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Animal Farm and the Power of Language (6-7ppgs)

(Final Copy Due 12/7 along with the Portfolio)

Because Animal Farm is a literary text and not an essay much of it is allegorical, and we have to
look at how it uses metaphor, imagery, and symbolism to convey its deep meaning. This
semester we have used the essays in Exploring Language to discuss the various ways in which
language can be used to spread propaganda, distort reality, and confuse those who are on the
receiving end of it, while keeping those who use it in power. Animal Farm presents a similar
scenario; the animals in the fable are tricked into believing that they’ve had a revolution and
now live in an egalitarian society, but as the novella unfolds we come to understand this as
nothing more than a ruse.

For the final paper, use at least four essays from Exploring Language, or other outside sources
assigned this semester to develop a thesis that looks at some aspect of how language is used
as a mechanism of control in Animal Farm. You will need to carefully consider the novel’s use
of metaphor, imagery, and symbolism as you make connections between Orwell’s novel and
the essays in Exploring Language. Do not think of the essays in Exploring Language, or other
assigned texts, as something you will briefly reference, and then pass over; you’ll need these
essays throughout your paper to keep your thesis on Animal Farm in focus. Here are some
issues we have discussed this semester, and will discuss during the few remaining weeks of the

 Language & Propaganda

 Doublespeak
 The language of war, and its translation into euphemisms
 Presidential speech, or the language of any powerful leader
 Influences of gender on Language
 How the language of ads/slogans create confusion, or the “Gruen transfer”
 The detrimental effects of modern technology on language/expression, and how this
makes it easier for demagogues to control the masses. Orwell explores this theme in
“Politics and the English Language,” an essay you are free to use in this paper. We’ve
also explored this theme in the essays I’ve assigned by Nick Carr & Eric Alter.
 The influence of political correctness on current language and whether it limits


 Every paper must include a title

 Every paper must include a clear, narrow, debatable thesis statement Do not spend the
entire paper summarizing the plot of Animal Farm. When you discuss the plot it should
be geared toward supporting your thesis.
 Every Paper must use at least 4 sources from Exploring Language, or other outside
sources assigned this semester such as Nick Carr, or Eric Alter.
 Every paper must include a minimum of (13) direct quotations, each sandwiched (with
an introduction and an explanation) and including a parenthetical citation as well as
numerous paraphrased quotes.
 Every paper must be typed, in 12-point Times New Roman font, double-spaced, with 1-
inch margins and page numbers
 Paper should be a minimum of 6 full pages and should not go over 8 pages.