The aim of this thesis is to take a critical look at the British colonial and postcolonial times by reading and analysing the short stories of authors who wrote under the British Empire and/or after its dissolution. We will ‘travel with Rudyard Kipling to India, with W. Somerset Maugham to South-eastern Asia and with Joseph Conrad to Africa. By including the tales of Salman Rushdie and Rohinton Mistry, two authors of Indian origins, focus shifts the experiences of immigrants who moved from India, a British former colony, to Great Britain and Canada. My critical ‘journey starts in the nineteenth century when the British Empire reached its climax. Kipling's personal struggle for belonging surfaces in his short stories, as he neither felt entirely British nor entirely Indian, and important themes such as the problem of inter-cultural communication between the colonizers and the native population are dealt with in his tales. Conrad's perception of imperialism was influenced both by his own experiences of imperial power in Russian-subjugated Poland, his birth place, and in Africa. From Kipling's and Conrad's short stories the focus then shifts to Somerset Maugham's ‘exotic fiction. His tales are set in the twentieth century, when the empire was weaker, but still existing. In my analysis, I shall focus on the interrelation between races, miscegenation and the desire for ‘the Other. My critical journey begins in the Victorian Empire and it ends in the modern times of Rushdie's and Mistry's postcolonial short stories. In my thesis I explore the problems of adaptation which Indian immigrants have to face in Great Britain and Canada. In this context, I shall focus on the immigrants' struggle for belonging, the difficulty of integration in the new society, and the interesting issue of the formation of a hybridized identity.