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The Road to Wigan Pier (Anglais) Broché – 26 janvier 2012

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Descriptions du produit

Revue de presse

True genius ... all his anger and frustration found their first proper means of expression in Wigan Pier (Peter Ackroyd The Times) --Ce texte fait référence à l'édition Poche .

Présentation de l'éditeur

In 1936 George Orwell was commissioned to visit areas of mass unemployment in the North of England, and The Road to Wigan Pier is a powerful description of the poverty he witnessed there, published with an introduction by Richard Hoggart in Penguin Modern Classics. A searing account of George Orwell's observations of working-class life in the bleak industrial heartlands of Yorkshire and Lancashire in the 1930s, The Road to Wigan Pier is a brilliant and bitter polemic that has lost none of its political impact over time. His graphically unforgettable descriptions of social injustice, cramped slum housing, dangerous mining conditions, squalor, hunger and growing unemployment are written with unblinking honesty, fury and great humanity. It crystallized the ideas that would be found in Orwell's later works and novels, and remains a powerful portrait of poverty, injustice and class divisions in Britain.If you enjoyed The Road to Wigan Pier you might like Orwell's Down and Out in Paris and London, also available in Penguin Modern Classics. 'True genius ... all his anger and frustration found their first proper means of expression in Wigan Pier'Peter Ackroyd, The Times 'It is easy to see why the book created and still creates so sharp an impact ... exceptional immediacy, freshness and vigour, opinionated and bold ... Above all, it is a study of poverty and, behind that, of the strength of class-divisions'Richard Hoggart

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En savoir plus sur l'auteur

George Orwell (de son vrai nom Eric Blair) est né aux Indes en 1903 et a fait ses études à Eton. Sa carrière est très variée et beaucoup de ses écrits sont un rappel de ses expériences. De 1922 à 1928 il sert dans la police indienne impériale. Pendant les deux années suivantes il vit à Paris puis part pour l'Angleterre comme professeur. En 1937 il va en Espagne combattre dans les rangs républicains et y est blessé. Pendant la guerre mondiale il travaille pour la B.B.C., puis est attaché, comme correspondant spécial en France et en Allemagne, à l'Observer. Il meurt à Londres en janvier 1950.

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Format: Broché
Le bouquin est super, arrivé sans un égratignure et comme j'en avais besoin en urgence j'ai choisit la livraison en un jour, très efficace, je le conseille tous les étudiants en galère.
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x8f9eeed0) étoiles sur 5 84 commentaires
71 internautes sur 75 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x8f849a68) étoiles sur 5 A vividly written book, controversial in its own day 31 mai 2000
Par Susan Paxton - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
It's worth knowing that this book was originally commissioned by the Left Book Club, a Socialist book club in the UK, and when the manuscript arrived they realized Orwell had delivered more than they'd bargained for. In part one, Orwell brilliantly reports on the atrocious living and working conditions in northern England in the 1930s. His chapter covering his visit to a coal mine has been often anthologized, but the entire section consists of equally vivid portraits. In part two, Orwell discusses Socialism with such a jaundiced eye that it had the editors of the Left Book Club wondering if they could get away with printing only the first half of the book! Orwell did not fully believe in Socialism until he fought in the Spanish Civil War after "Wigan Pier" was printed, and contrary to the right-wingers who have claimed him as one of their own, Orwell was a dedicated Socialist to the day he died, but a skeptical one. Read "Wigan Pier," and for more information, read Orwell's diary he kept during his trip to the north in Volume 1 of the Collected Essays.
42 internautes sur 43 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x8f849e70) étoiles sur 5 We have nothing to lose but our aitches 28 mai 2008
Par H. Schneider - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
Contrary to my expectations, this is Orwell's most personal book. He bares his soul to us. At least I think he seriously tries to be perfectly honest, if not complete.
After his success with Down and Out in Paris and London, Orwell got commissioned by the influential Left Book Club (Victor Gollancz one of the editors)to write a book about unemployment in the industrial and empoverished northern part of England. This was the mid 30s, the recent depression had led to high unemployment and endless misery in England as elsewhere.
GO went there and dug in and lived with workers and in boarding houses and crawled through mines (though he was about twice as tall as a miner should be) and talked to people and read statistics and reports.
The outcome is an oddity. Part 1 is a solid piece of investigative reporting and journalistic sociology. Chapter 1 is along the lines of Down and Out, an account of life in a boarding house in the North. Start with chapter 2 if you are squeamish. The hygienic conditions are worse than anything in Down and Out.
The following chapters in part 1 give us decsriptions of the life of miners and work in the coal mines, of the miners' leisure time, health, work safety, accidents, the housing conditions in the fearful northern slums (worse than the slums in India and Burma, says GO, because of the cold dampness), of unemployment and malnutrition, of food and fuel, of the uglyness of industrial countries at the time. The strongest chapter in this part, in my opinion, is the one on unemployment and its psychology. This subject is timeless. Even if the slums have changed, the essential condition of unemployment is surely unchanged.
So far so good and in line with the job description.
But then the man went and added a second part which deals in first place with himself, an autobiography and history of the thought of GO. Having grown up as a son of shabby genteels, he was raised on contempt for the working class. Public school education enforced the attitude. After school and after WW1, GO took a job in the imperial police in Burma and there learned to hate the system. He quit after 5 years and went into a personal crisis, a kind of horror vacui and hatred against his self. He goes on search of redemption as told with some embellishment in Down and Out. He tries to anihilate his social persona, but learns it does not work that way. The North England job gives him a chance to reconsider his position. He philosophizes about socialism and the classes. Interesting to us (at least to me), but shocking to the Left Book Club.
They decide to publish it anyway, but Gollancz adds a foreword where he thinks he needs to warn his club members that here is somebody who does not walk the line of good doctrinarism. Very odd.
By the way, did you know that quite likely fish and chips and the football pools have averted revolution in England by providing 'panem and circenses'? Says Orwell, and I love him for that kind of insight.
(This concludes my Orwell cycle, unless I decide to re-visit Burma and Catalonia.)
32 internautes sur 35 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x8f849c78) étoiles sur 5 Lesser known of Orwell's work, but NOT lesser valued... 11 décembre 2000
Par Amazon Customer - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
What a valuable examination! As other reviewers have pointed out, the Left Book Club of UK nearly three quarters of a century ago (!) commissioned Mr. Orwell to write on the condition of the coal miners in North Yorkshire. The first half of the book shows Orwell's observations of the squalor and struggles of those working people. However, Orwell continued with a whole second essay. In that second portion of the text, he criticized the left for its arrogance, its being out of touch with that which it claimed to want to remedy.
Orwell raises issues that could as easily apply today pertinent to those dedicated to "change" the conditions of those of whom they have little grasp. That's the only depressing thing about the book: so little has changed in so much time.
Some observations on the then-growing fascist movement in Europe are eye-openers too.
Read it and weep? Or read it and LEARN!
11 internautes sur 11 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x8f849eac) étoiles sur 5 Orwell 101 14 avril 2006
Par C. Ebeling - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
England in the 1930's had staggering poverty and unemployment and was still reeling from World War I. Socialism was enjoying interest from those who wanted to do something to fix the wrongs. The Left Book Club commissioned George Orwell, who had stirred attention with DOWN AND OUT IN PARIS AND LONDON to write a book about the working poor in the coal mines in Lancashire. He did that, but he also chose to go beyond the terms of his contract and assess the potential for Socialism to solve problems. His conclusions did not especially please the editors of the Book Club but to not publish the book would seem narrow-minded, so it went to press in 1937 as is tempered with a forward by Victor Gallancz, taking issue with Orwell's evaluation and vision.

