Analyze the success of the techniques the pigs use to control the thinking of the other animals.

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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I would say that the techniques that the pigs employ to control the other animals thinking works very well.  From Chapter 2 onwards, the pigs are able to use the power of persuasion to both change the animals' thinking and essential control it.  Snowball uses the persuasive element of going to animal to animal and talking about the revolution.  His exchange with Mollie is an example of this.  The fact that Snowball goes to any animal and implores them to accept the thinking of Animalism and the forthcoming revolution is representative of the ends to which he uses logic and persuasion to change their minds and essentially control their thinking.  Napoleon understands that the power of force and control can channel the animals' thought into something that supports the leadership of the pigs.  From the earliest point, he understands that the way to ensure loyalty and obedience from the animals is to use force to control their thoughts.  The rearing of the pups to be his secret army is something that is seen in chapter 5 as ridding the farm of Snowball and then in chapter 7 of potential traitors.  This proves to be largely successful as few other animals dare to cross him.  At the same time, Napoleon's ridding the farm of older animals such as Muriel and Boxer helps to ensure that a younger generation knows only he and his rule, thereby controlling their thought with the control of history.  Napoleon's ability to use the power of force to ensure that the animals' thought is aligned with his own consolidation of power proves to be both successful and one of the fundamental themes of the novel in terms of power.  Squealer's use of propaganda and political "spin" is another example of how he is able to control the animals' thinking to remain supportive of pig leadership.  Squealer is able to use propaganda and spin as means to control the Animals' thought.  Whenever he senses that the animals' questioning could prove to be problematic, he uses the fear of Jones in order to scare the animals enough so that the leadership of the pigs is reestablished.  Squealer is able to confuse the animals so much with his explanations that they lack the understanding to effectively voice dissent, demonstrating another example in which the animals are able to be controlled in terms of their thought.  Along with Napoleon in desiring a cult of personality, Squealer is able to ensure that the animals are inundated with enough glorification of Napoleon to control the animals' thoughts to support their leader.  In these instances, the pigs use different techniques to ensure that they are able to control the thought of the animals.

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