ClassicSeries: George Orwell’s Animal Farm

Animal Farm Book CoverAnimal Farm is one of the most famous books of our time.   Written by George Orwell, Animal Farm can be read on two levels; purely fictitious or as a powerful social commentary on Stalin’s USSR….




A powerful allegory, Animal Farm uses pigs to tell the story of the Russian Revolution.   The pigs attempt to uphold a vision set by a pig called Old Major, who dies shortly after delivering his vision for a more prosperous and better future for all on the farm.  He may represent Vladimir Lenin or Karl Marx.

The animals on the farm unite to overthrow their leader; an old farmer by the name of Mr Jones, who may represent Tsar Nicholas II who was overthrown by the people of Russia.  As part of the vision, the overthrow would make their lives better as they would be in control.  The farm is renamed “Animal Farm”.


The pigs, rightly chosen to further their stereotype of greed, change the rules on the farm by night, which are inscribed on a wall.   A pig by the name of squealer convince all the remaining farm animals that the rules were not changed, but it was their memories which were not clear.   The horse repeats day in and day out “Napoleon is always right”.

Orwell’s novel powerfully critiques socialist ideals; that they may not be feasible and how the leader, no matter how true their initial intentions, turn to capitalism themselves because the power is there.

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Filed under Fiction - Non Australian Literature, Must-Read Stories of All Time, National Year of Reading 2012, Starter Reads - Start here if you haven't read a book for a while and dont know what to choose, Top Books of the 20th Century

One response to “ClassicSeries: George Orwell’s Animal Farm

  1. Pingback: Reading 101…Lesson 1: Why Reading Matters | National Year of Reading 2012 | theOPINIONchair

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