Down and Out in Paris and London, by George Orwell

Down and Out in Paris and London, by George Orwell

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To be poor and destitute in 1920s Paris and London was to experience life at its lowest ebb.

George Orwell, penniless and with nowhere to go, found himself experiencing just this as he wandered the streets of both capitals in search of a job.

By day, he tramped the streets, often passing time with 'screevers' or street artists, drunks and other hobos. At night, he stood in line for a bed in a 'spike' or doss house, where a cup of sugary tea, a hunk of stale bread and a blanket were the only sustenance and comfort on offer.

First published in 1933, Down and Out in Paris and London is George Orwell's haunting account of the streets and those who have no choice but to live on them.

“He saw through everything... Many have tried to imitate his particular kind of clarity without anything like his moral authority” - The Times

“A man who looked at his world with wonder and wrote down exactly what he saw, in admirable prose” - John Mortimer