Animal Farm By George Orwell: A Comparison Of The Novel And Stalinist Russia

1484 words - 6 pages

In George Orwell's Animal Farm, a group of mistreated farm animals revolted against their human tyrant, Mr. Jones. The pigs, known to be the wisest of the animals, immediately established themselves as the new leaders of the farm, practicing what they called "Animalism" (a synonym for Communism). The farm animal's naïve trust in the pigs made it simple for this new society to evolve into a totalitarian society very similar to Mr. Jones. George Orwell surely modeled Animal Farm's characters and actions after the Russian Revolution in 1917 and its post-revolution period.Old Major was the one who had envisioned and proposed Animalism-a "revolutionary dictatorship of the proletariat." However, according to Old Major, this could only be achieved by revolting against "the only creature that consumes without producing." In other words, without Man, animals would no longer starve or be overworked. Of course, the time and place of the rebellion was unknown. Therefore, his philosophy was only an ideal. It was easy to say that Old Major was portrayed as a "good guy", but he had small inconsistencies which allowed the reader to question the motives of this venerable pig. For instance, in the midst of his long list of complaints and detailed mistreatments of each and every animal, he was forced to admit that he had not been a target of the cruelty. In fact, he had lived a life free from the terrors he had vividly described for his audience. He was twelve years old, which was the typical life span of a pig, and had over four hundred children. But to gain the support of the animals, he assured them that "no animal escapes the cruel knife in the end," in order to insure their support for his vision. Old Major was an obvious portrayal of Karl Marx. Marx was known as a grand philosopher. It was he who had originally proposed the idea for communism. Marx has envisioned a classless society ruled by, none other than, the proletariat. Old Major was also slightly modeled after Vladimir Ilych Lenin. Lenin was the leader of the Bolshevik Party that seized control after the revolution in 1917. Just as Old Major died before the Rebellion, Lenin died before he "could witness the way his followers carried out the work of the reform."From the beginning, Napoleon, a fierce Berkshire boar, "emerged as a corrupt opportunist." He never showed any real interest in Animal Farm. He was merely concerned about the strength of his power and domination in Animal Farm. Thus, he was only concerned with the education of a litter of puppies in order to train them into his elite guards. Napoleon deceived the others by allowing them to believe he was protecting their best interest. However, as soon as he had situated himself as the official leader, he betrayed the "democratic principles on which he rode to power". Of course, Joseph Stalin did the exact same thing in Russia-increasing his control over the Communist Party and eventually proclaiming himself as the absolute dictator. Like...

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