GCSE Animal Farm – Character Profile: The Humans
To Old Major, the humans are the enemy. In Chapter one, the reader can see that the conditions that the animals are living in and the way they are getting treated is terrible. Mr Jones is the owner of Manor Farm and is lazy and is often drunk. His men are also idle and dishonest and this leads the animals to think that all humans are the same way. Under Jones, the fields of Manor Farm are “full of weeds” and the animals are “underfed.” Orwell uses Jones to represent the unpopular Tsar Nicholas II in Russia.
Jones’ neglect and drunkenness allow the animals to meet and organise themselves in secret. He doesn’t have a clue of what is going on. He often forgets to lock them up properly and doesn’t have much control of the farm.
When the animals do rebel though, it is a spontaneous event and even the animals are surprised by their success. Jones has so little control of the animals by then, that it is easy for them to push him off the land.
Squealer later uses the fear of Jones returning to keep the animals obedient to Napoleon. At the end of the book though, many of the animals cannot remember what it was like under Jones’s rule. Squealer and Napoleon have manipulated their members so much, that they think it is much better for them with the pigs in control, when in fact, it is a worse standard of living for them, than when Jones was in power.
Even after Jones has left, there are still humans lurking about. Pilkington is an old-fashioned gentleman his farm is shabby and neglected. He represents the capitalist West and is just as cruel and dishonest as Jones and his men.
Frederick has a smaller and better kept farm. He is also dishonest and cruel and there are many rumours spreading about how unkind he treats his animals.
It is Frederick who leads a surprise attack on Animal Farm. It is a vicious attack. He almost overthrows the animals and is only driven off the land after the animals have sustained great losses. Some of the animals are injured and some have lost their lives. The windmill is also blown up. This is the one thing which Snowball worked so hard to achieve and something that could really have benefitted the animals, so it is a great blow to them.
Another human in the story is Whymper. He stands for those people who were happy to work for the communists in Russia or do business with them, if the price was right. His main priorities are money and profit.
Whymper is Napoleon’s solicitor and representative in his dealings with other humans. He is a sharp businessman who knows that Napoleon’s business is worth having . He sees how hard the animals are willing to work and what they can produce. Although, he only agrees to work for Animal Farm because Napoleon tricks him into thinking that the farm is prosperous. It is ironic that an animal is tricking a human, when it has usually been the other way around. It shows just how powerful Napoleon has become and how manipulative he is.
Humans are portrayed in a very unfavourable way in Animal Farm. They are seen as neglectful, unscrupulous, greedy and lazy. There are no contrasting figures to balance this view. All the humans in the book have the same flaws. It lets the reader understand why Old Major was so against humans and why he saw them as the enemy.