All, Books, Reviews

Status Anxiety by Alain de Botton

Status Anxiety is a Non Fiction Book / Documentary written by Swiss-British writer & philosopher Alain de Botton. Like the title clearly states, the book and the subsequent documentary questions the worth of “Status” and the anxiety gifted by our continuous effort to improve our status. Status Anxiety Book CoverThe book deals with all the aspects of the subject from the birth and evolution of status to the lifestyle and social structure we adopted due to its influence. The documentary differentiates the lives of the people who gives ample priority to the status, to the lives of Bohemians who value freedom rather than status.

Alain de Botton tells us with the change in our political ideologies, how our value based communities deformed into status based societies. Earlier, when there was a prescribed social stratum, people were not much status conscious as drastic change in status was not possible in that system. But with the advent of democracy and globalization, on the place of nobility and aristocracy which were the main status meters, Money and Power became icons of status. Everybody got the opportunity for improving their status infinitely. Societies got meritocratic ( …which is good ) but the drawback of a meritocratic society is that if the people applauded the successful people because they deserved success, the people also booed unsuccessful people and labelled them as “Losers”, and thought that they deserved that too.  Life turned into a ccompetition as people constantly evaluated their status by comparing it with their friends, neighbours etc.  Alain de Botton says the joy of living is lost because of the anxiety caused by STATUS.

It reminded me of the story that I once heard. When Burmese Prince visited India, Indian Prime Minister ( knowing that the GDP of Burma is much lower than India), asked the prince ” How much is the current GDP of Burma ? “, the prince smiled and replied “We don’t value GDP as much as we value GHP ( Gross Happiness Product )”. 

I think one prioritizes STATUS as per they define the meaning of LIFE. When Life is seen as an endless tournament with others or conquest to acquire more materials, values like empathy & sympathy diminishes from the society.  Conversely, if Life is seen as a brief moment in consciousness ( …utmost 80 Years ) to experience and learn from the world we inhabit, we get a value based system. I throughly enjoyed the Documentary and Book. 5 Stars.

Full Documentary of Status Anxiety (12 Parts ) below.

“Every adult life could be said to be defined by two great love stories. The first – the story of our quest for sexual love – is well known and well charted, its vagaries form the staple of music and literature, it is socially accepted and celebrated. The second – the story of our quest for love from the world – is a more secret and shameful tale. If mentioned, it tends to be in caustic, mocking terms, as something of interest chiefly to envious or deficient souls, or else the drive for status is interpreted in an economic sense alone. And yet this second love story is no less intense than the first, it is no less complicated, important or universal, and its setbacks are no less painful. There is heartbreak here too.” ― Alain de Botton, Status Anxiety

“Wealth is not an absolute. It is relative to desire. Every time we yearn for something we cannot afford, we grow poorer, whatever our resources. And every time we feel satisfied with what we have, we can be counted as rich, however little we may actually possess.” ― Alain de Botton, Status Anxiety

“People who hold important positions in society are commonly labelled “somebodies,” and their inverse “nobodies”-both of which are, of course, nonsensical descriptors, for we are all, by necessity, individuals with distinct identities and comparable claims on existence. Such words are nevertheless an apt vehicle for conveying the disparate treatment accorded to different groups. Those without status are all but invisible: they are treated brusquely by others, their complexities trampled upon and their singularities ignored.”
Alain de Botton, Status Anxiety

Status Axiety Alain De Botton Quote

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All, Books, Reviews

Freedom From The Known by Jiddu Krishnamurti

Freedom From The Known by Jiddu Krishnamurthy bookIn my fathers home library, I had seen Jiddu Krishnamurti’s books. I never read any of it, but I have heard his Lectures. For those who don’t know about Jiddu Krishnamurti, he was a renown modern-day philosopher, speaker and writer on philosophical and spiritual subjects. He specialized on the subjects like “Human nature” & “The Self“. Some of his discourses are recorded and available as videos. After hearing some audio version of this book, I decided to download the book into my Nook. In various lists on the internet this book has been spoken  highly of, and listed among the books which could change “the perspective of thinking”.

