Essay on Lispeth by Rudyard Kipling

Essay on Lispeth by Rudyard Kipling

By Rudyard Kipling

The Victorian age was a period of great progress as well as terrible social problems. England was developing into a modern democratic society, and the British was expanding their empire during the Imperialism around the 18th century where they were colonizing countries like India, which Kipling, a man known for using the imperialistic ideas in his texts, uses in his story Lispeth.

The short story Lispeth is written by the English poet Rudyard Kipling in 1886 from ”Plain Tales from the Hills”. In the short story we encounter the Hill-girl Lispeth whos family converts to Christians after their maize failed in the believe that they might have more succes with the Christian God than their own. Baby Lispeth gets baptized and later on Lispeth’s parents dies when cholera hits them in Kotgarh Valley. She then becomes half servant, half companion to the wife of the Chaplain of Kotgarh.

Lispeth is described as being unusually attractive and tall for a Hill-girl. ”When a Hill-girl grows lovely, she is worth travelling fifty miles over bad ground to look upon” (p. 1 , ll. 16-18), she is very beautiful with a pale, ivory skin colour. Kipling also compares her to the Roman goddess of hunting: ”[…]you would, meeting her on the hillside unexpectedly, have thought her the original Diana of the Romans going out to slay.” (p. 2 , ll. 1-3). Throughout the story Kipling continuously describes her as a savage - a wild girl of nature. Lispeth is different from the Englishmen because she speaks her mind freely and is very determined, ”Lispeth put is down on the sofa, and said simply, ’This is my husband. I found him on the Bagi Road. He has hurt himself. We will nurse him, and when he is well your husband shall marry him to me’.” (p. 2 , ll. 29-32), besides that she likes taking long walks, which is unlike the manners of the English ladies who prefers to go by carriages. The ”wild” side of Lispeth is also highlighted when the seventeen year-old...

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