Squealer's Use of Propaganda in Essay
- Length: 4 pages
- Subject: Agriculture
- Type: Essay
- Paper: #95913744
Excerpt from Essay :
He also has a knack for making language more difficult in order to serve his purposes. When the language is made more complicated, it becomes more confusing for the proletariat farm animals. This is certainly seen in the apples and milk propaganda. Squealer twists his words saying that pigs must eat milk and apples not for the love of milk and apples but because it is better for the comrades.
Squealer uses many different tactics when it comes to twisting language. Of course there is the fact that he lies, but he also uses rhetorical question and repetition as some of his propaganda techniques. When he gives a speech to the farm animals about the changing of the commandments, he says:
'You have heard then, comrades, that we pigs now sleep in the beds of the farmhouse? And why not? You did not suppose, surely, that there was ever a ruling against beds? A bed merely means a place to sleep in. A pile of straw in a stall is a bed, properly regarded. The rule was against sheets, which are a human invention. We have removed the sheets from the farmhouse beds, and sleep between blankets. And very comfortable beds they are too! But not more comfortable than we need, I can tell you, comrades, with all the brainwork we have to do nowadays. You would not rob us of our repose, would you, comrades? You would not have us too tired to carry out our duties? Surely none of you wishes to see Jones back?' (Orwell 80).
In Squealer's speech to the farm animals about the bed situation alone, he uses rhetorical questions -- 'And why not? You did not suppose, surely, that there was a rule against beds?' -- as well as his clever way of outsmarting the other animals -- 'A bed merely means a place to sleep.' -- which, undoubtedly, leaves the other animals feeling like they are, once again, the foolish ones for not realizing that a bed is just a 'place to sleep,' a bed could even be in a stall. Squealer has twisted the entire rule around so as to help his and the other pigs' position on the farm. By telling the other animals that the rule was against sheets not beds (a lie) and that the pigs need their rest for their brainwork, he proves his point and makes the other animals once again aware of how important the pigs are on the farm. He states that the beds are comfortable, but they are not as comfortable as they could be, which perhaps makes the other animals feel a little better about the whole situation. After all, they are not as comfortable as they could be! Squealer must make the beds sound just alright in order for the other animals to feel good about the situation; this is his way of reassuring the other animals.
Squealer is incredibly successful at using propaganda to keep a certain level of power and position for the pigs. Squealer is the connection between Napoleon and the other farm animals; he is the conduit, the means for getting across the tyranny of Napoleon. Squealer is very good at his job and he even grows to love it as illustrated at the end of the story when he is so fat (most likely from all the apples and milk) that his eyes are just mere slits on his fat face. Squealer is so smooth that the other pigs say he "could turn black into white," which is why Napoleon chooses to use Squealer for his selfish gains.
In Animal Farm, it is easy to see that it is an allegory, that Orwell was making a statement about powerful groups and how they will lie, cheat, rewrite history, and manipulate to get what they want. Though Napoleon is a very bad boar on the farm, Squealer can be considered just as bad because of the pleasure he takes in his job. He works hard at his job, as he must, because keeping up a tyrannical government while all the time trying to appear fair is challenging work.
Orwell, George. Animal Farm. New York: Signet Classics; 50th Anniversary edition, 1996.