George Orwell's Shooting an Elephant

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George Orwell's "Shooting an Elephant" In 'Shooting an Elephant,' George Orwell finds himself in a difficult situation involving an elephant. The fate of the elephant lies in his hands. Only he can make the final decision. In the end, due to Orwell's decision, the elephant lay dying in a pool of blood. Orwell wins the sympathy of readers by expressing the pressure he feels as an Anglo-Indian in Burma, struggling with his morals, and showing a sense of compassion for the dying animal. Readers sympathize with Orwell because they can relate to his emotions in the moments before the shooting. Being the white ?leader,? he should have been able to make an independent 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 with his gun, standing in front of the unarmed crowd - seemingly the leading actor of the piece; but in reality I was only an absurd puppet pushed to and fro by the will of those yellow faces behind (101). Everyone has been in a situation in which he or she has been expected to be a leader. For different reasons people are looked to as leaders, sometimes because of their race, ethnicity, or heritage. In this case, Orwell was pictured as a leader because he was British and he worked for the British Empire. Readers are able to relate to the fact that he does not want to be humiliated in front of the Burmese. He declares, ?Every white man'...
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