How does Animal Farm satirize the Russian Revolution?

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belarafon eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The Russian Revolution are the events that ended the Tsarist regime and created the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR). Animal Farmis a broad satire of those events, covering the initial propaganda of Karl Marx and Vladimir Lenin, and the slow breakdown of Russian society because of the essential failings of Communism.

By showing Russia as a small, working farm, and the subversive leaders as overthrowing the farmers, George Orwell shows how propaganda can be more powerful than fact and logic. By swaying the masses with slogans and pitting them against a common enemy, the pigs are able to exploit the workers as much as the previous regime, but in secret. The pigs claim that they are enjoying greater comforts (beds, alcohol, extra food) in order to keep everyone else safe; however, the result is that the workers work harder than ever while keeping less and less of their own labor. The book therefore acts as a shortened account of the necessary failure of a Utopian Communist society, since inequality of result becomes institutionalized by government instead of acting as a economic driver.