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Research Papers on Darwinism in The Jungle Book

Research papers on The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling can be written to illustrate the many instances of Darwinism in Kipling's writings. Paper Masters' writers will custom write research that focuses on Darwinism in the novel or any other aspect of characterization or theme you need explained.

The most obvious use of character development that Kipling uses in the stories are giving human qualities to the animals of the jungle. This device was particularly effective in Kipling’s time due to the revelation of the theories of Charles Darwin, which gave new light to the world on the roots of humanity within the animal kingdom. The world was more open and even eager to explore the idea that animals could embrace humanity and possess characteristics similar to man (Halliburton, Internet). Darwinism in the Jungle BookKipling illustrates his belief in this kinship with animals in the constant reiteration of Mowgli that “We be of one blood”, which he asserts to snakes, wolves, and other animals throughout the stories.


Another Element of Darwinism

Another element of Darwinism used to develop Kipling’s characters is the notion of the survival of the fittest. This form of social Darwinism fits into the stories with the constant bloodshed and battle that takes place among the animals. For example, in “Tiger! Tiger!”, Mowgli kills Shere Khan and skin’s him. Certainly a defiant turn from Mowgli’s human side as he brutally demonstrates domination in his kill. In illustrating Mowgli’s brutality, Kipling develops the animalistic side of his nature and firmly develops the character of Mowgli as possessing animalistic drives.

Kipling's Darwinist Ideals

Complimenting Kipling’s Darwinist ideals are the development of human characteristics within the animals. The “Jungle Lords” and Shere Khan illustrate the need to belong to a group. It is true that many animals travel in packs and stay within their own groups. However, where this extends into the human realm is in the desperate need to belong emotionally, over and above the natural drive to run in a pack. Mowgli’s desire to belong to this group is similar to the human phenomena of belonging to a gang.  In a test of will, Shere Khan pits Mowgli against Baloo to affirm his alliances. This tactic is reminiscent of typical group initiations in society today.

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