Why did the animals destroy the bits and whips in Animal Farm?

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mbjohnse eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The animals overthrow Mr. Jones after Old Major has inspired them to take action and secure their own freedom. The humans exploit them by forcing them to endure hard labor for no reward. The bits and whips represent oppression to the animals, since these are the tools the humans use to control them. When animals are out of line it is the whips the humans use to punish them; when animals are forced to work, it is the bits that the humans use to direct them. It makes sense that the animals feel a sense of resentment towards these tools. Destroying these symbols of oppression represents a new chapter in their lives. The song "Beasts of England," which becomes an anthem for the animals' small revolution, specifically mentions the whips and bits of human injustice. This shows how symbolically important this moment is to the movement.