Dictators often use fear as a control tactic in their countries as they want to make sure they have total power over their people. Fear is defined as an unpleasant and often strong emotion caused by anticipation or awareness of danger, often causing a person to act according to what is necessary for survival. Although fear can be unpleasant, many people like it in different ways; some like the suspense that scary movies bring, while others like the thrill that is created when cliff jumping.
George Orwell’s allegory Animal Farm and William Golding’s novel Lord of the Flies, exemplifies societies who are controlled by authority figures during the war. Jack, a narcissist dictator takes over Ralph’s democratic power over the society and creates his own tribe. Napoleon, also similarly removes Snowball from power. Jack and Napoleon use fear of physical harm and outside influences to control their citizens. Napoleon and Jack both use physical altercation to impose their power. Napoleon executed any animal that was thought to have betrayed animal farm even though there wasn’t real proof.
Violence in the text increases in severity, in accordance with Napoleon’s increasing corruption. It is demonstrated in Animal Farm right after the animals finish their confession, and “the dogs promptly tore their throats out, and in a terrible voice Napoleon demanded whether any other animal had anything to confess” (Orwell 56). Fear is so prevalent in the animals’ lives that, “they had come to a time when no one dared speak his mind, when fierce, growling dogs roamed everywhere, and when you had to watch your comrades torn to pieces after confessing to shocking crimes” (Orwell 58).
These events show that Napoleon is a heartless leader and is only looking after ultimate power and control. Jack uses physical abuse to manifest his power. In the fruit of his anger, Jack makes the kids “tie Wilfred up” in order to “beat [him] up”(Golding 176). This proves once more, that whenever anger fills within Jack he acts irrationally. Jack also shows his supremacy over the kids when Ralph’s group approach the savages’ camp in order to politely ask for Piggy’s glasses and Jack orders the kids to “grab them! (Golding 198) This demonstrates that the savages do everything Jack says because they are scared. Napoleon uses that strategy because animals are scared and their ignorance makes them believe that if they work harder and do what Napoleon says, they will have a better chance of surviving. Jack’s tribe also does everything he says because they are scared to physically get hurt or killed. Therefore both leaders benefit from this physical fear that both societies experience. Both leaders use supernatural things and outside influences to establish fear over their society.
Jack uses constantly the beast to his own advantage. He often makes allusion of it to scare his tribe, as it is shown when he says “the beast might try to come in” (Golding 177) to his guards. This shows that he is definitely afraid of the beast even though he tries to reassure his tribe to not be afraid, which perfectly links with his previous words of “this head is for the beast. It’s a gift” (Golding 151) which clearly proves his fear of the beast, while at the same time using that as a way to persuade his tribe that they are safe with him as long as they do what he says.
Napoleon uses lies about outside enemies to his own advantage. Napoleon claims that Snowball is a traitor and “was secretly frequenting the farm by night” (Orwell 52) causing panic in the animals. Therefore “whenever anything went wrong it became usual to attribute it to Snowball” (Orwell 52) which determines Napoleon’s corruption and need for power. Napoleon also starts rumors on neighbouring farms to dominate his society. Horrible stories were leaking out from Pinchfield.
It is believed that Frederick, “had flogged an old horse to death, he starved his cows, he had killed a dog by throwing it into the furnace, he amused himself in the evenings by making cocks fight with splinters of razor-blade tied to their spurs” causing the animals to rage against the neighbouring farm and also it amplifies their desire to “attack Pinchfield Farm, drive out the humans, and set the animals free” (Orwell 63). This quotation shows that the animals are very sensible towards their peers and are willing to go to “war” for their freedom.
The animal’s frustrations of outside enemies as well as the fear of the beast that the savages experience in Lord of the Flies, help greatly Jack’s and Napoleon’s cause. Both leaders imply that they can protect their citizens consequently making the population feel safer. This strategy is very adequate because it distracts both nations on the corruption happening inside their own “walls”. This makes their respective leaders look good because the citizens believe that other societies are in worse shape than their own.
These tactics are used to allow both leaders to prolong their power and achieve their ultimate goal of complete domination over the citizens. Jack and Napoleon use different type of fears to control their people. The difference between the successes of both parties is that in Jack’s case; the population always has a chance of getting rescued from a ship while in Napoleon’s farm the animals never really had another view on things other then what their leaders told them, and that is exactly why dictatorship prevails until today.
The population is clueless of the outside world; they believe that it is the same everywhere, so no change or revolution is thought of the people. Therefore although dictatorship is usually a very brutal and unfair government, it will always be a part of this world.
Orwell, George. Animal Farm. Toronto: Penguin Books, 1989. Print Golding, William. Lord of the Flies. Boston: Faber and Faber Limited, 1958. Print