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Transcript of ANIMAL
Beginning of the struggle between Stalin, who supported the theory of the "Socialism in One Country", and Trotsky who wanted to export the revolution out of the Russian limits in a "Permanent Revolution".
Starvation of millions of people who did not want to work for Stalin
After the initial refusal of humans to refer to the farm as using its new name, and persisting in calling it “Manor Farm”, the other farms finally recognize the "Animal Farm".
Russian civil war between the
Bolshevik Red Army
and the Counter-revolutionary White Army aided by France and England.
The war ended in 1920 with the victory of the Red Army.
"Secret Police" became official
"Treaty of Non-aggression between Germany and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics"
also known as the
23 August 1939
Start of Labor
Abdication and murder of Tsar Nicholas II
Mr. Jones' banishment
Pigs encouraged the
animals to work hard
on the farm
"Battle of the Cowshed" organised by the animal to defend themselves against Mr. Jones' attempt of taking the control of the farm back. Though other farmers gave him their support, the battle ended with the victory of the Animals.
Napoleon and Snowball begin to show different opinions about the extension of the revolution to the other farms
Building of the windmill
Snowball is chased away by the dogs,being blamed for the windmill collapse
Start of Industrialization with
various five years plans
Hens starved to death, when they did not want to sell eggs
After the lack of diplomatic recognition of the Sovietic Union on the part of the occidental power in the early years after the Revolution, USA finally recognizes the USSR.
the Nazists set fire to the German Parliament
and blame the Communists
A storm topples the windmill and
Napoleon blames Snowball
so that it'shaunted by the hounds
Dogs helped Napoleon to search through the private belongings of the animals
Napoleon forces "confessions" from innocent animals and has the dogs kill them in front of the entire farm. Death of four pigs, three hens, goose and sheep
Purges, confessions and show trials of Stalin's opponents, terror climaxes with labor camps and concentration camps
The animals sell wood to Frederick,
owner of the Pinchfield farm and allegory of Hitler.
Frederick's banknotes are nought so the animals have been swindled. He and his men attack the farm and explode the windmill but are eventually defeated in the
"Battle ofthe Windmill" in which many animals die.
Hitler decides to invade Russia, breakig the nazi-soviet pact, but his plan fails thanks to the gelid Russian winter and the brave standoff
"Battle of Stalingrad"
The pigs and the farmers dine together
A strategy meeting between Stalin, Roosvet and Churchill held in 1943
"...The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again: but already it was impossible to say which was which."
The progressive corruption of the pigs and the
twisting of the commandments represent the drift toward the tyrannical dispotism of the USSR under the Stalinian Rule.
Timeline of the events of the Russian Revolution compared with the goings-on in the book
As the entire novel is an allegory for the Russian Revolution of 1917, it has a strong symbology: each character represents one of the protagonists of the politics of the time and each event in the novel is related to a real episode of the Revolution.
The prize-winning boar whose vision of a socialist utopia serves as the inspiration for the Rebellion. He dies three days after describing the vision and teaching the animals the song “Beasts of England”
One of the creators of communism
The communist leader of the Russian Revolution and the early Soviet nation.
The Old Major's skull being put on revered public display recalls Lenin, whose embalmed body was put on display.
The main villain of the animal farm.
"...A large, rather fierce-looking Berkshire boar, the only Berkshire on the farm, not much of a talker, but with a reputation for getting his own way..."
Dictator and leader of the USSR since 1924 until 1953
Napoleon's rival and original head of the farm after Jones' overthrow
Russian Marxist revolutionary and theorist, Soviet politician, and the founder and first leader of the Red Army.
Right-arm of Napoleon who spreads his propaganda among the other animals, justifies the pigs’ monopolization of resources and spreads false statistics pointing to the farm’s success.
Soviet politician and diplomat, an Old Bolshevik, and a leading figure in the Soviet government. He rose to power as a protégé of Joseph Stalin
The poet pig who writes verse about Napoleon and pens the banal patriotic song “Animal Farm, Animal Farm” to replace the earlier idealistic hymn “Beasts of England,” which Old Major had passed on to the others.He stands for the mechanism of propaganda under the regime.
Hinted to be the children of Napoleon they are the first generation of animals subjugated to his idea of animal inequality and represent the indoctrination under the dictatorial regime.
Four pigs who complain about Napoleon's takeover of the farm but are quickly silenced and later executed. They represent the objectors who were brutally murder under the dictatorship.
The young pigs
Two dogs whose puppies are taken away by Napoleon in order to “educate” them.
Jessie and Bluebells
Reared by Napoleon to be his security force, they represent the Secret Police
The raven who regales Animal Farm's denizens with tales of a wondrous place beyond the clouds called "Sugarcandy Mountain, that happy country where we poor animals shall rest forever from our labours!"
