Reoccurring Themes In Animal Farm By George Orwell

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‘Animal Farm’, an allegorical novella by George Orwell, paints a vivid picture of the events leading up to the 1917 Russian Revolution and the Stalinist era of the Soviet Union. The way in which Orwell writes this novella allows his strong views and several reoccurring themes to stand out. A couple of themes that are particularly prevalent in his work is the corruption of power and leadership, and the use of intelligence and education to fuel oppression. Orwell uses the imagery of a farm and the farmyard animals to model Russia at the time as well as a large variety of other techniques; such as satire, to portray his views and messages. At the start of the text, the character ‘Old Major’ gives his final speech and states that in order to progress…show more content…
After Old Major dies, the pigs a point themselves as the leaders, as pigs are “recognized as being the cleverest of the animals”. At the start of their reign they worked honestly to serve the animals and towards a common cause; the revolution. They continue the work that Old Major started. However, as they grow more corrupt they begin to use intelligence and education to oppress the other animals. Their greed overcomes their honesty and they use their superior intellect to fool and manipulate the other animals. Later in the text the pigs find a children’s book which they teach themselves to read and write from. However when they are finished with the book they destroy it therefore stopping any chance of the other animals being of equal intellect. After the pigs have ensured that they will remain the smartest they begin to use their academic advantage to manipulate the other animals. With their new found skills along with their leadership positions, the pigs opt out of physical work and instead tend to the organisation and directing of Manor Farm. This opens up many doors of opportunity for the pigs but also allows them to close as many of these doors as they please. This theme of using intelligence and education to manipulate a population was not only prevalent during the time the text was written but is also important in today’s society. For example, during this ‘technological age’, the media holds the power to persuade and manipulate their audience into believing whatever they want them to. This power is often used for good but more often used for bad, feeding false information to the ignorant and
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