Jiddu Krishnamurti’s, “ Freedom From The Known ” is a thin philosophical non-fiction book, containing only 14 Chapters (just 128 pages). The book deals with numerous intellectual subjects. It speaks of the reasonable way to see the world. To recognize ourselves both inwardly and outwardly. The bondage by various elements like love, hatred, fear etc. To put the content of this book in one phrase, the book deals with the “realities of life“. The books begins by questioning the human nature. The Man, Mind and the Existence. Then it moves on to more introspections. Subjects like consciousness, pleasure and fear, love, freedom, death, memories and experiences, passion and finally the required revolution. Before we start thinking and analysing on these subjects, separate chapters are provided for the subjects like “What is Thinking ? ” and “Observer & the Observed“, which will even question our way of thinking and enrich it. Book follows the same pattern of his discourses, i.e like addressing an audience.

I was really impressed by this deeply introspective philosophical book. This book gave me a fresh outlook on the world, and helped me replenish inadequacies in my thinking. After reading this book, I was able the see the world differently. This is one of those books which will change the way you see the world.  Even though the book is written in simple English, since the book covers a lot of deep subjects, multiple reads might be required. Like all philosophical essays, it should be read by reserving adequete time for it. This book increases our vision,while the introspection is left to us. Unlike all ‘religions’ and some ‘gurus’ who serve ready-made dogma to everybody’s questions and blinds people by demanding faith, Jiddu Krishnamurti through “The Freedom From The Known” invites us to think, analyse and realize together the question of our very existence . Highly Recommended. 5 stars.

Read Full Book ( Web Version ) -> FREEDOM FROM THE KNOWN

Purchase BookUSD , INR , Audiobook Buy.

[ Click on the Playlist button on top, in the above video to get the list of Chapters. ]

Jiddu Krisnamurti Quote

Quotation-Jiddu-Krishnamurti-intelligence-observation

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All, Books, Technology

Converting Audible Audiobooks (.aa, .aax) into Chaptered MP3 files

Lately, I had been listening to a lot of Audio books. I love listening to audio books & pod-casts while travelling. Sometimes I even download & convert, YouTube lectures, Interviews, Debates into MP3 & put it on my mobile. Audible is a good source of getting legal DRMed audio books which inevitably comes with a price tag. After registering with audible, they offer “2 free credits”. AdOne audio book costs 1 credit or the currency equivalent. I bought 2 audio books using my free credits. One of which was the famous “Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” by Mark Twain, narrated by Elijah Wood. Don’t you know Eljah wood ? the one who played “Frodo Baggins” in “The Lord Of The Rings”.The narration is superb. The Mississippi Southern Accent is impeccably voice-acted by Eljah wood. The audio book spans for 10 hours. I am sure, if I read it on my Nook, It would take much more than that.


Adv of Huckfinn bookIf you read on E-reader or Mobile Phone, you can download the epub version of “Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (Illustrated)” with  188 sketches (Uncensored) chaptered ,  goto (http://www.mobileread.com/forums/showthread.php?t=193287 )


Downloading an audio book to PC from audible is a bit tricky. We have to first install the software that they provide which didn’t worked for me the first time. Later I learned, I had to disable my firewall (avast) for the program to install. The download is in .aa or .aax format. The format could only be played by iTunes or Windows media player after installing another plugin or using audible app in mobile devices. For the audio to work easily on any device I had to convert it to MP3 format. We cannot do it in the regular way, as it is DRMed.

In 3 steps we can convert the any DRM Audiobook to Chaptered MP3 Files.

Step 1: Download the DRM Audiobook in .aa or .aax format.

Download from Audible

Step 2: Download SoundTaxi

Soundtaxi Software

SoundTaxi

( There are free alternatives too. I have not personaly tried those). Sound Taxi converts the file fast and easy. You just have to drag the .aa or .aax file into soundtaxi, It would start converting automatically.

Step 3: You would get one MP3 file as output. Now you have to cut it into chapters. “ Slice Audio File Splitter ” is a wonderful tool for slicing any MP3 files. You can cut files in 3 different ways.

