TITLE: Animal Farm
AUTHOR: George Orwell
PAGE COUNT: 95 pages
PUBLISHER: Penguin Books
ORIGINAL PUBLICATION DATE: 17 August 1945
GENRE: Classics, Fiction, Dystopian & Politics
SYNOPSIS: Mr. Jones of Manor Farm is so lazy and drunken that one day he forgets to feed his livestock. The ensuing rebellion under the leadership of the pigs Napoleon and Snowball leads to the animals taking over the farm. Vowing to eliminate the terrible inequities of the farmyard, the renamed Animal Farm is organized to benefit all who walk on four legs. But as time passes, the ideals of the rebellion are corrupted, then forgotten. And something new and unexpected emerges…
Animal Farm is the kind of book I do not know what to write about. I ended up enjoying it much more than I thought I would and it is a book that will always stay with me. With everything going on in the world, I feel as if this book will frequently pop up in my head.
However, I will not be reading it again in the future. I believe it is one of those books you only need to read once as it is enough. This book was not a light read and it took me a while to get into the story. Each chapter gets heavier and darker as the story goes on.
In the end, I am glad I finally read it and I think it is quite an important read.
All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.
The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which.
Man serves the interests of no creature except himself.
Weak or strong, clever or simple, we are all brothers.
…and to know that things never had been, nor ever could be much better or much worse–hunger, hardship, and disappointment being, so he said, the unalterable law of life.
And remember also that in fighting against man we must not come to resemble him. Even when you have conquered him, do not adopt his vices.
Eric Arthur Blair, better known by his pen name George Orwell, was an English author and journalist. His work is marked by keen intelligence and wit, a profound awareness of social injustice, an intense opposition to totalitarianism, a passion for clarity in language, and a belief in democratic socialism.
In addition to his literary career Orwell served as a police officer with the Indian Imperial Police in Burma from 1922-1927 and fought with the Republicans in the Spanish Civil War from 1936-1937. Orwell was severely wounded when he was shot through his throat. Later the organization that he had joined when he joined the Republican cause, The Workers Party of Marxist Unification (POUM), was painted by the pro-Soviet Communists as a Trotskyist organization (Trotsky was Joseph Stalin’s enemy) and disbanded. Orwell and his wife were accused of “rabid Trotskyism” and tried in absentia in Barcelona, along with other leaders of the POUM, in 1938. However by then they had escaped from Spain and returned to England.
Between 1941 and 1943, Orwell worked on propaganda for the BBC. In 1943, he became literary editor of the Tribune, a weekly left-wing magazine. He was a prolific polemical journalist, article writer, literary critic, reviewer, poet, and writer of fiction, and, considered perhaps the twentieth century’s best chronicler of English culture.
Orwell is best known for the dystopian novel Nineteen Eighty-Four (published in 1949) and the satirical novella Animal Farm (1945) — they have together sold more copies than any two books by any other twentieth-century author. His 1938 book Homage to Catalonia, an account of his experiences as a volunteer on the Republican side during the Spanish Civil War, together with numerous essays on politics, literature, language, and culture, have been widely acclaimed.
Orwell’s influence on contemporary culture, popular and political, continues decades after his death. Several of his neologisms, along with the term “Orwellian” — now a byword for any oppressive or manipulative social phenomenon opposed to a free society — have entered the vernacular.
Keep on reading and never stop telling stories.