From 11:00PM PDT on Friday, July 1 until 5:00AM PDT on Saturday, July 2, the Shmoop engineering elves will be making tweaks and improvements to the site. That means Shmoop will be unavailable for use during that time. Thanks for your patience!
We have changed our privacy policy. In addition, we use cookies on our website for various purposes. By continuing on our website, you consent to our use of cookies. You can learn about our practices by reading our privacy policy.
© 2016 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.

Guide Mentor

Character Role Analysis

Natural Instincts

No character in "Rikki-Tikki-Tavi" acts as the guide or mentor. Rikki-tikki has no Merlin or Yoda or Morpheus to call his own. But he does have his natural instincts to learn from.

Rikki-tikki is "eaten up from nose to tail with curiosity," and this curiosity allows him to learn just as if he had a mentor figure to teach him (7). His fighting skills are also naturally "inherited from his family" (35), and he knows a "mongoose's business in life [is] to fight and eat snakes" (25). In other words, Rikki-tikki doesn't need a Merlin character to tell him to go fight the dragon, because he's going to do it anyway. That's just how he rolls.


Advertisement