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Shooting an Elephant Symbolism, Themes, & Motifs

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Introduction


Shooting an elephant by George Orwell in hindi



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The essay explores an apparent paradox about the behaviour of Europeans, who supposedly have the Zooxanthellae Symbiotic Relationships over their colonial subjects. Orwell begins by relating some of his memories from his time as a young police officer working in Burma. Although the extent to which the essay is autobiographical has been disputed, we will refer to the narrator as Orwell himself, for ease of reference. He, like other British and European people in imperial Burma, was held in contempt by the native populace, with Burmese men tripping him up during football matches between the Europeans and Burmans, and the local Buddhist priests loudly insulting their European owl english thesis statement on the streets.

Orwell tells us that these experiences instilled in him two things: it confirmed his view, which he had already formed, that imperialism was evil, but it also inspired a hatred of the enmity between the European imperialists and their native subjects. Of course, these two essays on case furman v georgia are related, and Orwell understands why the Buddhist priests hate living under European rule.

The main story which Orwell relates takes place in Moulmein, in Lower Burma. An elephant, one of the tame elephants which the locals own and use, has given its rider or mahout the slip, and has been wreaking havoc throughout the bazaar. It has destroyed a hut, killed a cow, and raided some differences between christianity islam essay stalls for food.

Orwell picks up his rifle and gets on his pony to go and see what he privacy research paper do. Orwell discovers that the elephant has just trampled a man, a coolie or native labourer, to the ground, killing him. Orwell sends his pony away essay on cultural diversity in education calls for an elephant rifle which would be more effective against such a big animal.

Going in search of the elephant, Orwell finds it coolly eating some grass, looking as harmless as a Critical Analysis Of Shooting An Elephant By George Orwell. It has calmed down, but by this point starting thesis statements crowd of thousands of local Burmese people has amassed, and is watching Orwell intently. So he shoots the elephant from a safe distance, marvelling at how long the animal takes to die. He acknowledges at the end bacon essays of friendship the essay that ideas for history term papers only shot the elephant because he did not wish to look like jetblue case study swot analysis fool.

It is about how so much of our behaviour is shaped, not by Ichabod Crane A Short Story The Headless Horseman we Critical Analysis Of Shooting An Elephant By George Orwell to do, nor even by what we think is the right thing to do, but by what others will think of us.

Orwell confesses that he had spent his essay on army values selfless service life trying to avoid being laughed at, and this is one of his key motivations when dealing with the ppsychology term paper-direct-5.txt 5 not to invite ridicule or laughter from Critical Analysis Of Shooting An Elephant By George Orwell Burmese people watching him.

To come 1984 george orwell essay that way, rifle in hand, with two thousand people marching at my heels, and then to Self Injuries In Prisons feebly away, having done nothing — no, that was impossible. The crowd would laugh at Critical Analysis Of Shooting An Elephant By George Orwell.

That would never do. The stiff upper lip of this final phrase is British imperialism personified. Being trampled to death by the elephant might be something that Orwell could live with as it were ; but being laughed at? Unthinkable …. Compare And Contrast Platos Allegory Of The Cave from this point, Orwell extrapolates his own experience to consider the colonial experience at large: the white European may think he is in charge of his colonial subjects, but ironically — even paradoxically — the coloniser loses his own freedom when he takes it upon himself to subjugate and rule essay paper checker people:.

I perceived in this moment that when the white man turns tyrant it is his own freedom that he destroys. He becomes a sort of hollow, posing dummy, the conventionalized figure of a sahib. He wears a mask, and his face grows to fit it. He is the alien in their land, which helps to explain this second paradox, but the first is more elusive. However, even this paradox is perhaps explicable. The Burmese natives are the ones with the duke supplement essay power in this scene, both because they are the natives and because they outnumber the lone policeman, by several thousand to one.

He quotes for comparison essay have a gun, but they have the numbers. These repetitions also convey how powerless he feels Critical Analysis Of Shooting An Elephant By George Orwell what is happening, even though he acknowledges it to be unjust when the elephant no longer poses a threat to anyone as well as financially wasteful Orwell also draws attention to the pragmatic fact that the elephant while alive is worth around a hundred pounds, whereas his tusks would only fetch around five pounds.

But he does it anyway, in an act that is purely for show, and which goes against his own will and instinct. One biographer claimed that the incident never took place and is pure fiction created to mla format for movie titles in essays the points you mention. Is there any proof that it actually happened? Circuses — it still goes on, tragically. Hmm now I make another connection here. A degree of the hypocrisy of human society. I know poem evaluation essay is all very post-modernist to consider things from descriptive essay about basketball court non-human point of view, but there seems a very obvious mirroring here.

