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Satire Project

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Matthew Spicer

on 10 June 2012

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Transcript of Satire Project

Satire Literary work in which human vice or folly is attacked Satire in Animal Farm Napoleon is a satirical caricature of Stalin. He is an attack on Stalin's pride and lust for power Orwell uses the pigs to satirically attack the gluttony and greed of the communist leaders of Russia. Pigs are, by nature, gluttonous animals.


As the pigs become more consumed by greed/gluttony, they manipulate the seven commandments to justify why they should be allowed certain luxuries that contradict the origional ideals of Animalism. For example, no animal shall drink alcohol...to excess. He has the pigs--his purposeful parallel to the Communist leaders--adopt greed and gluttony to show how these vices corrupted Stalin's government. Orwell attacks the sloth of certain educated yet apathetic Russians through Benjamin. Contemporary Examples John Stewart- "Cluster%/#@*$ to the Poor House" In this video Stewart responds to several news clips that illustrate the difficult economic situation many Americans were experiencing a year ago compared to the multimillion dollar bonuses being paid to executives of bailed-out Wall Street firms. Stewart is using direct satire. He is straightforwardly mocking the greed and ignorance of large Wall Street banks and governmet officials who supported those banks. Sarcasm is used to make Henry Paulson and Timothy Geitner's explanations for the massive bailouts sound ridiculous. Stewart also paints the large bonuses as very ironic. The banks, which in desperation were bailed out by the taxpayer, are paying outrageous bonuses to their employees while the taxpayers that saved them continue to suffer as a result of the situation the banks caused in the first place. Stewart's sharp, yet very humorous criticisms of the big banks and government bailouts exemplify Horatian satire. Stewart compares news reels showing how tough life is for average taxpayer and news clips reporting the outrageous bonuses of Wall Street to help set up and validate his mocking and criticism. The video demonstrates how the satiric manner often references things that society might find disgusting like "balls." This Family Guy clip is a parody of a public town hall meeting between undecided voters and candidates for mayor in the fictional town of Quahog. The clip uses parody to criticize the follies of uninformed voters and the politicians that take advantage of them. It portrays undecided voters as easy-to-manipulate, simple, and uninformed by showing how easily they are won over with emotionally-charged statements that lack substance. The satiric criticism in this clip is Horatian--much lighter than the type Orwell uses. "I'd have a beer with him" and all the 9/11 references by Lois Griffin allude to George Bush which suggests that the makers of Family Guy are criticizing the people who voted for him for making that choice for the wrong reasons. Family Guy: "Undecided Voters" Colbert uses exaggeration by issuing a "Red Alert" over 7-11's downsized Big Gulp and calling it an "assault on the American way of life." He is trying to show how uninportant the issue is by making it seem like a tragedy. He goes so far as to allude to 9/11 in his exaggeration. In this clip, Colbert covers the issue of 7-11 trying to downsize its Big Gulp by a few ounces. The emergency four ounce microgulp and Gulpzilla add humor to the clip. This light-hearted, humorous criticism is Horation satire. Animal Farm is an example of dystopian satire. The setting ultimately evolves into a farm controlled by tyrannical, totalitarian pigs where life is miserable for the common animals--a dystopian world with which to contrast the USSR. Orwell's novel contains humor, but it is really a scathing, serious criticism of communist Russia under Stalin. For this reason, it is Juvenalian satire. Through allegorical animal caricatures, he attacks all the human vices. Below are a few examples. attack on pride/lust for power attack on greed/gluttony attack on sloth often attack the follies of political figures or celebrities or poke fun at aspects of U.S. society

The Daily Show, The Colbert Report, Family Guy all use satire to convey messages.

