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Animal Farm Leaders

Updated on May 31, 2014

The book cover

Corrupt Leaders

Being a leader takes a lot of responsibility but why wouldn’t anyone want to be one? A key example of a leader turning corrupt is Napoleon, in the story of Animal Farm. Leaders become corrupt when they get experience and realize that they have everything they need such as money, privileges, and support.

A leader needs to take charge of the economy in order to succeed. The pigs traded with other farmers to give one another a helping hand, which was forbidden on the farm and they would lie to the animals. They would cover it up by Squealer saying, “The resolution against engaging in trade and using money had never been passed, or even suggested”(Orwell 77). But they used this money to benefit themselves more than for their followers. In the story, the pigs would drink, then they would say, “No animal shall drink alcohol”(113) and break other commandments as well. They bought or took these goods “for the sake”(52) of the other animals. For the need of money, the pigs and Napoleon started to take the chicken’s eggs to sell them, which was what Mr. Jones used to do. They also were “making arrangements to sell a stack of hay”(76). They started to use their power for no good.

Even though the leader might want their followers to think that they are equal, it’s not true. The pigs had certain privileges while living on the farm. At the start it was drinking cows milk and eating apples in order to “preserve”(52) their health. Later, they would start sleeping in real beds saying that they needed it to do “all the brainwork”(80). And lastly wear human cloths to look like their neighbors to trade. It was obvious that the pigs were taking advantage of the other animal’s ability to comprehend what was happening. An example was how the commandments were changing and they couldn’t really take action because they depended on Napoleon to be an honest leader. They had the privileges of walking on two legs and to do whatever they want, when the motto was “four legs good, two legs bad”(77). Napoleon started to resemble a dictator because he was hiding things from the animals and leading with fear and doing what he wanted no matter what anyone said.

With followers support a leader can do anything he or she wants. The pigs had undying support, as the other animals trusted them to lead because they were the “brainworkers”(52) on the farm. When Napoleon became the leader, he realized that these animals are very gullible and would listen to anything he would say. When Napoleon would say that the animal that brought down the windmill was Snowball all the animals would listen and agree. Even with all of these mysterious lies, the animals supported him. Napoleon would pass new commandments and decide on things without talking to the animals, without having a vote or democracy. The change of the song “Beasts of England”(32) to “Comrade Napoleon”(100) really shows how these animals support Napoleon, because the new song was all about how great he is. All of this support built him up to be a corrupt leader because the animals didn’t know what was happening. Commandments like, “No animal shall kill any other animal”(98) the endings were being changed to “without cause”(98) or something similar. Squealer was a huge supporter of Napoleon making sure that everyone was on his side. They would get animals like Boxer to say, “Napoleon is always right”(70). Support definitely plays a part with a leaders power turning corrupt.

Corrupt leaders happen when you add many different things together. As in the case with Napoleon all he needed was money, privileges, and support. These things changed him in a way that made Animal Farm into a corrupt farm, where animals were blind sided from the truth. Money gave him the ability to buy things, privileges helped him to have an advantage over others, and support made sure he’d stay in power. Napoleon is an example of how power really makes a leader corrupt.


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    • profile image

      ANANYA SHAH 5 years ago

      i hate the book it was so boring I hadn't even heard of it until i had to read it for a school project :(

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      Someone(: 6 years ago

      That book was really good, not sure why you didn't like it. I thought it was boring at first, but then my 7th grade English teacher showed us the connections to the Bolshevik Revolution, and I loved it.

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      me!! 7 years ago

      I HATE THAT BOOK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • bigdogacb profile image

      bigdogacb 7 years ago from United States

      i love that book, and nice job. Welcome to Hubpages!