A Hanging The Short Story, “A Hanging” By George Orwell,

1015 words - 4 pages

A Hanging The short story, ?A Hanging? by George Orwell, poses many problematic and significant questions. Of these questions the one that intrigued me the most was, how does the narrator?s emotions and feelings change throughout the story, and how does this change affect the theme of the story? These questions are significant in general because they are very important to the theme and major conflict of the story. These questions are also important to the story specifically, because it shows how the narrator develops as a character and how this change also affects the theme of the story.I feel that the narrator?s emotions change from the beginning of the story to the end in many aspects. In the beginning of the story the narrator is very professional and wants to perform his job to the best of his abilities. Evidence of this is found in the story, where he talks about how he and the other magistrates followed behind the prisoner and descries it as a procession (pg 439). This gives it a very professional tone. Also, when the narrator discusses the dog coming out of nowhere and ran around them, he says ?a dreadful thing happened? (pg 439). He says this as if the dog is a problem because it distracts the guards from being able to do their job. Furthermore, in the beginning the narrator describes the prisoner in a very methodical manner, just describing him factually showing no feeling whatsoever towards the prisoner this adds to the narrator being portrayed as professional.The narrator changes throughout the story immensely, he becomes more and more guilty and compassionate towards the prisoner as the story goes on. He begins to change as soon as the prisoner stepped carefully around the puddle on the ground (pg 440). Once this occurs, the narrator begins to include some of his feelings and thoughts, which he previously didn?t include because he was very professional and didn?t include his emotions and feelings. After, the prisoner steps carefully around the puddle the narrator says, ?I saw the mystery, the unspeakable wrongness, of cutting life short when it is in full tide? (pg 440). This is the first hint of the narrator showing that he is compassionate to the prisoner and demonstrates how the narrator doesn?t agree with the job he has to do. This also marks the first time in the story that the language changes when the narrator says that it is wrong, it is the first moral question and language that arises in the story. The narrator goes on to say that ?with a sudden snap, one of us would be gone-one mind less, one world less? (pg 440) this implies that he is empathetic towards the prisoner and that he is torn emotionally between the job he has to do and how he feels about it. This is a dramatic change from the narrator?s previous feelings or lack there of towards the prisoner because he now shows that he has a heart and became compassionate towards the...

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