Animal Farm- Boxer Essay, Research Paper
Boxer- an Analysis Arielle Furneaux 9A
Boxer is perhaps the most noble and pure Animal of Animal Farm. He works tirelessly and gives his all for a dream, even if he does not live to see that dream transpire. Because Animal Farm is a political allegory, with each character acting as a person or persona of Revolutionary Russia, Boxer must exemplify one himself. In fact, Boxer s role is that of an entire economic class.
Boxer, a strong and steadfast horse embracing the maxim, I will work harder , epitomizes the working or Proletariat class of Russia. Russia, in the early 1900s, was an economically segregated country, in which lived both poor and very rich. The Proletariats were essentially peasants, whose lives were marked with hardship and oppression from the upper class citizens. Likewise, under Jones regime, Boxer was forced to perform arduous labor without reward. He, like the other animals of the farm, received only the minimal in accommodations and provisions for his work, while Jones, who in comparison did little effort, lived the high life.
In early 20th Century Russia, in the midst of the oppression and dissatisfaction, new hope was sprung from the philosophy of Karl Marx. It was from Marx the original idea of communism was borne. The concept hoped to provide an answer to the coercion from the Upper Class Russian citizens. At this time, the country s power lied in the hands of the Czar, a terribly wealthy man, who sympathized with the rich and cared little for the poor. The idea of communism was based around the belief that all humans should be made equal, therefore abolishing the segregation between the Upper and Lower class. Although many of his supporters were well-off Russians who were disgusted in the tyranny of the government, Marx s most devout supporters were the Proletariat, who were tired of working harder than the upper class and receiving less for their labor. They readily embraced the idea of Communism, as it offered a new hope after years of unfair treatment. The fact that Russia s government was unsuitable to face Russia s problems and fight Russia s wars added to the appeal of Communism. And so, the Bolshevik party was formed from Marx s Communism, and its leader, Vladimir Lenin, was selected.
We can compare the optimistic Proletariat to Boxer, who possesses an idealistic and optimistic attitude regarding the future of the animals. After Old Major delivers his resonant speech in the barnyard, analyzing the reality of Jones repressive leadership, Boxer becomes inspired like a A hope for a better and richer life is kindled within him, and he clings to it. Boxer, being of low intelligence and extreme-romanticism, is naturally drawn to his promises of a richer life. Of course, having been poor, he is attracted to the prosperity that is guaranteed to him- it is incomparable to the lifestyle he was given under Jones rule. Whippings, low rations, being over-worked- this was a life he would gladly give up.
Unfortunately for the Proletariat of Russia, their ignorance made them easy targets for mistreatment. They were overly enthusiastic and confident about their new Communist lifestyles, and would accept any orders that would supposedly benefit their conditions without a backwards glance. As well, being formerly impoverished, they had not been able to afford quality education, so their intellects were not up to par with their leaders . This stupidity was a quality that made them more susceptible to trickery and dishonesty.
Boxer s idealism made him an easy and reliable target for manipulation and deceit. Any qualm he had about Animalism, for example, an uneasiness regarding the instigation of trade with human-run farms, was pushed to the back of his mind once he was convinced that an action would be advantageous. It wasn t difficult to convince Boxer. All it took was some smooth and appealing persuasion, which came naturally to his wily Pig-Leaders. The fact that he was stupid made him all the more easily taken advantage of. Boxer s virtues were many; he was steadfast, gallant, strong, kind- but sadly, he was lacking in the wits department. And stupid minds can be bent without much effort. He was like a marionette- attached to strings, controlled by authority.
Lenin s government was relatively liberal and painless compared to Joseph Stalin s totalitarian authority. Although Lenin instigated the dictatorship over the Russians (he and his party assumed total control), Stalin s rule amplified this power and turned it into an object of torture. No opposition was tolerated. Those who rebelled against the government faced incarceration or even death. Life in Russia was one of terror, in which citizens feared speaking their own minds or having their opinions found out. It was a time in which no one and nothing could be trusted- Stalin even seized power of a Russian newspaper, and used this opportunity to influence the Russians and gain new supporters.
To compare this series of events to animal farm: eventually, Napoleon gains complete power over the farm animals. His governance was incomparable to Snowball s. With Snowball as leader, the Animals felt free to offer new ideas and speak their minds without chastisement. Under Napoleon s reign of fright, any form of rebellion against the administration would be punished by a cruel and painful death. Animals were forced to admit to crimes they had obviously never committed, such as holding secret meetings with Snowball, and, hence, were savagely murdered. This was a time of lies- lies about changes to the Commandments, lies about the fate of certain animals, and lies about Snowball. It was a time of broken promises. And throughout this time, the Animals of Animal Farm, Boxer included, remained faithful to Napoleon. This can be attributed to their general stupidity. Most of the time, the majority of animals reacted inertly to the situation unfolding around them. Boxer could be compared to a sponge, absorbing all of his leaders lies and exaggerations and retaining them. When an animal experienced some uncertainty in regards to the intentions and truthfulness of their leaders, they would not react to it out of fear.
In short, Boxer, the steadfast workhorse of Animal Farm and the Proletariat Class of Russia share fundamental qualities. Both are noble and good intentioned, yet because of their poverty, foolishness, and will to see a better future, they are susceptible to ill treatment and manipulation. Both Boxer and the Proletariat Class serve as a paradigm of a bitter truth. They reveal a darkness in our society- the smart and corrupt will gladly taking advantage of the na ve and caring.