What strategy was used to control the animals in spite of their hard labor in chapter seven of Animal Farm?

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

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There are several strategies that Napoleon and the pigs use to control the animals on the farm.  I think that the most dominant method in this chapter would have to be fear and intimidation.  The demonstration of political cruelty in this chapter is what galvanizes support.  The forced confessions and public executions are the strongest example of this.  Clover is confused at what she is seeing, and is representative of the desired effect by those in the position of power.  Seeing animals' throats ripped out by the intense dogs could not be what was originally envisioned.  However, she continues to support the Pigs' government out of confusion, fear, and intimidation.  Another example would be Napoleon's edict that no one offer support to the pullets who start the mutiny over the eggs.  Napoleon cuts them off, demanding that anyone helping them will suffer and ensuring that they are seen as the enemy.  In this intimidation move of deeming an "outsider" as "undesirable," Napoleon continues to consolidate his own power.  It is in this light that Napoleon's rule in this chapter is one through fear and intimidation with the brutality to support such strategies.

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