Animal Farm: An Allegory Of The Struggles And Conflicts Of The Russian Revolution
Animal Farm by George Orwell is an allegory in which animals are personified to represent the struggles and conflicts of the Russian Revolution. In the story, the pigs govern everything that happens, whether it is something as minor as eating a meal, or something as important as fighting a battle. The word choice and language of the pigs is significant because the pigs are able to install fear into the other animals. The pigs are able to persuade the animals almost effortlessly. This allows the pigs to have absolute control over the actions of the other animals simply because of their ability to use convincing language to their advantage. George Orwell’s use of language illustrates the corruptive nature of power within Animal Farm by describing the true intentions of the pigs.
Napoleon is one of the most dangerous manipulators throughout the novel. Napoleon, with the help of Squealer, was able to convince the animals that Snowball was a traitor. Napoleon tells the animals that Snowball is now sided with the humans. In chapter 7 of Animal Farm, Orwell analyzes, “Now when Squealer described the scene so graphically, it seemed to the animals that they did remember it. At any rate, they remembered that at the critical moment of the battle Snowball had turned to flee (Orwell 88).” Squealer continues to manipulate the animals with ease because the animals continue to follow the pigs blindly. Also in chapter 7, Orwell describes in great detail, “When they had finished their confession, the dogs promptly tore their throats out, and in a terrible voice Napoleon demanded whether any other animal had anything to confess (Orwell 90).” The violence portrayed in this quote shows the power Napoleon has over the other animals. Napoleon is demonstrating his power by placing fear in the other animals. Napoleon wants to rid the farm of any potential threats. Nothing will stop Napoleon from ruling over Animal Farm.
Throughout the novel, Squealer abuses language in order to justify the claims made by Napoleon. Squealer is the mastermind behind Napoleon’s rule over Animal Farm. Squealer ensures that all the animals believe in exactly what the pigs want them to believe in. He teaches the sheep to say, “Four legs good, two legs better!” in order to brainwash and intimidate the other animals. Squealer continues to effectively cause the sheep to follow his instruction. In chapter 9, Orwell reveals, “Here Squealer’s demeanor suddenly changed. He fell silent for a moment, and his little eyes darted suspicious glances from side to side before he proceeded (Orwell 131).” This quote is just before Squealer convinces all the animals that Boxer was carted off to the vet rather than to be slaughtered. Squealer becomes very clever with his actions and word choice in order to effectively convince the animals. At the beginning of the book in chapter 3, Squealer asserts, “‘Comrades!’ he cried. ‘You do not imagine, I hope, that we pigs are doing this in a spirit of selfishness and privilege? Many of us actually dislike milk and apples. I dislike them myself. Our sole object in taking these things is to preserve our health. Milk and apples (this has been proved by Science, comrades) contain substances absolutely necessary to the well-being of a pig. We pigs are brainworkers. The whole management and organization of this farm depend on us. Day and night we are watching over your welfare. It is for YOUR sake that we drink that milk and eat those apples (Orwell 39).’” Squealer is again using his advanced intelligence in order to deceive the other animals. In order for Animal farm to be successful, all of the animals must work together. Squealer uses clever language in order to convince the other animals that they are working together. In reality, the animals are working for the benefit of the pigs.
In the beginning of Animal Farm, Old major preaches to the animals about freedom from humans and how to obtain that freedom. The animals must overthrow the humans to ensure that no one has control over them. This sounds like a great idea, but the pigs had other things in mind. Throughout the novel, the pigs slightly change the rules proposed by Old Major into rules that only benefit themselves. This act of deception causes the other animals to blindly work for the pigs. The pigs preach to the other animals that, “All animals are equal but some animals are more equal than others (Orwell 142).” This quote is an example of the pigs’ abuse of language. The pigs believe that there are different degrees of equality, starting with the pigs at the very top. The pigs continued to gain power throughout the book by simply being selfish and greedy. Additionally, Orwell observes, “The creatures outside looked from pig to man, man to pig, and already it was impossible to say which was which (Orwell 149).” This quote serves as the final sentence of Animal Farm. The pigs became the thing that they promised the other animals they would get rid of. The pigs and the humans were inseparable. The pigs were able to manipulate the other animals by using teachings that were believed to be true. By subtly changing these teachings throughout the novel, the pigs were able completely change these teachings to benefit themselves only.
George Orwell did a phenomenal job in appealing to authority and using emotive words to not only increase the detail of his writing, but to also increase the power given to the pigs because of their convincing language. In Animal Farm, the power of language is shown as a common theme throughout the book as mainly Squealer and Napoleon use their words to deceive and manipulate the other animals. Throughout the novel, it becomes evident that the pigs are skilled in manipulating other animals. The pigs use manipulation and deceptive language to ensure the other animals never find out their true intentions. Language is a very powerful tool that can be manipulative when followed blindly.