Shooting an Elephant Essay

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In his essay, Shooting an Elephant, George Orwell illustrates his experiences as a British police officer, and reflects it to the nature of imperialism. He hates his job as a police officer in Moulmein because an “anti-European feeling was very bitter” due to British Empire’s dictatorship in Burma. Therefore, Orwell, a white man is being treated disrespectfully by the Burmese which allows him to hate his job and British Empire, the root of everything. However, the incident of shooting of an elephant gives him a “better glimpse … of the real nature of imperialism – the real motives for which despotic government act” (13). In order to express the effects of imperialism, Orwell illustrates this “enlightening” incidence by using various dictions, rhetorical devices, sentence structures, and generating appropriate tone and mood (13). From his experiences and feelings of living under imperialism, Orwell efficiently shows the terrible effects of imperialism.
With the usage of suitable dictions in his essay, Orwell excellently conveys the message and feelings that he is trying to get across. He often uses the word “natives” for the Burmese: “Here was I, the white man with his gun, standing in front of the unarmed native crowd” (15). By doing so, he shows his emotions and respect to the Burmese because by calling them “natives” signifies that they are the true owner of Burma and not the British Empire. Also, by using this diction frequently in the essay, Orwell reminds his readers the existence of imperialism in Burma so that the readers do not just hang on to the elephant but also get the message incorporated in the essay. The body of an elephant is compared with the machine as Orwell thinks, “it is comparable to destroying a huge and ...

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...evastation in society.
Thus, George Orwell successfully sends the message of imperialism to his audience by using various styles in his essay, Shooting an Elephant. According to the topic of his essay, his main audiences are the youth, adults, and politicians as imperialism is more concern with them. According to his as a police officer, he teaches his reader that imperialism is the worst way to govern a country as it is harmful to individual’s way of thinking and value of morality in society. Orwell achieves this outstandingly by working out with rhetorical devices, dictions, and sentence structure to generate the feeling in the audience the way he wishes to be. Also, to hold and his readers through his essay, he bring up appropriate tone and mood. In result, Orwell excellently uses the incident of killing an elephant to describe the effects of imperialism.

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