• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

In his novel Animal Farm, Orwell satirises the way in which power corrupts and he uses events in Russian history after the 1917 Russian Revolution to demonstrate this.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

By writing an allegory of Russian history, Orwell makes clear the importance he places on history and how it is recorded. In his novel Animal Farm, Orwell satirises the way in which power corrupts and he uses events in Russian history after the 1917 Russian Revolution to demonstrate this. He shows how the pigs are corrupted by power in the same way that Stalin and the communist regime were. He structures his novel around events in history and uses characters, events and motifs to symbolise historical figures, incidents and symbols. In this way the attack on Animal Farm by Frederick symbolises the German attack on Russia after its anti-aggression pact; Squealer symbolises propaganda; and the green Animal Farm flag represents the Communist Red Banner. ...read more.

Middle

Orwell shows us the way that those in power (in this case the pigs) use their superior intellect and linguistic ability to rewrite history, just as, he believed, totalitarian governments did. Later, when we witness the gradual erosion of commandments, we see the way in which history continues to be rewritten. The first commandment to change is the Fourth Commandment; when the pigs take up residence in the farm house and sleep in beds, this becomes ?No animal shall sleep in a bed with sheets?, and despite Clover and the rest of the animals? reservations, they are made to believe that they have faulty memories as a result of Squealer?s use of fear (Mr Jones and the dogs) ...read more.

Conclusion

By the end of the novel, most of the original animals have died and only Clover and Benjamin remain, but Orwell makes clear for us that the animals ?could not remember? whether things had been better or worse directly after the Rebellion. He demonstrates the way in which collective memory is eroded. By using the barn?s wall as a symbol of collective memory on which the original principles of Animalism ? its Seven Commandments ? are inscribed, Orwell is able to show the way in which memory is removed. The fact that the pigs alter these, progressively eroding them all until only the Seventh Commandment, substantially changed, remains, shows the way that history is forgotten and altered. He makes comments about the way in which those who hold power in the present control not only the present but the past and future too. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Animal Farm section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Animal Farm essays

  1. Peer reviewed

    Animal Farm - Power Corrupts, and Absolute Power Corrupts Absolutely

    4 star(s)

    These examples enforce this argument far more powerfully, the most prominent of them being below. "He read out to her what was written on the wall. There was nothing there now except a single Commandment. It ran: "ALL ANIMALS ARE EQUAL BUT SOME ANIMALS ARE MORE EQUAL THAN OTHERS."

  2. Animal Farm Bookreport - plot outline and its links to the Russian Revolution.

    Boxer, who was working harder then ever before, was convinced that everything Napoleon said was right, so he got another motto- 'Napoleon is always right', which was an example for all the other animals, because they admired Boxer a lot because of his strength.

  1. How important is a knowledge of the Russian revolution to a solid understanding of ...

    The dogs were also Napoleons sidekicks as they did all the dirty work for him. They were his bodyguards and the inside spies. In Russia Stalin had the Cheka / OGPU / MKVD / KGB. These were various groups who were Stalin's secret police whilst he was in power.

  2. "Power corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely".

    Napoleon, who is described as, "a larg, rather fierce-looking boar...with a reputation for getting his own way attempts to control the political scene, supervises the youths' education, and is an ingenious stategist when it comes to organizing patronization for his cause.

  1. Compare and contrast the themes of revolution in Animal Farm by George Orwell and ...

    He takes control of the food supply quickly. His expulsion of Snowball demonstrates for the first time the extent of his power. You can see that Napoleon was a powerful figure who destroyed the happiness of the animals. His greed and his ambition cause the rise of his power.

  2. Animal Farm.

    In the attention to "the bits, the nose-rings, the dog-chains, the cruel knives," and a whole host of other instruments of physical discipline, we see Orwell's profound empathy with the lowest of the low, as well as his intense hatred for physical suffering and its destruction of dignity.

  1. Through Napoleon and his pigs council, we are able to see the idea of ...

    After the exile of Snowball, anything bad that happened was blamed on him this is shown when the cows ?unanimously declared Snowball milked them in the middle of the night?. The windmill was an important scheme of Snowball to benefit the other animals by reducing the workload.

  2. Power Corrupts and Absolute Power Corrupts Absolutely. Discuss in relation to "Animal Farm".

    In short, he explains that men have been taking advantage of them for years, and that it is time for the tyranny of man to end. His message, boiled down to a word: "Rebellion." What Orwell actually gives us through old Major?s speech is a simplified version of the beliefs

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work