In "Animal Farm", which character does Napoleon blame for all of the problems? Why does he do this?

Expert Answers
ms-mcgregor eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Napoleon blames his fellow pig, Snowball, for all of the problems on Animal Farm. Napoleon is in a power struggle with Snowball over control of Animal Farm and by blaming Snowball, this "animal hero first class" begins to lose more and more credibility with the other farm animals. After the defeat of the humans at the battle of Cowshed, it also allows Napoleon to unite the animals against another common enemy. This tactic is reminiscent of the war between Josef Stalin and Leon Trotsky after the death of Lenin in the Soviet Union. Stalin was able to cement his control over the Soviet Union by purging (or killing ) anyone who disagreed with him. Finally Trotsky, like Snowball, left the country. Trotsky was later killed by Stalin's agents in Mexico.

timbrady eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I would only add that this action of Napoleon, usually called scapegoating, is an essential step in the creation of any dictatorship.  It is essential to have someone/group that the population is afraid of to deflect criticism from the "leader" --- and for the leader to seize additional power to protect the people from this other person.  Everything that goes wrong is blamed on the other person, not the "leader."  

This isn't all that different from what goes on in our society.  Is is really possible that either political party/candidate could be responsible for ALL the things that are wrong?  And are wrong things created just to blame on the other party?

"Animal Farm" may be closer than we think.