George Orwell's Animal Farm
George Orwell wrote ‘Animal Farm’ as an allegory, which is a simple
story, with a more complicated idea running alongside it. In this
case, it is a story about a group of pigs taking over a farm, and the
story of the Russian Revolution is told underneath it. The main
characters of the revolution are portrayed in the book as follows: Mr
Jones is Czar Nicholas II, the last Russian leader before the
revolution; Old Major is Karl Marx, the person who influenced the
people into revolting and the idea of communism; Snowball is Trotsky,
one of the early leaders of the revolution; Napoleon is Stalin, a
cruel, selfish, and corrupt leader; and Boxer and Clover represent the
proletariat, or the ‘common’ working class people.
At the beginning of the book, Boxer is introduced as ‘an enormous
beast’, who is ‘not of first rate intelligence’, and we are also told
that he is universally respected. He has a kind, gentle, caring
character that others feel safe around ‘Last of all came the cat, who
looked around, as usual, for the warmest place, and finally squeezed
herself in between Boxer and Clover.’
Boxer and Clover are used by Orwell to represent the proletariat, or
the working class, in Russian society. This lower class is naturally
drawn to Stalin (represented by Napoleon) because it seems as though
they will benefit most from his new system. Since Boxer and the other
low animals are not accustomed to the "good life," they can't really
compare Napoleon's government to the life they had before under Jones.
The proletariat are also quite good at convincing each other that
communism is a good idea, ‘they absorbed everything that they were
told, and passed it on to the others’.
Boxer’s hardworking nature is displayed throughout the book. For
example, the animals spent weeks and weeks building a windmill, and
when one morning they woke up to find it had been destroyed, all the
animals were distraught, except Boxer. Boxer’s solution to this
problem, and many others, was ‘I will work harder!’ However, Boxer
doesn’t see that he is overworking himself, and no matter what
Benjamin and Clover try to tell him, he insists that everything will
be solved if he works harder. Also, Boxer is a simple character and,
like most of the other animals, doesn’t see that the pigs are taking
advantage, and after Snowball is overthrown, Boxer lives by his two
mottoes ‘I will work harder’ and ‘Napoleon is always right’.
Old Benjamin, an elderly donkey, is unchanged by the rebellion. He
still does his work the same way, never becoming...