Summary

The poem “The White Man’s Burden” by Rudyard Kipling begins with the speaker telling the reader to take up the White Man’s burden –to send his best men and his sons to serve their captives. The captives are described as angry, wild, and ignorant – like a combination of devils and children.

The speaker then repeats that the White Man must take up this burden, suggesting that he must be patient, hide the threat of terror, and hold back his pride. He must also use simple words, which he will repeat many times so that others will gain by them.

To take up the burden includes savage wars, but they are made in the name of peace. The speaker adds that the White Man’s duty is to end famine and cure diseases. However, when he is close to reaching his goal, he must be careful of laziness a...

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