Slice Audio File Splitter Screenshot

Slice Audio File Splitter

1) By designated time eg: 10 min cuts.
2) Into parts. eg: 5 parts.
3) Third option is by silence. i.e You can cut the MP3 files by automatically detecting the silence in the audio. Which is just what we wanted. The settings I used was ( Threshold: 25db noise, Silence time: 3 seconds ). The software will read through the sound graph and detect the silence in the audio, if the audio is silent for 3 seconds or more, it would slice it to a separate file. ( it will ignore the noise upto 25 db, we can increase this amount for cutting old tape-recorded audio books. ). Slicing of a 10 hour Enhanced quality audio file into 45 parts was done under a minute.

This software is a downloadable freeware.

My Man Jeeves - P.G.Wodehouse Screenshot

 

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Life In A Post Office – “Post Office” by Charles Bukowski

Life In A Post Office

I happened to read a wonderful quote by Bukowski, which eventually lead me to read his quasi-autobiographical post office covernovel, “Post Office”. The protagonist in “Post Office” is Chinaski, who is considered as Bukowski’s alter-ego. Chinaki’s personality, which is sincere, miserable, and aloof is very likeable. For 12 years of his life he is stuck with an absurd, difficult, and low paying job of “Mail-deliveryman” and “Post-office sorter”. He gets himself surrounded by vicious managers and annoying colleagues. Our miserable anti-hero, end up loathing everyone and everything. His only interest in life becomes women, (one fifth) whiskey, and racetrack betting. “Postman” is Chinaski’s life-journey in this wretched times.

I felt the book very interesting because, I myself had applied for a postal job. There is nothing worse than the suffering of an intellectual, stuck in an absurd job, surrounded by idiotic people. The book is often funny because of the humourous portrayal of his misery and meaninglessness of life. Some portions are really funny.

“The midget was married to a very beautiful girl. When she was in her teens she got a coke bottle trapped in her p*ssy and had to go to a doctor to get it out, and, like in all small towns, the word got out about the coke bottle, the poor girl was shunned, and the midget was the only taker. He’d ended up with the best piece of ass in town.”

SzaT9.jpg

Bukowski’s “Postman” is an easy read. It’s divided into numerous chapters, which makes it easier to read. I loved Chinaski and I could relate well with him, because now, I am also in a similar situation. The brutality and cruelty of life, sometimes make us laugh hard. Basically a poet, Bukowski write this début novel with real experience of his life. His sincerity and openness, along with numerous accolades and acclaim gives him the tag “Dirty Old Man”. But, like our Chinaki, I don’t think he would give a damn about it. Anyway, I liked Bukowski’s attitude and writing, and I am looking forward to read his next novel “Ham on Rye”. Charles Bukowski’s “Postman” is a recommended, easy weekend read from me. 5 stars.

Bukowski Quote

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Jonathan Livingston Seagull – Book Review

Jonathan Livingston SeagullJonathan Livingston Seagull by Richard Bach

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Richard Bach’s “Jonathan Livingston Seagull” is a philosophical allegory, characterizing a seagull who became an outcast, because his perspective towards life was different than his flock. This quick read provides inspiration and gives precedence of individuality over social stigma. Its a tale of over coming peer-pressure, striving for perfection and finally giving it back to the society. The book reminded me of “The Old Man and the Sea” by Ernest Hemingway. But it lacked the gravity and impact that “The Old Man and the Sea” provided.

“Most gulls don’t bother to learn more than the simplest facts of flight, how to get from shore to food and back again. For most gulls, it is not flying that matters, but eating. For this gull, though, it was not eating that mattered, but flight. More than anything else, Jonathan Livingston Seagull loved to fly. This kind of thinking, he found, is not the way to make one’s self popular with other birds.”

In this allegory, I like to see, Birds represent Humanity, Flying – Living, Eating – Existing. I would recommend this book to everyone. This book can be read within an hour.

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Old Man and the Sea

The Old Man and the Sea is one of Hemingway’s most successful, magnificent, enduring works. Told in language of great simplicity and power, The Old Man and the Sea is the story of an epic struggle between an old, seasoned fisherman and the greatest catch of his life, after his agonizing battle with a giant marlin far out in the Gulf Stream. Here Hemingway recasts, in strikingly contemporary style, the classic theme of courage in the face of defeat, of personal triumph won from loss. Hemingway, through The Old Man and the Sea, help us to see life positively and to face realities, and to move on with life. Written in 1952, this hugely successful novella confirmed his power.

