The great enemy of clear language is insincerity. When there is a gap between one’s real and one’s declared aims, one turns as it were instinctively to long words and exhausted idioms, like a cuttlefish spurting out ink.

George Orwell (“Politics and the English Language“)


3 Responses to “Obfuscation”

  1. 1 Joe January 27, 2007 at 5:23 pm

    Orwell’s “Why I Write” (http://www.netcharles.com/orwell/essays/whyiwrite.htm) was published a few months after “Politics and the English Language” and I think they fit perfectly together. You should check it out:

    “What I have most wanted to do throughout the past ten years is to make political writing into an art. My starting point is always a feeling of partisanship, a sense of injustice. When I sit down to write a book, I do not say to myself, ‘I am going to produce a work of art’. I write it because there is some lie that I want to expose, some fact to which I want to draw attention, and my initial concern is to get a hearing.”

    Orwell Essay Collection: http://www.netcharles.com/orwell/essays.htm

  2. 2 Rolf & Pnolf January 27, 2007 at 9:28 pm

    Thanks for the quote.. and thanks for the link, great site!

  3. 3 Christopher W. Kooch October 13, 2014 at 9:33 am

    Please send me more info on obfuscation also info on increasing hope for humanity

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