How does the story, ‘A Gorilla in the Guest Room’ reflect the theme of inhuman treatment meted out to animals? Give examples from the story to support your answer.
Gerald Durrel is popularly known as a British naturalist, Zookeeper, television presenter and conservationist author. His story “A Gorilla in the Guest Room” throws light on the inhumane treatment meted out to animals.
Zoos do not work towards the conservation of wildlife but act as a mere show place of animals. They do not provide humane conditions for animals to exist, Most zoo enclosures are very small, quite different from the natural habitat of animals. Birds’ wings are clipped so that they cannot cry, aquatic animals often live without water, and many animals, who live in large herds or family groups are kept alone or, at most, in pairs.
Zoos claim to protect species from extinction, which sounds like a noble cause, but zoo officials usually favour exotic or popular animals, who draw crowds and Imblicity, rather than threatened or endangered species. This is what Gerald Dun‘eu also witnessed in the story and hence obtaining a baby gorilla, even for twelve hundred pounds was his top priority.
Moreover the animals feel tortured in captivity. The caged space snatches their freedom and thus as Gerald mentioned, a baby chimpanzee when “reincarcergned will naturally filled with rage and will scream at the top of its voice”.
Even though Gerald and his team took utmost care of N’Pongo, at the end he was shifted in an artificial environment and entertained the visitors. He was the darling of the zoo
and every afternoon he would be brought out on to the infront of his admires. He would roll in the glass with a bored expression, with a wicked gleam in his eye.
Also, unlike Gerald‘s zoo, many zoos acquire the animals only for exhibition that make no effort to provide them with a mate, which in turn makes them morasses and melancholy as Gerald personally observed in many zoos. Human tend to be cruel to animals and this is also seen when Nandy, the female gorilla was brought to the zoo. Based on her earlier experiences with cruel humans, She turned anti-human. Right across the top of her skull was a scar Which must has been caused when an overenthusiastic man tried to catch her with a machete.
Animals are thus unfairly and sometimes cruelly treated by humans for their own selfish reasons. They are confined and made prisoners. Captive animals are deprived of everything that is natural and important to them, and as a result, they get bored and feel lonely and many even suffer from a condition called zoochosis.
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