What are some examples of transfer propaganda techniques used throughout Animal Farm?

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gmuss25 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

As was mentioned in the previous post, transfer propaganda is defined as a technique that projects the positive or negative qualities of an individual to something in order to make the second seem more or less acceptable. Squealer continually uses transfer propaganda to oppress and manipulate the other animals on the farm into accepting the pigs' decisions. After Napoleon chases Snowball off of the farm, the ruling pigs use transfer propaganda to blame all of their failures on Snowball. Transfer propaganda is employed to blame Snowball for the destruction of the windmill, as well as all of the other unfortunate occurrences on the farm. Orwell writes,

"Whenever anything went wrong it became usual to attribute it to Snowball" (30).

When Squealer declares that Snowball was in league with Jones and plotted against Animal Farm at the Battle of Cowshed, many of the animals find this hard to believe. When Boxer questions Squealer and comments that Snowball fought bravely, Squealer uses transfer propaganda by appealing to Napoleon's authority. Squealer says,

"Our Leader, Comrade Napoleon...has stated categorically — categorically, comrade — that Snowball was Jones’s agent from the very beginning — yes, and from long before the Rebellion was ever thought of" (Orwell 32).

Upon learning that Napoleon stated that Snowball was allied with Jones during the Battle of Cowshed, Boxer accepts Squealer's testimony. Napoleon is viewed as an infallible, honest leader which means that all of his comments must be true.

readerofbooks eNotes educator| Certified Educator

We should start with definitions. The idea behind transfer in propaganda or even advertising is the idea of projecting either positive or negative qualities of a person to another in order to make the second more acceptable or less acceptable. 

We see this technique used many times in Animal Farm. When the Windmill is destroyed, the blame is shifted to Snowball. According to Napoleon, he has been a traitor all along.  He conspired with humans to bring havoc on Animal Farm. Here is what Napoleon says:

"Do you know the enemy who has come in the night and overthrown our windmill? SNOWBALL! ...in malignity, thinking to set back our plans and avenge himself for his ignominious expulsion, this traitor has himself crept her under cover of night and destroyed our work of nearly a year...."

The greater subtly is this. The windmill is actually a good idea, but the problem is that Snowball thought of it. So, what Napoleon does is discredit Snowball and simultaneously take credit for the Windmill. So, the building of the windmill is now transferred to Napoleon. He become synonymous with it.