Period 5: Leo Kim, Giselle Peng, Bobby Shi, Dev Thimmisetty
Our Rerepresentation was inspired by Animal Farm, a novella by George Orwell. The physical copy, which is written by the animals at the end of the book, was turned in and it is recommended to be read at the same time as the website.
Orwell was born Eric Arthur Blair on 25 June 1903 in eastern India, the son of a British colonial civil servant. He was educated in England and later joined the Indian Imperial Police in Burma, then a British colony. Orwell quit in 1927 and decided to become a writer. In 1928, he moved to Paris where lack of success as a writer forced him into a series of menial jobs. In 1945, Orwell's 'Animal Farm' was published. A political fable set in a farmyard but based on Stalin's betrayal of the Russian Revolution, it gave out Orwell's name to the public and ensured him a stable life financially for the first time in his life.
In 1936 Orwell, a socialist, travelled to Spain to fight for the Republicans against Franco's Nationalists. However, he was forced to flee in fear of his life from Soviet-backed communists who were suppressing revolutionary socialist dissenters. The experience turned him into a lifelong anti-Stalinist. This experience inspired Orwell to write Animal Farm based off of Stalin, Trotsky, and Lenin
The whole book is based off of Old Major's, a prize-winning boar, dream he has had in which all animals live together with no human beings to oppress or control them. He tells the animals that they must work toward such a paradise and teaches them a song called “Beasts of England,” in which his dream vision is lyrically described. The animals greet Major’s vision with great enthusiasm. When he dies only three nights after the meeting, three younger pigs—Snowball, Napoleon, and Squealer—formulate his main principles into a philosophy called Animalism. At first, Animal Farm prospers but eventually Old Major's dream falls apart with the Snowball and Napoleon fighting over power. Snowball is defeated and many years later the pigs evolve into human-like creatures -- walking upright, wearing clothes, etc. The seven commandments are combined and revised into “all animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.”
Introducing our Rerepresentation of the DOI
This is our project. We attempted to recreate the process from the good intentions of Old Major to the eventual tyranny and oligarchy of Animal Farm society. Since in the book is was a process, there is a certain way to navigate the webpage. First, there is the home page. The home page is called "The Hearth," which means a fireplace or a home. Obviously, the barn was a home for the animals. Painted on the barn in the book were the 7 Commandments, and they are written on this page. Next is the song, "Beasts of England." This is the song that inspired that animals in their revolution. Next is the actual DoI Rerepresentation. The animals wrote this Declaration of Independence in the hopes that they would be equal. As you will see, history is written by those in power. The page I would like you to see next is "Happenings," a series of blog posts written by Squealer, the propagandist in the novella. Once you enter the blog posts, you will find that you cannot return to the exact previous state of any of the previous three pages, like the inevitable flow of history and passage of time. As you read through Squealer's blog posts, whenever you encounter something that does not match up with what you have already read on "The Hearth," "Beasts of England," or "The Declaration," I encourage you to click back to those pages. I think you will be surprised. After all eleven blog posts, there will be no more arrow to the next blog post. Then, if you may, click to "The Declaration" again, and note the changes. Then, click the new "Beasts of England." It will not be "Beasts of England" anymore, but a new song, "Comrade Napoleon." Then, click "The Hearth" again, and note the biggest change, the one line that immortalizes Orwell's novella, and sheds an important light on animal nature, and allegorically, human nature as a whole.