How Power Corrupted The Pigs Essay Research

How Power Corrupted The Pigs Essay, Research Paper

The satire Animal Farm by George Orwell expresses

the idea of self-government through the animals. The

animals play the role of humans, in this way using

most, if not all, of the human characteristics.

Because the animals decide that they want to run the

farm by themselves, they make up a way of living

called Animalism. The basic principles of Animalism

are two, all animals are to be treated as equals, and

no animals shall acquire any human traits or

characteristics whatsoever. The seven commandments

under which they live are based on these major

principles. As soon as they develop a whole new

system, they throw out all of the humans that run the

farm. Even though they are supposed to be equal, the

pigs begin to take control. By the end of the novel,

the pigs have manipulated the rest of the animals into

doing everything they want. The pigs then become

almost exactly like the humans. The most important

pigs are Napoleon and Snowball, that is until Napoleon

throws Snowball from the farm. It is throughout this

satire that Orwell illustrates how power corrupts by

showing the pigs actions.

Power corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely is

a concept widely understood after having read Orwell’s

satire. It is first shown when the pigs take the milk

and apples, explaining to the rest of the animals that

everyone is equal, but some are just more “equal” than

others. They also argue that the pigs do more

thinking, and therefore need more energy to do so. It

is in the latter part of the book, that the concept of

corruption gradually earns its meaning. When Napoleon

forces Snowball to leave the farm, the power is all

his. Napoleon fixes anything that goes wrong on the

farm simply by blaming Snowball. He insists that

Snowball had always planned everything in order to

harm the farm. Napoleon does not have a limit.

The pigs break all seven commandments, some without

notice, simply because power is addictive, and they

constantly want more of it. It is never enough. These

commandments are to be followed by all the animals

living on the farm at all times. Included in these

commandments is the sixth one which states that no

animal shall kill any other animal. Napoleon breaks

this commandment when he kills the chickens he says

are against him and the farm’s ideals. He justifies

this to the rest of the animals saying that no animal

shall kill any other animal without reason to do so.

The fourth commandment states that no animal shall

sleep in a bed. After the pigs move into what used to

be the owners house, they begin to sleep on beds.

“Its O.K.,” they say, because a bed is simply the

place you sleep on, the commandment is intended to be

no animal shall sleep in a bed with sheets. The pigs

continue their way of being until the end, when the

rest of the animals finally see what is happening

inside the house. The pigs invite their neighboring

farmers to join them for dinner. In doing so, they

break the first commandment which states that whatever

goes on two feet is an enemy. It is during this

dinner that they break the majority, if not all of the

commandments. The pigs, together with the humans, are

breaking the fifth commandment while drinking alcohol.

It is throughout the book that the pigs break all

seven commandments, in this way proving how power


The satire Animal Farm by George Orwell is a perfect

example of how power corrupts. The pigs become so

corrupt, that they become exactly what they hate the

most. In this book, Orwell shows the reader how it

does not matter what anyone thinks at first, greed

always brings them to doing what they did not want to

at first. The animals are simply a way of showing the

reader how power corrupts even when the nicest and

most caring concepts are what started everything. In

the world today, there are always problems in the

government because the people high in office take more

and more power. The major example is the Russian

revolution. In this book it is proven how power

corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.


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