George Orwell, Animal Farm

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". . . remember always your duty of enmity towards Man and all his ways. Whatever goes upon two legs is an enemy. Whatever goes upon four legs, or has wings, is a friend. And remember also that in fighting against Man, we must not come to resemble him . . . All the habits of Man are evil. And, above all, no animal must ever tyrannize over his own kind. Weak or strong, clever or simple, we are all brothers. No animal must ever kill any other animal. All animals are equal."

Animal Farm, from Old Major's speech

Of all the books I read in my teen years, Animal Farm was the most influential and memorable. I personally think Animal Farm is one of the most important works of human history.

First I read it as a story for children, then accepted my English teacher's interpretation that the book was about the Soviet Revolution.

Now I tend to understand it in a wider human context. The book is about the human situation in all countries and under all political and economical schemes, including socialist and capitalist systems. It is and incredible book and makes it very simple for people to see how corrupt most governing systems are.

George Orwell was obviously very knowledgeable on the subject of human nature in a general sense. That is why his books are still popular so many years after they were written.

About the author

George Orwell (pen name for Eric Arthur Blair) noted as a political and cultural commentator, Orwell is among the most widely admired English-language essayists of the twentieth century, though he is best known for two novels he wrote in the late 1940s, the political allegory Animal Farm and Nineteen Eighty-Four. The latter described a totalitarian dystopia...