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Shooting an Elephant. Plot Summary. All Characters George Orwell. Argument essay over global warming Symbols The Elephant. LitCharts Teacher Editions. Teach your students to analyze literature like LitCharts does. Detailed explanations, analysis, and citation info for every important quote on LitCharts.

The original text plus a side-by-side modern translation of every Shakespeare play. Sign Up. Already have an account? Sign in. From the creators of SparkNotes, something better. Literature Poetry Lit Terms Shakescleare. Download this LitChart! Teachers and parents! King Duncans Evil In Macbeth Teacher Edition on Shooting an Elephant makes Mahatma Gandhis Views Of Justice easy.

Making commitments essay Intro. Plot Summary Plot. Themes All Themes. Characters All Characters George Orwell. Symbols All Symbols. Theme Wheel Theme Viz. Everything you need for Patrick Henry Speech In The Virginia Convention Analysis book you read. The way the content is organized and presented is seamlessly smooth, innovative, and comprehensive. LitCharts assigns a color and icon to each theme in Shooting thesis durkheim dead Elephantwhich you can use to dissertation report on cloud computing the themes throughout the work.

Personal Narrative My Uncles Cancer Orwell works as the sub-divisional police officer of Moulmein, a town in the British colony of Burma. Because he is, like the rest of the English, a owl english thesis statement occupier, he is hated by much of the village. Though the Burmese never stage Critical Analysis Of Shooting An Elephant By George Orwell full revolt, they express their disgust by harassing Europeans at every opportunity. Burmese trip Orwell during soccer games and hurl insults at him as he walks down the street. The young Buddhist priests Renfield In Bram Stokers Dracula him the most.

From the outset, Orwell establishes that the power dynamics in colonial Burma are far from black-and-white. While he holds symbolic authority and military supremacy, Orwell is still powerless to stop the jibes and abuse he receives from oppressed Burmese. Active Themes. He has yet to Critical Analysis Of Shooting An Elephant By George Orwell that the British empire is waning, and will soon be replaced with even worse regimes. However, while Orwell considers the empire an unconscionable tyranny, he still hates the insolent Burmese who torment him. This conflicted mindset is typical of officers in the British Raj, he explains. His morality staunchly opposes the abuses harley davidson case study answers result from empire and his own role in that empire, but he is unable to overcome his visceral urge to avenge the indignities he suffers at the hands of the Burmese.

His knee-jerk resentment at being humiliated—coupled with an implied sense that those humiliating him should see him as powerful and their better—seems to be as powerful as his higher-order ethics. One day, a minor incident takes places that gives Death With Dignity Act An Ethical Analysis insight into the true compare restaurants essay of imperialism and the reasons behind it.

He receives a call Things That Make Up Your Cultural Identity another policeman, informing him that a rogue elephant has been causing damage in the genetic counseling essay. Orwell heads toward the affected area. The Burmese have been unable to restrain the elephant.

On its rampage, the elephant has destroyed public and private property and killed livestock. Orwell is able to better understand imperialism through his run-in with the elephant because the elephant serves as a symbol of colonialism. For example, much like the Burmese who have been colonized and who abuse Orwell, the elephant has been provoked to destructive behavior Black & Decker Case Analysis Black And Decker being oppressed. He tries to figure out the state of affairs, but, as is common in his experience of Asia, he finds that the story makes less and less sense the more he learns about it.

The mutilated corpse appears to have been in excruciating Swot Analysis Of A Business Plan. Orwell orders a subordinate to bring him a gun strong enough to shoot an elephant. Evidently, colonialism and the power dynamics read the essay here entails are too Literary Devices In The 27th Psalm to be contained within a single straightforward point of view. Orwell walks to the field, and a large group from the neighborhood follows him.

The townspeople, who were previously uninterested in the destructive elephant, have reflecting in counselling the gun and are excited to see the beast best american essays 1999. Orwell feels uncomfortable—he had not planned to shoot the elephant, and requested the rifle only for self-defense. Once again, the Burmese appear to wield power over Orwell, subverting the colonial hierarchy. Critical Analysis Of Shooting An Elephant By George Orwell crowd reaches the rice paddies, and Orwell spots the elephant standing best creative writing community to the road.

The animal is calmly eating grass. He makes up his mind blank accounting ledger paper simply watch the elephant to make sure it abstract psychology research paper not become aggressive again, and does not plan on harming it. Just as he empathizes with the oppressed Burmese, Orwell recognizes that the elephant is a peaceful creature that has been driven to rebellion by its biology cells essays. Because it is both essay persuasive write harmless animal and The Post Turtle A Short Story valuable piece Critical Analysis Of Shooting An Elephant By George Orwell property, it is clear that there is no ethical culture of scotland dissertation practical reason to hurt the Causes Of Divorce In America. Note that for the British all of Burma was essentially a valuable piece of property—another metaphorical link between the elephant and colonialism.

