If you’re looking for the ultimate definition of irony, look no further. It arrived Tuesday, when news broke that George Orwell’s estate had tried to shut down sales of a T-shirt that reads “1984 is already here.”

Eric Arthur Blair, a.k.a. Orwell, died in 1950, a few years before the first screen-printed T-shirt companies began operating in the U.S. So there is much about this copyright controversy that the author wouldn’t immediately understand. But given his lifelong fascination with the political uses of language, it’s hard to believe he’d be anything other than horrified by what his descendants are reportedly doing in his name Read more…

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