The Old Man and the Sea helped to revive Hemingway’s reputation as a writer of great acclaim. This slim volume also contributed enormously to Hemingway’s recognition as a world-renowned writer–with the award of the Nobel Prize for literature, in 1954. Here,  Hemingway recollecting a by-gone age in this spiritual quest for discovery. Touching and powerful in turns, the story is told in Hemingway’s simple, brittle style. The book reaches out to a very human need–for stability and certainty.

Overview : The Old Man and the Sea

 Santiago is an old fisherman, and many are starting to think that he can no longer fish. He has gone for many months without landing any kind of fish to speak of; and his apprentice, a young man named Manolin, has gone to work for a more prosperous boat. The fisherman sets out into the open sea and goes a little further out than he normally because he had not catched fish, since 84 days. At noon, a big Marlin takes hold of one of the lines, but the fish is far too big for him to handle.

Hemingway pays great attention to the skill and dexterity that Santiago uses in coping with the fish. Santiago lets the fish have enough line, so that it won’t break his pole; but he and his boat are dragged out to sea for three days. Finally, the fish–an enormous and worthy opponent–grows tired; and Santiago kills it. Even this final victory does not end the Santiago’s journey; he is a still far, far out to sea. To make matters worse, Santiago drags the Marlin behind the boat, and the blood from the dead fish attracts sharks. Santiago does his best to beat the sharks away, but his efforts were not enough. The sharks eat the flesh off the Marlin, and Santiago is left with only the bones. Santiago gets back to shore–weary and tired–with nothing to show for his pains but the skeletal remains of a large Marlin. Even with just the bare remains of the fish, the experience has changed him, and altered the perception others have of him. Manolin wakes him the morning after his return and suggests that they once more fish together.

Far more than a simple story about a man and a fish, the short novella shows understanding of men very different from himself–while he elevates their simple lives to legendary status. Kinship and honor develops between the fish and the man.

Hemingway writes of a time when fishing was not merely a business transaction, or a sport. Instead, fishing was an expression of humankind in its natural state–in tune with nature and oneself. Enormous stamina and power arises in Santiago. The simple fisherman  becomes a classical hero in his epic struggle.

The old man holds on to the rope–even though he is cut and bruised by it, even though he wants to sleep and eat. He holds onto the rope as though his life depended on it. Once more Hemingway brings to the fore the power and masculinity of a simple man–in a simple habitat. Hemingway demonstrates how the heroic can live in even the most seemingly mundane circumstances. Hemingway constructs  the spiritual journey of the old fisherman, with his beliefs and memories.

This books is beautifully written and  constructed well, which is why The Old Man and the Sea is one of Hemingway’s most revered and most favored works. The power of this story lies in its simplicity. There is no ostentation to Hemingway’s writing. No needless ornamentation. His stripped-down style enables him to tell a story of simple, almost-archetypal bravery and heroism.

Descriptive Synopsis

[learn_more caption=”Descriptive Synopsis ( Contains Spoiler )”]

For eighty-four days, Santiago, an aged Cuban fisherman, has set out to sea and returned empty-handed. So conspicuously unlucky is he that the parents of his young, devoted apprentice and friend, Manolin, have forced the boy to leave the old man in order to fish in a more prosperous boat. Nevertheless, the boy continues to care for the old man upon his return each night. He helps the old man tote his gear to his ramshackle hut, secures food for him, and discusses the latest developments in American baseball, especially the trials of the old man’s hero, Joe DiMaggio.

Santiago is confident that his unproductive streak will soon come to an end, and he resolves to sail out farther than usual the following day. On the eighty-fifth day of his unlucky streak, Santiago does as promised, sailing his skiff far beyond the island’s shallow coastal waters and venturing into the Gulf Stream. He prepares his lines and drops them.

At noon, a big fish, which he knows is a marlin, takes the bait that Santiago has placed one hundred fathoms deep in the waters. The old man expertly hooks the fish, but he cannot pull it in. Instead, the fish begins to pull the boat. Unable to tie the line fast to the boat for fear the fish would snap a taut line, the old man bears the strain of the line with his shoulders, back, and hands, ready to give slack should the marlin make a run. The fish pulls the boat all through the day, through the night, through another day, and through another night. It swims steadily northwest until at last it tires and swims east with the current.

