Notes by Mary Hamer
‘...the White Man’s work, the business of introducing a sane and orderly administration to the dark places of the earth that lie to your hand.’It is this ‘new imperialism’ to which he wanted to convert Andrew Carnegie, as he told the magnate in a letter of 25 June 1899, Pinney ed., Letters vol 2. It is fair to say that it was the vision of enabling orderly development based on economic progress which inspired Kipling, perhaps naively. (For an assessment of Kipling’s forays into politics, see ‘“Outside his Art”, Rudyard Kipling in Politics’, Michael Brock, Kipling Journal March 1988.) He made no allowance for greed and exploitation, or for conflicts of interest between empire and colony. This allowed him, not always but very often, to appear blind to the destructive effect of empire on its subject peoples and their cultures.