‘‘Rikki-Tikki-Tavi,’’ as a children’s story, is designed both to entertain and to disseminate the values of virtuous behavior. Courage, one of the characteristics exhibited by the hero, Rikki-tikkitavi, is one such virtue. Rikki, knowing that he has to kill Nag in order to protect the human family, is fearful of the cobra’s size and strength, but his fear is trumped by his own courage, and he succeeds in killing the snake. He is rewarded for his courage by being deemed a hero and given a permanent place in the home of the humans. The virtue of courage is...
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