Symbolism and the Depiction of Author’s Own Personal Experience in Animal Farm by George Orwell
George Orwell’s Animal Farm publication debuted on August 17,1945. Orwell’s inspiration was a reflection upon his own experiences during the transition period between the Russian Revolution of 1917 and into the Stalinist era of the Soviet Union. Animal Farm is full of allusions and symbolism among the characters relating to this time period. This further concludes George Orwell’s depiction of this era through his eyes.
An explanation of Animal Farm without all of the symbolism or in a literal sense is a book about farm animals starting a revolution for their own freedom from humans. Throughout the book characters like Napoleon and the other pigs show how having too much power results in greed and arrogance. At the closing of the book the last paragraph compares the pig’s supremacy to how the humans used to be. “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.” (George Orwell, 1945, pg.141) From my perspective this comparison is significant to Orwell’s book in many ways because not only does relate to human absolute authority over all animals but the leaders in the Soviet Union during the Russian Revolution. Napoleon the “Father of All Animals, Terror of Mankind, Protector of the Sheep-fold, Ducklings’ Friend, and the like.” (George Orwell, 1945, pg.93) traits resemble Joseph Stalin or the “man of steel”. Stalin was the dictator of the USSR and he had the same intention of Napoleon in transforming a poor civilization into a military superpower.
All things considered my view on Animal Farm is the same as how the sheep feel about four legs-, good. (“Four legs good, two legs bad! Four legs good, two legs bad!”-George Orwell, 1945, pg.34). Animal Farm was a good book to me because of character development in relation to real historical people. In addition, it was a very interesting story line due to the true events through symbolism. I liked how all of the farm animals had their own personality which is important because it showed how they all fit in the puzzle. Like Boxer the horse, he portrayed the loyal working class which is confirmed by his motto; “I will work harder”. Or even the objects that aren’t animals like the windmill in the story which represents the legitimate Stalin five-year plan which was implemented between 1928-1932. On the other hand, there are a few adjustments and questionable ideas that are being presented in the plot. Firstly, why didn’t the rebellion start earlier, to me it is a little off that they didn’t do anything sooner about their living conditions especially because they have leadership skills and the smarter animals can read while all of them talk. Major the pig is he first one to bring it up because he is the wisest and he has lived he longest life. But there were plenty of other animals that came before him so why was he the ‘first’ to come up with this great idea. Furthermore, I think that the plot gets a little corrupted because of the extreme repetition, it lost my focus and interest frequently. Predominantly when Napoleon keeps on changing the rules to his liking even though it is a big component to the plot which occurred on a variety of different occasions.
Weighing up both perspectives, I suppose that overall the book was good. Despite the minimal flaws nevertheless it was very enjoyable. In addition I would highly recommend it to anyone who hasn’t read yet, it has many climatic cliffhangers that’ll keep you reading.
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