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Rudyard Kipling

Action and Reactions by Rudyard Kipling (Vintage 1926 Edition)

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“Actions and Reactions” is a collection of short stories by Rudyard Kipling, first published in 1909. This collection, like many of Kipling’s works, explores various themes and settings, often drawing on his experiences in British India and his observations of human behavior and society. The stories in “Actions and Reactions” are diverse in their subject matter and style, but they all reflect Kipling’s keen insight into the human condition and his skill as a storyteller.

Some of the notable stories in this collection include:

  1. “An Habitation Enforced”: This story explores the challenges faced by a British family who must adapt to living in a remote and unfamiliar part of India. It touches on themes of isolation and cultural clash.
  2. “Garm – a Hostage”: This is a story about a beloved pet dog, Garm, and the various ways in which he affects the lives of the people around him. It reflects on the bond between humans and animals.
  3. “The Mother Hive”: This story is a satirical allegory that uses the organization of a beehive to comment on human society and politics.
  4. “The Head of the District”: This story revolves around the actions of a colonial officer and the consequences of his decisions on the people he governs. It addresses themes of power and responsibility.
  5. “The Tomb of His Ancestors”: This story explores the tension between traditional beliefs and modernity in India, as a young man grapples with the decision to build a railway through his family’s ancestral land.
  6. “The Dog Hervey”: This is a humorous story about a dog named Hervey and his owner’s attempt to find him a suitable home. It touches on themes of human eccentricity and the absurdities of life.

“Actions and Reactions” demonstrates Kipling’s skill at capturing the complexities of human nature and his ability to weave engaging narratives that often carry a deeper social or moral message. The stories in this collection reflect the author’s fascination with the British Empire, colonialism, and the clash of cultures, making it a valuable work for those interested in Kipling’s portrayal of the era in which he lived


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