I’m older than most people reading this leadership blog so I can safely say that I used to hear this phrase fairly often but not anymore. Researching it a bit, it seems the poem is not taught anymore, much like some of Mark Twain’s works in the US. By Rudyard Kipling. I've read that "Fortune favors the bold." It's refreshing and helpful. Thanks for a really good article to go with my coffee this morning. So ’ere ’s to you, Fuzzy-Wuzzy, at your ’ome in the Soudan; 45 (regarding your quotes). The movie was based on the poem and others by Kipling. Same with me. I seem to have won the bounty of 200 points for my answer to this question! The English treated the lower class Indians like dirt, but then again, so did the upper class Indians. You're a Better Man Than I» og berre «You're a Better Man Than I», er ein song først spelt inn av den engelske rockegruppa The Yardbirds.Han vart skriven av brørne Mike og Brian Hugg, og vart opningssporet på det andre amerikanske albumet deira, Having a Rave Up with The Yardbirds (1965). You Lazarushian-leather Gunga Din! He did have an eye for the foibles of different cultures, but does not seem to have held these differences as immutable. The poem is about an Indian water-bearer (a low-status Bhishti) who saves the soldier’s life but is soon shot and killed. LYRICS ON THE VIDEO. You ’re a pore benighted ’eathen but a first-class fightin’ man; Is this more important, Than the stories that he tells? That men with individuality should never fight? "Fortune favors the bold. Can you judge a man By the way he wears his hair? I might add that both also were very young (relatively) and intent on doing what was right regardless of what others did around them that was not so good. The juxtaposition of the disdainful attitude of the soldier with his candid admission that the blackfaced heathen slavey whom he beats and abuses is, in fact, the braver, better man gives the poem its power. And with quite positive results as to formative attitudes concerning race. WE ’VE fought with many men acrost the seas, This is a rant, not a serious answer. What's the best way for EU citizens to enter the UK if they're worried they might be refused entry at the UK border? used as a compliment, a genuine expression of admiration, fairly self-effacing at the same time. -- that line is by itself proof that it is not a racist poem, but earnestly politically-correct non-readers who have mentally 'tagged' Gunga Din (possibly without reading it) as a racist work may be vocally offended, especially those of the left-leaning liberals (not all but some) who are unforgiving of all imperialism except the dictatorship of the proletariat, which alone is historically and ideologically justified. better you than me phrase. Could you tell a wise man, By the way he speaks or spells? I enjoyed this one, mostly because the narrator caught me off-guard when he read the last lines of Kipling's poem at the end. The poem is a rhyming narrative from the point of view of a British soldier in India. And it is done with a great backdrop. We no longer teach those things or insist we have experiences that make us resilient. Reading this article today brings back those fond memories. Fortunately, the Gunga-din reference requires the person to be reasonably literate, and so, at least in theory, understanding of nuance. By Rudyard Kipling. Is it illegal to carry someone else's ID or credit card? Well thenMisterMr, you're a better man than I Yeah, Mister, you're a better man than I Oh, Mister, you're a better man than I Yeah, Mister, you're a better man than I Could you tell a wise man by the way he speaks or spells? What does it mean when you say, "be the better person"? Think of why the girl in the story can no longer knead her own bread; the bereaved husband in Without Benefit of Clergy; Janee crying in the watercourse. I, along with much of my family, use this phrase regularly as a compliment for someone who possesses the fortitude to do something that I doubt I could do. Of course, many have seen the 1939 movie, Gunga Din starring Cary Grant, Victor McLaglen, and Douglas Fairbanks. There are a number of Internet sites that you can see the movie for free. I would wager a double cheeseburger that it is still common where literacy rates are low. Correct lyrics. You Lazarushian-leather Gunga Din! Our parents didn’t know if we were going crazy or just being kids. The narrator of the poem had every right - even the responsibility - to treat Gunga Din the way he did. It will always be a compliment because it is referring to Din, an Indian Bhishti of unexpected character and bravery. When ’e went to tend the wounded under fire! Correlation between county-level college education level and swing towards Democrats from 2016-2020? So, is it still a compliment or have the racist overtones made it obsolete? Only the poor defense of ignorance could be persuasively advanced. Maybe that is why I later joined the US military. Lactic fermentation related question: Is there a relationship between pH, salinity, fermentation magic, and heat? @ChrisH thanks a lot for providing the political background of the newspaper, which was completely unknown to me here in India -- but I am only quoting their opinion as an example of a published piece, and, I disagree with this answer, and most of the comments, but will refrain from a downvote, because at the end of the