Authority in ‘Equilibrium’ & ‘Animal Farm’
“He who establishes his argument by noise and command shows that his reason is weak. ” This quote by Michael de Montaigne relates to the concepts of authority in the book ‘Animal Farm’ (by George Orwell,) and the film ‘Equilibrium’. Authority impacts the everyday lives of all people and in relation to this quote, the result and consequences of authority depend on how it is run. For example a tyrant will often get things done quickly and harshly but will tend to have no or little regard for his own people.
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Such tyrants, because of this negative authority eventually get over thrown or have their system decay and lose this power much like the film ‘Equilibrium. ’ ‘Equilibrium’ is set in a not too distant dystopian future where in order to prevent war and violence the government forces everyone to take a drug too suppress their emotions as they are seen to be the cause for an un-peaceful society. The government leader believes that anything that could stimulate emotion must be destroyed e. . films, art, music, pets, etc, to the extent of what seems to be no allowance for any bright colours. This is an example of tyranny and forceful control as anyone who violates the government’s code of conduct and feels emotion is hunted down and taken out by highly trained assassins called clerics. Similarly in the book ‘Animal Farm’ when the character Napoleon takes over the farm he forces and manipulates everyone to do his bidding.
Another similarity between the texts is in ‘Animal Farm’ the original idea was for everyone to be equal leaving nothing to fight about, but just like in ‘Equilibrium’ this gets out of hand and the reader is left at the end of the book that there will be an uprising to take away Napoleons wrath. This relates to Michael’s quote, how those who rule with a selfish and careless iron have little or no reason to rule in the first place, and when this happens things tend to be corrupt to the point where authority collapses because they are weak.
Through the techniques used in ‘Animal Farm’ and ‘Equilibrium’ the composers have portrayed their message/s about authority to the chosen audience of the texts. The general message between the two texts is being in a position of authority is a very powerful tool and responsibility. In both texts this power is abused bringing about corruption and in ‘Equilibrium’ the eventual over throwing of authority by the governments (‘The Father’) own law enforcing assassin. The techniques of character personality and plot events are what construct a view of negative authority. In the two texts positive nd responsible authority is promoted to the audience through such techniques. E. g. the pig Napoleon from ‘Animal Farm’ selfish, arrogant and power hungry behaviour leads him to lie and enforce by creating fear in the hearts of the other animals. He does this by training a pack of attack dogs, banishing an associate leader (squealer) and threatening to degrade the barn yard animal’s lives if they don’t meet his expectations. This behaviour and the events it causes portray Napoleon as a tyrant clearly shows how a negative authoritarian figure can corrupt people’s everyday lives.