Are there any fallacies in Animal Farm?

Animal Farm has several fallacies. Fallacies are components of a seemingly valid argument that, upon closer examination, are not actually correct. In Animal Farm, the pigs regularly use faulty logic to justify their actions, but the other animals are not educated enough or are too naive to realize this.

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

Fallacies are components of a seemingly valid argument that, upon looking more closely, are usually wrong. Animal Farmby George Orwell has several logical fallacies. For example, the animals split themselves into two groups under the slogans "Vote for Snowball and the Three-Day Week" and "Vote for Napoleon and the...

See
This Answer Now

Start your 48-hour free trial to unlock this answer and thousands more. Enjoy eNotes ad-free and cancel anytime.

Get 48 Hours Free Access

Fallacies are components of a seemingly valid argument that, upon looking more closely, are usually wrong. Animal Farm by George Orwell has several logical fallacies. For example, the animals split themselves into two groups under the slogans "Vote for Snowball and the Three-Day Week" and "Vote for Napoleon and the Full Manger." Even though this is a complicated situation, it becomes a strict either-or decision. The animals don't consider the other options or outcomes surrounding these two choices; Snowball could try to increase their manger, and Napoleon could try to reduce their working hours, but the animals still think it's either-or.

The pigs in Animal Farm seem to use logical fallacies most often, usually through Squealer. Squealer also uses the either-or fallacy in his campaigns against Snowball.

That was our mistake, comrade. For we know now—it is all written down in the secret documents that we have found—that in reality he was trying to lure us to our doom."

Here, Squealer is emphasizing that everyone is either for or against Snowball and there is no in-between, which is not necessarily true.

You do not imagine, I hope, that we pigs are doing this is a spirit of selfishness and privilege? Our sole object in taking these things is to preserve our health. Milk and apples (this has been proven by Science, comrades) contain substances absolutely necessary to the well-being of a pig. We pigs are brainworkers. The whole management and organization of this farm depends on us. It is for your sake. Do you know what would happen if we pigs failed in our duty? Jones would come back!

There are several logical fallacies hidden in Squealer's speech. He presents a red herring when he claims that the pigs' failure would cause Jones to return. In fact, their failure has nothing to do with Jones coming back. Squealer also begs the question several times, skirting around having to answer to why the pigs get all the milk and apples. He distracts the other animals away from their selfishness by essentially running circles around the real questions.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team