often Horatian in nature and geared more towards making the audience laugh than Orwell's harsh, serious, Juvenalien satire 2 types: Juvenalien and Horatian Can be either direct or indirect methods of indirect satire include: Colbert Report: "Thought for Food Red Alert" Napoleon is a PIG.... Pigs are never satisfied; they always want to consume as much as possible. Napoleon consumes as much power as possible and arrogently displays it for all to see. He drives Snowball out in order to seize control of the farm for himself. He ends the farm meetings that gave common animals a say in farm operations. He has Squealer paint his portrait on the barn and has Minimus compose poems that exhault his leadership. His pride and lust for power ironically turn him into a more tyrannical dictator than Jones ever was. He kills animals who disagree with him, such as the hens and some of the pigs. Napoleon Represents Stalin Every trait of Napoleon and all his actions allegorically parallel Stalin. For example: Stalin driving out Leon Trotsky from the USSR parallels Napoleon driving out Snowball. Stalin carried out purges of his own military and government officials just as Napoleon killed off some of the pigs that expressed disagreement towards him. Stalin used misleading propaganda to boost his image just as Napoleon has Squealer convince the animals that his decisions were best for every animal on the farm. Stalin put his country through five year ecnomic plans that had a huge human cost just as Napoleon works the animals excruciatingly hard to build and rebuild the windmill. Orwell is saying that Stalin is a PIG! Pigs are disgusting, looked-down-upon animals. Everyone knows they consume more than they need. Orwell brutally satirizes Stalin by making him a pig who treats power like pig slop; he cannot get enough. In Animal Farm, their gluttony and greed intensify as the story progresses The pigs (even Snowball) reserve the milk and apples for themselves. The windmill, once it is finally built, is used to make profits for the pigs rather than improve life on the farm for commoners. Squealer (who is so fat that by the end of the plot his vision is almost impaired) and the other pigs reap the food and profit the farm produces without doing any real physical labor while the common animals live in a cold barn and work long hours in the fields with little food. The Pigs parallel the Communist Party The Communist party became the new Russian ruling class just as the pigs became the new masters of Animal Farm. High ranking Communist officials and the pigs enjoyed more comfortable lives even though, according to communism/animalism, everyone was supposed the be equal. The pigs and communist leaders both exploited uneducated indivudals and exercised control over them with the use of misleading propaganda. Karl Marx's origional idea of classes society is corrupted by Stalin and his fellow communist leaders just as the seven commandments are corrupted by the pigs. Orwell is attacking Russian Leaders by reducing them to greedy and gluttonous pigs. Benjamin is a Donkey. Donkeys have a reputation for being cranky and stubborn animals. Benjamin is one of the few literate animals besides pigs on the farm, yet he almost always keeps that talent to himself. He stubbornly refuses to become optimistic about the Rebellion. His answer to excitement and curiosity about the revolution is "Donkeys live a long time. None of you has ever seen a dead donkey." When Snowball and Napoleon argue about building the windmill, Benjamin refuses to take a side. He refuses to believe that either plan could improve the animals lives. But instead of proposing his own solution, he cynically sits back and watches the debate the unfold. Message: Once in power, leaders can easily be corrupted by their material greed and gluttony. They will use their power to indulge their vices rather than serve the comman man. Message: Some leaders will take as much power as they can. The lust for absolute power of people like Stalin must be checked before it spirals out of control at the expense of the common man. Benjamin Represents Educated Russians Who did not Alert the Masses to their Leaders' Corruption. Both Benjamin and these Russians disagreed with their leaders but were too apathetic to oppose them. These educated Russians and Benjamin are both wise enough to see through propaganda, but refuse to help others see through it. The sloth of both helps keep a totalitarian regime is power. Orwell is calling those educated yet apathetic Russians stubborn donkeys! In this satirical attack, he is showing his disgust at the donkey-like stubborness of these people who sat back and complained when they saw corruption instead of confronting it. He is ridiculing their sloth by giving that vice to Benjamin the wise yet cranky donkey who misses his chance to do a lot of good for his fellow animals by calling attention to corruption. Message: Educated, capable people need to confront government corruption instead of just complaining about it. Satiric tools/characteristics Description Message Wall Street should not be allowed to give out millions of dollars in bonuses to its employees while the taxpayers that bailed them out continue to suffer in the poor economy. Satiric tools/characteristics Description Message Undecided voters do not vote based on an informed political opinion, but instead allow themselves to be swayed by the "glittering generalties" of manipulative politicians. Colbert is criticizing the American gluttony that would lead Paul Sunby and others like him to be so concerned over such a nonissue. Satiric tools/characteristics 7-11's downsized Big Gulp need not concern Americans and should not have made the news. We are much too gluttonous if we care that the Big Gulp will be four ounces smaller. Message Description By Matthew Spicer The End. -exaggeration/dimunization
-parody
-caricature
-utopianism/dystopianism
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