|Charles Dickens. en.wikipedia.org|
The 'Sepoy Mutiny' of 1857, against the English company, the worst revolt in the history of their occupation in India, was the the outcome of several serious matters. Poor treatment of Indian soldiers by the British Sahibs, open blasphemy, grabbing the kingdoms of Maharajahs and Nawobs, using various excuses, taking over tribal lands and lands assigned to Zamindars (landlords) and peasants and asking Indian traders to pay high taxes. The list goes on ad infinitum and ad nauseam.
|The Indian Sepoy Mutiny of 1857.www.tumblr.com|
|The Indian Sepoy Mutiny of 1857. en.wikipedia|
It slowly snowballed into a big uncontrollable rebellion. It was a great opportunity for the entire cross section of people across the country to show their pent-up emotions and hatred for the British and their atrocities against them. The rebellion backed by the people lasted for one and half years plus. During that period the British mercilessly killed tens of thousands of soldiers and civilians before putting down the rebellion. However, rumor mill in the English media worked overtime and reported concocted stories (some may be true) of British women and children being targeted and killed by the rebels in India. The British media followed this unethical method to help the British authorities in India get the sympathy from the British public.This obviously inflamed the public opinion in England about the highly tolerant Indians. The British public got the impression that the real culprits were the Indians and not the British.
Without verifying the facts, Charles Dickens, like many British racial bigots, proved that he too was a genocidal racist, bigot and full of hate, as proven from the letter cited below:
Dickens in a letter to Emile de la Rue on 23 October 1857, about the so-called Indian Mutiny of 1857 : “I wish I were Commander in Chief over there [ India ]! I would address that Oriental character which must be powerfully spoken to, in something like the following placard, which should be vigorously translated into all native dialects, “I, The Inimitable, holding this office of mine, and firmly believing that I hold it by the permission of Heaven and not by the appointment of Satan, have the honor to inform you Hindoo gentry that it is my intention, with all possible avoidance of unnecessary cruelty and with all merciful swiftness of execution, to exterminate the Race from the face of the earth, which disfigured the earth with the late abominable atrocities [2,000 British killed in the 1857 Indian War of Independence - Indian Mutiny] (see Grace Moore (2004), “Dickens and the Empire. Discourses of class, race, and colonialism in the works of Charles Dickens”
(Ashgate Publishing, Aldershot , UK )
However, British writers in a process of continuing, holocaust denial put the number of Indians killed at about 100,000. Randeep Ramesh (''India 's secret history'': ... a holocaust, one where millions disappeared..), author says ''British reprisals involved the killing of 10 million Indians spread over 10 years,'' Guardian, 24 August 2007.
Charles Dickens was a plain racist of top order; not only did he hate some British groups and but also he despised Americans. He was a staunch supporter of slavery. Besides Indians of India, he hated American Indians, blacks, Italians (on the above subjects he himself wrote, not once but several times)and others. Dickens was anti-Italian, anti-Irish, anti-Zulu, anti-Indian and anti-American Indian and anti- Jewish. To him all nonwhite people are savages just out of jungle and lack elementary British manners, social etiquette,etc.
In fact, if he were alive in the 1930s Hitler would have joyfully made this racist a Gestapo and Dickens would have become a political heir to Hitler. A disgusting and obnoxious British literary figure in spite of his distinction in the literary world.
www.estherlederberg.com/E Images/Extracurricular/Dickens.html Victorian Studies 48.2 (2005) 331-333
Dickens and Empire: Discourses of Class, Race and Colonialism in the Works of Charles Dickens, by Grace Moore; pp. xii + 210. Aldershot and Burlington: Ash gate, 2004,
(Re-modified August 01, 2015)