How does Napolean in Animal Farm seek to gain power over others?I have to write an essay so maybe 3 main points on how he gained power.

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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I think that what is so significant about the manner in which Napoleon is able to gain and consolidate his power is that it is done through an incremental plan.  There is not the bravado of sweeping in and dominating once Jones has been dispensed.  Rather, it is done in small incremental steps which reflects a grand design to maintain and grow his power.  From the taking of the pups to be his secret army to being able to use Squealer to "spin" his own image to constantly being in the way of Snowball's plans, Napoleon recognizes that the elimination of options or perceived threats to his power is the one way in which Napoleon can both establish his power and grow it.  This is significant because it shows that Napoleon was not really driven by Animalism or the like philosophy. He simply understood the revolution as an opportunity to develop his power and to expand it.  For Orwell, this becomes significant in that it shows political theory to be reduced to power and the need to expand it.  Politics is not about ideas and idealism as much as it is an exercise in power and the ability to keep and grow it becoming essential to modern political leadership.  Napoleon embodies this.


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