The entire time, Santiago endures constant pain from the fishing line. Whenever the fish lunges, leaps, or makes a dash for freedom, the cord cuts Santiago badly. Although wounded and weary, the old man feels a deep empathy and admiration for the marlin, his brother in suffering, strength, and resolve. On the third day the fish tires, and Santiago, sleep-deprived, aching, and nearly delirious, manages to pull the marlin in close enough to kill it with a harpoon thrust. Dead beside the skiff, the marlin is the largest Santiago has ever seen. He lashes it to his boat, raises the small mast, and sets sail for home. While Santiago is excited by the price that the marlin will bring at market, he is more concerned that the people who will eat the fish are unworthy of its greatness.

As Santiago sails on with the fish, the marlin’s blood leaves a trail in the water and attracts sharks. The first to attack is a great mako shark, which Santiago manages to slay with the harpoon. In the struggle, the old man loses the harpoon and lengths of valuable rope, which leaves him vulnerable to other shark attacks. The old man fights off the successive vicious predators as best he can, stabbing at them with a crude spear he makes by lashing a knife to an oar, and even clubbing them with the boat’s tiller. Although he kills several sharks, more and more appear, and by the time night falls, Santiago’s continued fight against the scavengers is useless. They devour the marlin’s precious meat, leaving only skeleton, head, and tail. Santiago chastises himself for going “out too far,” and for sacrificing his great and worthy opponent.

He arrives home before daybreak, stumbles back to his shack, and sleeps very deeply. The next morning, a crowd of amazed fishermen gathers around the skeletal carcass of the fish, which is still lashed to the boat. Knowing nothing of the old man’s struggle, tourists at a nearby café observe the remains of the giant marlin and mistake it for a shark.

Manolin, who has been worried sick over the old man’s absence, is moved to tears when he finds Santiago safe in his bed. The boy fetches the old man some coffee and the daily papers with the baseball scores, and watches him sleep. When the old man wakes, the two agree to fish as partners once more. The old man returns to sleep and dreams his usual dream of lions at play on the beaches of Africa.[/learn_more]

 The Old Man and the Sea Quotes

“But man is not made for defeat,” he said. “A man can be destroyed but not defeated. ”

“Let him think that I am more man than I am and I will be so.”

“Every day is a new day. It is better to be lucky. But I would rather be exact. Then when luck comes you are ready.”

“I may not be as strong as I think, but I know many tricks and I have resolution.”

“Why do old men wake so early? Is it to have one longer day?”

“It’s silly not to hope. It’s a sin he thought.”

“Now is no time to think of what you do not have. Think of what you can do with what there is.”

“If the others heard me talking out loud they would think that I am crazy. But since I am not, I do not care.”

“Luck is a thing that comes in many forms and who can recognize her?”

“Why did they make birds so delicate and fine as those sea swallows when the ocean can be so cruel?”

“Take a good rest, small bird,” he said. “Then go in and take your chance like any man or bird or fish.”

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Animal Farm Book Review

Animal Farm is a satrical allegery of Russian Revolution particularly directed against Stalins Russia. This political satire authored by George Orwel was first published in 1945. The book was originally rejected for publication by T S Elliot in 1944 but has gained the status of a classic since its appearance in 1945.

Animal Farm Book Review

Power corrupts, but absolute power corrupts absolutely-and this is vividly and eloquently proved in Orwell’s short novel. “Animal Farm” is a simple fable of great symbolic value, and as Orwell himself explained: “it is the history of a revolution that went wrong”. The novel can be seen as the historical analysis of the causes of the failure of communism, or as a mere fairy-tale; in any case it tells a good story that aims to prove that human nature and diversity prevent people from being equal and happy ,or at least equally happy.

“Animal Farm” tells the simple story of what happens when the oppressed farm animals rebel, drive out Mr. Jones, the farmer, and attempt to rule the farm themselves, on an equal basis. What the animals seem to have aimed at was a utopian sort of communism, where each would work according to his capacity, respecting the needs of others. The venture failed, and “Animal Farm” ended up being a dictatorship of pigs, who were the brightest, and most idle of the animals.