day it's about a difference of opinion. Watch Video Comment Enlarge font. Yes! Who first called natural satellites "moons"? Many people's reaction would be along the lines of “you what?” having never heard the quote and not even recognising it as a quote, never mind a poem or Kipling. Crying Out For Love. Become A Better Singer In Only 30 Days, With Easy Video Lessons! Note the similarities to Jesus from the Bible. It is amazing to see that Kipling and Mark Twain have become controversial -- are their opponents even reading their works before donning the armor of righteous indignation to do battle against the ghosts of two great humanists! As "God's favor is better than life," she who seduces from God is "more bitter than death." My dad (native to Oklahoma) uses it, and I picked up the usage from him. You Lazarushian-leather Gunga Din! Can you read his mind By the clothes that he wears? Its titular character is an Indian water-carrier (a bhishti) who, after the narrator is wounded in battle, saves his life, only to be shot and killed. Sorry, I realize this has some POB aspects to it. I first heard, then read, and later viewed the quotation as a youngster (I am now 75), and to this day I regard it as one of the most introspective and enlightening of all. How do you say You're a Better Man Than I? Before that (and even at the height of Roman power) your average Greek considered himself superior to the Roman. Was such treatment racist? ... “You’re better than this” isn’t an attempt to describe, but to inspire. Given its obscurity the quotation should be applied sparingly, but one does not need to withdraw this quote or feel shame if his/her intent is misunderstood. english.stackexchange.com/help/how-to-answer, MAINTENANCE WARNING: Possible downtime early morning Dec 2, 4, and 9 UTC…, “Question closed” notifications experiment results and graduation. Can you hate a man that shouts a freedom cry? I agree, great poem and one that I first read in my High School English class. An’ some of ’em was brave an’ some was not, But, yes. I am a white man, and if a black person were to say that to or about me, would I consider it anything other than a literate person saying a kind thing? Despite the lowly status of Kipling's man, his heroic deeds, coupled with the humility expressed by the narrator, oppose the long-standing notion of inherent racial superiority that was still being championed in some academic circles in the late 19th century. 'You're A Better Man Than I Am' Poem Crossword Clue The crossword clue 'You're a better man than I am' poem with 8 letters was last seen on the March 17, 2020.We think the likely answer to this clue is GUNGADIN.Below are all possible answers to this clue ordered by its rank. I was first introduced to poems in early HS years and then took more coursework in college. “You’re the man!” the prophet Nathan said to King David. It reminded me of Kipling’s poem, which I occasionally go back and read; mostly for nostalgia but also to again experience his brilliant poem. The way we use it isn't a compliment. What he was was a firm believer in his own culture, without ascribing imaginary flaws to others. I argue with someone, and we are both wrong; I then apologize to the other person and ask for peace, but the other person refuses to accept my apology and make peace. History and culture is liquid. It is well known that Kipling had great love for India and for Empire. In the final three lines, the soldier regrets the abuse that he dealt to Din and admits that Din is the better man. And call a man a fool, If for wealth he doesn't strive? Pathan, of course, were the tribesmen of the NorthWest Frontier. The British have always had a great capacity for wonderfully told stories. In fact that is the bigotry of ignorance, absolutely incapable of recognising oblique sarcasm or self-reflexive irony, and it shows that nuance is dead! Moreover, as already pointed out in the earlier comments and answers, the vast majority of people just may not get the reference! They mean you are a better person than to stoop as low as to do something. Below is an alphabetical list of widely used and repeated proverbial phrases. Indians of the lower classes were - much the same as African slaves in America - considered to be something less than human, and were treated as such. Someone for whom the Cary Grant film would have been a normal childhood pop culture experience is around 90 years old now. Thank's Chris. When you're not sure what else to say, try these. After all, the narrator had the right to beat Gunga Din. They were a bit nutty and liberal dingbats. rev 2020.12.2.38097, The best answers are voted up and rise to the top, English Language & Usage Stack Exchange works best with JavaScript enabled, Start here for a quick overview of the site, Detailed answers to any questions you might have, Discuss the workings and policies of this site, Learn more about Stack Overflow the company, Learn more about hiring developers or posting ads with us. Well....I think I am a latecomer on this one....but I think context may be the true test of the meaning. Its more an observation that the person in question is undergoing a lot of (potentially hazardous) work for no really good reward. Gethsemane. I'm pretty sure that in addition of listed above this quote was used in many other contexts. The Egyptians tended to consider the Persians as