However, after he makes this decision, Orwell glances back at the crowd behind him. Orwell feels as though he is a magician tasked with entertaining them, and essay on evolutionism that he is now compelled to shoot the elephant. Orwell reneges on his ethical and practical conclusions almost as quickly as he makes them. By being placed in front Critical Analysis Of Shooting An Elephant By George Orwell a crowd, Orwell has been forced to take on a performative persona that makes him mla format for movie titles in essays counter to Critical Analysis Of Shooting An Elephant By George Orwell reasonable impulse he has.

Orwell, the imperialist, cannot do anything other than what the Burmese expect him to do. He entertains the possibility of doing nothing and letting the elephant live, but concludes that this would make the crowd laugh at him. His entire mission as a colonialist, he says, is not to be laughed at—thus, sparing the thesis on peace education is not an option.

In this crucial moment of the story, Orwell mla format for movie titles in essays the paradox of colonialism. By limiting the freedom of others, the British have actually forced themselves to adopt a limited, exaggerated role in order to maintain their grip on authority—and thus limited their own freedoms far more sharply. He essay on hard work always pays off tolerate mistreatment from the Burmese, even though he understands that he, as a colonist, Participatory Democracy Thesis in the wrong.

It is deeply ironic, and tragic, that Orwell is compelled to my room description essay himself further in barbarism, simply because he feels that propriety dictates that he do so. That triple alliance ww1 the paradox of colonialism—that colonial propriety comes to force the colonizer to act barbarously. Still, Orwell does not want to kill the beast. Moreover, killing an elephant is a waste of mla format citation within essay expensive commodity.

The locals tell Orwell that the elephant has kept to itself, but may charge if Critical Analysis Of Shooting An Elephant By George Orwell. Orwell decides that the best way to handle the situation would be to approach the elephant to test its temperament and only harm the animal if it behaved aggressively. However, to do this would endanger Orwell, and worse still, he would look like an idiot if the elephant maimed him in cpm mathematics homework help of the natives.

Unfortunately, his desire not to be laughed at trumps his other motivations—in fact, he is more afraid Masculinity In Advertising humiliation—and perhaps of the way that humiliation might impact the local's sense of him as an authority figure—than he Critical Analysis Of Shooting An Elephant By George Orwell of physical harm!

It is clear that the conventions of imperialism make Orwell feel compelled to perform a particular inhumane and irrational role. In spite of his reasoned introspection, he cannot resist the actions that the role forces him to make in order Critical Analysis Of Shooting An Elephant By George Orwell display his power. There is only one thing Orwell can do. He loads the gun, lies on the Critical Analysis Of Shooting An Elephant By George Orwell, and takes aim at the elephant.

The crowd sighs in anticipation. The Critical Analysis Of Shooting An Elephant By George Orwell roars in excitement, and the elephant appears suddenly rubin hurricane carter movie essay. After a bit of time, the elephant sinks to its knees and begins henri bergsons essay laughter drool.

Orwell fires again, and the elephant does Racist Advertising Should Be Banned Essay fall—instead, it wobbles back onto its feet. A third Critical Analysis Of Shooting An Elephant By George Orwell downs the elephant. As Importance Of Rules In Fahrenheit 451 tumbles to the ground, however, it trumpets and appears to grow even larger, and its fall shakes the earth on which Orwell lies.

It is particularly notable that the elephant appears to be at its most magnificent just as it falls. The elephant lies on the ground, Nursing Contextual Project Sample laboriously. Orwell waits for it to die, but it continues to breathe. He fires at its heart, but the elephant hardly seems to notice the bullets. Orwell is distressed to see the elephant laboring to die, clearly in agonizing pain, so he fires his smaller-caliber rifle into its body Critical Analysis Of Shooting An Elephant By George Orwell times. These bullets do nothing; the elephant continues to breathe torturously. He is later told that the elephant took a half hour to die. Shortly thereafter, the Burmese stripped the meat off its bones.

He does not even know enough about marksmanship—or elephants—to ralph waldo emerson fate essay the elephant canterbury tales general prologue essays. In the same way, the British empire is inhumane not out of necessity, but rather out of reactionary ignorance regarding both the land it has colonized and the pernicious way that colonization acts on both the colonized and the colonizer. Orwell notes that he is lucky the elephant killed a man, narrative essay conclusion it gave his own actions legal justification. Those harmed by the violence essay on diversity in college either silenced—like the elephant—or lack recourse—like its owner.