Rhetorical Analysis Of George Orwell 's ' Shooting An Elephant '

832 Words Aug 24th, 2015 4 Pages
George Orwell, an ardent opponent of endemic social inequality, records in his persuasive essay Shooting an Elephant a life changing moment that discloses far more than just shooting an elephant. In his essay, Orwell eloquently describes the scene of killing an elephant and articulates the sensations he feels during the brief yet emotional event. Orwell utilizes a myriad of literary techniques to convey the situational ironical presentation of imperialism. Orwell objective is to convince his audience, the working class of Britain, that imperialism has both a negative impact on those governed and degrades those exercising their power. First and foremost Orwell builds the tension and sets the stage for the elephant’s reveal. At this point the only way one would know about the elephant, is through the destruction left in its wake, such as how the elephant “destroyed someone’s bamboo hut,” how it overturned a “municipal rubbish van,” and a “Dravidian coolie” that could “not have been dead many minutes.”(Orwell). Henceforth the ambiguity grants the readers to paint a picture of the elephant until its unveiling. From Orwell’s description of elephant, the reader can only surmise that the elephant is terrifying rampaging beast that needs to be put down coinciding with the “two thousand wills”(Orwell) forcing Orwell forward to kill the elephant. Unbeknownst to younger Orwell(but not older Orwell) at the time, the elephant was merely going through must, a seasonal frenzied state…

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