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Animal Farm, Interpreted Literally

This is so much better than my review of Animal Farm.

John Self is the protagonist in Money. I’ve already shared with you some of his pretty hilarious zingers. No doubt that Martin Amis is gifted with witty writing.

In the book, one of Self’s friends gives him a copy of Animal Farm. Self hates reading and routinely talks about his disdain of reading throughout the novel.

So, as an inexperienced reader, Animal Farm is completely over his head. The poor guy doesn’t even realize it’s an allegory.

The only thing that puzzled me was this whole gimmick with the pigs. Pull the other one, mate, I kept saying to myself. I mean, how come the pigs were meant to be so smart, so civilized and urbane? Have you ever seen pigs doing their stuff? I have, and believe me it’s a f*ing disgusting experience. I checked out these pigs when I was on a farm making a commercial for a new kind of pork-character rissole. I almost walked off the set when I realized what I’d have to be working with. You should see these hairy-jawed throwbacks, these turd lookalikes, honking and chomping at the trough. To eat your girlfriend’s tail when she isn’t looking—that counts as good behaviour, that counts as old-world courtesy, by the standards of the sty. And when I think of what they get up to in the hay even I have to shudder. I tell you, it’s no accident that they’re called pigs. And yet Orwell here figures them for the brains behind the farm. He just can’t have seen any pigs in action. Either that, or I’m missing something.

You’re missing something, buddy.

I can’t tell you guys how many times I’ve laughed out loud reading this book.

Juxtapose that with my cringing and squirming during some of Amis’s graphic passages, and Money is a hard novel to figure out.

Animal Farm. If you believe John Self, it’s just a story about extremely smart pigs.

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8 Comments Post a comment
  1. I have to give money a read then, it sounds really funny. I’ve read few others that do funny well.

    Like

    February 4, 2014
    • It’s a good one. That is if you can handle the graphic nature of the novel.

      Like

      February 4, 2014
      • I think I can, but thanks for the forewarning.

        Like

        February 4, 2014
  2. Pigs are not just “pigs” … hug!

    Like

    February 4, 2014
  3. dcapic #

    Reblogged this on Da Bears.

    Like

    February 4, 2014
  4. That’s so funny! I kind of chuckle whenever people read or watch something and completely miss it. Like when book club got together to read “Pride and Prejudice”, in the scene where Mr.Collins insultingly compliments his cousins for the meal, thereby implying they were too poor for even a housekeeper, all my friends got was that the potatoes tasted good. 🙂

    Like

    February 5, 2014
  5. As an ansolute animal farm lover, I think I’ll have to check this book out, it sounds brilliant!
    @DaveyNorthcott

    Like

    February 6, 2014
  6. Speaking as someone who was a pig in a former life, we are pretty smart creatures.

    Like

    February 6, 2014

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