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The way we lie Essay

People tell lies everyday,whether it is a simple white lire or a more complex lie. In article “the way we lie” written by Stephanie Ericsson she explains the different forms of lying, and how life is harder when we don’t lie to authority figures, people we love.In the short story ” shooting an elephant” the narrator is guilty of lying to the Native people in the village he is in. The narrator puts up a facade that he is like any other white man and can kill anything. A facade is an illusion, we put on to portray what we think the world expects from us.

The narrator in ‘Shooting an Elephant” continuously lets us know that he does not want to kill the elephant but he feels that he must because thats what everyone is expecting from him”I had no intention of shooting the elephant- I had merely sent for the rifle to defend myself if necessary” He also goes on to say how he feels like a fool going down the hill to kill the elephant, he continuously lets us know that he isn’t what everyone thinks he is rather he is just as nervous as everyone else is.

At the beginning of the short story we are told that the narrator is an european police officer in the town of Moulmein. When a person wears a police uniform one assumes many things.The first being that that person can protect us from harm and defend those who are weak. The narrator tries to preserve all these stereotypes in the short story. A stereotype is used to categorize a specific groups of people,although the narrator knows that he isn’t a ruthless elephant killing machine he wants people to believe that they are safe around him. For them to think he’s a “good” police officer he must kill the elephant regardless of what his initial intent was. because of the crowd gathering around him he doesn’t want them to think that he’s like any other white police officer, so he kills the elephant knowing that he didn’t want to bring any harm to the elephant.

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