Animal Farm: A Fairy Story tells the history of the Russian revolution as an Aesopian fable, with animals representing the various classes. The farm animals (workers) unite and rise up against the farmer, Mr. Jones (the Czar). The revolution ends in a victory for the animals, but the triumph is short-lived. Napoleon and the other pigs (the communist leaders) grow fond of their new-found powers and pervert all of the original aims of the revolution to fit their power-hungry agendas.
The novel is intended as a warning against the communist ideas that Orwell saw sweeping through Russia and spreading to Europe and even the United States. Publication was delayed until World War II had ended and open criticism of Russia, a worthy ally against Nazi-Germany, became possible.