Language in Animal Farm by George Orwell
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42 , 2015-12-27
This essay examines the role of the raven Moses and the solicitor Mr Whymper inGeorge Orwell’s Animal Farm, focusing particularly on the change of animal languagefrom mere bleating or grunting to the human language English. Moses is seen asrepresenting the religious situation on the farm, with attention paid to the historicaland mythological background of crows, rooks and ravens, birds that have beenconsidered to be gloomy and sinister since Aesop. There is mention of ravens’remarkable ability to mimic human voice and how Poe’s “The Raven” and Grip inDickens’ Barnaby Rudge influence Orwell’s characterization of Moses, whosupposedly speaks English after coming back to the farm. Mr Whymper is viewed asan intermediary between the farm and the outside world, showing how Orwell avoidedspoken language in order to suggest that human beings cannot possibly speak toanimals. The impact of the description that some pigs, including the leader Napoleon,speak English, wear clothes and stand upright while holding a whip in their trotters isseen as the result that Whymper’s role is not merely in trading but also in concealingthe pigs’ gradual transformation from beasts to humans.