FREE Literature Unit Study : Jungle Book
The themes of The Jungle Book revolve around noble qualities such as loyalty, honor, courage, tradition, integrity, and persistence. These are good to discuss and ponder in any century, making the stories timeless. In The Jungle Book, the protagonist is Mowgli and the antagonist is Shere Khan. A great part of this story follows the conflict between Mowgli and Shere Khan and represents the central purpose. The minor characters help in establishing this conflict and to also support the theme expressed by the author. The minor characters include Bander-log, Hathi's sons, Mang the bat, Rama, Mysa, Chil, Ikki, Tha, Thuu, Phao, as well as the characters in the story Rikki-Tiki-Tavi, and the human characters including Messua, her husband, Nathoo, and Buldeo.
Rudyard Kipling was born on December 30, 1865, in Bombay, India. He was educated in England but returned to India in 1882. In 1892, Kipling married Caroline Balestier and settled in Brattleboro, Vermont where he wrote The Jungle Book (1894) and "Gunga Din." Eventually becoming the highest paid writer in the world, Kipling was recipient of the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1907. He died in 1936.
For Kipling, India was a wondrous place. Along with his younger sister, Alice, he reveled in exploring the local markets with his nanny. He learned the language, and in this bustling city of Anglos, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists and Jews, Kipling fell in love with the country and its culture.
However, at the age of 6, Kipling's life was torn apart when his mother, wanting her son to receive a formal British education, sent him to Southsea, England, where he attended school and lived with a foster family named the Holloways. It was a hard time for him and he didn't tell anyone of his problems at school and the foster home. By the age of 11, Kipling was on the verge of a nervous breakdown. A visitor to his home saw his condition and immediately contacted his mother, who rushed back to England and rescued her son from the Holloways. To help relax his mind, Alice took her son on an extended vacation and then placed him in a new school in Devon. There, Kipling flourished and discovered his talent for writing, eventually becoming editor of the school newspaper. In 1882, Kipling was told by his parents that they didn't have enough money to send him to college. Instead, they had him return to India. It was a powerful moment in the young writer's life. The sights and sounds, even the language, which he'd believed he'd forgotten, rushed back to him upon his arrival. read more at BIOGRAPHY
Mowgli, a native living amongst the wolves, is the protagonist of The Jungle Book. Mowgli is wild and brave but at the same time, immature. His immaturity trait is demonstrated when he says,"'What of it? I am sleepy, Bagheera, and Shere Khan is all long tail and loud talk-like Mao, the Peacock"(Kipling, 19). Mowgli is motivated by fitting in and he changes throughout the short stories of The Jungle Book by learning who his true family had become.
ANTAGONIST: Shere Khan The Tiger
'Sher(e)' means "tiger" in Hindi and 'Khan' is a title from the Islamic era in India. His name translates roughly as "Lord Tiger".
Mowgli's adoptive Family
Akela is an Indian wolf who is fair and virtuous, and as a result, is motivated by following the laws of the jungle. Aklela is represented as a martyr by putting himself on the line for Mowgli. Akela states his trait when he says "'He is our brother in all but blood,' Akela went on, 'and ye would kill him here! In truth, I have heard that, under Shere Khan's teaching…" (Kipling 28).
Raksha is an Indian wolf and is the adoptive mother of Mowgli. She is represented as very maternal and strong and as being motivated by the love of her family. Raksha demonstrates her strength and love for Mowgli by defending him against Shere Khan: "' And it is I, Raksha [the demon], who answers. The man's cub is mine, Lungri - mind to me!' He shall not be killed. He shall live to run with the pack and to hunt with the Pack ; and in the end, look you, hunter of little naked cubs-frog -eater -fish-killer -he shall hunt thee!..." (Kipling, 8).
Father wolf is also an Indian wolf; he is Raksha's mate and Mowgli's adoptive father. He is very loving and protective of his family and is motivated by this - by keeping his family safe. Father wolf demonstrates this characteristic by saying, "Father wolf taught him his business, and the meaning of things in the jungle, till every rustle in the grass, every breath of the warm night air, every note of the owls above his head, every splash of every little fish jumping in a pool, meant just as much to him…"(Kipling, 15). - as described by Amy at AmyClassicNovel.blogspot.com
Bagheera is Mowgli’s wise companion, affectionate and loving the boy. He was born in a cage in the king’s palace at Oodeypore, and still has the mark of the human collar he wore. He managed to escape thanks to a broken lock, but he has kept this secret from all but Mowgli. He is known as a formidable hunter, and is actually even more feared than Shere Khan.
Baloo is a bear and he is Mowgli's friend and mentor. He is assigned the teacher role and teaches Mowgli the laws of the jungle. He is motivated by being a great teacher. This is illustrated by his teaching methods, of needing to be tough to ensure the lesson is learned. Baloo exemplifies his trait when he says, "Then the only other creature who is allowed at the pack council- Baloo, the sleepy brown bear who teaches the wolf cubs the Law of the Jungle:old Baloo, who can come and go where he pleases because he eats only nuts and roots and honey…"(Kipling, 12). Baloo changes considerably through out the Jungle Book, from sloth to an active member of the jungle society. - from Amy
Kaa is an Indian python, who is huge and powerful. He is greatly motivated by food, as well as helping rescue Mowgli from the monkeys, using hypnosis. By aiding Mowgli in his time of need, Kaa becomes a more sympathetic character of this jungle.
Audio/Video Kipling's Jungle Book verisons
what languages are spoken. give some interesting information - post a video so people will hear the most popular language.
true to Kipling
Video Series based on the Mowgli Character: dubbed English voices are good but its missing sound effects and background music
RIKI TICKI TAVI
Here is a fun interactive that would make a wonderful notebook page inspiration
Notebooking page assignment
1. print real photos/ quality illustrations of the characters
2. Write their names as characters in the short story Riki Ticki Tavi
3. Add the personification information for each character
Character Type of animal Personification Quote from text Page number
“Come then, Nagaina. Come and fight me.” 127
Darzee, Tailor bird
He has little common sense, and is fearful and cowardly. He says he is miserable, cried about the babies, and annoys Rikki with his singing. “Without waiting for breakfast, Rikki-tikki ran to the thorn bush where Darzee was singing a song of triumph at the top of his voice.” Pg. 122
Darzee’s wife, Tailor bird
She is smart and sensible. She plays a clever trick on Nagaina, pretending to be sorrowful.
“Oh my wing is broken! The boy in the house threw a stone at me and broke it.” Pg. 124
He is a coward. He creeps around the wall, whimpers, and can’t make up his mind.
“Chchundra sat down and cried till the tears rolled off his whiskers.” Pg. 119
He is heartless, vicious, and dangerous. He plans to kill the humans and probably would have done so had not Rikki prevented them.
“I will kill the big man and his wife, and the child if I can, and come away quietly.” Pg. 120
Like her husband, she is a dangerous killer. She is also ruthless and vengeful.
She blames Teddy’s father for killing Nag and plans to take revenge on Teddy.
“So long as the bungalow is empty, we are king and queen of the garden; and remember that as soon as our eggs in the melon bed hatch (as they may tomorrow), our children will need room and quiet.” Pg. 120
add book links to lapbook or amazon links so people can purchase their own.
More Research and Resources
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