Indian Mutiny

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What point of view does the "Justice" cartoon from Punch magazine's November 7, 1857 issue illustrate?

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This is a cartoon that Punch published in response to the Sepoy Mutiny in India.  The basic point of view here is that Britain is completely in the right and that it must take revenge against the Indians.

The Sepoy Mutiny arose largely because of Indian resentment of British colonial practices.  At the time of the mutiny, the British had been trying to impose their own ways on the Indians for decades.  They had assumed that their own ways were superior and they had no compunctions about trying to force the Indians to give up their own culture in favor of British values.

However, the cartoon to which you refer makes no attempt to understand these root causes of the rebellion.  Instead, the cartoon sees the issue in black and white.  It argues that the British are completely in the right.  It asserts that justice will be served by killing the Indian men who have taken part in the mutiny.  This point of view would have been very popular in Britain at the time given the extremely violent acts perpetrated by some of the rebels against British women and children.

Thus, the basic point of view is a very British point of view that believes that it would be just to take revenge for the Sepoy Mutiny.

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