Eric Arthur Blair was born in India on 25 June 1903. His father, Richard Blair, was an Anglo-Indian administrator. When he was eight, Eric won a half-scholarship to a preparatory boarding school, St. Cyprian's, at Eastbourne. The essay, “Such, Such Were the Joys” depicts the school as a snobbish tyranny, where they were under constant surveillance from the fearsome proprietors, Mr and Mrs Wilkes. The essay has been related to Orwell's interest in totalitarianism, with St. Cyprian's as his first experience of such total control. There has been much discussion of how straightforward the relation is between the experience and the account – a debate which applies to much of his writing.

In May 1917 he went to Eton as a King's Scholar. In an autobiographical entry prepared in 1941,

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Citation: Hopkins, Chris. "George Orwell". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 20 October 2001 [, accessed 16 July 2024.]

3433 George Orwell 1 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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