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How does the protagonist react to conflict in Animal Farm?

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saedgerton | Student, Grade 9 | eNoter

Posted August 11, 2012 at 1:55 PM via web

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How does the protagonist react to conflict in Animal Farm?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

Posted August 11, 2012 at 2:26 PM (Answer #1)

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If the protagonist in Orwell's work is seen as Napoleon, the answer is that Napoleon simply eliminates the source of conflict.  Problem solved.  When conflict arises with Snowball, he chases him off of the farm.  When different animals voice concern with how he is pursuing his position as leader and present conflict, he simply kills them off.  When other farms try to engage Animal Farm into conflict, he finds a way to neutralize the threat posed.  Napoleon does not seek to do anything with conflict other than get rid of it.  His reaction to conflict is to see it as a direct threat to his own power.  Napoleon demonstrates to the reader that the only entity that he covets is power and the desire to keep it is vitally important to him.  It is here where he views conflict as a potential way to have that power removed.  In this, Napoleon demonstrates that he views conflict and reacts to it as a zero sum game in which there is a distinct winner and a distinct loser.  Napoleon demonstrates himself to be one who will do anything to prevent himself from being seen as the latter, ensuring that his reaction to the conflict is one in which he is keenly driven to be the victor in any potential conflict.

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