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About the book
  • Published: 28 May 2014
  • ISBN: 9780141395432
  • Imprint: Penguin Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 304
  • RRP: $22.99

Burmese Days




But, my dear friend, what lie are you living?'  'Why, of course, the lie that we're here to uplift our poor black brothers instead of to rob them.  I suppose it's a natural enough lie.  But it corrupts us, it corrupts us in ways you can't imagine.

Based on his experiences as a policeman in Burma, George Orwell's first novel presents a devastating picture of British colonial rule. It describes corruption and imperial bigotry in a society where, 'after all, natives were natives - interesting, no doubt, but finally ... an inferior people'. When Flory, a white timber merchant, befriends Indian Dr Veraswami, he defies this orthodoxy. The doctor is in danger: U Po Kyin, a corrupt magistrate, is plotting his downfall. The only thing that can save him is membership of the all-white Club, and Flory can help. Flory's life is changed further by the arrival of beautiful Elizabeth Lackersteen from Paris, who offers an escape from loneliness and the 'lie' of colonial life.%%%Set in the days of the Empire, with the British ruling in Burma, Burmese Days describes both indigenous corruption and Imperial bigotry, when 'after all, natives were natives - interesting, no doubt, but finally only a "subject" people, an inferior people with black faces'. Against the prevailing orthodoxy, Flory, a white timber merchant, befriends Dr Veraswami, a black enthusiast for Empire. The doctor needs help. U Po Kyin, Sub- divisional Magistrate of Kyauktada, is plotting his downfall. The only thing that can save him is European patronage: membership of the hitherto all-white Club. While Flory prevaricates, beautiful Elizabeth Lackersteen arrives in Upper Burma from Paris. At last, after years of 'solitary hell', romance and marriage appear to offer Flory an escape from the 'lie' of the 'pukka sahib pose'.

  • Pub date: 28 May 2014
  • ISBN: 9780141395432
  • Imprint: Penguin Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 304
  • RRP: $22.99

About the Author

George Orwell

George Orwell (1903–1950) is one of England's most famous writers and social commentators. He is the author of the classic political satire Animal Farm and the dystopian masterpiece Nineteen Eighty-Four. He is also well known for his essays and journalism, particularly his works covering his travels and his time fighting in the Spanish Civil War. His writing is celebrated for its piercing clarity, purpose and wit and his books continue to be bestsellers all over the world.

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