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Animal Farm by George Orwell (Book Summary and Review) – Minute Book Report


This is a story about a group of animals who
live on Manor Farm, a farm in the British countryside that is under the operation of
Mr. Jones, a poor drunkard. Old Major, a well-respected pig, calls all
of the animals to a meeting to share his vision of a farm free of humans, where the animals
reap what they sow. This vision inspires all of the animals and they await the day for
a rebellion. After Old Major passes away, the rebellion
begins when Mr. Jones forgets to feed the animals. The animals, led by the pigs, chase
away all of the humans from the farm, renaming it Animal Farm. Two pigs named Snowball and Napoleon emerge
as leaders, and for a while life on the farm is good. Rules are written on the barn for
everyone to follow and a rhythm of work and recreation settles on the farm. The animals
coexist in harmony and they feel a sense of pride as they work for no master. One day, the farm is attacked by Mr. Jones
and some men. Bravely, the animals fight the intruders away. Tension begins to build on the farm, as Snowball
and Napoleon are at odds with one another on the direction the farm should take. Snowball
wants the build a windmill, which he claims will increase food and reduce work, while
Napoleon wants to increase production. Just as Snowball wins over the animals with
his windmill idea, Napoleon calls his secret attack dogs to chase Snowball away. With Snowball
gone, Napoleon becomes the sole leader of the farm. Over time, more and more resources go toward
the pigs and dogs and less resources go toward the working animals. Through the smooth talking
of Squealer, the mouthpiece for Napoleon, the animals are assured that the pigs need
the extra resources in order to think and organize the farm. Surprisingly, Napoleon then declares that
they should build a windmill and that he was never actually against the idea since it had
secretly been his all along. The animals work hard to build the windmill,
but it gets destroyed. Napoleon blames Snowball for this act of vandalism and vows that the
animals on Animal Farm will build it again. Soon, Napoleon reaches out to humans outside
of the farm and begins making business deals for more supplies. The attempt to rebuild the windmill is led
by the efforts of Boxer, an old work horse nearing retirement age. Eventually, the windmill
is completed, but then gets blown up during an attack by neighboring men. Over time, the rules on the barn begin to
change to fit the pigs’ new lifestyle until only one rule remains: All animals are equal,
but some animals are more equal than others. In the end, Napoleon invites neighboring farmers
to visit the farm and because the pigs have picked up on the mannerisms of humans, the
animals cannot tell the difference between the two. First, this story highlights the relationship
between the working class, proletarians, and the aristocracy, bourgeoisie, within the context
of a capitalist society. As farm animals, they work not for themselves, but for the
profit of someone else and they are only fed and rested enough so that they can perform
more work. And when the animals are no longer productive, they are killed off and replaced. This relationship, though easily illustrated
through farm animals, is applicable to social classes today. Socialist theory argues that
for the rich to be rich, there must be a working class that is poor. This is clearly illustrated
not only on a national level, but a worldwide level as well. Ideally, it might be nice to picture a world
where people own what they work for. That every person contributes and takes equally.
But as the story develops, readers see more of why this type of utopian society cannot
exist, an example of a communist system trying to exist in a capitalist world. The animals are protected within the boundaries
of their socialist farm and they thrive under this system of equality. But soon, they are
forced to interact with the outside world and that’s when communism turns into something
else. It becomes a totalitarian society under the rule of one leader. And slowly readers
see that for socialism to work under a communist rule, everyone, even those outside of the
community, has to be under the same system. Lastly, this story demonstrates the power
of knowledge and how the uneducated and ignorant can be easily manipulated. Squealer will often
twist words and events around to make Napoleon look good. And while it may seem obvious as readers to
see the manipulation, this sort of thing happens in real life too. The public can oftentimes
be misinformed and manipulated about certain issues if they are ignorant about it. Facts
and events that seem so concrete may not actually be true. Nowadays, it’s often up to individuals
to find out for themselves.

99 Comments

  1. Munro Steel Author

    Can I please use this in my essay like the whole thing cause my projects due tommorrow and I need to have an answer really quick please reply

    Reply
  2. Thomas O Author

    Could you send me this script? It´s awesome and would be a very great help for the preparation for the next class test. You make a unique awesome work, thank you! I look forward to the next videos.

    Reply
  3. Rachel .P Author

    I love this so so much! I wish I'd found it sooner before receiving a D on my SAT today…😅 But i am sooo gonna memorise this for the English exam I have on Thursday. I did not read the book. #BigMistake

    Reply
  4. Wardeaus Author

    I'm Dutch and I had to read this book for my English class. I have a test on it in 1 hour… Thanks for the clear explanation.