Initially it followsMrs. Jones into exile, but then he reappears several years later and resumes his role of talking but not working.
It represents the Russian Ortodox Church, brought back by Stalin.
the black raven of priestcraft—promising pie in the sky when you die, and faithfully serving whoever happens to be in power.
Orwell portrays established religions as:
A loyal, kind, dedicated, hard working, and respectable cart-horse, although quite naive and gullible. Boxer does a large share of the physical labor on the farm, adhering to the simplistic belief that working harder will solve all the animal's problems.
Clover - A good-hearted female cart-horse and Boxer’s close friend who often suspects the pigs of violating one or another of the Seven Commandments.
The vain, flighty mare who pulls Mr. Jones’s carriage. She has a difficult time with her new life on Animal Farm, as she misses wearing ribbons in her mane and eating sugar cubes. She represents the petit bourgeoisie that fled from Russia a few years after the Russian Revolution.
The long-lived donkey who refuses to feel inspired by the Rebellion. Benjamin firmly believes that life will remain unpleasant no matter who is in charge. He alone comprehends the changes that take place, but he seems either unwilling or unable to oppose the pigs.
He stands for the author himself and for those who didn't believe in the revolution.
They show limited understanding of the Animalism and the political atmosphere of the farm, yet nonetheless they blindly support Napoleon's ideals with vocal jingles during his speeches and meetings with Snowball. They stand for the masses.
They are among the first to rebel against Napoleon and to be killed because of their refusal to give their eggs away to be sold. They represent the opposition to the regime.
She has no interest in the politics of the farm, and the only time she is recorded as having participated in an election, she is found to have actually "voted on both sides".
She represents political apathetic people.
His two mottoes are “I will work harder” and “Napoleon is always right.”
The former owner of the farm, Jones is a very heavy drinker. The animals revolt against him after he drinks so much that he does not feed or take care of them.
He abdicated following the February Revolution of 1917 and was executed, along with the rest of his family, by the Bolsheviks on 17 July 1918
Tsar Nicholas II
The tough owner of Pinchfield, a small but well-kept neighbouring farm, who briefly enters into an alliance with Napoleon
He entered into a neutrality pact with Joseph Stalin's USSR only to later break it by invading the Soviet Union.
Eric Blair was born in India in 1903.
His father sent him to Eton, there he was impressed by the snobbish atmosphere and the reigning class consciousness; his dislike emerges in his books. He began to develop an independent-minded personality and he professed atheism and socialism.
He passed the India Office examinations for the Indian Imperial Police, opting to serve in Burma, where he remained from 1922 to 1927.
After this he decided not to return, he wished to break away from British Imperialism in India: he wanted to escape from every form of man’s domination over man.
In London he started a social experiment: wearing second-hand clothes, he spent short periods living in common lodging houses; in this way he directly experienced poverty and learned how institutions for the poor worked.
He decided to begin publishing his works with the pseudonym of “George Orwell”: “George” because it had an Englishness about it, “Orwell” because it was the name of the river he was fond of. He had some serious economic problems. He wrote some novels like “Down and Out in Paris and London”(1933) or “Burmese Days”(1934).
In 1936 he married Eileen O’Shaughnessy, an Oxford graduate.
Than he travel a lot: in Spain, to report the Spanish Civil War, and also in Austria, Germany and France.
He published in 1945 “Animal Farm”, his best book, and in 1949 he finished “Nineteen Eighty-four”. This two works are social allegory and contain the pessimistic vision of the world, in which people lose their identity and personality because of the totalitarian forms of government.
In fact in 1946 he wrote:
<< Every line of serious work that I have written since 1936, has been written, directly or indirectly, against totalitarianism and for democratic socialism. >>
Back in England, the Orwells adopted an infant child and called him Richard. In 1941 he joined BBC(British Broadcasting Corporation); in 1943 became the editor of “Tribune”, a socialist weekly. His wife died in 1945 and he died of tuberculosis in 1950.
THE ROLE OF THE ARTIST
Orwell’s life and work were marked by the
emotional identification with the working class
. His desire to inform, to reveal facts and draw conclusions from them, led him to believe that
interpreted reality and therefore
served a useful social function
He conveyed a vision of
and of the misery caused by
poverty and deprivation
. He insisted on
justice and decency
in human relationships, and warned against the increasing artificiality of urban civilization. Above all he presented a devastating
critique of totalitarianism
, warning against the
violation of liberty
and helping readers
to recognize tyranny
in all its forms.