fairly gauche... racist and bigoted Egyptians. And call a man a fool, If for wealth he doesn't strive? I understand your points, though. The narrator of the poem puts himself in the place of the rich man in hell who begs for a drop of water from Lazarus (who is heaven, the "bosom of Abraham"). @anongoodnurse - To be perfectly honest, this is the first time I've seen the poem. Abuse and ridicule had no effect on this admiration. Those of us who studied it in the dim and distant past may remember racism in the context — but not in detail. So the Persians were racist and bigoted. Is there a way to notate the repeat of a larger section that itself has repeats in it? Definition of better you than me in the Idioms Dictionary. He didn't have what it takes, and he thought I did. Either way, I find it sad that the poem by Kipling is rarely read any longer. Three months later in February 1966, it was released in the UK as the B-side to the "Shapes of Things" single. Or maybe, we KNOW we're the better man.. Welcome rankoutsider, anongoodnurse is quite correct, this is no place for what could be a journalistic opinion piece. @Alex P. I agree. Can you read his mind By the clothes that he wears? Though I’ve belted you and flayed you, I used to hear the Gunga Din line sometimes used in that sort of context when I was a kid (more or less nearly half a century ago and in a different country to you) but wouldn't use it now (the only time I refer to the poem at all is if I get locked out of somewhere ... as in "Hey I'm locked out and I, I've picked up the usage in the exact same way, my dad coming from Virginia, though. Din! Well then, Mr, you're a better man than I, Yeah, Mr, you're a better man than I, Oh, Mr, you're a better man than I, Yeah, Mr, you're a better man than I. He exhibited so little awareness of his own heritage that his character seemed two-dimensional. “Din” (pronounced to rhyme with green) is an example we could all follow. A real man has a higher purpose and dream that is bigger than him. You don't need to know its origin to understand the meaning (I tried to look it up and I still don't actually know where its from, to be honest). I suppose that one could take such a compliment as a sort of insult, but I have never seen it that way. By the livin’ Gawd that made you, I agree with you Max as typical. We may remember (if we’ve read a little on the subject) that Kipling’s views are the subject of much discussion. I did this to someone and they responded in a way that took me my surprise: Me: You deserve someone better, stop settling and being with me. Many Thanks for weighing in 'with us' on the side of poor departed (and therefore personally defenseless) R.Kipling, who probably wrote the poem with the best of intentions over a 100 years ago, but some modern souls would prefer to 'read' racism into it for their own purposes, whether innocent or devious, and. Your opinion would rather depend on whether you were sitting by a fire or standing in one. Yes and no. At one time Romans looked at the population of Britain and considered them backward. Thank you for taking me back to my younger days when I saw the movie Gunga Din in an old theater in downtown Chicago. Is than a conjunction or preposition? How can a hard drive provide a host device with file/directory listings when the drive isn't spinning? Than definition is - —used as a function word to indicate the second member or the member taken as the point of departure in a comparison expressive of inequality—used with comparative adjectives and comparative adverbs. Sestina of the Tramp-Royal. I actually got a little misty. In the final three lines of the poem, the British soldier regrets the abuse he dealt to Din and admits that Din is the better man … You will do your work on water, An' you'll lick the bloomin' boots of 'im that's got it. I have to admit that, while I knew from context that it was meant as praise, I long ago forgot most of the poem it came from, remembering just that Gunga Din was heroic on the battlefield. ), I noticed it being used by Laura Thyme in what I take to be it's usual meaning, i.e. I believe I've heard my mother-in-law (native to Ohio) use it as well. I grew up hearing the phrase, "You’re a better man than I am, Gunga Din!" Y. A proverbial phrase or a proverbial expression is type of a conventional saying similar to proverbs and transmitted by oral tradition. DeepMind just announced a breakthrough in protein folding, what are the consequences? It's a cardinal error to confuse a depiction of bigotry with bigotry itself. Malvolio's answer states the essence of what you wrote with much less rancor. The difference is that a proverb is a fixed expression, … With its politically conscientious lyrics and catchy me… Great movie and poem because they all point to the importance of character. How is time measured when a player is late? However, presuming such a quote to be racist or provocative in the absence any corroborating indication of racist intent would be rude. to decide the ISS should be a zero-g station when the massive negative health and quality of life impacts of zero-g were known? is from Thucydides. Yeah, Mr, you're a better man than I, Oh, Mr, you're a better man than I, Yeah, Mr, you're a better man than I. I'll take Kipling over the Antifa, limousine, or any other kind of Liberal any day. You’re a better man than I am, Gunga