Essay on Ch 5 Animal Farm

Submitted By colleenkeenan
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Colleen Keenan
5/15/13
Period 6
Rappoport
Chapter 5 Animal Farm
Allusion:
The three dogs that were raised by Napoleon are a mythological allusion to the three-headed dog Cerberus. He was in charge of guarding the gates of Hades. It is said that he had a serpent’s tail, a mane of vicious snakes, and was without pity. Its master was Hades, the god of the underworld, and the basic equivalent to the devil. The dogs prevented the animals and pigs from questioning Napoleon when he took power and chased away Snowball. By doing so, it is as if they are trying to escape Animalism (or the way Napoleon rules it). In this way, Orwell compares the new world of Animal Farm under Napoleon as Hell. The dogs will persecute them if they try to leave or lose faith and betray Napoleon. The book compares them to a pack of wolves, pointing out their savagery. If Napoleon is the new leader, this means he is symbolic for Hades as well.
Hesiod, Theogony 769 ff :
"And before them [the halls of Hades and Persephone] a dreaded hound (deinos kunos) [Kerberos, Cerberus], on watch, who has no pity, but a vile stratagem: as people go in he fawns on all, with actions of his tail and both ears, but he will not let them go back out, but lies in wait for them and eats them up, when he catches any going back through the gates."
Symbolism:
The skull of Old Major sitting on a stump at the foot of the flagstaff, next to the gun is very symbolic. This represents how the teachings and basis of Animalism (Communism) have been twisted and poisoned. It seems they have been picked clean to a core of savagery, because human nature dictated its transformation. All that is left is our human nature, and its ugly true appearance. Napoleon is trying to convince the animals to be proud of it, but they probably see the death of their dreams in the hollow dark eyes blankly staring. I imagine they see the Hell that has been created out of a plan for equality.
Irony:
In Squealer’s speech about Napoleon’s generous deed in taking on leadership, there is a great deal of irony along with…