Hindus support for British Raj.

M.S. Islam

Ad Honorem
Jul 2012
In Maratha-ruled regions such as Chhatisgarh, they would actively misrule and surrender the interests of the region for the sake of the British.
View attachment 22269

Source: Ashutosh Kumar, Rethinking State Politics in India: Regions Within Regions, Routledge
Can you please post the next page? How does the last sentence end?

Edit: Alright, looked it up myself.
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Oct 2015
I don't believe colonization was ever any sort of sin, true even today. It all depends on which side of the fence you are standing. The same Indians who hate British colonization, turn on a dime and take much pride in stating that Indians colonized SE Asia a thousand years ago. Kashmiri Muslims claim that Hindu India is treating Kashmir as their colony and are not letting them go. They have been rebelling for independence for more than 70 years, longer than Indians did to get their independence. So if one morally justifies 1857 rebellion, one should also justify Kashmiri rebellion.
Is there evidence to show that SE Asia was "colonized" by Indians or Indians ruled there? SE Asians adopted Dharmic religions - Buddhism and Hinduism - but the rulers were ethnic SE Asians as far as I know.
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Oct 2015
You imply that British authors hold benign views of colonial rule. Why can't that be extended to say that Indian authors hold hostile views of colonial rule?
Yes. Historians can be arranged in all shades of gray: from ultra-colonialists to ultra anti-colonialists.
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Oct 2015
Yes. "Empire" by Niall Ferguson, an excellent, detailed, well balanced book.
Naill Ferguson:

Prof Andrew Porter in his review of Naill's book:

"Ferguson’s own ‘on-balance-beneficial’ legacy of empire offers no new insight but rather the refurbishment of a much older conventional – some would say Whiggish – wisdom. Far from updating our view of empire, in highlighting the interplay of ‘liberty’ and ‘slavery’, Ferguson looks backward to an outdated literature, and at times is consequently wide of the mark – as when assessing the significance of the Durham Report as ‘the book which saved the empire’ (pp. 111-13)." [1]

Extreme Views:

This gentleman (Naill) holds rather extreme views

William Dalrymple says of him: "He is known for his contrarian views and his defence of the British empire. Naill himself explains his stance as: 'He once called himself "a fully paid-up member of the neo-imperialist gang" following the invasion of Iraq.' Wikipedia states on him: "Ferguson has defended the British Empire, many historians and commentators have considered his views both "audacious" and "wrong", "informative", "ambitious" and "troubling"." [2]

The Ascent of Money:

By the way, I had listened to Naill Ferguson's 5-hours documentary "The Ascent of Money" available thru Youtube. It is excellent.

Some Conclusion:

What I am trying to say is that motives of colonizers must be discussed along with the actions they took.

  • What did the British man gain out of sailing 7000+ nautical miles from London to Bombay/Madras for trading in India - a place where sometimes half of those who came died of Malaria & other diseases? [3] What potential reward made him to take this risk?
  • What was he trying to gain fighting a war of conquest so far away from his homeland? And sometimes dying with hardly anyone to mourn him?
Answers to these questions alone tells us the rationale behind, purpose of, and impact of colonization. Answers tell us what the colonizers were trying to achieve / achieved. Everything else was a by product, or unintended consequences. If we ignore their motivations, then risk is we get caught up focussing on the unintended consequences.

[1] Empire: How Britain Made the Modern World | Reviews in History
[2] Niall Ferguson - Wikipedia
[3] 7059 nautical miles is London-Bombay distance after the Suez Canal was built in 1869. Prior to that, distance may have been double.
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Forum Staff
May 2013
Albuquerque, NM
Rajeev, actually proper Historians tend to cluster around the Mode and Medians (esp. when they are close) rather than be a part of either end of the Bell. Once a Historian begins to have an agenda we begin to lose our objectivity and are converted from History to Partisan closed mindedness. Historians worth their salt, are constantly trying to know and understand human events. Partisans almost always believe they know and understand, and as a consequence no longer seriously look for answers to their fundamental questions. History is a rational pursuit, and that takes dispassionate study of the primary factors. The Historian tries to see the object(s) of their study within a narrowly defined hypothesis, seeks out the best available information from all sources, weighs their impact and importance, and then comes to a tentative conclusion. Know how difficult it is to find even consensus, good Historians know that their conclusions might be successfully challenged before their ink is dry.

Partisans, on the other hand, leap to conclusions in the heat of their passion. They believe they know the Truth of things, and so any challenge is regarded as an attack. Partisans take their views from sources that a proper Historian would generally relegate to the trash bin. Partisans of almost any form of human behavior tend to be activists who want the whole world to agree with their conclusions, and their conclusions are almost always decided in fits of passion without looking for anything that challenges their passions. History is a discipline, Partisans haven't the time or inclination to step back and control their emotions.

Serious Historians, as opposed to those who present themselves as historians, aren't found in extreme positions ... usually.
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Nov 2008
Colonization was the original sin which sort of morally justifies the 1857 rebellion. What do you think of this please?
This seems to me to be a specious argument, if I`m understanding your statement correctly. Colonization and its close relative imperialism have been the norm throughout history until recently, so suggesting colonialism as a sin in the context of the past, of history, when it was regarded as normal seems to be a weak argument to use.

Is Niall Ferguson's book on Rothschilds any good, in your opinion?
I have never read that book so I cannot comment. Sorry.
Oct 2015
Thanks @Asherman for taking time to comment. It is easy to understand them but difficult to put in practice. This forum is a good place to check out one's ideas with others interested in a subject.

If you feel that I have pressed some of my views a little too hard, please do point out those specifically. I am genuinely open to feedback.

Oct 2015
Is Niall Ferguson's book on Rothschilds any good, in your opinion?
The video series "The Ascent of Money" mentions two points:

(i) Reason why & how the Jews became richer than Christians [1]

(ii) Rothschild family lived spread across countries at war with each other. This afforded them updated information. They were also politically neutral in business - the brother in London would advance loan to Govt of England and the one in Paris to Govt of France.

There are other interesting things about history of economic growth (mostly since c. 1600 till date). Bangladesh is a growing economy and you are likely to enjoy the series on Youtube.

[1] From 16:00 minutes in https ://www. youtube.com/watch?v=JAbVltqySrA&list=PLdUhtBaYhORE4Pbvx5RjTyqussT7ktiBQ&index=1
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