Write summary of George Orwell’s Essay “Reflections on Gandhi”
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George Orwell wrote a piece of writing called “Reflection on Gandhi.” He looks at Gandhi’s life in this essay. The essay is a look back on the life of Gandhi. Orwell tried to understand Gandhi by reading “My Experiments with Truth,” Gandhi’s autobiography. He liked the book, but Gandhi didn’t strike him as a very interesting person. He gave some reasons why he didn’t like Gandhi;
Orwell, on the other hand, did not think Gandhi was a bad person. He says, “Even Gandhi’s worst enemy would agree that he is a strange and interesting person who made the world a better place just by being alive.”
Orwell says that Gandhi’s physical courage was very strong. No one has ever said that he is dishonest or too ambitious in a rude way. Even though he was the leader of a big political movement, he had no security. Anyone could walk into his ashram and attack him, which is exactly what happened in 1948 when he was shot dead.
Orwell says that Gandhi’s life was very easy. Gandhi was a very honest man, and he didn’t hide the fact that as a young man he had broken the law by smoking a few cigarettes, eating some meat, etc.
Some of Gandhi’s ideas seemed silly to Orwell because they made no sense from a European point of view. Some of these are not drinking alcohol, having sex, eating spices or animal food. Gandhi was very true to all of his beliefs. Even to protect his wife or child, he wasn’t willing to go against his beliefs. “On three occasions, Gandhi was willing to let his wife or child die rather than give them animal food as ordered by the doctor,” Orwell says that this is a point that calls into question Gandhi’s kindness.
Orwell is also surprised to learn that Gandhi didn’t like getting close to people. Gandhi said that close friendships can be dangerous. He says, “Friends react on each other,” which means that loyalty to a friend can lead someone to do something wrong.
When India got its independence in 1947, Gandhi had done what he had set out to do. But Orwell thinks that India got its freedom because the Soft Labour Party won the election in England. Gandhi’s peaceful methods could never have worked if people like Winston Churchill had been in charge.
Gandhi is not a saint in Orwell’s eyes. He also thinks that Gandhi’s main goals were against people and backward. At the same time, Orwell admitted that Gandhi was much more honest than most politicians of his time.