15 May 2007
Symbolism of Pigs in Animal Farm
In Orwell's Animal Farm, the animals revolt against the cruel human leaders and set up a better method of farm management where all animals are equal. As time passes, the new leaders become greedy and corrupt, and the other animals realize conditions are just as miserable as before. There is a major connection between Animal Farm and Russian communism. The pigs are one of the most significant of these connections, representing the communist rulers of Russia, like Joseph Stalin and Leon Trotsky. Their traits, personalities, and actions are similar to the actual men in power. In the novel Animal Farm, the pigs represent the communist leaders of Russia in the early 1900s.
Old Major, the creator of animalism, represents both the original revolutionary, Vladimir Lenin, and the founder of communism, Karl Marx. Like these Russians, Old Major wants all individuals to be equal. Old Major is symbolic of Marx because, like Marx, he has a dream about the revolution. He says, "'That is my message for you, comrades: Rebellion! And among us animals let there be perfect unity, perfect comradeship, in the struggle. All men are enemies. All animals are comrades'" (Orwell 4). Also, neither of the two live to see the revolution put into effect ("Animal" 1). Old Major is also symbolic of Lenin because while he introduces the idea of a revolution, Lenin introduces the New Economy Plan to Russia (Urban 1). Animals view Old Major's skull prior to meetings because he inspired them to revolt; similarly, people of Russia view Lenin's glass coffin because he originally led them to overthrow the czars' reign. In addition, Napoleon, the ruthless commander of Animal Farm, is symbolic of communist Joseph Stalin. Both characters can be described as "cruel, corrupt, and selfish" ("Animal" 1). Napoleon rids himself of Snowball and takes control, and Stalin removes Trotsky and names himself...