Quote of the week:

"We are such stuff as dreams are made on; and our little life is rounded with a sleep."
- William Shakespeare.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Animal Farm- An allegorical way to the truth.

"All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others."

In 1945, George Orwell managed to successfully bring to life one of the direst and most shattering indictments of Russian communism. Animal Farm is a powerful and insightful novel, a worthy introduction to his upcoming dystopian masterpiece (1984) that would entail from the message that Orwell was trying to spread at first, with this book; namely: Russia was not the prosperous land of freedom and opportunity as the rest of the world thought it was at the time.

By means of symbolism and a simple but direct prose, Animal Farm brings a clear light into the outbreak and denouement of the Russian revolution. Throughout this allegorical novel, the reader can easily witness the naive rising of what started as a noble and wholesome society, striving for equality and common welfare that eventually decayed into a new despotism full of cruelty and exploitation of the non ruling class.


Orwell´s main concern while writing the novel, was warning the global population into being always aware of the insidious methods by means of which a ruling class can acquire immeasurable power and turn any society into a totalitarian and despotic State.


That warning is epitomized by certain powerful themes contained in Animal Farm, such as:


a) Propaganda: It takes a very important role in the novel as it represents, at first,  the catalyzer of the revolution, the vessel through which the “present and future generations” could maintain intact the ideals and beliefs of the movement; it helps the indignant and fed up animals to channel their frustration and eventually vent it against their oppressors. Nevertheless, it eventually turns against the population, as it is used as a method of mind control, a way to keep the animals from realizing the poor conditions in which they now live in and the reigning inequality of their farm.


b) Ignorance: One of the main reasons power and despotism are perpetuated in the novel, is the ever present, ever growing ignorance of the rest of the animals. Despite the fact that certain rules have been created and written in plain sight in order to ensure the peaceful existence in the farm, most of the animals can´t read and those than can, easily forget what was written before, remaining ignorant of the convenient overnight changes applied to the rules that condone the atrocities committed by the ruling oppressors. The main message is this: if people do not take it upon themselves to think and learn freely, they will always depend and be forever enslaved to the agenda of those who tell them what to think and what allegedly is true.


c) Military power: The way Napoleon, the leader of the farm´s ruling class, literally “gets away with murder” is by procuring himself a private military force in the form of huge, vicious dogs. It is thus that he is able to get rid of his potential rivals and enemies, impose his own perfidious agenda and keep the rest of the animals in check. In this case, Orwell denounces perhaps the most powerful tool a despot has over his subjects: the military force; it exemplifies the infallible method by which Napoleon suppresses any form of resistance, forces compliance over the rest of the animals and guarantees his place as a ruler in the farm.


d) A common and never-ending threat: The way Napoleon unifies the animals and abates any trace of dissatisfaction from their part, is by keeping them in a constant state of fear, utilizing hate as a common banner against a chimerical enemy. Whenever a certain faction of the animal population raises a complaint against the status quo, suddenly there arises an attack from the evil Snowball, a former leader of the farm, vanquished for his devious and treacherous convictions, or so Napoleon and his minions claim. And not only that, but Snowball is also pointed as a direct cause for any shortcoming the present ruling system might have; therefore, it is only because of Snowball´s actions, and not the present social organization´s own faults, that problems in the farm arise. It´s this way that the ruling stratum shakes off any type of responsibility and merely busies itself with denouncing Snowball´s infamous actions as the farm´s main social cancer.


This is merely a summary of the vast number of topics the novel approaches, thus rendering us a clear view of what Orwell saw in the Russian revolution and the country´s eventual social organization.


Lest I turn this review into an essay, I will conclude here by saying that in Animal Farm we have a mesmerizing novel, poignant in its portrayal of a highly ideal gone wrong and whose vast depth shines through the pages directly at us. The story itself is utterly engrossing; the characters are at times strikingly and touchingly human and its chief message only enriches even more this must read classic. Absolutely wonderful!


  1. Hey, Nice Blog..!! Saw you on goodreads.com

    I've clicked to 'join this site' and follow you. Would really appreciate a click follow back @


    Many thanks and all the best. Look forward to reading.


    1. Absolutely! Thanks for visiting and for the follow. Hope you drop by often =D
      Already following you!

      Read you later!