Comparing And Contrasting “A Hanging” And “A Chase” 

As Aldows Huxley once said, “the essay is a literary device for almost everything and almost anything” (goodreads. com, para 1). This quote gives us a better view on how necessary literary devices are in order to draw the reader’s attention into a narrative. Although both, Dillard and Orwell, use similar literary devices like foreshadowing in their title and imagery in their writing, there are some dissimilarities between them, like the use of hyperbole and metaphor.

Some of the similarities found on these two stories are the use of foreshadowing in their titles and imagery throughout the story. Both Orwell and Dillard use foreshadowing in their titles because they keep it simple, yet they give the main idea of the whole story. In addition, both of these authors are brilliant when it comes to imagery that any reader can clearly visualize what they are depicting. When Dillard says “He chased us silently, block after block.

Every time I glanced back, choking for breath, I expected he would have quit” she gives the reader enough information to show how hard they were really running and how scared they really were (P. 15). Likewise, Orwell uses this rhetorical device when he says “He was Hindu, a puny wisp of a man, with a shaven head and vague liquid eyes” to help the reader imagine exactly how the prisoner looked (P. 23). Just like there are some similarities between these two stories, there are also disparities when it comes to the use of hyperbole. Hyperbole is an exaggerated statement or claims not meant to be taken seriously, often used to demonstrate the seriousness of a situation and even add humor in other cases. Even though both of these stories use some type of humor, they are expressed in different rhetorical devices. In her narration, for example, Dillard said “He could have fried Mikey Fahey and me in boiling oil… He could only begin, ‘you stupid kids’” to demonstrate the irony of all the running her and her friend did (P. 17). They thought they were running for their lives, they expected this angry man to do so much worst to them and in reality, he just called them stupid kids. She uses hyperbole to add humor. In contrast, Orwell uses metaphor to give a little bit of light to his dark story. “A young Eurasian jailer picked up a handful of gravel and tried to stone the dog away, but it dodged the stones and came after us again” here the author, Orwell, besides using the dog to signify innocence, he uses it as a distraction from all the other darker things going on at the same time (P. 25).

In conclusion, even though both of these authors have a similar way of writing, they express their ideas using different rhetorical devices. The way Dillard and Orwell use rhetorical devices, show how well they understand their importance for their audience. Since Dillard’s story is more of a fun anecdote, she uses rhetorical devices to give it a sense of drollness; in contrast, the use of rhetorical devices in Orwell’s story makes his tale seem more serious altogether.

18 March 2020
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