Gunga Din: Actions Speak Louder Than Words

Gunga Din: Actions Speak Louder Than Words

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Although cliché, the title I chose best summarizes the theme of Gunga Din into a simple phrase. Though Gunga Din was insulted and abused by the queens regiment, his life saving deed best reflected the character of Din. The narrator's portrayal of Din changes at a point in the story where the actions of their water boy tell the reader what kind of person Din truly was. The waterless climate created an intense desperation for water, which gave Din the opportunity to do something completely unselfish for the good of another. Din was obviously inferior to the narrator, but he had motives other than obligation to lend a helping hand to his superior. The theme is emphasized by the fact the actions of Din show the reader what type of person he is more than the narrator's initial degrading representation.

The reason that the insulting remarks of the narrator to first describe Din influence the theme of this story/poem is very simple. Very harsh words were used to describe him, but they are not as significant as his actions were in analyzing his personality. His position in their military regiment gave the narrator a sense that he was a better man than Din. Although he still wasn't respected, he became very indispensable to the crew. The reason for his conditional importance is because of the intense heat of the climate of the setting, which is India, makes him a necessity because the members of this congregation of slaughterers scarcely had a resource for water. Their throats were often dry, and they reminisced about gin and beer. This creates an excellent opportunity for Din to show his true character which is the backbone for the theme of this literary work.

The live saving antics of Din influence the direction in which the theme takes because of the importance of this act of unselfishness. This particular battle was being fought at night, and with bullets flying by, the narrator was battling the thirst and the enemy, when he took a bullet that should have been deflected by his belt buckle. This warrior's hope was fading out when good ol' Din spied him out and engaged in a very respectable endeavor. The test tells that he applied pressure to his wounds, and gave the narrator an unforgettable memory of drinking Din's stagnant green water. The reason this was such an unforgettable swig is not because of the repulsiveness of the water, but because it probably saved his life, and it was the most appreciated of any drink he'd ever taken.

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Without the narrator's survival it would not allow him to give his testimony of the reason for change in respect for Din.

The narrators opinion of the regimental bhisti was changed dramatically after Din too became wounded in the intense exchange of fire. Din heroically summons the will to make the final strides in removing his helpless superior to safety. Din's true human value is shown by this unselfish deed. After the narrator witnesses this he has a very different judgment of their water boy, not because of his position of rank in the fighting regiment but because of the content of his character. This supports what I believe is the theme, because it shows howhis unselfish action was much more relevant to the depiction of Din's ability for higher order functioning, shown by his decision to act outside himself.

Fortuitously, the narrator became a veteran of that days battle. Although seemingly tragic, Din's death becomes more than a casualty of war, but a classic example of how actions speak louder than words. I used this cliché to show how several different elements of this tale supported the idea of this phrase. The words of the narrator were not a true reflection of the character of Din. His act of bravery and unselfishness although resulting in his demise, showed how powerful an deed performed in respect for another human being can change any body's view of a person, regardless of social class of any other discriminatory bias. Conclusively, the change in opinion of the regimental water mule, was a result of his actions showing, more clearly then words, the empathetic and forgiving behavior of his personality.

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