Animal Farm Essay examples

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Animal Farm

Russian communism is a vast topic that stretches over many years. It would be impossible to study all of it in a realistic amount of time. For this reason George Orwell wrote the book Animal farm to condense the important issues in an easily comprehendible way. In the book Animal Farm, Orwell oversimplifies the story through the use of a farm as a metaphor to represent the complex political figures and the policies of the USSR. The animals are used portray people such as Lenin and Trotsky, while events such as the Great Purge, the 5 year plan and the Ukrainian Farmer revolt were substituted for challenges and events on the farm. Orwell uses the pigs as a representation of prominent political leaders such as Lenin and Stalin as well as using the “lesser” animals to represent different social casts. The first instance we see of this is in Old Major, the creator of 'Animalism'. He is representative of Karl Marx, the founder of communism, but also in some ways symbolizes the original communist leader - Vladimir Lenin. We see evidence of this when Old major's skull is displayed in a similar manner to the way Lenin's remains were displayed to the public. Snowball represents Leo Trotsky. Trotsky was one of the original communist revolutionaries in Russia. However, as Stalin rose to power Trotsky became one of his biggest enemies, and in 1925 was expelled from the Politburo. In the novel, Snowball was exiled similarly from the farm just as Trotsky had been from Russia in 1929. Trotsky was not just physically exiled, he was also expelled from the minds of Russian citizens. His historical role was altered; his face cut out of group photographs of the leaders of the revolution. In Snowball underwent similar treatment, as he became a scapegoat for everything that went wrong on the farm. His value in The Battle of Cowshed was altered and his image warped until he became the unfounded enemy of Animal farm. On of the last important simplifications is Napoleon as Joseph Stalin, the second leader of the Soviet Union. Napoleon leads the farm from the very beginning, unlike in the USSR when Lenin maintains a short rule. However, we can see distinct similarities between the two. Napoleon was not a good public speaker and not nearly as eloquent as Snowball who “won over the majority with his magnificent speeches”(46). This is very characteristic of Stalin who was not persuasive with his words like Trotsky nor was he educated as well as Trotsky. Another prominent similarity was both Napoleon’s and Stalin’s ambition for power. They did not hesitate to kill and mislead the masses into following them. Orwell oversimplifies the events and policies of the USSR to represent the struggles and challenges the animals face on the farm. One major example of this is the Hens, who represent Peasant Farmers in the USSR. In Chapter seven, Napoleon orders the hens to “surrender their eggs”(76) in an effort to help feed and earn money for the farm. This is a direct reference to Stalin's plan of collectivization and the rebellion that took place in Ukraine protesting it. In the beginning, the hens tried to resist, just as the farmers of the Ukraine did. But both in the book and in real life they were eventually starved into submission. During the hens revolt the Hens smashed their own eggs to protest against Napoleon's actions. In the same manner Ukrainian farmers would kill their own livestock before as a protest against collectivization. Furthermore we see examples of events in the