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Animal Farm - Essay

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The book Animal Farm, written by George Orwell, is a satire the Russian Revolution from 1917 to 1953. Its intent was to criticize Stalin and Stalinism. It is an allegorical fable, in which animals resemble the Bolshevik party members. Napoleon and Snowball (the leading pigs) represent Stalin and Lenin respectively. After a speech from Old Major (an old pig, which stated Man was evil and in the future all animals would be free), the animals start a Revolution on Manor Farm. They overthrow the owner; Mr. Jones (represents the Tsar). The animals set up a list of commandments, with the general rule of “All animals are equal.” At first, all animals are equal, but soon the different species and classes become disproportionate, and quickly afterwards the commandment changed to “All animals are equal but some are more equal than others.” The book describes the changes that can happen in a society due to the corruption of power when everybody should be equal. I have chosen to discuss the contrast and comparison between the two leaders, Snowball and Napoleon. These pigs lead the Revolution from the start. Snowball takes initiative at first, and leads the animals with devotion and great plans. Napoleon stays a bit in the back, and only becomes active later.

Snowball, unlike Napoleon, had interest in the whole animal farm. He had taken over the ideas of Old Major and wants to improve the ways of the animals. His role on the farm is characterized for Leon Trotsky in the early years of the Russian Revolution. He believed in a free world for animals with even rights and tried to stir up revolutions on other farms in England. He also wrote the first Seven Commandments, which were later adjusted by Napoleon. Even though he is only shortly in the scene, he has good intentions and had very efficient plans. One of his plans is to build a windmill to increase production. He and Napoleon were opponents from the very start, which is clear due to the fact that they always disagree on each other’s plans (Napoleon was against the windmill). He was driven off the farm and exiled by Napoleon early in the book and blamed for all different kind of problems by Napoleon afterwards. He makes the animals believe that Snowball is a comrade of Man, their worst enemy. He is not seen again, and it is unknown if he is alive or dead afterwards, as he is not seen again.

Napoleon symbolizes Stalin in the story. After he exiled Snowball, Napoleon takes advantage of the animals’ uprising to become a tyrant. He turns Animal Farm into a dictatorship and calls himself "President of Animal Farm”. Soon after the parting of Snowball, Napoleon decides to build the windmill he earlier was against. Due to a poor preparation (an example of the failing Five-Year-Plans), the windmill crumples apart. He then blames Snowball for this, and is followed by a wave of fear and dictatorship. Napoleon makes quite some animals confess bonds with Man or crimes, and then executes them on the spot. After that to that he changes the seven commandments; an example is the change from the commandment “No animal shall kill another animal” to “No animal shall kill another animal without cause” after the executions.

After that he decides to have the windmill rebuilt, which again takes a lot of effort from the animals (except for Napoleon and the pigs, which don’t have to work). Rations are reduced due to bad seasons and harvests, but strangely enough the pigs still have more than enough. Later he even makes deals with other nearby farm owners and humans in general, to get the necessary materials for the windmill in exchange for eggs from the chickens. Mr. Jones and some of his friends and men come to take hold of Animal Farm once again. In “The Battle of the Windmill”, the animals win over the humans, but the windmill is destroyed.

Even though Napoleon sends other animals to work and fight and die for Animal Farm, he and the pigs do not have to fight, and only supervise the



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