Orwell's place in literature is so assured that we may think we know all about him. Yet, as this reappraisal makes clear, he remains a contradictory figure: an Old Etonian who hated the ruling class; a patriot who disliked nationalism; a leftist who despised the sandal-wearing left; and a socialist who made 'Ingsoc' - 'English Socialism' - the ideology of the dystopian Nineteen Eighty-Four. Colls traces the evolution of his ideas, and his gradual reconciliation with his country.