Animal Farm Book Review

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Animal Farm is set on an English farm named Manor Farm, owned by Mr. Jones. The fable-like story concerns the rebellion of the farm animals, and is told entirely from their point of view. The story opens with Mr. Jones stumbling into bed, unable to lock up the farm properly after a night of excessive whisky drinking. Old Major, the venerable and well-respected pig, has called all the animals together for a meeting to take place after Mr. Jones has gone to bed, and they gather outside the big barn on the farm. Old Major tells them all that he had a miraculous dream last night, in which he saw his approaching death, and also understood more clearly the life of animals. He wants to impart his realizations to the rest of the animals while he still can, as well as rouse them to take the action that he has come to feel is necessary. Old Major points out to the animals that the cause of their miserable existences is the tyranny of Man, who is a lazy, incompetent creature who steals the fruits of animals' labor for his own benefit. Old Major describes his vision of an England where animals could live in peaceful and plentiful coexistence with each other, free from the cruel tyranny of Man. He exhorts the animals to band together to defeat their common enemy, and teaches them all "Beasts of England," the song which becomes their revolutionary anthem and battle cry. The animals are greatly moved by Old Major's speech, and rally around the rebellion idea, singing "Beasts of England" until Mr. Jones is roused from his sleep and fires a shot into the air, quieting the animals to sleep.

Three days later, Old Major dies and is buried. His revolutionary fervor lives on, and the animals begin to flesh in the revolutionary ideology with which they will overthrow Mr. Jones. Two of the pigs, Snowball and Napoleon, emerge as the leaders of the animals. Another pig named Squealer is also prominent for his persuasive speaking ability. These three pigs create a system of tenets and...
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