Chapter

Conversions and Reversions

Douglas Kerr

in Eastern Figures

Published by Hong Kong University Press

Published in print June 2008 | ISBN: 9789622099340
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9789882206892 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5790/hongkong/9789622099340.003.0003
Conversions and Reversions

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This chapter discusses conversions and reversions in the works of Rudyard Kipling, specifically in Plain Tales from the Hills, his first book of stories. Conversions and reversions provided the structure for many of his narratives, and had particularly intricate variations in his Indian novel Kim. The chapter looks at the liberal and conservative ideas in India. While the figure of conversion helped many British people understand their country's relation with India, the liberal voice persisted until the end of British India. Kipling viewed the liberal as speaking a discourse that is feminine, feminizing, and metropolitan, which makes it doubly ignorant of the work of real men in the empire. The conservative, on the other hand, respects the cultures of subject peoples despite their differences.

Keywords: conversion; reversion; Rudyard Kipling; liberal; conservative; Plain Tales

Chapter.  14838 words. 

Subjects: Literary Studies (20th Century onwards)

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