Analysis Of The White Man's Burden

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In his poem The White Man’s Burden, Author Rudyard Kipling instructs white men to take up the “burden” of responsibility for the “sullen peoples/half devil and half child” who are affected by colonization. Kipling, was a well-known pro-Imperialist writer and a prestigious college graduate who had won many awards, including the Nobel Prize for writing. His tone throughout the poem is insultingly patronizing and reflects the popular attitude toward imperialism at the time. Despite widespread isolationist impulses and the sheer inability to maintain a strong international position, the United States moved ahead with a modest foreign policy plan after the Civil War. One of the greatest representatives of this movement was Secretary of State William …show more content…
These people believed that America was obligated to expand itself and spread it’s ideology far and wide. The White Man’s Burden touches on the achievements and failures of imperialism, while refusing to acknowledge the failures. Most people during this time believed that imperialism benefitted both parties. The conqueror gained wealth and land while the “fluttered folk” gained access to western ideology and technology. What these people lacked was understanding of a simple fact: foreign cultures deserve respect and sovereignty whether they resemble our own. Another example of imperialist ideology in action is the Philippine-American War. When The Treaty of Paris (1898) transferred Philippine sovereignty from Spain to the United States but was not recognized by Filipino leaders. Here we see two western super powers passing a nation between them with no regard for the feelings of its …show more content…
The U.S. and other European countries conquered foreign lands, stole local resources, and imposed their way of life on the native populations, all while excusing their behavior with a simple narrative: civilizing savages who need a guiding hand. This insidious rhetoric assumes that the victims of colonization—like the native Filipinos— were uncivilized and therefore less deserving of respect. in the first place. At the time, people like Kipling couldn't—or wouldn't—acknowledge the humanity of those who weren’t like them. Those who were dedicated to social reform performed work abroad that mirrored the missionaries, and many were influenced by recent scholarship on race-based intelligence. They embraced the implications of social Darwinist theory, the main one being that inferior races were destined to poverty because of their lower evolutionary status. Many of these reformers believed that the Anglo-Saxon race was mentally superior to others and owed less evolved populations their attention and assistance. This feeling was immortalized In the phrase coined by Rudyard Kipling “the white man’s

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