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date: 18 September 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This article investigates how a particular vision of a diseased tropical environment grew out of the dynamics of British imperialism in the Indian subcontinent and how this vision was simultaneously reinforced and interrogated in the work of Rudyard Kipling, who was considered the bard of the empire. It analyzes the issue of so-called palliative imperialism in the works of Kipling and describes how the debates about cholera conducted by the imperial doctors produced a contested and contradictory idea of tropicality. This article also argues that the embedding of the idea of a global, tropical diseased environment through the techniques of empire in the nineteenth-century should enable us to place disease and medicine as key elements in any exercise of postcolonial ecocriticism.

Keywords: tropical environment, Indian subcontinent, British imperialism, Rudyard Kipling, palliative imperialism, tropicality, diseased environment, disease and medicine, postcolonial ecocriticism

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