George Orwell (1903–50) was the pen-name of Eric Blair, an English socialist writer and radio broadcaster. Born into what he described as a “lower-upper middle class” family in British India, Orwell attended Eton school before becoming a police officer in Burma. He was later wounded when fighting in the Spanish Civil War on the Republican side. Declared unfit for military service in the Second World War, he was by then well known for non-fiction works such as 'The Road to Wigan Pier' and 'Homage to Catalonia'. Orwell is best known today for 'Animal Farm' and '1984', two novels that were extremely critical of totalitarian communism.