“Animal Farm” was published in 1945, during the Orwell’s Spanish period. Orwell metaphorically told
the October Revolution
(1917) with a fairy and at the same time cutting tone of those who had experienced firsthand
the myth of the socialist revolution
its disastrous effects
The Soviet model changed the ruling class
maintaining the same injustices
. This is the part of the story told in Animal Farm;
the developers of revolution are the pigs
, one of theme,
the same injustices
that they suffered under Mr. Jones(Tsar Nicholas II)
, toward other animals. Therefore, the Orwell’s message is that
no one ever give up to the individual power
All animals are equal but some animals are more equal than others >>
continues to make affairs with the other farmers, declares
traitor and condemns to death four pigs and his dogs try to attack also the horse,
[The sixth commandment says that no one animal can kill another animal]
. The animals wanted a society where they would be set free and equal, but
became an oppressor. The animals won another battle against the humans, but they continued to work like slaves.
and the pigs take finally the entire power. The pigs are dressed, walk on their hind legs and also talk friendly about the farm. At the end pigs and humans dine together. The transformation is complete:
the pigs are like the humans
the animals of an English farm decide to start a rebellion against the
. A night
, the most important pig in the farm, tells to the other animals that he dreamed about a life without the
, in fact they are forced to work for him. After the
death, the animals begin to prepare for the rebellion. Two pigs,
, elaborate the Old Major’s teaching and begin to teach the ‘’animal rules” to the others.
After some months
, the farmer,
(the Man), forget feeding his animals and so they drive out him and his men from the farm.
the farm belongs to the animals; they write on a wall the “seven commandments” that are the rules living.
The animals are quick and peaceful and the farm’s work is planned out together. But begin the first problem:
are never in agreement and everyday have strong debates. They try to create class in reading and writing because of pigs are the mind of the farm and take gradually more power.
During the summer
the news of what happened on the Animal Farm spread across the country.
send many pigeons to the neighbor farms to persuade other animals to begin the rebellion.
asks help to two farmers
) but they are frightened by situation and they want to prevent an insurrection in their own farms. So, humans are frightened by the rebellions.
and his men try to enter in the farm. The animals are ready.
gives orders to everyone, in this way the men retire from the farm. The animals create a military decoration for
, the lead pig, and also for
, the horse. After the battle
, the mare, escapes to stay with humans.
During the winter
the pigs decide all questions of farm’s policy because they are cleverer than other animals. There are violent debates about the windmill that could supply the farm with electrical power and fantastic machines would do the animals’ work.
decide that the animals are divided on the vote.
is adverse to the project and utters a signal through which nine enormous dogs drive out
takes the entire power. The windmill is constructed and the animals’ life starts to become harder; all the next years animals work like slaves and no one animal can stand on his hind legs. The pigs become gradually like humans and live like them.
even changes the first commandment to
"Four legs good, two legs better"
of the windmill’s destruction and orders him to rebuilt it. The work at the windmill can’t go on because the winter and the corn ration is drastically reduced.
orders animals to hide the real situation and, to procure some grain, orders hens to produce four hundred eggs a week that will be sold; but, hens give up.
PRESENTATION OF THE WORK
"...On my return from Spain [in 1937] I thought of exposing the Soviet myth in a story that could be easily understood by almost anyone and which could be easily translated into other languages."
The pigs adapt Old Major's ideas into "a complete system of thought", which they formally name
, an allegoric reference to
Napoleon and Squealer partake in activities associated with the humans (drinking alcohol, sleeping in beds, trading), prohibited by the Seven Commandments and Squealer alters the Seven Commandments to justify this humanisation, an allusion to the Soviet government's revising of history in order to exercise control of the people's beliefs.
1. Whatever goes upon two legs is an enemy.
2. Whatever goes upon four legs, or has wings, is a friend.
3. No animal shall wear clothes.
4. No animal shall sleep in a bed.
5. No animal shall drink alcohol.
6. No animal shall kill any other animal.
7. All animals are equal
The changed commandments are as follows,
4. No animal shall sleep in a bed
5. No animal shall drink alcohol
6. No animal shall kill any other animal
Through the revision of the commandments, Orwell demonstrates how simply political dogma can be turned into malleable propaganda.
Even the Horn and Hoof on the flag of the farm are a parody of the hammer and sickle
"Of course I intended it primarily as a satire on the Russian revolution..[and] that kind of revolution (violent conspiratorial revolution, led by unconsciously power hungry people) can only lead to a change of masters [-] revolutions only effect a radical improvement when the masses are alert."
Disagreement between the allies and start of the Cold War
Napoleon and Pilkington quarells while playing cards
The shipping of pigeons to the surrounding farm to spread the Revolution represents the revolutionary wave encouraged by the Comintern which involved several European countries in the following years.
A man hired by Napoleon to act as the liaison between Animal Farm and human society. At first he is used to acquire goods needed for the farm, such as dog biscuits and paraffin, but later he procures luxuries like alcohol for the pigs.
The Russian Revolution begun because of mass shortages and hunger while the animals revolted because Jones wasn't feeding them anymore.
