Animal Farm


Chapter 1-Chapter 3

Chapter One

When Animal Farm begins, the reader is first introduced to Mr. Jones, who stumbles to bed, drunk, joining Mrs. Jones, who is already in bed. Mr. Jones has apparently neglected to secure the animals for the evening, because they all meet to gather in the barn. They have been called there by Old Major, one of the oldest animals on the farm. Old Major believes that his life is drawing to a close and wishes to talk to the animals about something that has been bothering him. Old Major describes to the animals how he believes that man has been exploiting the animals. He describes men as using animals to better their own conditions, while at the same time only providing enough care to sustain the animals, despite having adequate resources for the animals to live in much greater comfort. He also talks about the men failing to contribute anything to the animas’ well-being. He describes the animals as living as virtual slaves and challenges the notion that it is somehow part of the natural order for the animals to live this way. What he suggests is that man has made the animals believe that it is the natural order for the animals to work for men without adequate compensation. Clearly, this is a description of the lower classes working for the benefit of the upper classes. Modern Socialism may focus on social class distinction, which is largely related to one’s social class at birth, but it is critical for the reader to understand that birth played a much greater role in social position when this book was written. The Bolshevik Revolution, which served as a huge inspiration for the book, was not simply about a disadvantaged lower class fighting against an oppressive advantaged upper class, but about an upper class that was literally royalty. Tied into the notion of royalty has always been the idea that, simply because of someone’s bloodline, the person is somehow better than others. Therefore, Orwell’s comparison between man and animals was not dramatically different from the distinctions the upper class drew between the...

Sign up to continue reading Chapter 1-Chapter 3 >

Essays About Animal Farm