Orwell's "Animal Farm" Synopsis and Comments - This is how people are fooled. A masterful satirical allegory of Soviet totalitarianism.

Contemporary Society through Dystopian Science Fiction Novels





Let's take a quick look at the book.

The animals on the farm, who are being treated well by the humans, revolt. The animals, led by an old pig, expel the humans and build an ideal society where "all animals are equal. However, the pigs who became leaders want power, and the animals suffer a life worse than before. ...... This 20th century Aesop's Tale satirizes the Russian Revolution and takes a hard-hitting look at socialist fascism.

Kadokawa Shoten, George Orwell, translated by Fumio Takahata, Animal Farm, back cover

I am1984."と同じく、この作品も10年ほど前の学生時代に初めて読みました。その時の衝撃は今でも忘れません。

I was particularly shocked by the scene in the final part of the story where the pigs march on two legs, and I still vividly remember my surprise at that moment.

Reading the book again after studying the history of the Soviet Union over time, I realized what an excellent work it is: the skill with which it so well describes and satirizes the movements of the Soviet Union from the Russian Revolution of 1917 to the Lenin and Stalin regimes is nothing short of astonishing.







Create an enemy, and once you have defeated it, an ideal world will come to you. That is what he tells the animals. And that it is justice.




As I read this "Animal Farm," I realized that we must be careful of sweet words and words that incite hatred. What I also notice is the strength of the pigs' storytelling. Their eloquence makes the farm animals feel that something is "wrong" with them, but they are easily seduced. And by the time they realize it, they are dominated by violence. And despite this, they still continue to be deceived by their clever tricks of disguise.

このことについて素晴らしい解説をしている本がありましたのでぜひここに紹介したいと思います。この本については次の記事で改めて紹介しますが、香西秀信著Rhetoric and Sophistry."という本の中で『動物農場』が次のように紹介されていました。

At the manor farm owned by Mr. Jones, the overworked animals revolted under the leadership of Snowball the pig and Napoleon, who banished Mr. Jones. They changed the manor farm to an animal farm, established its Seven Commandments, and tried to create their own utopia under the slogan "All animals are equal.

But as early as the next day, things started to go wrong. The milk that had just been milked from the sows had somehow disappeared. It turned out that the pigs had been feeding themselves secretly, but the other animals began to complain that the pigs were trying to monopolize not only the milk but also the apples that had fallen in the wind. So Napoleon dispatched Squealer, a pig with a good tongue, as his spokesman.

Fellow comrades!" he exclaimed. You don't think that we pigs, with our gruffness and our air of privilege, are going to have all the milk and apples for ourselves, do you? To tell the truth, most of us hate milk and apples. I hate them too. The only reason why we eat such things that we hate is to maintain our health. Milk and apples (science has proven it, comrades) contain ingredients that are absolutely essential for the welfare of pigs. We pigs are engaged in brain work. The management and organization of this farm rests entirely on our shoulders. Day and night, we are devoted to the welfare of our comrades. Therefore, it is for the sake of our comrades that we drink the milk and eat the apples. Do you know what would happen if we, the pigs, were unable to fulfill that duty? Jones will come back! Yes, the Joneses are coming back! That's it, comrades," Squealer exclaimed in an almost pleading tone, hopping from right to left and busily wagging his tail. Not one of you wants Jones to come back, do you?

This decisive line worked. The animals were absolutely certain that if there was one thing they did not want Jones to return, it was that they did not want him to return. When he said it like that, they couldn't say anything else.

Squealer got a taste of the success of this argument. Later, when the animals were upset by Napoleon's ousting of Snowball, the leader of the revolution, in a power struggle, he was sent back to frighten them with the same argument: "Fellows, discipline! Discipline, fellow comrades, discipline, iron discipline! This is our watchword today. If we make a mistake, our enemies will attack us at once. Listen, none of you want Jones to come back, do you? Do you?" -Again, no one could refrain from making a sound in this discussion.

Chikuma Shobo, Hidenobu Kasai, "Rhetoric and Sophistry," p. 86-88



This is scary because it can happen anytime, anywhere.

Let's continue to look at the explanations.

Or when the pigs were exposed sleeping in beds, in violation of the fourth of the seven commandments, he repeated it again. For the pigs, sleeping in beds is necessary for their health. No one wants us to be so exhausted that we cannot do our duty. We are not going to have any of you wishing for Jones to come back, are we? -When this was said, the animals had nothing to say.

The ludicrousness of the argument used by Squealer here should be obvious. He asked, "Do you gentlemen wish Jones to return?" he asked the animals. Of course, their answer was a resounding "No." But this declaration of intent becomes approval for the pigs to keep milk and apples to themselves, for them to sleep on beds in violation of the commandments, or for Napoleon to become dictator.

This is because Squealer's question was based on the causal assumption that Jones would return if the pigs were not allowed to monopolize milk and apples, sleep in beds, and Napoleon's dictatorship. So, the animals, who were not smart enough to think about it, went up in smoke and accepted this premise, but if there were those who did not want Jones to return but also did not accept the privileged behavior of the pigs (i.e., they were not convinced of the causal connection between the series of privileged behavior of the pigs and Jones's return), then he would have been the first to admit that Jones would return. ), he cannot answer "yes" or "no" to Squealer's question. Since he does not want Jones to return, of course he cannot answer "yes". But if he answered "no," it would thereby be taken as an approval of the pigs' actions.

Chikuma Shobo, Hidenobu Kasai, "Rhetoric and Sophistry," p. 88-89

Rhetoric and Sophistry" by Hidenobu Kasai is, as the title suggests, a book that explains what "sophistry" is.







We should beware of those who create enemies, incite hatred and discontent, and thereby promote the defeat of our enemies. What happens after the enemy is defeated, "Animal Farm" tells us, is what happens after the enemy is defeated.

Animal Farm" is a short work of about 150 pages. The writing style is easy to read and you can read it in one sitting. It is such an easy-to-read work, yet it contains a surprisingly concentrated essence.

It is true that "1984" is a large work, and it is also true that it is difficult to read in terms of content. Many of you may have been frustrated. For those people, I would highly recommend this "Animal Farm". Of course, it is best to read it in combination with "1984," but I can assure you that this one book alone will be a shocking read.

This is a highly recommended book. It is a must read for now.


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