Secondly, I say then the conqueror gets no power but only over those who have actually assisted, concurred, or consented to that unjust force that is used against him: for the people having given to their governors no power to do an unjust thing, such as is to make an unjust war, (for they never had such a power in themselves) they ought not to be charged as guilty of the violence and injustice that is committed in an unjust war, any farther than they actually abet it; no more than they are to be thought guilty of any violence or oppression their governors should use upon the people themselves, or any part of their fellow-subjects, they having impowered them no more to the one than to the other. Conquerors, it is true, seldom trouble themselves to make the distinction, but they willingly permit the confusion of war to sweep all together: but yet this alters not the right; for the conqueror’s power over the lives of the conquered being only because they have used force to do, or maintain an injustice, he can have that power only over those who have concurred in that force; all the rest are innocent; and he has no more title over the people of that country, who have done him no injury, and so have made no forfeiture of their lives, than he has over any other, who without any injuries or provocations, have lived upon fair terms with him.
But though the golden age (before vain ambition, and “amor sceleratus habendi,” evil concupiscence, had corrupted men’s minds into a mistake of true power and honour) had more virtue, and consequently better governors, as well as less vicious subjects; and there was then no stretching prerogative on the one side, to oppress the people; nor consequently on the other, any dispute about privilege, to lessen or restrain the power of the magistrate; and so no contest betwixt rulers and people about governors or government: yet when ambition and luxury in future ages would retain and increase the power, without doing the business for which it was given; and, aided by flattery, taught princes to have distinct and separate interests from their people; men found it necessary to examine more carefully the original and rights of government, and to find out ways to restrain the exorbitancies, and prevent the abuses of that power, which they having entrusted in another’s hands only for their own good, they found was made use of to hurt them.
But if they, who say, “it lays a foundation for rebellion,” mean that it may occasion civil wars, or intestine broils, to tell the people they are absolved from obedience when illegal attempts are made upon their liberties or properties, and may oppose the unlawful violence of those who were their magistrates, when they invade their properties contrary to the trust put in them; and that therefore this doctrine is not to be allowed, being so destructive to the peace of the world: they may as well say, upon the same ground, that honest men may not oppose robbers or pirates, because this may occasion disorder or bloodshed. If any mischief come in such cases, it is not to be charged upon him who defends his own right, but on him that invades his neighbour’s. If the innocent honest man must quietly quit all he has, for peace sake, to him who will lay violent hands upon it, I desire it may be considered, what a kind of peace there will be in the world, which consists only in violence and rapine; and which is to be maintained only for the benefit of robbers and oppressors. Who would not think it an admirable peace betwixt the mighty and the mean, when the lamb, without resistance, yielded his throat to be torn by the imperious wolf? Polyphemus’s den gives us a perfect pattern of such a peace, and such a government, wherein Ulysses and his companions had nothing to do, but quietly to suffer themselves to be devoured. And no doubt Ulysses, who was a prudent man, preached up passive obedience, and exhorted them to a quiet submission, by representing to them of what concernment peace was to mankind; and by showing the inconveniencies might happen, if they should offer to resist Polyphemus, who had now the power over them.
In these and the like cases, when the government is dissolved, the people are at liberty to provide for themselves, by erecting a new legislative, differing from the other, by the change of persons, or form, or both, as they shall find it most for their safety and good: for the society can never, by the fault of another, lose the native and original right it has to preserve itself; which can only be done by a settled legislative, and a fair and impartial execution of the laws made by it. But the state of mankind is not so miserable that they are not capable of using this remedy, till it be too late to look for any. To tell people they may provide for themselves, by erecting a new legislative, when by oppression, artifice, or being delivered over to a foreign power, their old one is gone, is only to tell them, they may expect relief when it is too late, and the evil is past cure. This is in effect no more than to bid them first be slaves, and then to take care of their liberty; and when their chains are on, tell them, they may act like freemen. This, if barely so, is rather mockery than relief; and men can never be secure from tyranny, if there be no means to escape it till they are perfectly under it: and therefore it is, that they have not only a right to get out of it, but to prevent it.
