Through Napoleon and his pigs council, we are able to see the idea of power corrupts

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Discuss how an important idea was illustrated at the beginning, and concluded at the end of the novel

The satire ‘Animal farm’ by George Orwell has many ideas that are illustrated through it. One important idea is power corrupts; this idea is demonstrated through Naopleon who is the antagonist and along with his council of pigs represents the Russian leader Joseph Stalin and his committee. Through Napoleon and his pigs’ council, we are able to see the idea of ‘power corrupts’ anyone or group who has too much of it.

When Napoleon is crowned the official leader of the farm, all he cares about is maintaining his position. Unknown to anyone else, he has raised a secret army of dogs which “he had taken form their mothers at birth”. Napoleon represents the Russian leader Stalin who ruthlessly murdered anyone contesting his superior power. In ‘Animal farm’, a key event is ‘the public execution of alleged traitors’. By doing this, Napoleon is able to keep everyone in line and get rid of any opposition. Another key event is the exile of Snowball, a key rival of Napoleon, who represents Leon Trotsky in history. Snowball was the only possible animal that was able to contest power with Napoleon and this led to both pigs trying to persuade the other animals to vote for them as leader, due to the fact that neither of them was willing to co-operate and share power. Despite Snowball having the better speeches and ideas, his major flaw was not realizing Napoleon’s ambitions through his secret army and his slow rise to power. This was ultimately Snowball’s downfall.

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Once Napoleon had power, he did everything to try keeping it which meant going to great lengths including killing any supporters of Snowball. Examples of this include: the fours pigs that were alleged to have secret meetings with Snowball, the hens who said that they were told in a dream to disobey Napoleon and other animals said to have a link with Snowball. 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 ...

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