This book opens up a frequently neglected aspect of the rise of British power in India: namely, the impact of that process upon the lives the Indian people themselves for three centuries.
When the British Raj was established in India, everything changed dramatically: from the government, legal system, and policing of India to family life, gender roles, life expectancy, and the caste system. The intellectual, linguistic, and religious spheres of Indian culture were deeply influenced. And in time, India's character left indelible marks upon the British as well.
Most traditional Raj histories deal with the actions, motives, and thoughts of the British who occupied, governed, and administered the subcontinent. The Making of the Raj: India under the East India Company flips the focus and tells not of the rulers but concentrates on the Indian workers—the farmers, the millhands, the servants, and the gardeners. The book uncovers the untold and priceless tales of the individuals who were subjected to the rule of the British during the Raj, describing the impacts upon the lives of Indians themselves.
The book traces the history of British interactions with India from their beginnings in the early 1600s, through to the establishment of Raj in the wake of the Indian Mutiny of 1857. The first part provides a narrative of the transformation of the East Indian company from trading enterprise to governing authority. The second portion of the text considers the effects of these developments thematically, examining issues such as the organization of agriculture, the development of the caste system, and the myriad changes in cultural and religious life.
• A chronological account of the rise of British power in India from 1600 to 1859
• A map of the Indian sub-continent that identifies chief places mentioned in text
• An index containing analytical as well as name and subject entries
• Provides a clear, easy-to-follow, and well-structured account of a complex and often confusing period of history that laid the basis for modern India
• Focuses upon the impact of political and social events upon the lived experience of the Indian people throughout the book
• Presents a thematic treatment of a number of strategic areas of Indian life, notably the economy, social structure, culture, religion, and the experience of the state
• Surveys the process by which the East India Company assumed the governance of India and the various factors that motivated this development