Animal Farm(A) Essay, Research Paper
Animal FarmThe novel, Animal Farm by George Orwell, is a satire of human nature that uses animals to ridicule certain human traits and characteristics. The novel depicts man’s selfishness and greed as part of human nature and how many “innocent bystanders” are swept under and destroyed by these selfish and greedy people. In the novel, these naive bystanders are the animals of the Manor Farm who succumb to their masters, first the humans and then the pigs. Orwell’s transformation of the pigs into humans and vice versa shocks the reader who finally realizes the tremendous similarity that our race has with that of the pigs in Orwell’s novel. There is much symbolism in Orwell’s choice of the pig to be the animal to transform into a human. By reading between the lines, we can see that he is trying to tell us that humans are the equivalent of pigs. A pig is characteristically seen as a greedy, selfish, dirty animal. This is what Orwell is calling the human race. The author’s choice of the pig over the other animals begins at the very start of the novel. It is a pig that instills the hope of a Rebellion against Mr. Jones in all the other animals. Pigs plan for and carry out the Rebellion. Pigs are the ones to take charge after the Rebellion. The leadership that is shown by the pigs, is also another example of human nature. The pig leadership is seen many times throughout the novel, but particularly after the Rebellion when Napoleon and Snowball compete for the role of ruler supreme, as well as when Napoleon changes the Sunday meetings from debates into a time when orders were given and punishment doled out. Humans naturally feel that they are worthy to, and therefore should be, leaders. When reading the novel, we are quick to accept the pig as a logical choice to transform into the human, but only after an examination of ourselvesdo we realize why they were the chosen animal. At the end of the novel, the animals of Animal Farm are portrayed differently than they were with Mr. Jones as their master. With a human as their master, all of the animals’ plights were caused by humans’ cruelty. If they were hungry, it was because their human master didn’t feed them. When the pigs were masters, the animals themselves, unawares, permitted their own downfall. Though they were hungry, they still trusted the pigs who told them that they were being fed twice as much as Mr. Jones had fed them. By trusting in the pigs, their “fellow comrades”, all of their once longed for freedoms were taken away because of their trust and stupidity. No longer were they just “dumb animals”, as humans often called them, but under the rule of the pigs, they were blind as well.
The prosperity that the animals had hoped to achieve after the Rebellion was reached but in a different way than they had planned. The animals had hoped to make Animal Farm the most productive in the county, which they did, but they had planned to keep all the benefits of their labors for themselves and to work only for the sake of knowing that they were working for themselves. But this was not to be so. The farm’s new and bigger productivity was reached, but in the same way that it was reached under Mr. Jones. Both man and pig used the animals to their benefit, took advantage of them and then denied them the fruits of their labors. With the pigs as masters, the increased productivity was reached at the full expense of the animals – excluding the pigs, of course. The animals worked harder than ever before, received less food than ever before, and existed under worse conditions than there had ever been before. All of the profit that the animals worked their bodies and souls for went entirely to the pigs. Yes, the farm was the most prosperous in the county, but the pigs were the only ones who benefitted from it. At the conclusion of the novel, the pigs become so much like humans that the reader is unable to tell the two apart. The pigs, with their greed, selfishness and lust for power, have become exactly like the humans. They cheat, drink, intimidate, kill and carry on like humans. The tranformation is now complete. Orwell best sums it up in his final paragraph, ” … No question, now, what had happened to the faces of the pigs. The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which.” The attempt by the animals to reach utopia has failed. They have returned to the same place from whence they came.