Orwell’s mastery lies in his presentation of the horrors of totalitarian regimes, and his analysis of communism put to practice, through satire and simple story-telling. The structure of the novel is skillfully organized, and the careful reader may, for example, detect the causes of the unworkability of communism even from the first chapter. This is deduced from Orwell’s description of the various animals as they enter the barn and take their seats to listen to the revolutionary preaching of Old Major, father of communism in Animal Farm. Each animal has different features and attitude; the pigs, for example, “settled down in the straw immediately in front of the platform”, which is a hint on their future role, whereas Clover, the affectionate horse” made a sort of wall” with her foreleg to protect some ducklings.

So, it appears that the revolution was doomed from the beginning, even though it began in idealistic optimism as expressed by the motto” no animal must ever tyrannize over his own kind. Weak or strong, clever or simple, we are all brothers. “When the animals drive out Mr. Jones, they create their “Seven Commandments” which ensure equality and prosperity for all the animals. The pigs ,however, being the natural leaders, managed to reverse the commandments, and through terror and propaganda establish the rule of an elite of pigs, under the leadership of Napoleon, the most revered and sinister pig.

“Animal Farm” successfully presents how the mechanism of propaganda and brainwashing works in totalitarian regimes, by showing how the pigs could make the other animals believe practically anything. Responsible for the propaganda was Squealer, a pig that “could turn black into white”. Squealer managed to change the rule from “all animals are equal” to” all animals are equal but some animals are more equal than others”. He managed to convince the other animals that it was for their sake that the pigs ate most of the apples and drank most of the milk, that leadership was “heavy responsibility” and therefore the animals should be thankful to Napoleon, that what they saw may have been something they “dreamed”, and when everything else failed he would use the threat of ” Jones returning” to silence the animals. In this simple but effective way, Orwell presents the tragedy and confusion of thought control to the extent that one seems better off simply believing that” Napoleon is always right”.

Orwell’s criticism of the role of the Church is also very effective. In Animal Farm, the Church is represented by Moses, a tame raven, who talks of “Sugarcandy Mountain”, a happy country in the sky “where we poor animals shall rest forever from our labors”. It is interesting to observe that when Old Major was first preaching revolutionary communism, Moses was sleeping in the barn, which satirizes the Church being caught asleep by communism. It is also important to note that the pig-dictators allowed and indirectly encouraged Moses; it seems that it suited the pigs to have the animals dreaming of a better life after death so that they wouldn’t attempt to have a better life while still alive…

In “Animal Farm”, Orwell describes how power turned the pigs from simple “comrades” to ruthless dictators who managed to walk on two legs, and carry whips. The story maybe seen as an analysis of the Soviet regime, or as a warning against political power games of an absolute nature and totalitarianism in general. For this reason, the story ends with a hair-raising warning to all humankind:” The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again: but already it was impossible to say which was which”.

Story Synopsis

Old Major, a prize-winning boar, gathers the animals of the Manor Farm for a meeting in the big barn. He tells them of a dream he has had in which all animals live together with no human beings to oppress or control them. He tells the animals that they must work toward such a paradise and teaches them a song called “Beasts of England,” in which his dream vision is lyrically described. The animals greet Major’s vision with great enthusiasm. When he dies only three nights after the meeting, three younger pigs—Snowball, Napoleon, and Squealer—formulate his main principles into a philosophy called Animalism. Late one night, the animals manage to defeat the farmer Mr. Jones in a battle, running him off the land. They rename the property Animal Farm and dedicate themselves to achieving Major’s dream. The cart-horse Boxer devotes himself to the cause with particular zeal, committing his great strength to the prosperity of the farm and adopting as a personal maxim the affirmation “I will work harder.”

