What are the similarities between Stalin's era and Animal Farm.

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I would say that another similarity between both Stalin and the world depicted in Orwell's work is evident through the use and control of information.  The Stalinist control of the flow of information through Pravda and Squealer's masterful presentation of information are both powerful reminders of the level to which the government sought to increase and validate its control over the people.  The idea of "truth" being both the instrument of propaganda for both the Stalinist government and Squealer acquires even more relevance in that both represent the concept of "truth" as being something directly controlled by the government.  At both of their heights, Squealer and Pravda refused to acknowledge anything other than the monolithic supremacy of their ruling authorities, seeking to rewrite both present and past, and ensuring that generations understood state controlled mediums of information as the "only game in town."

pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

There are tons of similarities between this book and various episodes in Stalin's long reign.  Let me highlight a few of them:

  • The poor harvests and hard times in the book are true to life.  Stalin's efforts to force Soviet farmers onto collective farms led to a huge famine that caused many deaths in the country.
  • The purges of people for crimes that were probably imaginary are also true to life.  When all the animals are executed for conspiring with Snowball, it is very much like the show trials that Stalin put on for people who allegedly opposed the revolution.
  • Stalin's inability to really see through Hitler's intentions is portrayed in how Frederick fools Napoleon.  Hitler and Stalin had a nonagression pact that lasted up until the day that Germany invaded the USSR.