in Spain while fighting with the P.O.U.M., I found Lionel Trilling's introduction fascinating and equally informative. Trilling pays homage to Orwell the man. According to Trilling, one of the leading critics of th

I reread Homage to Catalonia while staying with a friend and his wife in Kyiv this July. One day, I heard two voices in the front hallway, before the time my friend usually got back from work. Naturally, I tried to avoid human interaction by keeping the door to the guest room closed, pretending I wasn’t there; and naturally, they knew I was there, knocked on the door, and demanded that I join them to eat and drink vodka. They turned out to be my friend’s brother-in-law and his co-worker, who’d h
Apr 09, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
* Read from the collection Homage to Catalonia / Down and Out in Paris and London*

It's slightly odd that today is the day that I finished Orwell's memoir of his service in the P.O.U.M. militia during the Spanish civil war (1936-1939). For it was on this day, the 20th of May, that Orwell was famously shot in the neck by a fascist sniper. I came across this little factoid during some personal research into the book and its history, so it was absolutely unplanned. Anyway, of course Orwell survived,
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Eric Arthur Blair, better known by his pen name George Orwell, was an English author and journalist. His work is marked by keen intelligence and wit, a profound awareness of social injustice, an intense opposition to totalitarianism, a passion for clarity in language, and a belief in democratic socialism.

In addition to his literary career Orwell served as a police officer with the Indian Imperial

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