The Callous Nature Of Government Illustrated In Orwell's Animal Farm

2379 words - 10 pages

The Callous Nature of Government
The establishment of an elite power in a society produces feelings of hopelessness and fear. George Orwell, a world-renowned author, is known for his politically influenced works regarding socialism. In Animal Farm, Orwell creates a satire based on the communist regime of Russia from 1917–1943. The animals seeking freedom under their liberators, the pigs, revolt against their oppressive owner, Farmer Jones. Ironically, after the revolution, the Pigs, led by Napoleon, become the oppressors. Orwell’s most influential novel Nineteen Eighty-Four describes a society under totalitarian control. The dictatorship of Big Brother in Oceania, rule over the population with strict laws and a distinct hierarchy. Winston Smith, a blue-collar Outer Party member is secretly discontent with his life. When he begins to rebel against the Party, he is found out, brutally forced to rehabilitate, and required to conform to their ideals. In both novels, the authorities use their power to gain superior status at the expense of others, the government control of the population, poor treatment of the working class, and the disallowance of basic needs, illustrate the destructive nature of the antagonists.
The government control of the population in both works is manipulative and brutal. The pigs in Animal Farm use songs to control the thoughts of the other animals. The pigs teach, “all the humbler animals…the maxim FOUR LEGS GOOD, TWO LEGS BAD…the sheep developed a great liking for the maxim and would start bleating…for hours on end” (Animal Farm 22). Initially, the Pigs lead all the animals to believe that anything on four legs is a friend and anything on two, namely humans, are the enemy. However, later on when the pigs gain more power, they inform the other animals that they will start trading with humans and change the maxim to, “Four legs good, two legs better…by the time the sheep had quieted down the chance to utter any protest had passed” (Animal Farm 89). At first when the pigs establish slogans they are the basis of the original rebellion against Farmer Jones. These seven commandments serve as a reminder of what the animals fought for, it also serves to enforce morals and values amongst the community. Sadly, the pigs begin to change the commandments as they acquire further dominance. "Some of the animals remembered--or thought they remembered--that the Sixth Commandment decreed 'No animal shall kill any other animal.' And though no one cared to mention it in the hearing of the pigs or the dogs, it was felt that the killings which had taken place did not square with this" (Animal Farm 65). The principles that distinguish the animals on Animal Farm from those on neighbouring farms have been tainted. The pigs change the commandments according to their needs and when the animals realize this, it is too late and the pigs join the dominating status of humans, further enslaving the animals. When keeping order on Animal Farm became...

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