Great writers engage with the changing times and by using their imaginations transform their ideas and environments into fiction. More than any other writer of the 20th century, George Orwell responded to a period of historical change by imagining his dystopian future of Nineteen Eighty-Four, perhaps the most influential political novel ever written. At the same time Nineteen Eighty-Four was very much a product of post-war England with its rations and shortages. Orwell, in fact, remained a socialist until his death in January 1950, but the far more intriguing question is what Nineteen Eighty-Four would be like if it were written today, in an age of Islamist terror, fake news and post-truth politics.
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