Back in 2010 I mentioned the blog Letters of Note. It’s a blog that publishes letters, postcards, telegrams faxes and memos. Now they have a fascinating letter from Aldous Huxley to Oeorge Orwell. Here’s what they say:
In October of 1949, a few months after the release of George Orwell‘s dystopian masterpiece, Nineteen Eighty-Four, he received a fascinating letter from fellow author Aldous Huxley — a man who, 17 years previous, had seen his own nightmarish vision of society published, in the form of Brave New World. What begins as a letter of praise soon becomes a brief comparison of the two novels, and an explanation as to why Huxley believes his own, earlier work to be a more realistic prediction.
Trivia: In 1917, long before he wrote this letter, Aldous Huxley briefly taught Orwell French at Eton.
And here’s the first paragraph of the letter:
21 October, 1949
Dear Mr. Orwell,
It was very kind of you to tell your publishers to send me a copy of your book. It arrived as I was in the midst of a piece of work that required much reading and consulting of references; and since poor sight makes it necessary for me to ration my reading, I had to wait a long time before being able to embark on Nineteen Eighty-Four.