Shooting An Elephant Conflict Essay

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In Orwell's "Shooting an Elephant," he goes through several inner conflicts while stationed in Moulmein, Burma. One of these conflicts is that he longs for acceptance from the Burmese. Orwell states "As a police officer I was an obvious target and was baited whenever it seemed safe to do so" (lines 5-6) which is an example which shows he is not respected as he wishes to be. Orwell also struggles with being antagonized by the people of Moulmein. He says "in an aimless, petty kind of way anti-European feeling was very bitter" (line 3). And this shows that the Burmese are very likely to dislike him and make his time in Moulmein as stressful as possible. Lastly, Orwell's hatred for his job makes him conflict within himself. Orwell expresses "As for the job I was doing, I hated it more bitterly than I can perhaps make clear. In a job like that you see the dirty work of Empire at close quarters" (lines 16-17) which clearly shows that that he hates that he has to do the dirty work for the British Empire of keeping the people whom have done nothing wrong under control of the Empire.…show more content…
As previously stated, he is a very obvious target for hazing and rudeness. Consequently, he is bullied and picked on throughout the entire essay. Also, the fact that he wants to be accepted by the people of Burma eventually drives him to shooting the elephant. He exclaims " they did not like me, but with the magical rifle in my hands I was momentarily worth watching" (lines 101-102) which implies that now that he has the rifle in his hands to shoot the elephant, people suddenly want to pay attention to him like he is a hero of some sort. Therefore, he has an argument within himself as to whether he will shoot the elephant in order to gain respect, or whether he will not shoot the elephant in sake of the innocence of the creature thus making him look cowardly and

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