We’ve got the Whole World in Our Hands?
George Orwell’s Animal Farm and Ayn Rand’s Anthem were both published during a period in world history where repressive totalitarian dictatorships were increasingly placing a stranglehold on the social, intellectual, and political rights of people all across the world, with the rise of fascism in Europe and the absolute despotism of Stalinist Russia. Rand and Orwell sought to both deflate utopian propaganda and give a wake up call to the masses with their books. Anthem and Animal Farm were literary munitions targeted at the foundations of their chosen adversaries, collectivism or fascism as a whole and the Soviet Union under Stalin respectively. In Animal Farm and Anthem, Orwell and Rand both expressed the view that the tyranny that they depicted is at least partly dependent upon the ignorance and unquestioning obedience of the populace. Orwell began writing Animal Farm during the year of 1943, in a time of great popularity for the Soviet Union in the West, as they were allies against the axis powers. Because of this popularity, Orwell was not able to find a publisher until 1945 when relations between the Soviet Union and the West had cooled down. Orwell took pleasure in deflating the fantasy-based perception of Stalinist Russia at the height of its popularity. He saw Stalinist Russia as a perversion of socialism. Animal Farm was the story of Manor Farm, a microcosm for the Soviet Union, where the animals took control of the farm from the owner. A power struggle soon ensued between the two most influential pigs, Napoleon and Snowball, in which Napoleon emerged victorious. After Snowball was run off, Napoleon gradually took complete control of the farm through deceitful and murderous means. Additionally, Napoleon horded food and all luxury items for the other pigs and him. In the end, the pigs became indistinguishable from the repressive humans that ran the farm before. Ayn Rand was undoubtedly...
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