Din! I'm sure there will come a time in the future when whatever culture exists will look back on the current "politically correct" movement and murmur "What foolish bigots and self righteous knotheads these people were.". Well then, Mr, you're a better man than I, Yeah, Mr, you're a better man than I, Oh, Mr, you're a better man than I, Yeah, Mr, you're a better man than I. Is this more important, Than the stories that he tells? I hate running on other people's time and feelings and my 'man pride' would cause me to sacrifice all of my money for … I tried to speak to that point in one version of my carefully crafted, over edited reply. It was not because of his race, but rather his class. If I were in the audience, I would give the speaker the benefit of the doubt, but that’s about me, not the quote. My mother (born 1909) used it frequently (a public or parochial school education was a better quality than what you see today). It only takes a minute to sign up. Same here, Army Captain. To learn more, see our tips on writing great answers. The English also treated many upper-class Indians as dirt. He was referring to the long years, and the long months leading up to her death of being at her side which he felt he cannot and could not do for anyone. A lot of the epithets against Kipling are the same old Lefty trash thrown at anyone who stands for values. It's not a phrase that communicates much. I could not agree more with your first sentence. album: "Birdland" (2003) I'm Not Talking. Perhaps it’s the lack of education our kids now get or simply we’ve moved on. Characters count : / 50. (Princess Bride callback), "Good luck with that", or "Better you than me.". I feel honored. I grew up hearing the phrase, "You’re a better man than I am, Gunga Din!" What is the application of `rev` in real life? what?" In the Bible, the Rich man (in hell) asks to let Lazarus (in heaven) give him water: ‘Father Abraham, have pity on me and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, because I am in agony in this fire.’ While the Biblical answer is 'Nope', the author has so much faith in the goodness of Gunga Din that he believes Gunga Din will bring him - and others - water not only on the battlefield, but also in hell. How can one plan structures and fortifications in advance to help regaining control over their city walls? Mr. You're a Better Man Than I Lyrics: Can you judge a man / By the way he wears his hair? It is bigger than his bank account, his social life, his day-to-day job, and maybe even his family. site design / logo © 2020 Stack Exchange Inc; user contributions licensed under cc by-sa. So, the next time someone refers to you using this phrase, thank them for the compliment and their insight. In the end, he sacrificed his life blowing a bugle to warn the British of an attack by the irredeemable but elusive Thug tribe, summoning the cavalry just in time to make a climatic charge which, of course, routed the Thugs and put an end to their reign of terror. No Replies Log in to reply ... We do not have any tags for Mister You're a Better Man Than I lyrics. So this is pretty well making him out to be as "better as it gets" while sadly never quite removing a little demeaning servitude as Din's "natural" lot. Many thanks for directing my attention to this intriguing and controversial poem from one of the Children of Empire. At it's height, the English Empire was admired by much of the world and their actions were considered upright and justified. Mrs. Zimmerman was a wonderful teacher. n/a Source: A Choice of Kipling's Verse (1943) More About this Poem. Thought it would be worth noting, since this was a rather main stream detective series. Panshin's "savage review" of World of Ptavvs. "Quite old?" Log in to add a tag. Produce more than you consume. Whenever I tell someone ‘You’re a better man than I am, Gunga Din!’ it’s a compliment. For example, some fans of the film, Thanks for addressing my question directly. Thanks! Basically, it is saying "Society may see you as inferior, and I have treated you terribly, but you are truly the better man." For Your Love. Why did the scene cut away without showing Ocean's reply? They are so blinded that they convince themself that they "can't find a better" man when in reality it's that they need a better man. I think the poem is very well written, and, like Twain... baby with the bathwater kind of stuff. “Gunga Din” is named after the Indian, portraying him as a heroic character that is not afraid to face danger on the battlefield as he tends to wounded men. Oh that is the actual title, I assumed you were oddly truncating or censoring some commonly known work. I have a personal example....my brother, I am his sister, called me on the phone after my niece who lived with a horrendous disease died at a young age. Lines taken in isolation may paint a nasty picture, but each poem should be read in its entirety, in context, and I am convinced there is nothing inherently racist about 'Gunga Din'. Do people actually address their male child “Son” rather than a name, in real life English, or is this mainly a written English usage? Though I’ve belted you and flayed you, Saw the movie when I was a kid with my whole family. You’re a better man than I am, Gunga Din! The idea that “character” matters a great deal in a person and is a part of why the are successful and do the right thing, is a fundamental