Orwell held the pessimistic belief that
was inevitable and so he uses a
in Animal Farm. The novel begins with Jones as autocratic tyrant and ends with Napoleon not only in Jones’s position, but in his clothes as well. Over the course of the novel, Napoleon essentially becomes Jones just as Stalin becomes an autocrat after pretending to espouse equality and freedom.
The circularity of Orwell’s story prevents the reader from imagining a better future for Animal Farm. After all, even if another Rebellion were to take place, its leaders would eventually come to emulate Napoleon.
From the very beginning of the novel, we become aware of education’s role in stratifying Animal Farm’s population. Following Major’s death, the pigs are the ones that take on the task of organizing and mobilizing the other animals because they are “generally recognized as being the cleverest of the animals” . It is not long before the pigs’ intelligence and education turn from tools of enlightenment to implements of oppression. The moment the pigs are faced with something material that they want—the fresh milk—they abandon their morals and use their superior intellect and knowledge to deceive the other animals.The pigs take the fresh milk and apples and justify their actions on the basis of their superiority; they are smart and need more nutrition than the other animals to fuel their brainpower. There is no scientific basis for the pigs’ claim— if anyone needs more food to fuel their labor, it is the manual laborers—but they can count on the animals’ being too ignorant to realize that. In this way, Orwell makes the point that totalitarianism can hide under the guise of the “greater good” as it did in the Soviet Union before the totalitarianism became obvious.
The pigs also limit the other animals’ opportunities to gain intelligence and education early on. They teach themselves to read and write from a children’s book but destroy it before the other animals can have the same chance. They use their mental advantage to manipulate the other animals and knowing that the other animals cannot read the Seven Commandments, they revise them whenever they like.
Working as a propagandist during World War II, Orwell experienced firsthand both the immense power and the dishonesty of propaganda. Squealer can make the animals believe almost anything. This fact is especially clear in his interactions with Clover and Muriel. Each time Clover suspects that the Seven Commandments have been changed, Squealer manages to convince her that she is wrong. After the executions, Napoleon abolishes the singing of “Beasts of England” in favor of a new anthem, the lyrics of which contain a promise never to harm Animal Farm. In this propagandist maneuver, Napoleon replaces the revolutionary spirit of “Beasts of England” with the exact opposite, a promise not to rebel.
Each time the animals dare to question an aspect of Napoleon’s regime, Squealer threatens them with Jones’s return. This is doubly threatening to the animals because it would mean another battle that, if lost, would result in a return to their former lifestyle of submission. Napoleon is also able to vilify Snowball in the latter’s absence and to make the animals believe that his return, like Jones’s, is imminent. Snowball becomes the terrorist responsible for the infringements on the rights and liberties instigated by the pigs.
In Animal Farm, Orwell criticizes the ways that dictators use violence and terror to frighten their populaces into submission. Jones overworks the animals, steals the products of their labor and whips or slaughters them at his discretion. Once the pigs gain control of the animals, they, like Jones, discover how useful violence and terror can be. They use this knowledge to their full advantage. The foremost example of violence and terror in the novel is the pattern of public executions which represent the abuse of power.
Orwell’s use of the allegory genre serves him well in the execution scene. Execution with weapons is a violent and horrifying act, but many people have become desensitized to it. Orwell’s allegorical executioners, the dogs that kill cruelly, portray the bloody and inescapably animalistic side of execution.
Initially, the animals do not realize Jones is exploiting them and Old Major’s speech is a revelation of momentous proportions Orwell suggests that exploitation is, in fact, bound to happen when one class of society has an advantage over another. The opposite of exploitation, according to Major, is the state of being “rich and free.” Major’s ideas about animal rights symbolize the importance—and scarcity—of human rights in an oppressive regime.
All the animals on Animal Farm are exploited under Napoleon’s control, save the pigs. Even the dogs, which work closely with the pigs, are exploited as they are made into agents of intimidation and death. Whereas Napoleon exploits the other animals’ physical strength and their ignorance, he exploits the dogs’ viciousness and turns them into villains against their parents’ wishes.
Boxer’s life is a particularly sad example of exploitation because he exploits himself, believing wholeheartedly in Napoleon’s goodness. In the end, Napoleon turns the tables and exploits Boxer, having him slaughtered for profit. By the end of the novel, we see clearly how the animals participate in their own exploitation. They are beginning to build a schoolhouse for the thirty-one young pigs Napoleon has fathered That schoolhouse will never benefit the animals that build it; rather, it will be used to educate the pigs and indoctrinate them into the cycle of exploiting others.
The inevitability of Totalitarianism
Violence and terror as means of control
Exploitation and the need of human rights
The easygoing gentleman farmer who runs Foxwood, a neighboring farm. Mr. Frederick’s bitter enemy, Mr. Pilkington represents the capitalist governments of England and the United States.