Essay, Research Paper: Animal Farm
Literature: George Orwell
The term propaganda is sometimes brought up in casual conversation, however,
many do not realize the potential power that propaganda can have.
Merriam-Webster defines propaganda as "the spreading of ideas, information,
or rumor for the purpose of helping or injuring an institution, a cause, or a
person." In the novel Animal Farm by George Orwell, propaganda is shown to
indeed cause harm. An examination of various sections of the book will be
conducted in order to demonstrate three aspects of propaganda: how it is used by
Snowball to positively obtain the control of Animal Farm; how Napoleon uses it
in a sinister way to exile Snowball and his paradigm and to show Napoleon's
propaganda as a scapegoat for his own problems. Again, Merriam-Webster states
propaganda as "the spreading of ideas, information, or rumor for the
purpose of helping or injuring an institution, a cause, or a person."
First, it can be seen how Snowball uses propaganda to effectively assume
leadership of Animal Farm. After the rebellion, Snowball took control and
broadcast his ideas upon desprate ears. "Vote for Snowball and the three
day week..." (p.34) Snowball spread propaganda that would promote Animalism
by building a windmill. This windmill was to be used for luxuries that would
make life better for everyone on Animal Farm. Snowball also said that although
the construction would be difficult all animals would benefit in the long run.
His positive attitude, ideas and propaganda excited the animals so much that
they wanted to build it, until the demise of Snowball and his crimes of treason.
Napoleon decided to use propaganda in a negative manner to destroy the
reputation of Snowball's righteousness. During a vote when the animals of Animal
Farm were to decide the fate of the windmill, the animals seemed to be siding
with Snowball. That is when Napoleon implemented his wicked plot to rule Animal
Farm. Napoleon exiled Snowball from the farm by means of death and then spread
propaganda about how he was a traitor from the beginning and how he has been
working with Mr. Jones the past (exiled) owner of Animal Farm. Napoleon did this
to guarantee his position of leadership at Animal Farm to counteract when he was
outsmarted by the plans for the windmill and the fact that Snowball was likely
to be the one in complete control of the farm. However, all the animals accepted
Napoleon's propaganda and continued with him as their new leader. . During the
unjust reign of Napoleon at Animal Farm, he encountered many problems that would
eventually be attributed to the use of propaganda. This use of propaganda was
again corrupt, but it was used in a different way, propaganda served as a
scapegoat for Snowball and every issue that would threaten his role as leader.
This was obliviously evident in many ways. When the windmill (a bad idea to
begin with) was being built under the rule of Napoleon, it toppled in a violent
storm. It was declared destroyed by Snowball but he could not have destroyed the
windmill due to sheer size. The animals thought about how Snowball was a traitor
in the past and believed every word that Napoleon directed. This also shows how
propaganda is very powerful when it is used in leadership situations. People
will believe anything. The novel Animal Farm clearly indicates how propaganda is
used to change others beliefs When people are motivated by positive ideals and
wish to promote those ideas, propaganda is a wonderful tool. However, when we
see the darkness from Napoleon and it becomes difficult to separate the truth
from lies. Hopefully, when propaganda is brought up in casual conversation it
comes out in the way that Snowball intended. To help people.
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