Nor let any one say, that mischief can arise from hence, as often as it shall please a busy head, or turbulent spirit, to desire the alteration of the government. It is true, such men may stir, whenever they please; but it will be only to their own just ruin and perdition: for till the mischief be grown general, and the ill designs of the rulers become visible, or their attempts sensible to the greater part, the people, who are more disposed to suffer than right themselves by resistance, are not apt to stir. The examples of particular injustice or oppression, of here and there an unfortunate man, moves them not. But if they universally have a persuasion, grounded upon manifest evidence, that designs are carrying on against their liberties, and the general course and tendency of things cannot but give them strong suspicions of the evil intention of their governors, who is to be blamed for it? Who can help it, if they, who might avoid it, bring themselves into this suspicion? Are the people to be blamed, if they have the sense of rational creatures, and can think of things no otherwise than as they find and feel them? And is it not rather their fault, who put things into such a posture, that they would not have them thought to be as they are? I grant, that the pride, ambition, and turbulency of private men, have sometimes caused great disorders in commonwealths, and factions have been fatal to states and kingdoms. But whether the mischief hath oftener begun in the people’s wantonness, and a desire to cast off the lawful authority of their rulers, or in the rulers insolence, and endeavours to get and exercise an arbitrary power over their people; whether oppression, or disobedience, gave the first rise to the disorder; I leave it to impartial history to determine. This I am sure, whoever, either ruler or subject, by force goes about to invade the rights of either prince or people, and lays the foundation for overturning the constitution and frame of any just government; is highly guilty of the greatest crime, I think, a man is capable of; being to answer for all those mischiefs of blood, rapine, and desolation, which the breaking to pieces of governments bring on a country. And he who does it, is justly to be esteemed the common enemy and pest of mankind, and is to be treated accordingly.
In this way the elephant is a symbol of oppression because the elephant is forcing the narrator to make a decision about where he has to stand on the issue of shooting in order to maintain a specific outward appearance.
In this perspective, the narrator completely overlooks the idea that it was the elephant itself that was causing the oppression, rather it was completely his anxiety that he may appear in a foolish way to the people that is causing all of the oppressive feelings.
With these perspectives taken into account, the elephant is the cause of oppression from the Burmese people and the narrator himself.
In “Shooting an Elephant” by George Orwell, there is a common theme throughout the essay of the rejecting of British imperialism.
ap literature essay conclusion Our other guarantees include confidentiality, full-time support and timely deliveryWhen you are writing a for an AP English Language or AP English Literature prompt you need to make sure Sample Classification Essay AP English Sample EssaysAPâs high school English Literature and Composition course is a rigorous, college-level class that provides an opportunity to gain skills colleges recognize
Rejection dominates the opinions of the narrator as he believes strongly enough so that he confesses “secretly, of course – [he] was all for the Burmese and all against their oppressors, the British” (19).
You speak of our activity in Birmingham as extreme. At first I was rather disappointedthatfellow clergymen would see my nonviolent efforts as those of an extremist. I beganthinking about thefact that I stand in the middle of two opposing forces in the Negro community. One is aforce ofcomplacency, made up in part of Negroes who, as a result of long years of oppression, areso drainedof self respect and a sense of "somebodiness" that they have adjusted to segregation; andin part of afew middle-class Negroes who, because of a degree of academic and economic security andbecausein some ways they profit by segregation, have become insensitive to the problems of themasses. Theother force is one of bitterness and hatred, and it comes perilously close to advocating violence. It isexpressed in the various black nationalist groups that are springing up across the nation,the largestand best known being Elijah Muhammad's Muslim movement. Nourished by the Negro'sfrustrationover the continued existence of racial discrimination, this movement is made up of peoplewho havelost faith in America, who have absolutely repudiated Christianity, and who have concludedthat thewhite man is an incorrigible "devil."
I wish you had commended the Negro sit inners and demonstrators of Birmingham for theirsublime courage, their willingness to suffer and their amazing discipline in the midst ofgreatprovocation. One day the South will recognize its real heroes. They will be the JamesMerediths, withthe noble sense of purpose that enables them to face jeering and hostile mobs, and withtheagonizing loneliness that characterizes the life of the pioneer. They will be old,oppressed, batteredNegro women, symbolized in a seventy two year old woman in Montgomery, Alabama, who roseupwith a sense of dignity and with her people decided not to ride segregated buses, and whorespondedwith ungrammatical profundity to one who inquired about her weariness: "My feets is tired,but mysoul is at rest." They will be the young high school and college students, the youngministers of thegospel and a host of their elders, courageously and nonviolently sitting in at lunchcounters andwillingly going to jail for conscience' sake. One day the South will know that when thesedisinheritedchildren of God sat down at lunch counters, they were in reality standing up for what isbest in theAmerican dream and for the most sacred values in our Judaeo Christian heritage, therebybringing ournation back to those great wells of democracy which were dug deep by the founding fathersin theirformulation of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence.