Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Orwell’s Shooting an Elephant

George Orwells Shooting an Elephant George Orwell writes of his experience in British-ruled India in the early twentieth degree centigrade as a sub-divisional police officer in the sovereign Southeast Asia state of Burma. His essay presents a powerful theme of inner conflict. Orwells rugged inner conflict lies between what he believes as a human being and what he should do as an imperial police officer. Orwell immediately claims his prospect on British imperialism saying that it is evil and that he is fully against the British oppressors, even though he himself is a symbol of foreign oppression to the Burmese.His conflict ultimately results from the fact that he hates the British Empire, which should make him pity the Burmese masses, but he does not. This is made clear when he says All I knew that I was stuck between my hatred of the empire I served and my rage against the evil-spirited beasts who tried to make my byplay impossible (Orwell 1). In his story Orwell writes not onl y about his ad hominem experience with the wild elephant but how the elephants rampaging spree is a metaphor exhibiting the destructive power of imperialism the elephant destroys homes and even kills a man.Orwells hostile feelings toward the British, imperialism, and the Burmese people are further revealed when sets the mood of the story by illustrating the setting in Burma to be a cloudy, stuffy morning at the beginning of the rains (Orwell 2). Orwell then establishes himself as a weak character when he introduces the Burma people and how they completely disrespect the British officer by constantly laughing and mocking him. When Orwell finally finds the elephant, he admits that, I knew with perfect certainty that I ought not to shoot him nd that he did not want to shoot the elephant (Orwell 2). He ultimately falls into the expectations of the Burmese when he decides to shoot the elephant, despite the many reasons not to shoot it such as how it is worth more alive rather than dead. When he kills the elephant he goes against his pass on and moral belief, and Orwell uses the death of the elephant as another metaphor of British imperialism in Burma. The elephant is a symbol of Burma and its struggle to remain alive after three Anglo-Burmese wars showtime in 1824 between the British oppressors and the Burmese.Even after a third shot, the elephant survives, symbolizing how the Burmese are still alive but with less power, strength and confide than before the wars. Even though Orwell tries to justify his killing the elephant by stating, legally I did the right thing, a mad elephant has to be killed, he knows that the elephant could have been deliver without unnecessary harm and this exemplifies the final collapse of his morals (Orwell 4). As the story develops, it becomes progressively evident that the natives have control over the white man who is vatic to be in power.Orwell realizes that as the symbol of British oppression, he is actually the victim of the Bu rmese, and it is their expectations of how he should use his power that force him to do what they want. As I mentioned earlier, Orwell makes many comparisons throughout the story that demonstrate his weakness in character he equates himself to a puppet being controlled with the Burman crowd behind him as the audience, as well as how he feels forced to wear a mask constantly and play the role of a white man.Orwell does a great job at shedding light on the fact that humans can be influenced so easily as well as how the influences of imperialism produce mischievous effects on both the victims and oppressors. Orwell is supposed to be the higher power as an imperial police officer but because he is subjected to the evils of imperialism he becomes the victim. Orwell leaves readers with a powerful ending implication that human beings will do almost anything and act in unimaginable ways just to avoid looking a fool (Orwell 4).It is my opinion that Orwells essay succeeds in conveying its me ssage because it combines personal experience and political opinion into a smooth reading story. cite Orwell, George. George Orwell Shooting an Elephant George Orwells Library. New Writing. GB, London. Web. 15 Oct. 2012. http//orwell. ru/library/articles/elephant/english/e_eleph

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