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Since its publication in 1946, George Orwell's fable of a workers' revolution gone wrong has been recognized as a classic of modern political satire. Fuelled by Orwell's intense disillusionment with Soviet Communism, Animal Farm is a nearly perfect piece of writing--both an engaging story and an allegory that actually works. When the downtrodden beasts of Manor Farm oust their drunken human master and take over management of the land, all are awash in collectivist zeal. Everyone willingly works overtime, productivity soars and for one brief, glorious season, every belly is full. The animals' Seven Commandment credo is painted in big white letters on the barn. All animals are equal. No animal shall drink alcohol, wear clothes, sleep in a bed or kill a fellow four-footed creature. Those that go upon four legs or wings are friends and the two-legged are, by definition, the enemy. Too soon, however, the pigs, who have styled themselves leaders by virtue of their intelligence, succumb to the temptations of privilege and power. "We pigs are brainworkers. The whole management and organisation of the farm depend on us. Day and night, we are watching over your welfare. It is for your sake that we drink that milk and eat those apples." While this swinish brotherhood sells out the revolution, cynically editing the Seven Commandments to excuse their violence and greed, the common animals are once again left hungry and exhausted, no better off than in the days when humans ran the farm. Satire Animal Farm may be, but it's a stony reader who remains unmoved when the stalwart workhorse, Boxer, having given his all to his comrades, is sold to the glue factory to buy booze for the pigs. Orwell's view of Communism is bleak indeed, but given the history of the Russian people since 1917, his pessimism has an air of prophecy. -- Joyce ThompsonReview:
True Agony of a Socialist Orwell is obviously angry at the way Socialism has been distorted by Stalin. Using Animal characters as symbols Orwell honestly mocks and criticizes the Russian leadership under Lenin. It is a very easy to read book giving good perspectives on the Socialist Revolution. --Abhishek Kona Aug 22, 2011
Animal Farm is a satirical allegory on the Russian Revolution. Orwell explains it, It is the history of revolution that went wrong. It tells the simple and tragic story of what happens when the oppressed farm rebel to attain freedom from Mr. Jones. It is about their attempt to rule the farm themselves on the basis of equality. The animals had initially aimed to form a utopian society, where each would work according to his capacity, respecting the needs of the others. But, they failed to do so. And, Animal Farm ended up being a dictatorship of the pigs that were the brightest, but did no physical work in reality. The main action of the story stands for The Russian Revolution of 1917 and the early years of the Soviet Union. Animalism is a metaphor for Communism. Manor farm is an allegory of Russia, Mr. Jones is Russian C-Zar, Old Major stands for Karl Marx, and Snowball represents Leo Trotsky. Napolean stands for Stalin, while the dogs are the secret police. The horse, Boxer stands for the working class which works constantly for the greater good while Squealer is the propagandist. The novel is skillfully organized and presents the horrors of communism through simple story-telling. It presents what propaganda and brain washing do to the people living under the dictatorship. How the fickle minded people were swayed easily by the pigs, who managed to reverse the seven commandments and reduce them to Four legs good, two legs better . I would recommend this book to everyone above 14 years of age who has some knowledge about communism or a hint of what happened during the Russian Revolution of 1917. The book is gripping as there is always something happening. It ends with the pigs becoming mush like humans and changing the name of the farm back to the Manor Farm . The ending was sad it shows how power turns comrades into tyrannical dictators. --Diksha Mahajan Aug 14, 2012
George Orwell is probably one of the few authors who has more than one book featuring regularly in the all the favorites of most people. In such a short book, we get to experience the entire range of the human emotions - probably characterized by the animals. But, what this book basically makes us realize is the fact that politics is relevant at all times. --Deep Agrawal Mar 2, 2012
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