Animal Farm

Jeffrey Brignac

Novel Genres

Animal Fable

An animal fable is a story in which it uses animals instead of humans that act like humans and talk like them. This book is an animal fable because it personify's all the animals.

Allegory

An allegory is a story in which characters or events stand for something else. The novel often relates to Communist Russia and A tyrannical government.

Satire

A satire is when you use humor and make fun of people or things, but in the humor it points out something serious. This book uses lots of satire to express something through humor.

Chapter Summary

Chapter 1

1. Introduction of most of the main characters

2. Old Major explains how the animals are being mistreated.

3. He tells them about his dream of how it would be paradise without the humans.

4. The animals all sing a song called "Beasts of England" and Old Major explains that anything on two feet are enemies, and anything that has wings or has four feet is a comrade.

Chapter 2

1. Old Major dies.

2. The animals try to carry out his dying wish by planning a rebellion.

3. Some animals are troublesome but the pigs prime all the animals for the rebellion.

4. The rebellion starts and the men are drove out of the farm by the animals.

Chapter 3

1. Without the humans, all the animals spend their time harvesting the fields.

2. Every Sunday the animals have a meeting and decide on how things should be handled.

3. There are lots of disagreements between Snowball and Napoleon.

4. The animals get outraged that the pigs take all the milk and apples for themselves, but Squealer explains that they need it to think better, so the animals let them have it.

Chapter 4

1. News of the Animal Farm has spread, and more animals from other farms act rebelliously, but farmers are fearful.

2. Mr. Jones has began to go back on the farm.

3. The animals launch an attack against the humans at that point and defeat the humans.

4. One sheep dies, and Boxer unintentionally killed a stable boy and feel guilty, but Snowball tells him not to.

5. Snowball and Boxer receive medals and discover a gun.

6. They decide to fire the gun twice a year, on the anniversary of the Battle of Cowshed and on Midsummer's Day, the anniversary of the rebellion.

Chapter 5

1. Mollie begins to not accept her responsibilities and eventually is lured away by a fat man, now the animals never mention her.

2. Snowball and Napoleon have a big disagreement on if they should build a windmill or not, which divides the animals into two groups.

3. Nine dogs drive out Snowball and Napoleon takes charge.

4. Napoleon manipulates the animals into thinking that he is always right and Squealer convinces them that Snowball is a traitor and criminal.

Chapter 6

1. The leadership cuts food rations, and gives extra labor to the animals, but the animals are eager to do this because they believe whatever is told to them.

2. Construction begins on the windmill.

3. Napoleon trades supplies with Mr. Whymper.

4. A storm hits, and the windmill is destroyed. Napoleon said that Snowball did this, and casts a death sentence on hi.

Chapter 7

1. There are hardships when there is a cold winter.

2. Napoleon sells four-hundred eggs a week to get money for things they need, but the hens rebel.

3. They hear that Snowball visits the farm every night, and when something goes wrong by chance, Snowball is blamed.

4.More animals die, and "Beasts of England" is replaced with a new song.

Chapter 8

1. A commandment is changed - "No animal shall kill another animal." to "No animal shall kill any other animal without cause."

2. The animals complete the windmill.

3. Mr. Frederick and his men blow up the windmill, so the animals attack him, but some animals die, and Boxer gets heavily injured.

4. Another commandment is changed from "No animal shall drink alcohol." to "No animal shall drink alcohol to excess."

Chapter 9

1. Boxer, injured, refuses to stop working until the windmill is finished, then he will retire.

2. The animals rations are reduced while the pigs and dogs get good nourishment.

3. Napoleon is elected president, and more false stories about Snowball occur.

4. Boxer dies :(

Chapter 10

1. Years pass and many animals die, and the windmill is complete. Only the dogs and pigs live in luxury while the other animals live normal lives as before.

2. Squealer and Napoleon walk on their hind legs, and sheep shout "Four legs good, two legs better!" Also a commandment has changed from "All animals are equal" to "all animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others."

3. Napoleon tries to act like a human.

4. Napoleon and Mr. Pilkington have a meal together, and they play a card game. When both play the Ace of Spades, they each accuse each other of cheating. This is when the animals can no longer distinguish which of the card players is the pig and which is the human.

Characters

All Characters and What They Symbolize

1. Snowball - Snowball represents Leo Trotsky, who was one of the original revolutionaries, but when Stalin rose to power they became greatest enemies.

2. Napoleon - He represents Stalin, who was the second leader of the Soviet Union.

3. Old Major - Represents Vladimir Lenin, who was an original communist leader.

4. Mollie - Mollie represents Russia's upper class

5. Benjamin - was a donkey that could read like as well as pigs, but chose not to.

6. Boxer - Boxer the horse represents the working class, because he never stopped working no matter what happened to him.

7. Clover - Clover represents Boxer's female counterpart

8. Moses - The raven symbolizes the Russian Orthodox Church, because he didn't do anything beside tell stories about Sugar Candy Mountain.

9. Squealer - Represents the Russian media because he Napoleon's version of the truth to the masses.

10. Muriel - The white goat is very literate, but doesn't represent much.

11. Mr. Jones - The farmer, represents the last Tsar of Russia, Nicholas Alexandrovich Romanov.

12. Mr. Frederick - The owner of Pinchfield represents the leader of Germany.

13. Mr. Pilkington - Owner of Foxwood, doesn't represent anyone in particular, but maybe a Leader of England.

14. Mr. Whymper - He represents a solicitor living Willingdon. He acted as an intermediary between Animal Farm and the outside world.

15. Sheep - The sheep represent the masses at large.

16. Dogs - They represent the military or police, because they protect their leader, Napoleon.

17. Ducklings - The ducks and ducklings represent peasants, because they are used only for their eggs.

Motifs

Songs

Songs are often used throughout the book to band all the animals together to rebel against the humans like "The Beasts of England" Also the songs are used to restore the animals' faith when they have suffered a loss of some sort.

Rituals

Many rituals throughout the book are a sign of thanks and praise to the new system created by Napoleon and Snowball under which they now live in. These rituals reinforce the loyalty of the animals

Themes

The Corruption of Socialist Ideals in the Soviet Union

Animal Farm allegorizes the rise to power of the dictator Joseph Stalin. In the novella, the overthrow of the human oppressor Mr. Jones by a democratic coalition of animals quickly gives way to the consolidation of power among the pigs. Much like the Soviet intelligentsia, the pigs establish themselves as the ruling class in the new society.

The Societal Tendency toward Class Stratification

Animal Farm offers commentary on the development of class tyranny and the human tendency to maintain and reestablish class structures even in societies that allegedly stand for total equality. It illustrates how classes that are initially unified in the face of a common enemy, as the animals are against the humans, may become internally divided when that enemy is eliminated.

The Danger of a Naïve Working Class

Animal Farm gives a sketch on how situations of oppression arise not only from the motives and tactics of the oppressors but also from the naïveté of the oppressed, who are not necessarily in a position to be better educated or informed. It also demonstrates how the inability or unwillingness to question authority condemns the working class to suffer the full extent of the ruling class’s oppression.

The Abuse of Language as Instrumental to the Abuse of Power

In Animal Farm, the pigs gradually twist and distort a words of socialist revolution to justify their behavior and to keep the other animals in the dark. The animals heartily embrace Major’s visionary ideal of socialism, but after Major dies, the pigs gradually twist the meaning of his words. As a result, the other animals seem unable to oppose the pigs without also opposing the ideals of the Rebellion.