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Literary Analysis of “Shooting an Elephant,” by George Orwell

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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…show more content…
Orwell uses this metaphor of an elephant’s rage and destruction of homes, theft of food shelves, and even killings as an example to the inner working of imperialism. Metaphorically, Orwell expands his argument about how imperialism is tyrannical towards to the Burmese people by comparing an elephant’s rage to the British Empire’s invasion of Burma and its destruction of the native life. Similarly, the elephant’s theft of food represents the oppressed of the British Empire’s imperialism has brought upon the Burmese people. They try to implement their aim of domination upon Burma without any care upon the Burmese way of life. This event not only makes the oppressed country become the victims of the imperialism, but it also is the foundation of Orwell’s dilemma regarding the killing of an elephant or the peer pressure he feels towards killing. In short, the use of metaphorical devices found throughout Orwell’s narrative help emphasizing the similarities of imperialism to that of an elephant ravaging through a town, illustrating the true effects it has upon the Burmese people.
Beyond the use of metaphorical techniques, Orwell also uses vivid imagery to the strongest extent, to further his stand against the imperial forces. Under the oppression of British imperialism, the Burmese people become “wretched prisoners huddling in the stinking cages of the lock-ups, the grey, cowed faces of the long-term convicts” (Orwell 285). Orwell applies
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