Table of Contents
Animal Farm Chapter 3 Summary
Animal Farm Chapter 3: The hard work that the animals do in the time that follows the Rebellion is rewarded as the quality and size of the harvest exceeds even their greatest expectations. Although all of the animals contribute as best as they could, Boxer is especially impressive as he put his “I will work harder!” motto into action on a regular basis. But it should be noted that the pigs contribute solely in a mental capacity, organizing and supervising the others.
Benjamin seems to be the only animal to have not changed as a result of the Rebellion, not his demeanor and not his work ethic, as he continues to do exactly the same amount of work as before.
The animals improve their reading and writing skills, some more so than others. The sheep’s skills are still limited as they soon simply start bleating, “Four legs good, two legs bad!” at regular intervals.
Napoleon takes nine puppies from Jessie and Bluebell and starts teaching them in private out of sight from the others.
It’s discovered that all of the milk and apples are going to the pigs, an act that they defend by saying that as the smartest animals, it’s important that they keep their brains healthy by consuming milk and apples. They are doing so only for the good of the farm, not for their own personal benefit.
Animal Farm Chapter 3
The animals work hard in the time that follows the revealing of the Seven Commandments, and their work is rewarded as the size and quality of the harvest exceeds even what they had hoped for.
It wasn’t easy work by any means, and oftentimes the pigs had to come up with solutions to a variety of issues, one of which was the inability of any animal to be able to use any tool that required standing on its hind legs. The pigs continued to contribute solely in that manner, through their intelligence and ability to organize and supervise the others. This was viewed as the way for the animals as a group to be most productive.
When work was to be done, Boxer, one of the cart-horses, always led the way. The author describes him as “more like three horses than one.” Boxer also made it a point to be involved in the hardest tasks. It made sense that his personal motto was, “I will work harder!” as he never seemed to be satisfied.
However, it wasn’t like the other animals slacked as almost all of them contributed as best as they could. A couple of the exceptions to this rule were Mollie, the pretty white mare, and the cat.
Benjamin, the old donkey, made an impression in that he seemed to not have changed at all since the Rebellion. He didn’t do less work than when Mr. Jones was in charge, but he didn’t do more either.
Every Sunday, which was the day of rest, a green flag with a hoof and horn in white was hoisted. Snowball said that it symbolized the greenery of England and the Republic of the Animals who were going to overthrow the humans throughout the world, not just on this one farm.
Also on this day of the week, the pigs put forth resolutions – no other animals ever did – and the most active ones, Napoleon and Snowball, seemed to never be in agreement. Even a matter that nobody could really contradict in and of itself often resulted in an argument over the nitty-gritty aspects of it.
Snowball creates a number of committees for the animals, but this is generally met with failure. However, one very significant exception to this are the writing classes as all of the animals are able to better their literary ability. However, the gains are not significant in some cases. For example, the sheep are not able to learn all that much and often start crying the little bit that they do learn, “Four legs good, two legs bad!” over and over again. That was the simplified version of the Seven Commandments that the pigs determined was most essential to pass along to the rest. After the birds voiced their objection to this phrase, they were quickly told that wings counted as legs.
Napoleon is generally not interested in Snowball’s ideas and instead focuses on the youth of the farm, not the adults. One of the things that he does is take nine puppies from Jessie and Bluebell as soon as they are weaned and teach them in an area of the farm away from view of the others. They are so secluded that, before long, the others forget that they are there or even exist.
At the end of the chapter, the animals discover that all of the milk and apples are being given solely to the pigs. Of course, this is a matter that Snowball, Napoleon and the rest of the pigs are in full agreement about. Squealer explains that the pigs need to have healthy brains to ensure that Mr. Jones will not return and that’s why they need the milk and apples. It is for the good of the farm as a whole.
It starts becoming more and more clear in this chapter that the pigs are in the process of replacing the humans at the top of the work pyramid. “The pigs did not actually work, but directed and supervised the others.” “The other animals … could never think of any resolutions of their own.”
At the chapter’s conclusion, Squealer puts together a convincing argument as to why the pigs should be the sole recipients of the milk and apples despite that being a clear violation of the seventh commandment, “All animals are equal.” Perhaps his most convincing tactic was creating fear in the minds of the other animals when he declared that if the pigs were not given milk and apples and, as a result, failed in their duties, “Jones would come back! … Surely there is no one among you who wants to see Jones come back?” He ended up convincing the other animals that the pigs were consuming all of the milk and animals for the others’ benefit, not their own. This use of fear to attain more power is often done in political situations throughout the world today.
Snowball and Napoleon being continuously in disagreement with each other during the weekly meetings is reminiscent of political situations today where many in leadership roles focus on dividing the public into two groups who are arguing with each other so that they never turn their focus towards teaming up to overthrow those in power. However, it’s important to note that something in which they both benefit, all of the apples and milk going to the pigs, was agreed upon by Snowball and Napoleon without reservation.
One of the arguments that the pigs had early on in convincing them to overthrow Mr. Jones was that he would often take away their offspring very early in their lives. Then Napoleon does just that in this chapter, taking nine puppies away as soon as they are weaned so that he can look over them personally.
It was interesting how Snowball seemed focused on educating the adult animals, which was mostly met with failure, while Napoleon looked to educate the young ones. We don’t yet know how that will turn out.
One positive aspect of this chapter came when, at the beginning, the animals realized that powerfully positive emotions can result from being so giving. The issue comes when not everybody is that giving.
Animal Farm Chapter 3 Questions and Answers
Those that required standing on hind legs.
Yes. In fact, it was the biggest that any of them had ever experienced.
“I will work harder!”
Mollie and the cat.
The Republic of the Animals, who will overthrow the human race throughout the world.
Napoleon and Snowball.
The reading and writing ones.
“Four legs good, two legs bad.”
The birds, but they were quickly told that wings should be regarded as legs too.
After being weaned, Napoleon took them and taught them away from sight of the remaining animals.
To be saved and then mixed with the pigs’ mash.
Because the pigs were the brains of the farm, and their mental health was essential to keep the farm running at an optimal level.
The milk and apples not going to the pigs could cause them to fail in their duty, which might result in Mr. Jones returning and resuming control of the farm.