Sunday, July 23, 2006

To Hell With Random House

On David Pryce-Jones'blog there's a very disturbing story about the publishing fate of George Orwell.

It seems that Random House owns the publishing imprint that publishes George Orwell's books, including both Animal Farm and 1984. Despite the enormous profits that publishers of Orwell have made over the years, Random House has elected not to publish the final volume of the Collected Orwell.

Although Pryce-Jones doesn't specifically name a reason, apart from money-grubbing, I cannot but wonder if Orwell's listing of fellow-travelling commies (contained in this last volume) didn't make the volume politically incorrect for someone at Random House.

Of course, most of the people who work at Random House are under the age of 25 and probably couldn't tell you what a Stalinist was if their life depended on it. They've probably never read a book by Orwell, either, apart from some vague memory of "that animal story I read in high school."

So maybe they are just money-grubbing parasites who feel no obligation to Western culture. Pryce-Jones concludes:

"I hope never to buy a Random House book again, and welcome any ideas short of jihad to shame them and their smelly little money-grubbing."

I second that. I hope their business goes belly-up.


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