The Parallels Of Self-Preservation In Animal Farm, By George Orwell

1246 Words 5 Pages
Human or Animal Instinct? The Parallels of Self-Preservation
Animal Farm by George Orwell, unprecedented in its time and ground-breaking in it its relevance to humanity today, is a social commentary on communism and capitalism, and can be applied to today 's modern society with its themes of self-preservation and human nature. With its allegorical characters, such as Benjamin the donkey, and strong parallels we can find a deeper understanding in how our world deals with similar issues to the novel. We can see through Benjamin’s disinterest and cynical view on the rebellion, as well on his lack of involvement in helping the other animals on the farm, that his use of self-preservation shares similarities to the issues of police-brutality in
…show more content…
None of you has ever seen a dead donkey.’” used by Benjamin throughout the book is a clear indicator that self-preservation is being used to his advantage (Orwell 38). By stating this very early on in Benjamin’s character arc, we can see that Benjamin has been doing something to further the rate of his survival that makes him different than all the other animals, that being self-preservation. From the sheep who blatantly follow the leadership of Napoleon, in stating the mantra “Four legs good, two legs bad” constantly, to Boxer whose work ethic compares to no other (“I will work harder”) Benjamin is seen as one of the only animals who does very little for the farm or the rebellion, and does not follow nor rebel against Napoleon 's rule (Orwell 37, 41). He is seen as cynical and unconcerned for anything but himself. For example, he is seen to be the only animal on the farm who does not get excited over the windmill being built, “Only Old Benjamin refused to grow enthusiastic about about the windmill.” (Orwell 71). This shows us that Benjamin is indifferent to the ideas of change, he has been around long enough to know that nothing lasts, and uses self-preservation by not becoming caught up in ideas of rebellions and new technologies and leaders, so that when thing ultimately go south, he will not be phased. He showcases this when he seems almost entertained by the idea that the humans are going to blow up the windmill and by …show more content…
Names such as Michael Brown and Sandra Bland should ring an unfortunate bell in your mind as people who have been unjustly killed due to police violence. Events such as the riots in Ferguson, Missouri have caused even more fatalities. It is evens like these that can reveal how self-preservation is used in our society today. For example, an article by Steve Chapman, “When Cops Ignore the Law”, spoke about how even when presented with a ridiculous charge, it is easier to stay complacent then beg for your life, “I was breaking no law...But it didn 't matter. He and his colleagues acted as though they were in the right, and self-preservation dictated that I pretend they were.” (Chapman 1). It is clearly shown here that this is a self-preservation tactic being used in modern society, and it strongly parallels to Animal Farm. Similarly to how Benjamin knew what was happening was wrong, he did nothing to stop it from happening to save his own life. Benjamin never argued with Napoleon, he knew what could happen if he did. Just like people are now learning that, as unfair and unlawful it may be, it could mean the difference between life and death. In the case of Sandra Bland, could she have avoided arrest if she had followed the officer 's orders, no matter how unfair they were? The article “Was the Sandra Bland Traffic Stop Legal-and Fair?” by Danny Cevallos, this notion was

Related Documents