Literary Devices
AP Style Questions
Rhetorical Situation

The central tone of "Shooting an Elephant"

What is cynical?


"The thick blood welled out like red velvet, but still he did not die" (para. ).

What is simile?


“The tortured gasps continued” and “long rattling gasps, his great mound of a side painfully rising and falling,” (para 12).

What is pathos


In context, the tone of “Besides, legally I had done the right thing, for a mad elephant has to be killed, like a mad dog, if its owner fails to control it” can best be described as ....

a. desperate

b. defensive

c. solemn

d. gloomy

e. bitter

What is a. defensive?


The author of "Shooting an Elephant"

Who is George Orwell or Eric Blair?


Tone of "As for the job I was doing, I hated it more bitterly than I can perhaps make clear"

What is Angry, Caustic, Bitter?


“In reality, I was only an absurd puppet pushed to and fro by the will of those yellow faces behind” (para 7). 

What is metaphor?


“feelings like these are the normal by-products of imperialism; ask any Anglo-Indian official” (para 2).

What is ethos?


Orwell's internal conflict in "Shooting an Elephant" is best compromised of which two factors?

a. Stubborness vs. Kindness

b. Morality vs. Strength

c. Hatred vs. Obedience

d. Pride vs. Conscience

e. Safety vs. Compliance

What is d. Pride vs. Conscience?


The audience of "Shooting an Elephant"

Who are the people in power in the British Empire?


Tone of "When a nimble Burman tripped me up on the football field and the referee (another Burman) looked the other way, the crowd yelled with hideous laughter...the sneering yellow faces of young men that met me everywhere, the insults hooted after me when I was at a safe distance, got badly on my nerves."

What is contemptuous, condescending, disdainful?

"He looked suddenly stricken, shrunken, immensely old, as though the frightful impact of the bullet had paralysed him without knocking him down"

What is alliteration?


"I was sub-divisional police officer of the town, and in an aimless, petty kind of way anti-European feeling was very bitter."

What is ethos?


Which of the following choices best describes what the slow death of the elephant symbolizes?

a. Orwell's distrust in humanity

b. The moral decay and brutality of imperialism

c. The lack of compassion in all humanity

d. The Burmese's inability to fight for themselves

e. The other people dying because of the British

What is b. The moral decay and brutality of imperialism?


1963 is when "Shooting an Elephant" was written

What is context?


Tone of "with another part I thought that the greatest joy in the world would be to drive a bayonet into a Buddhist priest's guts."

What is caustic, contempt, irreverent, irritated, malicious?


"His mouth was wide open – I could see far down into caverns of pale pink throat."

What is metaphor?


"I took my rifle, an old 44 Winchester and much too small to kill an elephant, but I thought the noise might be useful in terrorem."

What is logos.


George Orwell’s phrase “Somehow it always seems worse to kill a large animal” has the effect of…

a. Highlighting Orwell’s prejudice against smaller, inferior creatures

b. Making the readers feel more sympathetic towards Orwell and his duties as an Anglo-Indian Official

c. Creating more tension between Orwell and the elephant’s connection later in the passage

d. Emphasizing Orwell’s natural sense of bias towards larger animals

e. Demonstrating the corrupt beliefs and attitudes of Anglo-indian Officials during the British Empire

What is c. Creating more tension between Orwell and the elephant's connection later in the passage?


To reflect over the injustices in imperialist systems.

What is the purpose?


Tone of "I watched him beating his bunch of grass against his knees, with that preoccupied grandmotherly air that elephants have. It seemed to me that it would be murder to shoot him."

What is sympathetic, sincere, passionate, earnest/admiring?


"I heard a devilish roar of glee that went up from the crowd” (para 11). 

What is oxymoron?


People in power are willing to compromise their morals to please people

What is the message?

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