Figurative Language In The Hanging By George Orwell

666 Words3 Pages
Some animals are often abused, tortured, neglected, or uncared for, especially due to the negligence of the offender; unfortunately, these heartbreaking situations occur in a large part of human society as well. "The Hanging" uses an authentic situation, in Orwell's perspective during his time as an Imperialist Policeman, to grab the attention of people inside and outside the Burmese prison world from the 1930s to present time. Through Orwell's narrative essay, he tells the story of a Hindu prisoner being escorted to his death sentence by hanging. By utilizing the figurative language techniques of similes, imagery, parallelism and symbolism, Orwell argues that the Burmese prison system dehumanizes its prisoners. Through the use of similes…show more content…
As the Hindu man is closely approaching the gallows, a large dog appears out of nowhere, "wild with glee at finding so many humans...and then, before anyone could stop it, it had made a dash for the prisoner, and jumping up tried to lick his face" (24-26). Since the dog doesn't have the ability to understand the differences between the men, it views them all equally, as human beings. This is truly confirmed when he goes straight to the prisoner, who is viewed as untrustworthy by police, and shows him the most affection. The dog's action shines light on the fact that the guards believe they are superior to the prisoner, illustrated by their prejudice treatment. With quite a deal of effort, the police finally capture the dog and proceed escorting the criminal to the gallows. While doing so, Orwell realizes, "he [the Hindu man] was alive, just as we were alive. All the organs in his body were working...He and we were a party of men...understanding the same world" (48-55). After understanding that he was apart of "destroying a healthy, conscious man," (46) Orwell compares the humanity of the imperial police to the prisoner, and finds that they are similar in this particularly important aspect. The value of man's life is conveyed to Orwell and the reader through the symbolic meaning of the dog and the natural equality of human

    More about Figurative Language In The Hanging By George Orwell

      Open Document