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Harry
What does "having done nothing" mean? please.. For it is the condition of his rule that he shall spend his life in trying to impress the "natives," and so in every crisis he has got to do what the "natives" expect of him. He wears a mask, and his face grows to fit it. I had got to shoot the elephant. I had committed myself to doing it when I sent for the rifle. A sahib has got to act like a sahib; he has got to appear resolute, to know his own mind and do definite things. To come all that way, rifle in hand, with two thousand people marching at my heels, and then to trail feebly away, "having done nothing" – no, that was impossible. The crowd would laugh at me. And my whole life, every white man's life in the East, was one long struggle not to be laughed at. What does "having done nothing" mean?
May 27, 2013 3:07 AM
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Answers · 5
It seems that the narrator is expected to shoot an elephant at some big event and he is quite nervous that he will fail people's expectations. In this context, "having done nothing" means "not having shot the elephant/not having lived up to expectations". So if the narrator fails shooting the elephant, he would leave the event "having done nothing". Does that make sense?
May 27, 2013
"having done nothing" = "without doing anything"
May 27, 2013
Harry
Language Skills
English, Korean
Learning Language
English