Old Major first states the general problem. He says the life of animals is "miserable, laborious, and short" and their lives end in slaughter. He asks if these are necessary conditions because of the landscape. He answers that no, this is not the case. The land is fertile enough to...
Old Major first states the general problem. He says the life of animals is "miserable, laborious, and short" and their lives end in slaughter. He asks if these are necessary conditions because of the landscape. He answers that no, this is not the case. The land is fertile enough to afford the animals a much better lifestyle. Then Major identifies the problem: man. Man is their oppressor. Major uses basic logic to conclude that if Man is removed, their suffering will be over.
Then Major points out how illogical it is for man to be the lord of the animals. Man produces nothing, does not plow the fields, and yet Man keeps all of the excess eggs, milk, etc. He appeals to Clover, in particular, pointing out that her own children (foals) were taken from her by men. He uses shocking images to shake the animals into seeing the harsh truth of their miserable lives under the oppression of men. He tells the young pigs they will be killed within a year. He tells Boxer that he will be killed as soon as his muscles stop working. The dogs will be drowned when the become too old. After stating the problem and the cause of the problem (man), Major then provides the solution: rebellion.
His argument is simple and succinct: problem, cause, and solution. "All men are enemies. All animals are comrades." It is the logic and simplicity of Major's argument that makes him so convincing to the other animals. This is also the strategy of any kind of propaganda. It must be clear and understandable so that the masses can comprehend it and be unified by it. Then Major lists what will become the commandments of Animalism. These are the basic rules the animals will live by. Lastly, Major rallies the animals with the song Beasts of England leaving them very inspired at the thought of life without men.