George Orwell is the pseudonym of Eric Arthur Blair, he was born in 1903, in Bengal, India. He was admitted to Eton, a famous boys’ school but there he was treated badly because he was not wealthy, he wrote this experiences in “Such, such were the Joys”. He enrolled in the Indian Imperial Police but then he resigned because he was against imperialism, against man’s dominion over man. He returned to Europe where he had left his family and friends, to work in London and Paris restaurants and hotels, he wrote this experience in “Down and Out in Paris and London” and “Burmese Days”, and he wrote “The Road to Wigan Pier” when, for the Great Depression he went to north of England to write about social conditions there. Then he participated in Spanish civil war, with republicans, against fascists, and wrote “Homage to Catalonia”. He was especially a journalist and editor, of a socialist newspaper “Tribune”, but he was not totally socialist because he’s disillusioned with communism and totalitarianism of Stalin, indeed he wrote “Animal Farm”, a satire of the Russian Revolution.
It is a political fable, describing how animals of a farm rebel against the farmer, and decide to run themselves the farm, but the pigs start to behave as cruelly as the human master. The animals are a metaphor for the workers in modern society, because they are exploited. The conclusion is that even if there are revolution against oppression, at the end of revolution, other forms of oppression will born.
ANIMAL FARM – THE PLOT
The animals of an old British Farm are tired to be exploited by the farmer, Mr. Jones, so one of them, a pig, Old Major, decide to start a revolution against man, to create an independent community: Animal Farm. The revolution, is led by two pigs, Napoleon and Snowball. When it ends, animals create the farm’s statutes, based on seven commandments, in which the most important is the seventh “All animals are equal”, but these commandments are not real, because Napoleon gradually acquires power in his hands, and he behaves as cruelly as the human master, so a new form of oppression begins, the animals are very similar to men.
It is an anti-utopian or dystopian novel. The first writer who wrote “Utopia” was Thomas More. Utopia means the realization of a perfect world, while Dystopia is the contrary, means a world paradoxically imperfect. This novel was written in 1948 (Orwell has reversed the last two numbers to give the title of the novel). It is a ruthless and prophetic picture of a world where the individual is controlled by mass-media, in this case, the omnipresent and mysterious oppressor is the “Big Brother”.
In 1984 the world is divided in three great-powers, Oceania, Eastasia and Eurasia, which are in war to get remaining territories. Britain is part of Oceania, is ruled by a totalitarian dictatorship rule by Big Brother, which control everyone by microphones, video cameras, “telescreen”, huge posters. There is no privacy, and Society is divided between members of the Party, a small minority which has the control, and the “proles” who live in other districts. The party manipulates people’s minds through the Ministry of Truth, which has to rewrite history, by correcting party’s mistakes, and it has to reduce vocabulary to eliminate hues of meaning. The main character is Winston Smith, who works for Ministry of Truth, and he don’t share the party’s fanaticism. He starts to keep a diary, to keep distance from the party, and he meets Julia, a young girl, with whom he starts an illegal relationship, and when the relationship is found out, the two lovers are subjected to “rehabilitation treatment”, a program of mental and physical torture. At the end of the program, they are cured, but destroyed in body and soul, Winston has not emotions anymore, and he can just adore Big brother with all his being.