Animal Farm by George Orwell is a novel detailing a farm’s revolution as the animals fight to take back what is theirs and keep it for themselves rather than supply a farmer and his needs. The animals succeed in recapturing their farm, and one of the first things they do is set up a list of seven commandments to provide structure to their utopian society. By the end of the book, one realizes that the utopian society the animals set up was riddled with holes, and this leads one to wonder if a utopian is ever really achievable.
The purpose of this essay is to discuss Animal Farm’s flaws in its utopian society and the idea of the utopian society as a whole. To begin, one of the main flaws of the animals’ society is the fact that they wanted to be completely self-sufficient without any help from the outside world. A farm cannot sustain on its own: tools break, you can run low on fuel, and things need to be modernized. Orwell wrote the first commandment as “Whatever goes upon two legs is an enemy. ” (24).
With this as its first and primary thought, the pigs ultimately set their society up for failure. One crucial example of this failure is when the animals tried to construct a windmill to provide electricity for the farm. The animals couldn’t break up the stone to build the windmill, because as Orwell put it, “There seemed no way of doing this except with picks and crowbars, which no animal could use, because no animal could stand on his hind legs. ” (60) The animals were not men and were foolish to think that they could achieve everything just as easily as man could.
The windmill took several years to finish, and in the end wasn’t used to provide electricity to the farm, but to grind corn. The belief that all humans are the enemy and should be avoided was one of the nails in the coffin of Animal Farm’s utopian society, because they eventually did have to interact with the humans and trade with them. As well as the first commandment, the fact that the animals had two leaders led to the society’s destruction. The pigs Snowball and Napoleon were of completely different minds and had completely ideals.
They argued over everything and eventually plotted against each other. Having two different leaders with different ideas and different styles of governing and taking care of Animal Farm was a mistake because it would be much more difficult to reach an agreement or do anything that would greatly improve life on the farm. There is also the fact that one of them would eventually take over completely, which did happen. Napoleon chased Snowball off the premises and slowly but surely convinced the animals that Snowball was the worst of them all.
Napoleon even got to the point where if anything bad happened, the animals would blame Snowball for it. To be successful, the leaders of a society must want to cooperate and to work for the good of the people they are leading. Napoleon did not want to work with Snowball in the slightest, and this led to the totalitarianism state that Animal Farm became under Napoleon’s leadership and guidance. Considering these flaws in utopian societies, one is led to wonder if a utopian society is really attainable.
To be a utopian society, all people must be equal and have equal worth. This in itself is impossible. A society must have at least one leader to guide it and lead the people, but there are no leaders in equality. There has to be different social classes or else all there is going to be is a great deal of working in the lowest of low jobs in factories or farms. There is also no absolute way to please everyone, which is another characteristic of a utopian society. If one thing happens that will make one person happy, there is a great chance it will make someone else angry.
Utopian societies are unreachable and unattainable, and will surely turn into dystopian societies, just like Animal Farm. In brief, the society created in Animal Farm was condemned from the first commandment and the first appointment of its leaders. Trying to live life on a farm without the aid or contact with humans was illogical in itself. As previously stated, a farm cannot sustain on its own. The animals were foolish to think it could. The leading of Snowball and Napoleon also led to the destruction of the farm’s utopian society.
They couldn’t possibly do any good for the farm because they were too busy arguing at the Sunday debates. All in all, a utopian society is not achievable, at least not in the near future. Equality cannot possibly be reached because a society needs a leader, which is against the idea of equality. Everyone also cannot be pleased at the same time because it is against human nature. Animal Farm never could have been a true utopian society; it was doomed before it had even begun.