IJCH 2020 Vol.6(1): 8-12 ISSN: 2382-6177
doi: 10.18178/ijch.2020.6.1.142

The Value of Rudyard Kipling’s Kim—An Ethnocentric Perspective

Xin Yuan
Abstract—Kim is the representative novel of Rudyard Kipling, with which he won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1907. The story is about an Anglo-Indian boy Kim who encounters a series of adventures during the pilgrim of looking for the River of Arrow with a Tibetan lama and finally grows to adulthood. In this novel, Kipling vividly depicted the images of the British colonizers and Indians and brought the Anglo-Indian group into the public’s sight. Generally, ethnocentrism emphasizes on the group division and advocates the positivity of the in-group and negativity of the out-group. However, descendants of colonizers, like Anglo-Indian, are easily trapped into a go-between identity, thus, forming a faith stuck between ethnocentrism and attachment to the colonized culture, which is different from the ethnocentrism that colonizers usually believe in. Therefore, based on ethnocentrism, this paper aims to discover the ethnocentrism of the protagonist Kim by studying the novel Kim. One the one hand, he is ethnocentric about the British national culture, manifested in the superiority of ethnicity and the advocation of colonization. On the other hand, his ethnocentrism is both complemented and sometimes contradicted by his attachment to the Indian culture, embodied in his gratitude to Indians and profound love to this country.

Index Terms—Kipling, Kim, ethnocentrism, British colonizers, Indians.

Xin Yuan is with School of Foreign Language for Business, Southwestern University of Finance and Economics, Chengdu, 611130 China (e-mail: 554302412@qq.com).

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Cite: Xin Yuan, "The Value of Rudyard Kipling’s Kim—An Ethnocentric Perspective," International Journal of Culture and History vol. 6, no. 1, pp. 8-12, 2020.

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