Orwell wrote Animal Farm in Great Britain during World War II. At the time Great Britain and the USSR were allies in the war. Even as an allegory, it was viewed by many as a derogatory work about the Soviet Union and the communist ideology. Therefore, he had a difficult time getting it published. If he had written it in a more literal fashion, there is no way any publisher from an Allied country would touch it. Being that it is an allegory, it is symbolic in nature and can take on different interpretations. For example, many people who read Animal Farm don't believe he is referring to the Soviets, but rather attacking dictatorial governments in general. The allegoric nature of the book allowed Orwell to eventually get his book published in Great Britain, while still managing to get his points across to his intended audience.