Animal Farm and A Modest Proposal Essay

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Animal Farm and A Modest Proposal

Although 'Animal Farm' and 'A Modest Proposal' were written over two
hundred years apart, and one is non-fiction and the other is not,
there are distinct similarities between the two. Both of the pieces
are political, with 'Animal Farm' based on the Russian Revolution, and
'A Modest Proposal' based on the situation of homelessness in Ireland.
Also, both of the pieces are satirical. Animal Farm ridicules the
ordinary Russian people for being gullible, and 'A Modest Proposal'
mocks politicians who ignore sensible suggestions and come up with
extreme ones.

In the build up to his speech, Old Major first clears his throat, to
gain all of the animals' attention. The fact that all he has to do is
clear his throat to do this, gives the impression that he is
authoritative, and in control. We are given the idea that the other
animals respect him.

In the following paragraph, Old Major mentions a dream, but he says "I
will come to the dream later". The dream is the whole reason the
meeting has been called, and by saying that he will talk about it
later holds all of the animals in suspense. They are willing to listen
to what he has to say, to hear about the dream. He also mentions his
imminent death, which will gain the audience's sympathy, and again
make them listen. To guarantee that the animals are going to listen to
him, he says that he will "pass onto to you such wisdom as I have
acquired". This makes it seem like everything he is going to tell them
is wise, true and worth listening to.

In the third paragraph of his speech, he is brutally honest, and works
up the animals, to get them angry. He tells them "our lives are
miserable, laborious and short". This is the 'problem'. He then tells
them the 'sol...

... middle of paper ... their bastard children; alas!" Again though, Swift uses a
lot less exclamation marks than Old Major. This is mainly because his
piece is meant to be formal.

Both Old Major and Swift use alliteration in the pieces to make
themselves sound stylish and eloquent. In one part of his speech, Old
Major says " as sure as I see this straw " The repetition of the 's'
makes certain words in that sentence stand out, making his message
more clear. Swift says "Four females".

Although Old Major's speech and 'A Modest Proposal' were written over
two hundred years apart, they both use very similar techniques and
development of their argument to get their point across. Both of the
pieces are politically based and satirical, both use formal and
emotive language, differing sentence types and structures and in
sparse amounts, alliteration. This makes their arguments fairly

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