Spoiler AheadAt first, Animal Farm prospers. Snowball works at teaching the animals to read, and Napoleon takes a group of young puppies to educate them in the principles of Animalism. When Mr. Jones reappears to take back his farm, the animals defeat him again, in what comes to be known as the Battle of the Cowshed, and take the farmer’s abandoned gun as a token of their victory. As time passes, however, Napoleon and Snowball increasingly quibble over the future of the farm, and they begin to struggle with each other for power and influence among the other animals. Snowball concocts a scheme to build an electricity-generating windmill, but Napoleon solidly opposes the plan. At the meeting to vote on whether to take up the project, Snowball gives a passionate speech. Although Napoleon gives only a brief retort, he then makes a strange noise, and nine attack dogs—the puppies that Napoleon had confiscated in order to “educate”—burst into the barn and chase Snowball from the farm.Napoleon assumes leadership of Animal Farm and declares that there will be no more meetings. From that point on, he asserts, the pigs alone will make all of the decisions—for the good of every animal. Napoleon now quickly changes his mind about the windmill, and the animals, especially Boxer, devote their efforts to completing it. One day, after a storm, the animals find the windmill toppled. The human farmers in the area declare smugly that the animals made the walls too thin, but Napoleon claims that Snowball returned to the farm to sabotage the windmill. He stages a great purge, during which various animals who have allegedly participated in Snowball’s great conspiracy—meaning any animal who opposes Napoleon’s uncontested leadership—meet instant death at the teeth of the attack dogs. With his leadership unquestioned (Boxer has taken up a second maxim, “Napoleon is always right”), Napoleon begins expanding his powers, rewriting history to make Snowball a villain. Napoleon also begins to act more and more like a human being—sleeping in a bed, drinking whisky, and engaging in trade with neighboring farmers.

The original Animalist principles strictly forbade such activities, but Squealer, Napoleon’s propagandist, justifies every action to the other animals, convincing them that Napoleon is a great leader and is making things better for everyone—despite the fact that the common animals are cold, hungry, and overworked. Mr. Frederick, a neighboring farmer, cheats Napoleon in the purchase of some timber and then attacks the farm and dynamites the windmill, which had been rebuilt at great expense. After the demolition of the windmill, a pitched battle ensues, during which Boxer receives major wounds. The animals rout the farmers, but Boxer’s injuries weaken him. When he later falls while working on the windmill, he senses that his time has nearly come.

One day, Boxer is nowhere to be found. According to Squealer, Boxer has died in peace after having been taken to the hospital, praising the Rebellion with his last breath. In actuality, Napoleon has sold his most loyal and long-suffering worker to a glue maker in order to get money for whisky.

Years pass on Animal Farm, and the pigs become more and more like human beings—walking upright, carrying whips, and wearing clothes. Eventually, the seven principles of Animalism, known as the Seven Commandments and inscribed on the side of the barn, become reduced to a single principle reading “all animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.” Napoleon entertains a human farmer named Mr. Pilkington at a dinner and declares his intent to ally himself with the human farmers against the laboring classes of both the human and animal communities. He also changes the name of Animal Farm back to the Manor Farm, claiming that this title is the “correct” one.

Looking in at the party of elites through the farmhouse window, the common animals can no longer tell which are the pigs and which are the human beings.

[/learn_more]

Animal Farm Best Quotes

“All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.”

“No one believes more firmly than Comrade Napoleon that all animals are equal. He would be only too happy to let you make your decisions for yourselves. But sometimes you might make the wrong decisions, comrades, and then where should we be?”

“Several of them would have protested if they could have found the right arguments.”

” Beasts of England ” Anthem

“Beasts of England, beasts of Ireland,
Beasts of every land and clime,
Hearken to my joyful tidings
Of the golden future time.

Soon or late the day is coming,
Tyrant Man shall be o’erthrown,
And the fruitful fields of England
Shall be trod by beasts alone.

Rings shall vanish from our noses,
And the harness from our back,
Bit and spur shall rust forever,
Cruel whips shall no more crack.

Riches more than mind can picture,
Wheat and barley, oats and hay,
Clover, beans, and mangel-wurzels,
Shall be ours upon that day.

Bright will shine the fields of England,
Purer shall its water be,
Sweeter yet shall blow its breezes
On the day that sets us free.

For that day we all must labour,
Though we die before it break;
Cows and horses, geese and turkeys,
All must toils for freedom’s sake.

Beasts of England, beasts of Ireland,
Beasts of every land and clime,
Hearken well and spread my tidings
Of the golden future time. ”

“Let’s face it: our lives are miserable, laborious, and short.”

“The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which.”

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