Animal Farm by George Orwell

This book is a satire on Soviet Communism and during the period of the Russian Revolution in the early 1910s. It showcases the fact that power corrupts when not exercised properly. The pigs, Napoleon, Squealer and Snowball took control of the farm after the animals chased away Mr Jones, the owner. At first, they believe in equal treatment for all animals and that everyone should obey the 7 Commandments. They saw each other as brothers. ‘Whatever goes upon two legs is an enemy. Whatever goes upon four legs, or has wings, is a friend.’ The rest of the animals were too dumb and could not read well. The pigs used this opportunity to wield power over the farm and to obtain benefits at the expense of the others. Napoleon was involved in a power struggle with Snowball regarding a decision to build a windmill and ousted him with the sheer might of the dogs under his command. Later, Squealer often blamed Snowball and the humans for any wrongdoing and attributed any success to Napoleon. The animals lived in worst conditions than the days when Mr Jones was owner. Dissent was punished with death and the animals had no say when it came to decision making. To the outside world, false messages were spread that the farm was operating well etc. The propaganda machine was running and Napoleon was turning into a dictator. He was living an exuberant life and was now seen as a ‘King’. The pigs and dogs exploited the other animals. They consumed alcohol, slept in beds and killed other animals. The farm turned into a Republic. They practiced genocide and killed Boxer, the horse. The pigs destroyed the past and did not mention it to the future generation of animals. The pigs were walking on their hind-legs just like humans now and it was impossible to distinguish one from another.

Lessons from the book: i) Education is important; ii) Do not allow a party to exercise too much power; iii) Implement a voting mechanism; iv) There must be checks and balances on the main party; v) The media should be independent from the government; vi) The outside community must know of the truth

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