The Sniper - Analysis

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The Sniper is a short story written by Liam O’Flaherty, a novelist and storyteller born in 1896. In his first years he fought in the First World War, he retired because of the hard situations he had to live. Before his war’s recuperation he began participating in the Ireland’s revolution and then the civil war. In 1933 he suffers a mental ill and doctors believe that it was product of his experience in the battle lands. Basing his work on his own life, O’Flaherty has written many short stories in relation to the main topic that characterized his life; the participation in the war. This short story is about a civil war taking place in Dublin. As the title says, the Sniper is the main character, and is hiding on the rooftop of a building near to O'Connel Bridge. Through the narration, O’ Flaherty makes us feel tension and horror, and from the sentences that he used to described the sniper without saying who is him, he finally reveals the main character.

As we said, O'Flaherty uses many ways to reveal the character of the sniper. For example, how the author chooses the words is very effective: "a man who is used to looking at death." This phrase is helpful for the reader because it gives the idea that he may have very cold looking eyes. By using the word looking, it hooks the reader's attention to the eyes of the sniper. Even though this suggests that the sniper didn’t have problem by killing people, for example, "The sniper looked at his enemy falling and he shuddered." This shows that he could kill, although he didn’t enjoy doing it. The word choice in this sentence is very effective and it makes it easy for the reader to imagine how the sniper feels. The word shuddered is a very good election because the reader can interpret it like if the sniper watched the body fall in the ground. This phrase reveals more about the character. Also, "He began to gibber to himself, cursing himself, cursing everybody," proves that the character doesn’t like killing people and...
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