What topics can be developed in the essay "Shooting an Elephant"?

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"Shooting an Elephant" is a thought-provoking essay which has a number of interesting topics that can be further developed.

One idea is to look at the nature and function of British imperialism. Consider, for example, how Britain came to build its empire and how it took control of...

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"Shooting an Elephant" is a thought-provoking essay which has a number of interesting topics that can be further developed.

One idea is to look at the nature and function of British imperialism. Consider, for example, how Britain came to build its empire and how it took control of Burma, specifically. As Orwell's essay argues, the British often mistreated the Burmese, as we learn in the second paragraph, when he describes the "wretched prisoners" who have been "Bogged with bamboo." Using this as a starting point, research this darker side of imperialism and find out how the British used violence to subjugate and control the native population.

Another topic idea is to focus on Orwell himself. As we learn in the text, Orwell very much hated his job. He had already decided, for instance, that "imperialism was an evil thing," but believing himself to be "young and ill-educated," he stayed in Burma for five years (from 1922-1927). Write a biographical essay in which you find out what prompted Orwell to finally give up his job and what he did next. Did his experience in Burma surface in any of his later writings?

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