As a European white man in the British colony of India, George Orwell, in his narrative essay Shooting an Elephant, describes one of his most memorable events while living in the Southeast Asian nation of Burma. Orwell’s purpose is to share the absolute horror of living in imperialism. He adopts a tense tone throughout his essay by using vivid description and gruesome imagery in order to relate the incident with the elephant to what it is like to live in imperialism.
George Orwell’s ‘Shooting an Elephant’ (Orwel, 1936) represents a number of strangers being involved in a combined encounter. The situation throughout the essay represents the unjust British occupation of Burma, the hatred towards him as a British officer and the elephant symbolising the British. The part of the text chosen clearly exemplifies how a forced duty can lead to hatred. The text chosen displays that he is forced to encounter the Burmese people yet they despise him. Although the encounter with the Burmese improves with the arrival of the elephant, Orwell still has a sense of isolation. Throughout the text Orwell questions the presence of the British in the East exploring that the encounter with the Burmese should not have took place.
George Orwell describes to us in “Shooting an elephant” the struggle that his character faces when to win the mobs approval and respect when he shoots down an innocent animal and sacrifices what he believes to be right. Orwell is a police officer in Moulmein, during the period of the British occupation of Burma. An escaped elephant gives him the opportunity to prove himself in front of his people and to be able to become a “somebody” on the social
“Shooting an Elephant” is an essay written by George Orwell, first published in the journal New Writing in 1936. In this essay, the author tells his own story about when he was working as a police officer for the Indian Imperial Police in Burma.
“Shooting an Elephant” is an essay written by George Orwell, who was an Assistant Superintendent in the British Indian Imperial Police in Burma from 1922 to 1927. The essay was published in 1936. Burma was occupied by the British over a period of 62 years (1823-1886) and it was directed as a province of India until it became a separate colony in 1937. In the essay, Orwell narrates the scene of the killing of an elephant in Burma and expresses the feelings that he goes through during the event. The writer’s theme is that imperialism is not an effective way of governing. It can be decoded through his
“Shooting an Elephant” is a short anecdote written by George Orwell. The story depicts a young man, Orwell, who has to decide whether to bend the rules for his superiors or to follow his own path. George Orwell works as the sub-divisional police officer of Moulmein, a town in the British colony of Burma. He, along with the rest of the English military are disrespected by the Burmese due to the English invading their territory and taking over. Over time, Orwell, the narrator, has already begun to question the presence of the British in the Far East. He states, theoretically and secretly, he was “all for the Burmese and all against their oppressors, the British.” Orwell describes himself as “young and ill-educated,” bitterly hating his job. Orwell uses powerful imagery and diction to convey a depressing and sadistic tone to the story. At the end of the story, he faces a dilemma: to kill the elephant or not.
The quest for power is one which has been etched into the minds of men throughout history. However, it can be said that true power is not a result of one’s actions but comes from the following one’s own beliefs without being influenced by others. This principle sets up the story for Shooting an Elephant by George Orwell. The protagonist, Orwell himself, is a sub divisional police officer in Burma, a British colony. Orwell must try to find and use his inner power when he is faced with the decision of whether or not to kill an elephant which has ravaged the Burman’s homes. The state of power established through the imperialistic backdrop show that Orwell, as a colonist, should be in control. As well, the perspective and ideas given by Orwell
George Orwell who wrote a narrative essay Shooting an Elephant” has a tense tone of literature towards his life. He is using a stressed tone due to peer pressure, and lack of confidence toward himself as he is an imperialist who came to protect uphold the laws. He's difficult attitude sets the scene for the story in his eyes. Throughout the story the concept of his decisions and action will be projected through the uses of diction; the write words to express his feelings.
The glorious days of the imperial giants have passed, marking the death of the infamous and grandiose era of imperialism. George Orwell's essay, Shooting an Elephant, deals with the evils of imperialism. The unjust shooting of an elephant in Orwell's story is the central focus from which Orwell builds his argument through the two dominant characters, the elephant and its executioner. The British officer, the executioner, acts as a symbol of the imperial country, while the elephant symbolizes the victim of imperialism. Together, the solider and the elephant turns this tragic anecdote into an attack on the institution of imperialism.
George Orwell, author of, "Shooting an Elephant" gives detailed scenarios to help the audience discover different interpretations of his inner conflicts. He then connects his piece to historical events in India that involved the British empire, he does so by using symbolism in place of description in his story. Narration is used to aid in interpreting Orwell's inner conflicts throughout the story such as killing the elephant, his conflict with the Burmese people, and finally the imperialism Britain had over
In “Shooting an Elephant,” George Orwell achieves two achievements : he shows us his personal experience and his expression while he was in Burma; he use the metaphor of the elephant to explain to describe what Burma looked like when it was under the British Imperialism. The special about this essay is that Orwell tells us a story not only to see the experience that he had in Burma; he also perfectly uses the metaphor of the elephant to give us deep information about the Imperialism. By going through this essay, we can deeply understand what he thinks in his head. He successfully uses the word choices and the sentences to express his feeling. By reading this essay, Orwell succeeds us with his mesmerizing sentences and shows us the
Throughout "Shooting an Elephant" by George Orwell, he addresses his internal battle with the issues of morality and immorality. He writes of several situations that show his immoral doings. When George Orwell signed up for a five-year position as a British officer in Burma he was unaware of the moral struggle that he was going to face. Likewise, he has an internal clash between his moral conscious and his immoral actions. Therefore, Orwell becomes a puppet to the will of the Burmese by abandoning his thoughts of moral righteousness. This conflicts with the moral issue of relying upon other's morals, rather than one's own conscience.
In conclusion George Orwell essay “ Shooting An Elephant” expresses through his language that pride was something that pushed him to pull the trigger even though if it had been him alone he would have never pulled it. He also showed through his use of colour language and imagery the regret he feels for shooting the
. By the type of language and the choice of words that the author used to write his essay, it is very likely that it was written for the British people, to make them aware of the injustice and cruelty of Imperialism in the colonies. The author’s aim is to make the reader feel disturbed and uneasy by describing in detail his negative experiences in India. This rhetorical analysis explores the success of the author in portraying the negative impact that Imperialism had on those being governed under it, but also on the impact on those in power. The way Orwell used the words for describing the scene of shooting the elephant, his aim was to get the reader’s mind to understand the injustice of Britain’s rule over the natives. While Shooting an
Orwell employs symbolism as a major literary technique, aiding our understanding of his stance against colonialism and our understanding of the setting. From the start, it is clear that he represents the modern, the western industrial English, at complete odds with the rural and primitive Burmese. It is believed that the focal symbolic point would be the narrators stand against the elephant. In the paragraph in which the narrator fires at the elephant, it is seen as docile, not bothering anyone anymore and having only made a sporadic wrong. The narrator then fires at the quite calm elephant once, but it does not fall and so, while it is still weak, he fires two more shots, bringing the magnificent creature down. Burma (The country in which the story is situated) has a long history of wars with the British Empire before finally giving in to Colonialism; three wars to be exact. It can be seen in the history books that Burma only wronged the British in a minor way and in fact was not directly bothering the British Raj and much like the narrator, it