Mr. Kipling was known to be fond of ‘India’

The Brown Man’s Burden by Henry Labouchère

Aditya Kshirsagar
2 min readMay 4, 2017


While watching Honest Trailer of The Jungle Book, I was reminded of the famed author & racist, Rudyard Kipling. Mowgli. Baloo. Sherkhan. Loved and adored by most Indians.

In 1899, Mr. Kipling wrote a poem that was as ‘right’ as it gets. The poem was aptly titled, ‘The White man’s burden’. Sounds racist? That’s because that is exactly what it is. A racist take on imperialism. Link to pdf.

First two para’s from the poem:

Take up the White Man’s burden —

Send forth the best ye breed —

Go bind your sons to exile

To serve your captives’ need;

To wait in heavy harness,

On fluttered folk and wild —

Your new-caught, sullen peoples,

Half-devil and half-child.

Take up the White Man’s burden —

In patience to abide,

To veil the threat of terror

And check the show of pride;

By open speech and simple,

An hundred times made plain

To seek another’s profit,

And work another’s gain

Now, try and think about Mowgli, Baloo and Sherkhan ;)

Anyway, I found an extremely funny parody of the poem that I thought of sharing.

This is a take on Mr. Kipling’s poem by Henry Labouchère also written in 1899.

The Brown Man’s Burden

Pile on the brown man’s burden
To gratify your greed;
Go, clear away the “niggers”
Who progress would impede;
Be very stern, for truly
’Tis useless to be mild
With new-caught, sullen peoples,
Half devil and half child.

Pile on the brown man’s burden;
And, if ye rouse his hate,
Meet his old-fashioned reasons
With Maxims up to date.
With shells and dumdum bullets
A hundred times made plain
The brown man’s loss must ever
Imply the white man’s gain.

{There are three more stanzas}

You can read the complete poem at the original source.
Analysis of The White Man’s Murder {link}

Favorite quote,

“Roosevelt would then forward the poem to his friend Senator Henry Cabot Lodge, commenting that it was “rather poor poetry, but good sense from the expansion point of view.”

A posthumous fuck you to Rudyard Kipling

The interesting part is that the white man still thinks they can solve the world problems.

Coming soon…