What Is The Purpose Of Imperialism In Shooting An Elephant

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A significant detail in “Shooting an Elephant” is the last sentence, “I often wondered whether any of the others grasped that I had done it solely to avoid looking a fool.” Orwell places this sentence in the essay because it directly supports his purpose of expressing the negative impact on imperialism. Imperialism causes Orwell to fall subject to the pressure of being more powerful than the native people. His motive behind killing the elephant is to “impress the natives”. A level of power is expected from the imperialist officers; if they do not live up to these expectations they are ridiculed by both the oppressors and the natives. By shooting the elephant Orwell experiences an epiphany that his motive of saving face fuels oppression further

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