The first half of the book stands as a remarkable piece of journalism revealing untold squalor. Coal was the oil of its day and people wanted it in quantity and they wanted it cheap and they did not want to know what it took to produce it. It is difficult to decide what is grimmer, the work beneath the earth or the housing to which the miners returned at night. Especially mean is the fact that the privilege of a family of eight living in two leaky, barren rooms, two hundred yards from an outdoor privy, extracted most of the household wages. Orwell's urgent prose does not let anyone look away.

Orwell then turns to a discussion of class differences, the bourgeois and Socialists. He portrays a culture saturated in a class system that will be difficult to eradicate any time soon, one in which the different classes have different values, fears and perspectives that obstruct understanding and reconcilation. Socialism, which had both its bourgeois and proletariat adherents, had yet to get its act together. Rather dyspeptically, Orwell saw it as a lightening rod for all the modern trends taken up in rejection of the old ways: feminism, vegetarianism, free love, humanitarianism, atheism, pacifism, to name a few. The Socialists fell feverishly upon their new orthodoxies with a zeal Orwell suggests would drive the public towards Fascism. He does not reject Socialism-in the end he equates it with common decency, but he wants it to get its act together in light of his views. In this essay lies the Orwell either side of the divide loves or hates, the Orwell who defies easy categorizing. In it also lies the eloquent, precise voice that makes reading him a pleasure despite wanting to say, "Look, here, there is nothing wrong with being vegetarian (or feminist or whichever of your sacred cows he's dealt some withering words)."
7 internautes sur 7 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x8f84f2b8) étoiles sur 5 Excludes a bit, but powerful and entertaining nonetheless 14 janvier 2005
Par Julia Webber - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
First off, I'd like to point out that socialism is NOT communism, since one of the other reviewers failed to make the distinction.

Secondly, Orwell did not write this book "for the socialists" in the sense that some of the other reviews imply. He wrote the first half of the book-an analysis of living/working conditions of coal miners in North England- by request of the Left Book Club, a British socialist organization. The second half of the book- a critique of socialism and socialists- was not requested by the club, in fact, it prompted a rebuttal from a representative of the organization in the original release (which is included as an introduction in other editions of the book.)

The half of the book about the miners and their lives is heartbreakingly poignant, described well by the other reviews. Read them. The second half is a well reasoned constructive critique of socialism and socialists. Orwell points out that most of those middle-class folk who claim to be socialists, in actuality, are not: they wouldn't be willing to lower their own standard of living for the sake of elevating those in poverty. He points out that the alternate view of "why don't we just elevate the standard of living for EVERYONE?" is a bit of a Jesus complex that would never work. He goes on to compare "bearded juice-drinking Marx-quoting Socialists" to the likes of pushy evangelical Christians, saying that most Socialists actually harm their cause and turn others away from socialism rather than converting them. Hillarious, wether you are a critic or friend of socialism (assuming that you have a sense of humor...)

The one complaint I have about this book is that Orwell states that socialism is "obviously" the only cure for the ills of the coal miners described in the first half of the book. He never says how or why. One could extrapolate that socialism could alleviate the housing shortage by providing subsidized housing in the mining towns, and that it could improve the conditions in the mines by applying industry standards to how the mines are run. Wether this would actually be the case could be argued, but the author doesn't even bother to give any support to his claim.

Overall a great book- read both parts!
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