Not from my favorite book, but my all time favourite literary quote. Also incredibly poignant
I first read this book when I was about 7 and at the time it had very little meaning to me. It was not a particularly enjoyable read and honestly I didn’t really rate it or even really remember it. Years later, I picked up Animal Farm again (whilst studying the Russian Revolution) and suddenly it all made sense. Orwell’s allegorical novel places the events leading up to the russian revolution in the context of farmyard animals who wrest control from their drunken master. What follows is the slow disintegration of the ideals of this revolution until the pigs (leaders of the rebellion), who once described the humans as ‘parasites’, now are those who most closely resemble them.
So why do I think this should be on hs/college required reading- the answer is not because I think people should learn about the evils of communism, but because the book tells us much about human nature and the danger of straying from our ideals. What is more it is a message about not repeating old mistakes and the dangers of putting the wrong people in charge. It also highlights one of the saddest facts of the communist system- that whilst excellent in theory, it fails in practice due to the greed and lust for power that human beings so easily fall prey to.