Essay on the Concept of Power
Nertile Latifi and Brikena Sela Julie Kolgjini Writing Seminar 0502-227 October 07, 2008 What is power, and how does it present itself in our lives? We know for certain that it proves as the one thing that either keeps people together, makes them revolt, or changes history overall.But what is it really? Is it the ability to do or act, or is it political/national strength? Does it always have to be represented by a person in charge? Or is it just something in our minds that has the possession to control our influence.
There are so many meanings behind this short yet ‘powerful’ word, such as that which is discussed in Orwell’s Animal Farm, and that which is part of human nature.To begin with, various resources provide different illustrations of power.
Reading George Orwell’s Animal Farm, it gives us the view of power in a form of an animal representing us humans. A short summary of the book is that of how one animal, a pig, in the whole bunch has the courage to stand up and feed the other animals with brainwashing information. He begins with things that amuse the group which was mainly equality for all.
Since the farmer was in charge of the animals’ lives, the pig reaches out to them in their weakest point by promising them freedom and equality. The pig does this only so the others will agree with every other decision he makes. Time after time, he slowly changes the rules here and there, still pretending to be egalitarian. The rest of the animals are so convinced that they are being led towards the right path from the beginning, they never stop to analyze what they were actually doing, which was whatever they were told by the pig.
Eventually they are brought back to the same position by their own kind, as they had been in the beginning by the farmer: following the dictates of a single individual. Thus, according to Animal Farm, we come to understand that power is simply something that is passed on in life. In the story, it was the one thing that kept the animals together doing whatever they were told. If any animal became somewhat suspicious of someone daring to stand up to the leader, they were thrown out immediately. Yet, from the reader’s point of view, it is what causes mayhem in our minds to know that we, as people, are fooled the same way by everyday things.
You realize how brainwashing is used and devoured by those who don’t contemplate the consequences of authoritarian regimes. Now, if we “zoom in” to the big picture, power has a role in each tiny event of our daily lives. Every one of us wants and needs power to show our importance and presence. It is our egos drug. It begins very early in our childhood, when we first start to explore the limit of our power. A little child crying very loudly, for example, waits to see when mom or dad lose their patience and say stop or no.
Until then it is not going to stop crying, which shows how we use our power, even if it’s only for some more candy. Later on, that child, lets name her Visvira (which in Latin stands for power), is going to build friendships with other children. Even in the Sandbox there is a hierarchy. Everyone has his/her role; the stronger children like Visvira, who maybe have a lot of power at home, will most likely use it in relation with other children too, and are the unofficial leaders of the whole bunch. It doesn’t even have to be a bunch.
In many cases of a friendship of two people, one is always more powerful than the other and time and again it shows, for example, when telling his/her weaker friend what to do. Power rules the world, and as said before it starts with every one of us. We all have the need for power, beginning with the power of controlling ourselves. Visvira is going to grow up, and have many arguments with her parents, which mostly start because she wants more power for herself. She wants to decide more on her own, and her parents are often afraid of giving her too much power.
When Visvira has collected that much knowledge to know that it’s not always best to decide everything on her own, she is called an adult. In adulthood power still shows, but differs from the naive use in childhood. Adulthood power is weighed more definite. Visvira is in her first real relationship where she just started to go out with her new boyfriend. From the first day on, each side shows indirectly his and her strengths and powers. What they’ve learned until now is that one always has to give in, if it’s worth the sacrifice.
Visvira’s boyfriend for example learned this earlier in his teenage-years, and decided to be the weaker one, who’d rather do what the powerful tell them to, than risk on his own. Hence, Visvira turns out to be dominant in the relationship. She decides what they’re going to do, when, and why. Visvira got so good in using her power it’s even helping in her career. The power she has at home with her family and with her boyfriend gives her confidence and strengthens her so much, that she’s not afraid of being dismissed when coming up with new ideas.
After Visvira and her boyfriend move in and get married, she even makes more money than him, which presents another big presence of power. Her life goes on like this when they have children too. She keeps on making the decisions because she wears the pants in the family. But as her children grow up, guess what they’re going to do? Like their mother, they’re going to fight for their own power, and Visvira gets to her last part of life: “Senior-hood”. She knows now, she isn’t the boss anymore, but the power she lost is given to her back in love and respect. “All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others (Orwell 133). As the most influential quote in the entire book, it shows the reality of by what rules our world operates. Orwell is known as an author who tries hard to show readers his view on society and how easily fooled it becomes when there is only one individual in power. From both our examples, we came to an agreement that our definition of power is when one is able to control your influence so much, you are bound to believe whatever he or she says, even that “2+2=5. ” Work Cited Orwell, George. Animal Farm. New York: Harcourt, Brace & Company Inc. 1946. Orwell, George. 1984. New York: Harcourt, Brace, 1949.