Orwellian Delusions: A Critique of George Orwell’s Notes on Nationalism, Part II

In the first part of this two-part series, I treated some of the logical fallacies and internal contradictions in George Orwell’s essay “Notes on Nationalism.” I will continue this second part by focusing on some of the problems with the narrative argument Orwell presents in the latter half of his essay.

Orwell criticizes G.K. Chesterton’s religious engagement in politics. Yet Orwell’s own religious presuppositions are revealed when he lists what he calls the “overthrown idols” of British nationalism: God, the king, the Empire, and the Union Jack. He goes as far as to say that they (i.e. including God) are only “worshipped because they are not recognized for what they are.”

Orwell’s accusation that nationalists are removed from reality, and that they believe it can be altered to suit their own agenda, is especially ludicrous when one looks at the unsubstantiated claims Orwell himself makes in this very essay. To claim, as he does, that races or religions don’t exist is rather absurd.

Orwell identifies ten forms of nationalism that he categorizes into three groups: positive nationalism, transferred nationalism, and negative nationalism.

Under positive nationalism he lists British imperialism (“neo-toryism”), which is obviously antithetical to ethnonationalism, Celtic …

Read more at the Faith and Heritage blog
(The opinions in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of Southern Nation News or SN.O.)

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