by George Orwell
Animal Farm Chapter 1 Quotes
How we cite the quotes:
Mr. Jones, of the Manor Farm, had locked the hen-houses for the night, but was too drunk to remember to shut the pop-holes. With the ring of light from his lantern dancing from side to side, he lurched across the yard, kicked off his boots at the back door, drew himself a last glass of beer from the barrel in the scullery, and made his way up to bed, where Mrs. Jones was already snoring. (1.1)
We don't know if Mr. Jones became a drunk before or after becoming the leader of the farm, but we definitely get the idea that he's not up to his job.
"Comrades, you have heard already about the strange dream that I had last night. But I will come to the dream later. I have something else to say first. I do not think, comrades, that I shall be with you for many months longer, and before I die, I feel it my duty to pass on to you such wisdom as I have acquired. I have had a long life, I have had much time for thought as I lay alone in my stall, and I think I may say that I understand the nature of life on this earth as well as any animal now living. It is about this that I wish to speak to you." (1.6)
Hm. We're not sure, but we think there's a difference between acquired wisdom and random dream, right? "Wisdom" might tell Old Major that human—ahem, animal—nature is selfish and lazy; a "dream" might convince him that a communist utopia will work anyway.
"Is it not crystal clear, then, comrades, that all the evils of this life of ours spring from the tyranny of human beings? Only get rid of Man, and the produce of our labour would be our own. Almost overnight we could become rich and free. What then must we do? Why, work night and day, body and soul, for the overthrow of the human race! That is my message to you, comrades: Rebellion! I do not know when that Rebellion will come, it might be in a week or in a hundred years, but I know, as surely as I see this straw beneath my feet, that sooner or later justice will be done. Fix your eyes on that, comrades, throughout the short remainder of your lives! And above all, pass on this message of mine to those who come after you, so that future generations shall carry on the struggle until it is victorious. (1.11)
Unfortunately, as soon as they overthrow the tyranny of human beings, a new tyranny arises: the tyranny of pigs. This is… pretty depressing, actually. It's kind of like realizing that growing up doesn't actually mean you get to eat as many jelly doughnuts as you want; it means that you have to go to work every day to earn the money to buy those jelly doughnuts. (And then get fat.)