Rudyard Kipling's first collection of short stories, which established his reputation and brought India to the British imagination
Including the stories "Lispeth," "Beyond the Pale," and "In the Pride of His Youth," this collection tells of soldiers, wise children, exiles, forbidden romances and divided identities, creating a rich portrait of Anglo-Indian society. Originally published for a newspaper in Lahore when Kipling was a journalist, the tales were later revised by him to re-create as vividly as possible the sights and smells of India for readers at home. Far from being a celebration of empire, these stories explore the barriers between races, classes and sexes, and convey all the tensions and contradictions of colonial life.
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Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) was born in Bombay. During his time at the United Services College, he began to write poetry, privately publishing Schoolboy Lyricsin 1881. The following year he started work as a journalist in India, and while there produced a body of work, stories, sketches, and poems including "Mandalay," "Gunga Din," and "Danny Deever"which made him an instant literary celebrity when he returned to England in 1889. While living in Vermont with his wife, an American, Kipling wrote The Jungle Books, Just So Stories, and Kimwhich became widely regarded as his greatest long work, putting him high among the chronicles of British expansion. Kipling returned to England in 1902, but he continued to travel widely and write, though he never enjoyed the literary esteem of his early years. In 1907, he became the first British writer to be awarded the Nobel Prize.
Jan Montefiore is a professor of 20th Century English Literature at the University of Kent. She is the author of Men and Women Writers of the 1930s (1996);Arguments of Heart and Mind:Selected Essays 1977-2000 (2002); Feminism and Poetry (3rd edition, 2004); and Rudyard Kipling (2007).
Kaori Nagai is a Research Associate at the University of Kent and author of Empire of Analogies (2006).