Animal Farm Chapter 6: Summary

Instructor: Kerry Gray

Kerry has been a teacher and an administrator for more than twenty years. She has a Master of Education degree.

In this lesson, we will summarize the events that happen in Chapter Six of ''Animal Farm'' by George Orwell. The load has doubled as animals work the farm and build the windmill. Will the animals remain happy with Animalism?

Priorities Shift

In chapter six of Animal Farm, the animals are still working as hard as ever to keep the farm running, but now, they are working just as hard to build a windmill. It becomes apparent that there are some things that the animals are not going to be able to do on their own. Do animals need humans after all?

Pigs supervise while the animals work harder than ever.

Hard Work Pays Off

In addition to the sixty-hour work week they are already putting in, Napoleon pronounces that Sunday afternoon is now a work day for all animals who volunteer in lieu of having their food supply cut in half. The animals do not complain because they know they are working for the common good of animals instead of for humans. Despite their efforts, the animals know that it will be a hard winter because all the work they need to do to build the windmill prevents them from working all of the fields.

The animals are able to procure the necessary materials to build the windmill, but are unable to use tools made for humans to break the limestone. Their solution is to take on the arduous task of hauling huge boulders to the top of the quarry, dropping them down to the bottom to break them, then hauling them in carts back to the building site. The pigs supervise as the other animals work.

Boxer is a solid worker who takes on substantial responsibility. Clover worries that he will hurt himself, but he does not pay attention to her warnings. His two mantras, 'I will work harder' and 'Napoleon is always right,' keep him going. He wakes up even earlier and volunteers to work alone during his spare time.

The animals do well and have just as much food as they had when they were working for Mr. Jones. The fences, hedges, and gates are let go because it is not necessary to keep animals from stealing anymore. Supplies that cannot be made on the farm begin to run low. No one is sure how they will acquire the things they need.

The Rules Change

Napoleon declares they will begin trading with neighboring farms to get the things they need for the windmill. A stack of hay, part of the wheat crop, and eggs are sold to contribute to the windmill. The animals are uncomfortable with this decision because Old Major warned them about dealing with humans and trading with money. This decision is a violation of the Seven Commandments. A few of the pigs speak up, but become compliant when the dogs begin growling.

A salesman, Mr. Whymper, is coming to the farm weekly to handle farm business so that the animals will not have to interact with humans. Squealer goes to animals individually to convince them that the rule about trading with humans was in their imagination. The animals are uneasy when Mr. Whymper visits the farm, but are reassured when they see Napoleon on four legs giving Whymper on two legs commands.

Mr. Jones leaves town, and humans begin referring to Animal Farm by name. Men hate Animal Farm, but also respect it. The pigs move into the farmhouse. Once again, Squealer is able to convince the other animals that they are not correctly remembering that living in houses is against the rules. Clover is definitely bothered when she hears that the pigs are eating in the kitchen and sleeping in beds, but Boxer's response is, 'Napoleon is always right.'

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