In a modern day Nike sweatshop set in Bangladesh, child labor, abuse, and under minimum wage pay are huge problems. Children are forced to work at age 9. Women are forced to go on birth control to keep from maternity leaves and the people with families struggle to feed them. When a supervisor beats a child to unconsciousness, that is the last straw.
The workers are finally fed up with the hard labor forced on them and plan a rebellion. The older workers fight the supervisors out and start a business of their own. They tell the young laborers that everything will get better, but everything seems to get worse when they have to start to work even harder than before. This is the theme “Ideologies of Liberation Often Lead to Tyrannies”, which is seen in Animal Farm by George Orwell. The older workers, now the leaders, are able to take over because they are smarter and more educated than the children. They take advantage of their ages. This theme, also seen in Animal Farm, is “Education is Important for Society”. These themes are explored to show how dangerous they can actually be.
Ideologies of Liberation Often Lead to Tyrannies
The older workers fill the youngsters heads with thoughts of a rebellion and a new business they can create. A new factory where all of the workers get rewarded and aren’t controlled. They can even wear the shoes and clothes they create. This idea sounds fantastic to the the kids. It takes them away from the abuse and long hours. They love this idea so much, that when the rebellion actually happens and the older workers take over and take power, they barely notice. This is what they wanted right?
Education is Important for Society
How didn’t anybody notice the older workers were taking charge and making all the decisions? Poor education. Children at age nine aren’t as smart as an adult. Especially since these specific kids have very little if no education. You tell them to do something, and they’ll do it. Especially if there’s tough consequences if they refuse. If these kids were as educated as they should be, then they would understand that something wrong is happening and it’s unfair.
Mankind represents the company, Nike, as a whole. There are multiple sweatshops all over the world they run. Just like in Animal Farm, the humans own many farms all around the world. Some are involved in the story, but most are not.
The Mr. Jones of the sweatshop is a man named Hamid. He runs the particular factory this story takes place in. Hamid is a very harsh, abusive, and unfair man. He beats the workers and makes much more money than them. He also makes the workers work ridiculous amounts of time and makes women take birth control so they don’t get pregnant and have to go on maternity leave. Hamid is what the workers consider the villain.
The pigs in this story are the older workers who are smarter than the others. The received a good education and have the capability to use the kids to overthrow Hamid. These workers are very manipulative and end up being the new leaders of the sweatshop.
Old Major is represented by an older worker named Amolik. Amolik creates the first idea of a rebellion and a new business run by the workers. He dies right after he pitches the idea and impacts the whole fate of the story.
Napoleon is shown as an older worker named Biman. Biman is an older worker, so he automatically helps lead and takes charge, with some hesitance at first. After Biman drives out the opposing leader, he become the one leader, forming a dictatorship in the shop. Biman makes the workers work 100 times harder than they ever would have before.
The person Snowball is represented as is an older worker, with better values, named Achinta. Achinta has better ideas for the new business. He wants whatever is best for the other workers and children, unlike Biman.
Squealer is shown as an older worker named Nazmul. Nazmul is the loyal partner or “servant” of Achinta and Biman. He always backs up the two leaders, mostly Biman, and convinces all of the workers that everything is okay and fair. Nazmul become the voice for Biman later and Biman’s words are only heard through Nazmul.
The horses in the story are the uneducated children who are forced to work and are too stupid to rebel. The children are all very loyal and hard working, even more than the older workers.
Box is represented by a 12 year old boy named Taj. Taj is the hardest and best working worker at the sweatshop. Sadly, he earns the least money. Taj is too uneducated to know better though, so he is perfectly happy doing what others tell him to.
The dogs are represented by the poorer worker at the sweatshop who can’t afford to get kicked out. They have families to support and will do anything and protect anyone, even Biman, to provide for their families. These workers vary in age and are mean and women.
The Animal Farm/Manor Farm
The Animal Farm is the Nike sweatshop in Bangladesh where all of these events and people take place. The workers are forced to stay at the shop because if they leave, they will be attacked and jumped.
The farmhouse is Hamid’s old office, which has many amenities like a fridge, kitchen, clean bathroom, food, and much more. The older workers end up moving here and even start wearing Hamid’s old manager uniforms.