Characterization of the sniper

The short story “The Sniper” by Liam O’Flaherty presents an episode in the life of a sniper during the Irish Civil War. The sniper’s name and age are not mentioned in the story. However, we can assume he is relatively young. The sniper fights for the Irish Republican Army (IRA). This could point to his strong patriotic and nationalistic convictions. The fact that the main character is unnamed and is referred to only as “the sniper” shows that his identity has been reduced to his purpose in the war. It also suggests that he is a symbolic character, meant to highlight the effects of war.

The sniper appears to be dedicated to his mission. As soon as he sees the enemy car approach, he wants to fire at it. When an old woman reveals his location, the sniper fires at th...

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