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The poem was published in 1899, a period wherein racial discrimination is still the norm in America. Although slavery was finally abolished and outlawed in 1865, people of color were still treated as inferior. The audience of the poem, hence, was still characterized by prejudicial outlook, seeing imperialism as a favor and even a burden for America as the best of the white men will be sent on a mission to civilize the colored colonials. This theme is underscored by several concepts, which can be classified into three: captives, wild, serf, sweeper; burden, terror, pride, profit, gain; laurel, manhood, praise, wisdom. The first set of keywords described the colonials, the next described the process of imperialism and, finally, the last set highlighted the rewards. It is clear that the poem encourages imperialism. Kipling appeared to campaign for this move not only because it is a noble thing to civilize others. Also, he seemed to consider imperialism as a precondition for the United States to be finally recognized by its peers, which of course are the European colonials. There is an implied proposition that in order for America to be finally considered as a world power – within the league of the European club – it must be able to govern its own colony.
There are scholars who believe that this poem by Kipling is a satire. But this interpretation is quite far-fetched. The tone, the diction and the themes involved are on the serious side and no attempt at humor is apparent. The thesis is clear: America must take the burden and colonize a backward nation. His poem provided the arguments for these. First, there is the suggestion that imperialism is a task that must be accomplished because it is noble. The colonization will benefit the colony. America and its best would strive to make the client state and its people ready and worthy member of the community of nations. Secondly, Kipling argued that imperialism is a selfless act, hence, noble, as America
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European imperialism of the last few centuries were heavily centered on the perceived moral responsibility of its leaders toward other supposedly backward regions of the world Also referred to as the White Man's Burden,this notion of cultural,religious,scientific and administrative superiority over far-off civilizations had led to several negative consequences.
This idea encourages the viewpoint that it is the White man’s responsibility to rule and encourage the development of people belonging to various cultures and backgrounds. The white man shall rule until the world has adopted the Western ways. If understood in terms of philanthropy, Kipling is trying to say that it is the moral duty of the rich to help the poor, irrespective of the fact whether the poor need help or not.
Especially in a present context, when the notions of imperialism tend to accrue negative aspersions, it is much easier to condemn and criticize imperialism. As far as the literature is concerned, the essential duty of a reader is to conjure up one’s notions of imperialism after reading the literature affiliated to both sides of the issue.
This suggests the ‘you’ of the poem has tried leaving before, but once they’ve left, they become capable of hearing their own thoughts, “there was a new voice / which you slowly / recognized as your own” (27-29), thus gaining
The author states that this burden must be taken up because of a moral responsibility to help people. In reality, this morality was often distorted and led to negative consequences for everyone involved. Morel sees things differently. The black man's burden is the so-called help that people in Africa were receiving from Europeans.
It has an impact that no other poem has, and it leaves a mark simply because it has a lesson inside of it.
The poem reminds us that wealth is not all that there is. Everyone wishes to be wealthy and that’s a fact. Everyone
He constructs a poem where the reader’s expectation is met with disappointment. Even the first line of the poem employs this technique by rejecting the idea of a famous hat, much less a list of famous hats. Tate writes, “Napoleon’s hat is an obvious
However, Kipling’s book has a very abrupt and unusual ending that departs from the regular narration to introduce a form of revelation about the finding of the River of the Arrow. Even though the ending is not coherent
However, the outcome from the story the two men, is that Dravot and Carnehan, who tried to portray themselves up as “rulers”, realizes that their ambitions and fantasy are only proper as long as their subterfuge held up. For instance, when
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