The White Man's Burden by Rudyard Kipling

Start Your Free Trial

How are natives portrayed in Kipling's poem "The White Man's Burden?"

Expert Answers info

pohnpei397 eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2009

write35,413 answers

starTop subjects are History, Literature, and Social Sciences

Natives are portrayed in a very negative way in Rudyard Kipling’s poem “The White Man’s Burden.”  They are irresponsible and foolish.  They are lazy.  The may be evil.  They are resentful and ungrateful.  All of these descriptions of the non-white people are very negative.

First, Kipling portrays the native peoples as irresponsible and foolish.  He says that they are “fluttered” and “wild.”  This means that they are flighty and not very serious.  Kipling says that they are “half-child.”  This implies that they are like children who are irresponsible and who do stupid things.  Later on, we are told that the “heathen folly” of the natives will...

(The entire section contains 350 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now



check Approved by eNotes Editorial