What are 6 key points of Old Major's speech from Animal Farm?

Expert Answers
amarang9 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

First, Major states that life for animals in England is miserable. Essentially, they are in slavery. This sad state of life is not because of the animals themselves, nor is it a result of the climate and landscape they live in. His second major point is that humans are the cause of their miserable lives. The animals have meager shelter and only receive enough food to stay alive and work. Humans steal most of the product of their labor. 

A third point is the solution. Get rid of humans and the animals will be in control of their labor and products of that labor. Following this, their living conditions should improve. 

Major adds that man (humans) is the only creature that produces nothing: no eggs, milk, and no pulling of the plow. Man is useless in this sense but is somehow the lord of all animals. And for no logical reason, it is man who keeps the eggs, milk, and fruits of that which is planted in the plowed fields. 

A fifth point is that, under the authority of humans, all animals will come to a gruesome end to life, and sometimes this will be premature. 

A sixth point is that the solution to this is to rebel. The only way to get rid of man's oppressive authority is to simply get rid of man altogether. The animals must stick together in this rebellion. 

Having said all of this, Major organizes a vote asking if wild animals are their comrades. They conclude that the wild animals are comrades. Again, this establishes the unity and camaraderie of the animals and their opposition to humans. 

Major summarizes his points which will become the commandments of Animalism: 

Whatever goes upon two legs is an enemy. Whatever goes upon four legs, or has wings, is a friend. And remember also that in fighting against Man, we must not come to resemble him. Even when you have conquered him, do not adopt his vices. No animal must ever live in a house, or sleep in a bed, or wear clothes, or drink alcohol, or smoke tobacco, or touch money, or engage in trade. All the habits of Man are evil. And, above all, no animal must ever tyrannise over his own kind. Weak or strong, clever or simple, we are all brothers. No animal must ever kill any other animal. All animals are equal.