Squealer talks of the violation of the principles of Animalism, but how did Old Major expected food to be distributed?I do not understand what exactly the question wants.

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litteacher8 | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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Squealer tells the animals that equal rations are against the principles of Animalism, even though Old Major Expected food to be evenly distributed.

Let’s beginning by explaining what the question means.  First of all, the principles of Animalism were laid down by Old Major.  The basic idea was that everything on the farm would be shared by all animals.  When Old Major died, the pigs began to change Animalism to suit their own needs.

In chapter 9, things are beginning to get really tough for most of the animals on the farm.

Meanwhile life was hard. The winter was as cold as the last one had been, and food was even shorter. Once again all rations were reduced, except those of the pigs and the dogs. (ch 9, pdf p. 44, see my first link)

Let’s take your question:  How did Old Major expect food to be distributed?  In the above quote, we see that the pigs and dogs are getting more food.  This is because they have taken power over the other animals.  The pigs are running things, and the dogs are their enforcers.  Did Old Major want it that way?  No!

And, above all, no animal must ever tyrannise over his own kind. Weak or strong, clever or simple, we are all brothers. No animal must ever kill any other animal. All animals are equal. (Ch 1, p. 5)

This line from Old Major's speech shows that Old Major clearly expects all animals to be equal, and share equally.  Old Major would have expected all food to be shared.

The soil of England is fertile, its climate is good, it is capable of affording food in abundance to an enormously greater number of animals than now inhabit it. This single farm of ours would support a dozen horses, twenty cows, hundreds of sheep and all of them living in a comfort and a dignity that are now almost beyond our imagining. (Ch 1, p. 2)

Old Major did not foresee food rationing, which means limiting food!  He thought every animal would have enough.  Squealer, Napoleon and the pigs’ mouthpiece, indicates that Animalism is a little different than Old Major described.

A too rigid equality in rations, Squealer explained, would have been contrary to the principles of Animalism. (ch 9, p. 44)

Remember, Sqeualer "is the propaganda chief for the pigs" (enotes character analysis, Squealer).  Clearly the pigs are engaging in their own manipulation again, so that they can live large while everyone else suffers.  This is NOT what Old Major expected.  He thought every animal on the farm would prosper equally because they would all share everything.

The full text of Animal Farm from which my pages were taken can be found here: http://msxnet.org/orwell/

Read more about Animal Farm here: http://www.enotes.com/animal-farm/summary

Read more about Squealer here: http://www.enotes.com/animal-farm/squealer


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