Presentation on theme: "Animal Farm is an allegory Allegory: A story in which the characters, places and events mean something else, often a real life event. Allegories make."— Presentation transcript:
Animal Farm is an allegory Allegory: A story in which the characters, places and events mean something else, often a real life event. Allegories make an important statement about the subjects they cover
Animal Farm is an allegory for the Russian Revolution The characters, places and events represent actual people that lived and the things they did It ultimately makes a comment or judgement about the Russian Revolution
What seems important in the pic? Your understanding (and enjoyment) of the novel will be helped by learning a little about the Russian Revolution Think of it as a puzzle to be worked out—who is this character/ thing/event supposed to be?
Russian History 101 Or “Once Upon a Time in Russia”...”
Once upon a time in Russia... There lived a supreme ruler—the Tsar—and his family The Tsar (emperor) was an absolute ruler—his word was LAW His rule was his birthright—the people didn’t pick him, God did (nice work if you can get it...)
The Tsar and his court (princes, nobles, dukes and duchesses) lived very well They threw huge parties and wore expensive clothes, drinking and dancing most of the year
Meanwhile... About 10% of Russians lived this high life The other 90% were known as peasants They worked in factories or on farms owned by the nobility and barely had enough to survive
Only the nobility were allowed to own land Most businesses were owned by the nobility and a few very rich people Peasants and factory workers had to pay rent to live on the farms or in tiny apartments (usually 10 men in each one) for the privilege of working for these guys They were little more than slaves, really...
How would you feel if you were a... Noble?Peasant / Worker?
Enter Marxism Karl Marx was a German economist / philosopher He hated the conditions of factories in the 1840s and wrote about what he saw His ideas spread through Europe
Marx’s Ideas Factory owners do nothing and get rich off the labour of their workers If workers stopped working, production would stop Since the real power is with the workers, they should control factories and share the wealth
He blamed poverty on capitalism—the system wherein people own private businesses and land and make a profit by paying workers to make things
Some Famous Capitalists... EXXXCELLENT!!$$$
He invented communism—the system wherein everybody worked for the good of the people. Nobody made a profit. Everyone was equal and got the basic needs of life
Take 5 minutes and think about the pros and cons of Capitalism and Socialism. Complete a T-Chart for each using the following guideline.
Marxism There would be no private ownership. Marx stated that people who control the means of production have all the power & wealth and thus control society. According to Marx, throughout history society has always been divided into – Haves (business owners / wealthy people) – and have-nots (workers / poor people).
Marx predicted that the workers would rise up and take control of the factories and companies from the owners. Why would they want to do this?
In Marx’s view... Once the revolution was won, – The workers would destroy the owners, – a classless society would emerge, – and everyone would share the wealth. Bear in mind he was writing in The Russian Revolution happened in 1917.
So what does all this have to do with the Russian Revolution? While other countries moved forward, Russia seemed stuck in the Dark Ages. Many people turned to Marxist and Liberal ideas as a way to better their lives. The Russian people wanted CHANGE.
Now back to our story... Many people started protesting against the Tsar for change The Tsar reacted by ordering his soldiers to fire on the protesters
This was known as “Bloody Sunday”
But the people still met in secret and listened to leaders who spread communist ideas They liked the thought of sharing the wealth and having “their own kind” running things instead of the Tsar
Vladmir Lenin led the communist party They were called the Bolsheviks He spread Karl Marx’s message of the workers overthrowing the nobles and controlling society
Eventually the workers and peasants DID rise up and overthrow the Tsar Lenin led this revolution and brought communism to Russia He immediately took all the businesses and land from the wealthy people and said he would redistribute among the poor people
The Tsar and his family were killed
Russia became the Soviet Union
In return for getting their basic needs met, workers were expected to give all of their labour or crops to the government Failure to do so resulted in death or imprisonment
Soviet soldiers take grain that a farmer was hiding
In 1924 Lenin died and there was a power struggle between his 2 closest followers to take his place The first ½ of Animal Farm describes this struggle
Stalin did everything he could to turn people against Trotsky, including: – Propaganda – Lies – Killing Trotsky’s supporters Eventually Trotsky ran away, leaving Stalin to rule alone.
An assassin finally found Trotsky in Mexico and killed him Icepick to the head— OUCH!
Actually, Stalin used propaganda, lies and purges (killing all his opponents) to gain and then keep his power
Economic plans Stalin made plans to spread communism through Russia and update Russia’s industry He did this by taking control of the farms and setting quotas in the factories The farming plan was a failure and resulted in famines killing millions In the factories, workers were sent to gulags or executed for not working hard enough
People were often worked to death for nothing
Animal Farm tells this story by setting it on a farm where the animals overthrow the evil farmer to run the farm themselves Just like the real Russian Revolution, things go horribly wrong... As you read, use the chart to compare real life people and events to the characters and events in the novel