Give an example of the propaganda technique of testimonials that the pigs used in Animal Farm.

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pirateteacher eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In Old Major's speech to the animals he uses propaganda by uniting all the animals against one common enemy: the humans. He tells them their lives would be better if they would but listen to him and overthrow the farmers.  He also teaches them the song "Beasts of England" which serves to teach the animals easy to remember tenets of his ideas. The song is also sung at the end of the pig's secret meetings to unite and empower them. Snowball and Napoleon also use the song to help spread their message throughout the farm.

Slogans like "Four legs good, two legs bad" are also types of propaganda.  Though the animals do not always understand what it means, they repeat the short and easy to remember shibboleth.  When Napoleon and Snowball run for election, they each also develop easy to remember slogans -"Vote for Snowball and the three-day week" and "Vote for Napoleon and the full manger"- to garner support.

Squealer uses fear as a type of propaganda.  He warns the animals if they make one false step Jones' will return. This fear helps keep the animals in line. He is also able to convince the animals that even though they know Snowball fought bravely at the Battle of the Cowshed, he really didn't. By doing this, he is able to convince them that Snowball is a traitor.

gmuss25 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Napoleon utilizes the technique of testimonial propaganda to mislead the other animals into believing that Snowball was responsible for the destruction of the windmill. Testimonial propaganda is a technique used when a famous or celebrated individual endorses an idea. This is exactly what Napoleon does so that he can shift the blame and create an enemy when the windmill collapses. Napoleon realizes that his construction plans were flawed and that the windmill could not withstand the harsh weather because it was incorrectly built. However, Napoleon knows the strength of his position and uses it to his advantage. As the animals are standing around the scattered remnants of the windmill, Napoleon says,

" you know who is responsible for this? Do you know the enemy who has come in the night and overthrown our windmill? SNOWBALL!" (Orwell 30).

Napoleon shifts the blame to Snowball by claiming that he maliciously planned and executed the attack on the windmill. Upon learning that Snowball was responsible for such an act, the animals become furious and begin to plan ways to catch Snowball. Napoleon's clever use of testimonial propaganda shifts the blame from him as he accuses Snowball of malicious activity.