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Animal Farm

By: George Orwell

The animals of the Manor Farm lived badly because their farmer Mr. Jones, a mean and always drunk man, exploits them. One day Old Major, the old pig who led the animals, called a meeting of all the animals and told them about a dream that he had the previous night. Orwell wrote it because he wished to destroy what he called the “Soviet myth”. Like Nineteen Eighty-Four, the story is one of the most famous political allegories in the world.

Napoleon enacts changes to the governance structure of the farm, replacing meetings with a committee of pigs who will run the farm. Through a young porker named Squealer, Napoleon claims credit for the windmill idea, claiming that Snowball was only trying to win animals to his side. The animals work harder with the promise of easier lives with the windmill. When the animals find the windmill collapsed after a violent storm, Napoleon and Squealer persuade the animals that Snowball is trying to sabotage their project and begin to purge the farm of animals Napoleon accuses of consorting with his old rival. When some animals recall the Battle of the Cowshed, Napoleon (who was nowhere to be found during the battle) gradually smears Snowball to the point of saying he is a collaborator of Mr. Jones, even dismissing the fact that Snowball was given an award of courage while falsely representing himself as the main hero of the battle. "Beasts of England" is replaced with "Animal Farm", while an anthem glorifying Napoleon, who appears to be adopting the lifestyle of a man ("Comrade Napoleon"), is composed and sung. Napoleon then conducts a second purge, during which many animals who claim to be helping Snowball in plots are executed by Napoleon's dogs, which troubles the rest of the animals. Despite their hardships, the animals are easily placated by Napoleon's retort that they are better off than they were under Mr. Jones, as well as by the sheep's continual bleating of “four legs good, two legs bad”.

Book Details

Language

English

Original Language

English

Published In

1945

Author

Orwell's work remains influential in popular culture and in political culture, and the adjective "Orwellian"—describing totalitarian and authoritarian social practices—is part of the Engli...

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