By Jean Armstrong (auth.)

ISBN-10: 0333382773

ISBN-13: 9780333382776

ISBN-10: 1349076422

ISBN-13: 9781349076420

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Additional resources for Animal Farm by George Orwell

Sample text

We hear how the animals fare at reading and writing and that the principles of Animalism are reduced to a slogan 'four legs good, two legs bad' as many of the animals cannot read very well. Snowball, however, has developed his ideas into some complexity and uses long words the animals cannot understand. The puppies of Bluebell and Jessie are taken away by Napoleon to be educated, the milk and apples have been appropriated by the pigs and this is justified by Squealer and accepted by the animals.

It is worth noticing how much is made of the animals' reaction to the rebellion rather than the action itself. Why has Orwell done this? Is it to demonstrate that the animals, once making a move, had together an almost irresistible strength, or that Jones and his men were cowards? Or is it to deflect the reader's attention to the result rather than the event? All the clues are in the episode and are worth looking for. The writing up of the Seven Commandments should be a very serious event in the chapter - they are to contain the principles of Animalism, to direct the behaviour of the animals in their new way of life.

The sacrifices the animals have to make in releasing hay , wheat and eggs for sale in order to buy materials they need represents the sacrifices the people of Russia had to make to fulfil the Five Year Plan. The manufacture of consumer goods, even essentials, took a back seat so that targets could be met. Eventually there were food and housing shortages. These shortages made it possible for Stalin to dispense privileges and 'closed shops' were opened selling goods that much of the population could not buy.

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Animal Farm by George Orwell by Jean Armstrong (auth.)


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