Watership Down

by: Richard Adams

Symbols

The Rabbit Warren

The different rabbit warrens in the novel can be seen as different versions of human government. The warren of the snares could be considered socialist, as all the rabbits there are equal and no one has anything more than anyone else. The Efrafan warren represents a totalitarian regime, as Woundwort and a handful of others rule with an iron fist while all the rest are trod upon and abused. Hazel's warren represents a democracy, as it has a leader whom everyone wants making decisions based upon the will of the group. This symbolism clearly carries with it some degree of value judgment, as the first two regimes clearly fail while the third is a smashing success. Adams suggests that democracy—or at least some form of government in which the leader is chosen by the people and acts according to the will of the people—is the best way to organize society.