part of Western civilization. It was written by brothers Mike and Brian Hugg, and became the opening track to the group's second American album, Having a Rave Up with The Yardbirds (1965). Din! Yet at the end of the poem, the speaker acknowledged that Gunga Din was not only in fact a man (not merely lower-class "property"), but that he was even a better man than the speaker himself, for Gunga Din possessed courage and character that the speaker did not. I understand what you're saying, but you're a better man than me. / Can you see a bad man / … Yeah, Mister, you're a better man than I Oh, Mister, you're a better man than I Yeah, Mister, you're a better man than I Submit Corrections. "A racist would not have glorified Gunga Din in the way Kipling did," wrote Andrew Roberts in The Telegraph on 13 May 2003, http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/personal-view/3591241/At-last-Kipling-is-saved-from-the-ravages-of-political-correctness.html. I wouldn't have guts/gall/moral fiber to do that, but I admire that you do. For example. An' I'll get a swig in hell from Gunga Din! Even if it could be backed by sound reasoning, calling Kipling (or most any deceased person) a racist only provokes an insoluble debate that distracts from more productive conversations about addressing racism. I'm not saying that i couldn't still marry my significant other after cheating on me a week before the wedding, but it would take me some time. Is this more important than the stories that he tells? Kipling, @FaheemMitha we can indeed agree to disagree, but the reason I say so is because the whole concept of racially ethical behavior was unknown or unimportant in those bygone cultures! Bonaparte couldn't break a British square, but Fuzzy did. Tragic, but excellent example of a very appropriate use of the statement in its right context! Within the (severe) limitations of the British post-colonial mentality, it's a perfectly generous compliment, albeit with a heavy serving of irony. A real man is always working to pay what he owes to society and those who gave him the means for survival growing up. "Fortune favors the bold" is a self-contained aphorism. If I say something about naked woodworking or grains of sand in asafoetida-bearing Cyrene, most people are just going to go, "uhhhh? I've never heard "might white of you", before, and if I heard it now, I'd hear it as racist. Whenever known, the origin of the phrase or proverb is noted. We watched it on an old black & white tv set in our living room. I would never have heard of the quote or the poem if I didn't go in for old movies. Quite the opposite, he made me feel for the Indians he described. 6. Gunga Din was portrayed as a native with boundless admiration for, and puppy-like devotion to, British soldiers and cavalry. By the livin’ Gawd that made you, Youre a better man than I lyrics - Sham 69. Watch: New Singing Lesson Videos Can Make Anyone A Great Singer Can you judge a man by the way he wears his hair Can you read his mind by the clothes that he wears Can you see a fat man by the pattern on his tie Then mister you're a better man than I Mister you're a better man than I Could you tell a wise man by the way he speaks or spells Is this more important than the stories … Displaying a tinge of this outdated norm is a poor cause to indict the reputation of a 19th-century poet. This means to work hard, do the right thing, get an education, stay out of trouble especially with the law, and don’t have children before marriage. I'd even argue most people won't even know that it is Kipling quote, not even speaking about any assumed "racism" associated with it. @anongoodnurse OMG! This may not be the impression you want to give. 'τοῖς τολμῶσιν ἡ τύχη ξύμφορος'... not that I would know; it's Greek to me. A highly racialized reference isn't necessarily "innocent" even if you think the original work is. Print lyrics. Kipling's lines at the end provided a discernible arc to several roles, infusing the Gunga Din with courage and dignity while imposing unfamiliar humility on the soldiers he admired. See the full Youre a better man than I lyrics from Sham 69. It seems that to understand the Gunga-Din reference, one would have to read the entire poem. And, no, Kipling wasn't a racist, any more than Frederic Remington. Can you judge a man by the way he wears his hair Can you read his mind by the clothes that he wears Can you see a fat man by the pattern on his tie Then mister you're a better man than I Mister you're a better man than I Could you tell a wise man by the way he speaks or spells Is this more important than the stories … At the risk of sounding judgmental, and given the poem's historical context, it takes a shallow analysis and a prejudicial bias to claim a racist or derogatory intent in either the poem or the movie. ThomYorkeGuyGarvey92on August 14, 2010 Link. Hey, really good observation. For him, the poem was historical. Darn good movie. If you have time, visit the Royal Bombay yacht club which has a sign with the wonderful phrase "Dogs and Indians not allowed". By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy. Did China's Chang'e 5 land before November 30th 2020? Youre a better man than I lyrics belongs on the album The adventures of Hersham boys.Learn every word of your favourite song and get the meaning or …
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