The Best English-Language Fiction of the Twentieth Century
A Composite List and Ranking
by Brian Kunde


<- Orwell, George, 1903-1950.
         Real name: Eric Arthur Blair. British author and journalist best known for his late anti-totalitarian novels (below).
  • <- Animal Farm. 1945.
             An anti-Stalinist allegory of farm animals who overthrow their human keepers and take over their farm in a revolution; subsequent power-struggles among the pig leaders subvert the animals' original ideals and lead to a dictatorship in which the new leaders come increasingly to resemble the humans they displaced, and the other animals are more ruthlessly oppressed than ever. Adapted to film as a cartoon in 1954 and as a live-action movie in 1999.
  • <- Nineteen Eighty Four. 1949.
             Dystopian tale of the degradation and spiritual destruction of minor government fuctionary Winston Smith by the totalitarian state in which he lives. Its most notorious features are the omnipresent image of the dictatorial leader, "Big Brother," and the reductionistic language of "Newspeak," intended to eliminate the possiblity of free thought. Seen at the time of its original publication and for many years after as a cautionary tale of the future, since the date of the title passed it has more often been viewed in comparison to the more negative aspects of contemporary society. Adapted to television in 1954, to film in 1956 and 1984, as an opera in 2005, and as a stage play in 2006.

Posted Mar. 29, 2007, and last updated May 14, 2013.
Please report any errors to the compiler.
Published by Fleabonnet Press.
The source list data is public domain.
Additional material © 1999-2013 by Brian Kunde.