STUDY NOTES FOR EACH CHAPTER IN ‘ANIMAL FARM’
CHAPTER 1-DREAMS OF A BETTER FUTURE
The farm animals symbolise the different figures from the Russian Revolution of 1917 and this chapter introduces us to the theme of revolution. Old Major is the main figure in this chapter and he lights the spark of revolution on the farm. He is a symbol for leaders of the Russian revolution. In this chapter many of the animals are described in half-human ways e.g. Clover the mare, ‘who never quite got her figure back after her fourth foal.’ Orwell will show us the strengths and weaknesses of these animals in very human ways. The writing style is simple and plain which fits in with the writing style of fables.
CHAPTER 2-THE ANIMALS CONTROL THE FARM
With the death of Old Major, there is now an opportunity for younger figures to continue the revolution and use it to propel themselves into power. Napoleon, Snowball and Squealer are cleverer, sneakier and more aggressive than the other animals and they soon rise to power as leaders of the revolutionary movement. The other animals are cautious about continuing with the revolution, but Squealer persuades them to continue. The seven commandments are important to ensure there is equality for all animals. The first 2 commandments and the last, seek to unite the animal world and create some basic beliefs for the animals to share.
CHAPTER 3-IMPROVED LIFE ON THE FARM
The revolution starts to move away from the idea of a classless society with the pigs failing to use their labour. We start to see the beginnings of a social hierarchy (order). The animals go along with this for they fear a return to the days of Mr. Jones. Squealer sees that by using fear, it is easy to persuade the animals. This chapter also shows the division between Snowball and Napoleon. Snowball is the ‘thinker;’ his acts and ideas are for the animals’ benefit e.g. “the Whiter Wool Movement” for the sheep. Napoleon in contrast becomes subtly, more evil e.g. his involvement with the puppies.
CHAPTER 4-THE FARM IS DEFENDED AGAINST MR JONES AND HIS ‘BUDDIES.’
Napoleon is never mentioned in this chapter, suggesting he wasn’t involved in the fighting, so how supportive is he of the animals’ revolution? We see Snowball as brave, intelligent and a leader. He has studied Caesar’s battle plans. By receiving a medal for his heroism, the tension between Snowball and Napoleon will come to a point where Napoleon will take drastic measures. The attack by humans on the farm shows how threatened they feel by the animals.
CHAPTER 5-CONFLICT BETWEEN NAPOLEON AND SNOWBALL
The conflict between Snowball and Napoleon increases. Snowball is the thinker and the visionary whilst Napoleon is authoritarian. The puppies, now killer dogs, show us that the
dogs, once a farm resource, have been turned by Napoleon to act against other animals. This goes against Old Major’s ideas. Squealer’s role increases and he uses persuasive techniques and strategies to calm the animals,...