Prompt: Fear is the most important weapon used by those in power.
‘Animal Farm’, a novel by George Orwell, depicts a group of animals who rebel against their master and take over the farm. ‘Animal Farm’ is an allegory for the Russian Revolution and many themes in ‘Animal Farm’ reflect those of the Revolution. In ‘Animal Farm’, fear is an an important weapon used by those in power, however intelligence and language are equally important. Orwell reveals that those lacking intelligence are easy to control, the use of language makes people vulnerable to manipulation, and how those in power use fear to gain control over society.
Orwell displays how those lacking intelligence are susceptible to being controlled by those of a higher education. In ‘Animal Farm’, many different types of intelligence are shown. The pigs claim power by stating that they are the most intelligent animals on the farm, therefore being the rightful leaders. The pigs claim that they need apples and milk in their mash, a privilege not available for the other animals, as their minds are so important to the organisation of Animal Farm. “It is for your sake that we drink that milk and eat those apples.” (P. 25) This shows how the pigs use their intelligence to their advantage, claiming that they deserve to be treated better than the other animals on the farm. Not only do the pigs use their intelligence to gain privileges, they also use it to manipulate the animals. “The birds did not understand Snowball's long words, but they accepted his explanation.” (P. 15) Due to their lack of intelligence, the birds could not comprehend what Snowball was saying. They could easily be manipulated because they would accept whatever Snowball said without fully understanding him. During the Russian Revolution, the peasants were also uneducated. Joseph Stalin used this to gain control over Russia and to manipulate many people. Using the pigs, Orwell reflects Stalin’s wrongful use of intelligence in ‘Animal Farm’. Throughout ‘Animal Farm’, it is evident that intelligence is among the most important weapons of power.
Orwell reveals how the use of language makes people vulnerable to manipulation. On Animal Farm, the animals heartily embrace Old Major’s visionary ideal of socialism, but after Major dies, the pigs slowly distort the meaning of his words. As a result, the animals seem unable to oppose the pigs without also opposing the ideas of the Rebellion. The pigs gradually twist the seven commandments to justify their behaviour and keep the other animals in the dark. By the end of the novel, after Squealer’s repeated changes of the seven commandments, the main principle of the farm is reduced to “all animals are equal but some animals are more equal than others.” (P. 57) By this point, the animals are so brainwashed that they don't notice that ‘more equal than...