The map in King Solomon’s Mines: a reflection of Victorian sexism and racism.
King Solomon’s Mines is a novel by H. Rider Haggard, first published in 1885. The story is set in the Kingdom of Basutoland, now Lesotho, in southern Africa, and follows the adventures of a young man named Allan Quatermain.
The novel has been adapted for film several times, most notably in 1950, when it was made into a film starring Stewart Granger and Deborah Kerr.
The book is notable for its time because it portrays Africans in a positive light, as opposed to the typical colonial view of Africans as savages. It is also one of the first adventure stories to feature a treasure map.
2. The map in King Solomon’s Mines
One of the most important features of the novel is the map that Allan Quatermain and his companions use to find the lost city of Kukuanaland. The map is full of racist and sexist stereotypes.
For example, the tip of a mountain is described as a “nipple”, while the compass logo is referred to as a “breast”. The female body is used as a map, with various landmarks being compared to breasts, buttocks, and even genitalia.
3. The use of terms like “nipple” to describe the tip of a mountain
This kind of language would not be out of place in a Victorian gentlemen’s club, but it is quite shocking to find it in a mainstream novel. It shows how deeply ingrained sexism was in Victorian society.
4. “Breast” to describe the compass logo
The use of the word “breast” to describe the compass logo is also quite sexist. It suggests that women are nothing more than objects to be gazed upon and desired.
5. The female body as a map
The use of the female body as a map is both sexist and racist. It suggests that African women are nothing more than sexual objects, and that their only purpose is to serve white men’s needs.
6. Colonialism and the map in King Solomon’s Mines
The map in King Solomon’s Mines is full of colonial stereotypes and biases. Africa is portrayed as an untamed wilderness, full of danger and savagery. The only people who are shown any respect are white men. Africans are either portrayed as noble savages or barbaric brutes.
7. The race and sex bias in the map
The map in King Solomon’s Mines is extremely biased against both women and Africans. It shows how deeply ingrained sexism and racism were in Victorian society.
The map in King Solomon’s Mines is full of racist and sexist stereotypes. It is a product of its time, and reflects the deep-seated sexism and racism of Victorian society.