Recently I have read the novel ‘Animal Farm’ by George Orwell.
It is about a group of animals on a farm that all dream to be free. Old Major, a boar, hopes for farms to be run by animals and for everyone to be equal. However, after he dies, his vision goes terribly wrong. Napoleon, the pig, and Boxer, the horse, are good examples to show us how Orwell has used these creatures to make a political point. Napoleon takes power over the farm after Old Major dies. He is an untrustworthy leader, as he does not do any work.
He tells the rest of the animals that all the pigs will work on plans for the farm but really they just order everybody about. Orwell describes, ‘the pigs did not actually work, but directed the others. ‘ As we read on in the novel we realise Napoleon and the pigs are acting like humans, walking like humans and dressing like humans. In relation to the Russian Revolution I would say that Napoleon would represent the power-mad Stalin who treats his people badly and keeps all the money and food for himself. Orwell persuades the reader to dislike Napoleon for many reasons.For example, if someone came up with an idea other than himself he is not happy, he does not agree. Orwell describes, ‘only Napoleon held aloof.
He had declared himself against the windmill from the start. ‘ Napoleon takes away some puppies from their mother, Jessie, and turns them against everyone else on the farm. One night the dogs come into the barn where the animals are resting. Orwell describes them as wearing, ‘brass studded collars. ‘ They dashed for everyone in the farm. ‘Too frightened and amazed to speak.Silent and terrified, the animals crept back into the farm. ‘ Not only does this show that Napoleon puts the other animals under danger but also treats them lower than him.
With Napoleon in charge the animals were working harder than when Jones, the farmer who used to own the farm, was there. Orwell describes the work to get, ‘even harder. ‘ He also says, ‘there were times when it seemed to the animals that they worked long hours and fed no better than they did in Jones` day.
‘ All this and more persuaded me to dislike Napoleon.The political point being made is that it is important to pick a good leader that will be fair with everyone and make everyone equal. For in picking the wrong one could change or ruin a whole community. I think Orwell creates a good character in Napoleon to make this point come across to its leader. Boxer is the hardest worker on the farm.
He always tries his best and he always says, ‘I will work harder. ‘ Since Bower is a horse he is the strongest animal on the farm so he usually gets the heaviest loads to bear.At the start of the novel he is described as rather stupid and clumsy but I think he is a loveable character who is friends with everyone on the farm. Jessie is a close friend of Boxer and when he dies she takes it very badly. In relation to the Russian Revolution, I would say that Boxer would be an innocent citizen who just wants the best for his country. Orwell persuades the reader to like Boxer in many ways. Orwell describes Boxer to be innocent describing him to be gullible and always agreeing with Napoleon.Boxer often says, ‘Napoleon is always right,’ and, ‘if comrade Napoleon says it, it must be right.
‘ This makes us feel sorry for him because he is falling into Napoleon’s trap. When Boxer and Jessie are talking about retirement, Boxer says. ‘I am looking forward to it. ‘ However, we know that Napoleon will probably keep Boxer working until he dies. We also like Boxer because he never wants to hurt or harm anyone and he would always look to Napoleon for advice, ‘Boxer looked at Napoleon to know whether he should crunch the dog to death or let it go.Boxer also feels terrible when he hurts someone. ‘He is dead.
I had no intention of doing that. I forgot I was wearing iron shoes. Who will believe that I did not do this on purpose? I have no wish to take life, not even human life. ‘ Although the boy does not die the pigs try to cover it up by trying to persuade Boxer that it was a good thing.
All this persuaded me to like Boxer. The political point being made here is that it is important to take poorer people into consideration as they have feelings and may even help in hard situations when they could use their strength and capability.Yet again I think Orwell created a good character in Boxer to bring across the point to the reader. I learn from Orwell’s characterisation that it is important to share, make clever decisions, take poorer people into consideration and to treat people equal.
I think this is an effective way of making a political point because it gives us examples of a situation that may happen if you make wrong decisions. Orwell’s characterisation also lets us compare characters with people in the Russian Revolution, which helps us to understand what people were like.