An Analysis of Orwell”s “Shooting an Elephant”

In “Shooting an Elephant,” George Orwell finds himself in a tough situation involving an elephant. The destiny of the elephant lies in his palms. Only he can make the ultimate decision. In the top, as a outcome of Orwell’s determination, the elephant lay dying in a pool of blood. Orwell wins the sympathy of readers by expressing the stress he feels as an Anglo-Indian in Burma, struggling with his morals, and showing a way of compassion for the dying animal.

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Readers sympathize with Orwell as a end result of they will relate to his emotions within the moments before the taking pictures.

Being the white “leader,” he ought to have been capable of make an impartial decision, but was influenced by the “natives” (Orwell 101). Orwell describes his feelings about being pressured to shoot the elephant: “Here I was the white man together with his gun, standing in front of the unarmed crowd – seemingly the main actor of the piece; but in actuality I was solely an absurd puppet pushed back and forth by the need of these yellow faces behind (101).

Everyone has been in a situation by which he or she has been expected to be a leader. For different causes individuals are appeared to as leaders, generally because of their race, ethnicity, or heritage.

In this case, Orwell was pictured as a leader as a outcome of he was British and he worked for the British Empire. Readers are in a position to relate to the truth that he doesn’t need to be humiliated in entrance of the Burmese. He declares, “Every white man’s life within the East, was one long struggle not to be laughed at” (101).

Orwell compares the elephant to the massive British Empire, and just because the elephant has lost control, he feels that when the white man turns tyrant it’s his personal freedom that he destroys (100). Secretly he hates the British Empire and is on the side of the Burmese (97). The elephant is equal to the British Empire ravaging via Burma and disrupting the little bit of peace that they have. So in that instant he felt that he had to kill the elephant.

Another facet that wins reader’s sympathy is Orwell’s struggle with what he thought was right and what the Burmese wished him to do. The readers have a sense that he didn’t have ill-intent to kill the elephant. When Orwell says, ” As soon as I saw the Elephant I knew with certainty that I ought not shoot him” (99). The readers know that cruelty or hatred for the beast was not his motive. Orwell repeats the he doesn’t need to kill it and the readers sympathize with him. Almost everyone has been in a scenario had been he or she could not base a decision on personal beliefs and knows that going against those beliefs may be very troublesome. Orwell explains, “For it is the situation of his rule that he shall spend hid life in trying to impress the ‘natives’ and so in each crisis he has obtained to do what the ‘natives’ count on of him” (100). Readers respect Orwell for his sense of duty. He realizes the his determination have to be based on the best curiosity of the Burmese.

Also, Orwell showed nice feelings of compassion for the dying animal. He was killing the animal as a end result of he had to. He did not feel strong and highly effective, as a hunter would; he felt weak and helpless. Orwell so vividly describes the elephant’s death, nearly as it were giving him ache to look at. The elephant lay, “dying, very slowly and in nice agony. . .” (Orwell 102). While the elephant lay dying Orwell can really feel nothing however helplessness. He describes the experience as “dreadful to see the great beast lying there, powerless to maneuver and yet powerless to die, and never even to bee able to end him” (102).

He felt helpless, with no bullets left in his gun; he was unable to place the elephant out of his distress. The compassion that he felt was apparent, he waited so long for the animal to die however, “could not stand it anymore and went away” (Orwell 102). The detailed description that Orwell provides of the demise leaves the impression that he really had emotions for the animal. If it have been a routine killing he would haven’t even thought-about how the elephant felt.

Orwell was very detailed about his emotions about the killing by way of out the essay. Most readers have respect and sympathy for him due to his emotional turmoil before the capturing, his battle along with his own feelings about killing, and his emotions of disappointment for the elephant.

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