    Reply
  5. Blankphotograph5799 Author

    I like this book but when reading it, it puts me to sleep, literally. I have to read the whole thing by Friday for a test. So now instead of reading it I'm just researching it online so that I can get as much detail as possible without being put to sleep. So thank you!

    Reply
  6. TCG LORD Author

    you know, this book also represents the rise and fall of the Soviet Union. Old major's visions represent the philosophies of karl marx and Vladimir Lenin. Napolean's rule represents that of Joseph Stalin, the Soviet dictator. In chapter 2, the animal's revolt against humans represents the October revolution of 1918 against Tsar Nicholas II, the Soviet monarch before stalin came to power. he is portrayed by farmer jones. When farmer jones and his men try to take back the farm in chapter 4, it is an allegory on the civil war between the Russian loyalists and the bolsheviks in 1919. But you know what the ironic thing is, by dictionary definition, a revolution end where it begins, so at first, the pigs that were being oppressed by the humans are now the ones doing the oppressing. So in a weird way, the animals are right back where they started.

    Reply
  7. truspeak Author

    As common with Orwell's books it is an analogy for the Russian Revolution and his hatred of the Stalinist turn the USSR took, Orwell was himself a Democratic-Socialist and was sympathetic towards Trotsky (portrayed by Snowball in the book, notice the betrayal and exiled to outside Animal Farm).
    His point was not that Socialism could not work, but that there will always be those who seek mislead and betray their kin to get more for themselves, as Stalin did. Communism as Trotsky saw it was utilitarianism however Stalin placed his favourite people above the workers, granting them more authority.
    Orwell commonly criticised communism for being more of a Fascism than a socialism, and if you look at the USSR under Stalin you cant blame him (and if you read 1984 you will know)
    I personally love Animal Farm and 1984 and think they are both "must reads", especially where we are heading in light of world politics, but be open minded about the message as the states in both resemble a Fascist state not a socialist one

    Reply
  8. Minute Book Reports Author

    If you found this video helpful, please Like and Share the video with your friends. If you want to know what I’m currently reading, as well as watch other book summaries, please subscribe to the channel. Thanks.

    Reply
  9. Glen Jackson Author

    South Africa can also be used as an example to this story line. Jacob Zuma together with his family, friends and some ANC associates, the Gupta family and their associates have crippled South Africa after Nelson Mandela has secured a "Free South African society" The South African airways, the railways Prasa, the power utility ESKOM, the hospitals poor services, the schools changing education system are some of the government units that were raped of the finances to be used to uplift the country.

    Reply
  10. Dean J Author

    What I like about your summarizes is that you do not go for the self-improvement fraud industry but rather summarize intellectual stuff.

    If you can summarize this one, it would be great:
    https://www.amazon.com/Crude-Look-Whole-Science-Business-ebook/dp/B016TX4DU4#customerReviews

    Thanks again and keep up the great work.

    Reply
  11. 1fishmob Author

    Okay, the description this video gave might mislead some people.  It's not a book talking about how capitalism helped make socialist countries turn communistic, it's a cautionary tale of how easy it is for a socialistic country to be easily turned into a communistic regime, the dangers of overthrowing one dictator only for an even worse one to take over, just like with Stalin and Soviet Russia.  All of the things in the book is an allegory for the real life events happening in the soviet union.

    Reply
  12. Amy Pattie Author

    I believe this report misses the point – it is not the outside influences that corrupts; the corruption was there to begin with, when those with power (Napoleon) are not held accountable for his actions, and no one questions what he does. Your mention of Boxer was brief, and without mentioning the climax where he is betrayed and sent to be slaughtered by the pigs, his mention is completely obsolete.
    Also, the big, big thing that it’s missing is that it’s an allegory of the Russian Revolution and the Soviet Union. Every single character, event, every word represents an aspect of the Bolshevik uprising. To not mention that is a great injustice.

    Reply
  13. SULEMAN SHAHEEN Author

    Has a test and watched it just before. I then got an A. Couldn’t have done it without this helpful video. Thanks so much!

    Reply
  14. Kayla Author

    I’m 15-years-old, and headed into my fourth year of high school. My English teacher recommended I read Animal Farm as he found it rather interesting. I just finished it 10 minutes ago. It was a great read.

    Reply
  15. Patrick Reilly Author

    Graduated 10 years ago. I must have been so high and slept through this class cause it was definitely a required novel we studied. And i remember none of this. 😳

    Reply
  16. You just got Triggered Author

    Thank you! This really helped. I haven’t been listening in class because the because it’s very boring. I have an assessment coming up, so you’re literally a life saver

    Reply

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