Black and white people on the opposite poles: an analysis with reference to the White Man’s Burden and the Black Man’s Burden


  • Numan Muhammad Department of English, Foreign Studies College, Hunan Normal University, Changsha, China.
  • Yang Yang Department of English, Foreign Studies College, Hunan Normal University, Changsha, China.



Imperialism, White imperialism, Anti-imperialism, Black people, White people, Binary opposite, White men burden, Black men burden, Non-white people


The study probes into the binary opposites of white imperialism and anti-imperialism in the poems of Rudyard Kipling’s White Man’s Burden and H. T. Johnson’s Black Man’s Burden: A Response to Kipling. This research study highlights how these binary opposites generated the ideology of white men's burden to civilise the uncivilised and subsequently affected black and non-white people. It clearly shows that the white people considered non-white people as very low background creatures, and they did not have the right to live in a way where the white people were living. They were considered like people who needed to be civilised only by the white people, and no one else could do this. However, on the other hand, non-white people also consider that they are the same human and that white people have ruined their lives; otherwise, they are more civilised and more cultured. Therefore, this mentality shows that their way of thinking does not conform with each other’s. That’s why we have tried to apply the theory of binary opposite, and the study findings show clearly the binary opposition the whites and blacks have very opposite connections regarding their life, culture, and ruling the people.


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How to Cite

Muhammad, N., & Yang, Y. (2024). Black and white people on the opposite poles: an analysis with reference to the White Man’s Burden and the Black Man’s Burden. Liberal Arts and Social Sciences International Journal (LASSIJ), 8(1), 102–116.



Research Articles | Original Research