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British Involvement in India (18 th -19 th Centuries)

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Presentation on theme: "British Involvement in India (18 th -19 th Centuries)"— Presentation transcript:

1 British Involvement in India (18 th -19 th Centuries)

2 British Presence in India: 18 th century Until 1750s – coastal presence During and after 1750s – gradual military dominance and territorial acquisitions

3 The British East India Company (EIC) Trade monopoly in Asia (since 1600) *3,000 shareholders *Annual profits of 2 million pounds *Headquarters/directors in London India – focal point of EIC trade – raw cotton and woven cotton cloth for import EIC settlements – Bombay, Madras, and Calcutta

4 EIC Trade in India – First part of the 18 th century Sophisticated economy Profitable for Europeans – no military intervention Security/stability guaranteed by the Mughals and nawabs

5 Company Trade – “Company Men” Ambitious reps of the EIC Relied on personal diplomatic skills and private armies of sepoys to protect their’s and company’s interests. Sepoys – Indian mercenary troops employed and trained by Europeans.

6 British in Bengal Bengal – territory in NE India British presence – Calcutta 1756 – Nawab overruns Calcutta Robert Clive (“company man”) and British/sepoy troops overthrow Calcutta’s nawab By 1765 – the EIC rules Bengal (granted by a weak Mughal Emperor)

7 Robert Clive and Expansion of the British Presence in India Robert Clive: *Arrived to India in 1743 – civil service for the EIC *Transferred to the military service of the EIC *Lost election to the House of Commons in England *Return to India in 1756 to take control of the British forces in Madras *Won the Battle of Plassey (1757), securing British control over Bengal Internal weakness and political fragmentation in India Euro.interference in India’s politics / “kingmakers”!!!

8 European Rivalries in India The British vs. The French (and the Dutch) Seven Years’ War (ends in1763) Battle of Plassey (1757) – British win control of Bengal / decline of French presence in India

9 Territorial Expansion in India – end of the 18 th century British gov’t and EIC directors – against Company – involved in local politics/wars Annexes, adds territories Economic pressures / transformation

10 British government of Indian territories (The British Raj) Largely done by the natives (indirect control and administration) Policies of “westernization, Anglicization, and modernization” - tax/property reforms, Christian missionaries, Support of local traditions End of the century – India must be “saved” from backwardness…(education, religion, technology, economy, superstition, etc.)

11 British presence in India – 19 th century (The British Raj) Before 1857 – Combination of reforms and support for traditions After 1857 – Direct control and conservatism!

12 Before 1857: Mixture of “New and Old” “Civilizing” India included fostering “a class of persons, Indian in blood and colour, but English in taste, in opinions in morals and in intellect.” (Thomas Macaulay, 1835) British presence strongest in urban areas At the same time, the authority of Brahmins and caste separation grew stronger.

13 Causes of 1857 Sepoy Uprising (Mutiny – British perspective) Long term causes: *Policies of Westernization (especially under the Marquess of Dalhousie, Governor – General in 1840s) - ”Doctrine of Lapse” + exclusion of high ranking Indians from civil and military offices - Perceived threat from Christianity (attack on tradition – sati, child marriage, infanticide, permission for widow’s to remarry)

14 Territorial Expansion under Lord Dalhousie

15 Sepoy Rebellion – Long Term Causes – cont. Economic causes: - Enforcement of Sale Laws - Increase in taxes / limited investment opportunities - British export and import policies (manufactured goods undermine Indian cotton industry) - Economic expansion (roads, canals, telegraph) at the expense of temples and shrines

16 Importance of Indian Cotton (raw material) to the British Cotton exports from India

17 Sepoy Rebellion – causes cont. Military causes: (immediate causes) -The General Services Enlistment Act (1856) -Challenges to Sepoy privileges (recruitment from various ethnic groups: Sikhs, Gurkhas, etc.) -Breech loaded Lee- Enfield rifle (cartridges greased with animal fat)  immediate cause

18 The Sepoy Rebellion May, 1857 – July, 1858* Massacres/atrocities committed by each side Rebel leaders: Nana Sahib and Bahkt Khan Last Mughal ruler: Bahadur Shah – installed by the rebels as ruler in Delhi during the rebellion British forces and sepoy troops loyal to them put down the rebellion. Bahadur Shah

19 What were the results of the uprising? Mughal rule/dynasty – officially ends The Government of India Act of 1858 (transfer of power from the EIC to the “Crown”) Queen Victoria declared the Queen of India (Secretary of State for India (London) – Viceroy (governor-general) in India. British policy: conservatism and emphasis on traditions

20 The Colonial (Imperial Stage) British policies in India: *Doctrine of Lapse – suppressed *The Viceroy’s council included Indians *Indian rajas’ treaties and Indian people’s traditions, customs, and religions were to be respected (less support for Christian missionaries) *Taxation system reformed (emphasis on export of Indian raw materials) Military recruitment from “martial races” – loyal to the British during the Sepoy rebellion Durbars

21 Durbars Doesn’t this remind you of Theatre States? Elaborate ceremonies/parades designed to legitimize and celebrate political power of the British rule and native Indian elites.

22 Social and economic changes in India – 19 th century British investment in infrastructure / public works (railroads, canals, harbors, etc.) India’s main exports – cash crops (cotton, opium, tea, silk) Implementation of western style technologies, laws, and education Rise of India’s urban elites (merging of Western education and Indian cultural heritage) Greater mobility of population (+) - emergence of common national identity (Pan-Indian) (-) – spread of diseases (ex: kala mari)

23 The Indian Civil Service (ICS) The ICS – Elite government officials/bureaucrats who administered British India after Composition of the ICS: *~1,000 officials – chosen by merit / British men – advantages in recruitment – based on racist attitudes *1870 – 1 Indian member *1887 – 57 Indian members *1914 – 5% Indian members * Indians and 588 British

24 Development of Indian Nationalism The Sepoy Rebellion - ? Economic development = Pan-Indian identity Early leaders – Western educated elites / middle class (ex: Rammohun Roy) Indian National Congress (1885) – early demands focused on economic opportunities and social changes within the British Raj.

25 Work Cited: %20A%20Procession_thumb%5B2%5D.jpg Church-Of.html


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