Orwellian 1950 (first attested in Mary McCarthy), from English author George Orwell (pseudonym of Eric Blair, 1903-1950), especially in reference to his novel "Nineteen Eighty-Four." Ironically, it has come to be used in reference to the totalitarian systems he satirized.
It is as if George Orwell had conceived the nightmare instead of analyzed it, helped to create it instead of helping to dispel its euphemistic thrall. [Clive James]

Etymology dictionary. 2014.

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  • Orwellian — describes the situation, idea, or societal condition that George Orwell identified as being destructive to the welfare of a free society. It connotes an attitude and a policy of control by propaganda, surveillance, misinformation, denial of truth …   Wikipedia

  • Orwellian — ► ADJECTIVE ▪ relating to the work of the British novelist George Orwell (1903 50), especially the totalitarian state depicted in Nineteen Eighty four …   English terms dictionary

  • Orwellian — [ôr wel′ē ən] adj. of or like the society portrayed by Orwell in his novel Nineteen Eighty four, in which a totalitarian state exercises almost total control over the public and private activities of the citizens …   English World dictionary

  • Orwellian — adjective see Orwell …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • Orwellian — /awr wel ee euhn/, adj. of, pertaining to, characteristic of, or resembling the literary work of George Orwell or the totalitarian future described in his antiutopian novel 1984 (1949). [1945 50; G. ORWELL + IAN] * * * …   Universalium

  • Orwellian — adjective a) Pertaining to or resembling the works of , especially in reference to the dystopia in b) Frightening and overcontrolled by a government that interferes in nearly every aspect of personal life …   Wiktionary

  • Orwellian — Or|well|i|an [ ɔr weliən ] adjective relating to a political system in which the government controls every aspect of people s lives …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • Orwellian — adj. pertaining to George Orwell; in the style of Orwell (especially mimicking the totalitarian rule in Orwell s novel 1984 ) …   English contemporary dictionary

  • Orwellian — adjective of or characteristic of the work of the British novelist George Orwell (1903–50), especially with reference to the totalitarian state as depicted in Nineteen Eighty four …   English new terms dictionary

  • orwellian — or·well·ian …   English syllables