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The Manor Farm—later called Animal Farm—is a small, independent farm somewhere in the English countryside. The name “Manor Farm” tells us that it was once owned by a local aristocrat, the lord of the manor. However, the farm has since come into the hands of Mr. Jones, an unsuccessful, lazy, drunken farmer. Within the novella’s allegory, the Manor Farm represents Russia and also the countries of Europe more generally: places once ruled by aristocrats, now ruled by capitalists, and ripe for a Communist revolution. However, the Englishness of the Manor Farm is also important. Small, independent farms are a treasured part of the British national self-image, emblems of the coziness and tranquility of English political life. By imagining such a farm undergoing a revolution, Animal Farm suggests that the corruption and bloodshed of Stalinism is much closer to home than British readers may realize.
Ace your assignments with our guide to Animal Farm!