Burmese Days by George OrwellBurmese Days by George Orwell

Burmese Days

byGeorge Orwell

Paperback | January 3, 1974

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Orwell draws on his years of experience in India to tell this story of the waning days of British imperialism. A handful of Englishmen living in a settlement in Burma congregate in the European Club, drink whiskey, and argue over an impending order to admit a token Asian.
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Title:Burmese DaysFormat:PaperbackDimensions:288 pages, 8 × 5.37 × 0.67 inPublished:January 3, 1974Publisher:Harcourt Brace & Company

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0156148501

ISBN - 13:9780156148504

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Rated 5 out of 5 by from The less trodden path of Orwell's novels If you are here you have most likely already read 1984 and animal farm. This book is much less a commentary on authoritarian governments but it still is touched by the issues of imperialism. The main characters sensitivity to the effects of colonialism which he is a part of is a driving force of this masterpiece.
Date published: 2016-11-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Orwell's Forgotten Masterpiece “In Moulmein, in lower Burma, I was hated by large numbers of people–the only time in my life that I have been important enough for this to happen to me,” it is with these words George Orwell begins one of his most famous essays, “Shooting an Elephant.” It seems that the protagonist, Flory, in "Burmese Days" is no other than Orwell himself. Orwell will forever be remembered for his immortal, frightening parable, "Nineteen Eighty-Four." His other works, especially novels, have been more or less ignored by the general public –wrongly, in my humble opinion. For "Burmese Days" is his most mellifluous and lyrical of works. As you read, you feel the searing heat under an incandesce sun, you feel as though you are in the midst of noisy, busy streets and you can smell the garlic-stricken houses. It is beautiful in its own peculiar way. Mistake not, I do not claim that "Burmese Days" is the greatest novel written on the Raj, for that award must go to Paul Scott’s Raj Quartet series. However, this novel is not merely a tale of the rulers and the ruled, masters and slaves, “superior” and “inferior” races; if you read between the lines, you will notice the subtle psychology behind the whole experience with the Empire. U Po Kyin, a magistrate of erroneously vulpine personality is loyal to the Crown not merely for the sake of loyalty, but for his own enhancement. Paradoxically, we see Burmans manipulating Burmans under the Union Jack. I was particularly struck by the inferiority complex in many natives. For example, Dr. Veraswami wholeheartedly believed that they were not quite as good as Europeans. But the independence is in the air, and colonizers are trying their best - in their own ways - to realize that the sun may set on the British Empire, after all. This is a must-read if you want to comprehend the last days of the British Empire, and the men and women who represented it. They were not all evil men and women; many of them had only the good of intentions. Some of them, like Flory (and Orwell), truly loved these places. As Orwell reminds us, “every particle of his soil was compounded of Burmese soil.” Consequently, they were always pariahs. They belonged neither with the native nor the ruling class. A novel of the bygone world, but a novel that still has strength to move our hearts. Very highly recommended!
Date published: 2012-05-21

From Our Editors

In this caustic, fast-paced novel about the waning days of British imperialism, George Orwell draws on his years of experience in India, the country of his birth. The story focuses on a handful of Englishmen living in a small settlement in Upper Burma. They congregate in the European Club, drinking whiskey and arguing over an impending order to admit a token Asian.