George Orwell’s award winning novella “Animal Farm” owes its timeless appeal in part, to how the story line has parallel human experience. Written originally as contemporary satire of the Soviet Union and the Russian Revolution it could also portray how the American Republican Party usurped the Tea Party Movement while the Democratic Party absorbed much of the grass roots energy of Move On and, to a lesser extent the Coffee Party. As a result, these advocates for change now do little more than represent views of the existing government, bringing about no new change at all.
Since determinism is defined as “the idea that every event is necessitated by antecedent events and conditions together with the laws of nature” it would seem to hold that “Animal Farm” certainly appeals to this school of thought. The pattern of powerful corporate interests absorbing popular movements and governments to increase their own fortunes was one of the initial causes of the American Revolution of 1776 when the British Government added a Stamp Tax to tea exports to the colonies in order to repay the corporations who financed the Empire’s expansion.
Determinism is the direct opposite of freedom. It postulates that there is but one potential outcome in the course of events and this outcome is not determined by an individual’s free will but by events, conditions and the laws of nature. In this “Animal Farm” not only fits the description of determinism, it also finds some parallel in Jean-Paul Sartre’s “No Exit.” In “No Exit” the characters are shaped not by their own view of themselves but how they are viewed by each other. In that play freedom of self-determinism occurs on a peer level as the individuals, unable to find a mirror in their front parlor hell can only see themselves as reflected back by each other. This is echoed in famous closing cry of “Hell is — Other People.”
Orwell, G. (1945). Animal Farm. Seker and Warburg .
Stanford University. (2010, January 21). Causal Determinism. Retrieved February 07, 2012, from Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy: http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/determinism-causal/