By Peter Robb
N this assortment written over a interval of just about twenty years, Peter Robb, a massive historian of the Empire, explores the connections among agrarian coverage, profit, estate legislations, and advertisement creation; and the emergence of political identities. He investigates matters like monetary improvement, tenancy acts, peasant stratification, "capitalist" agriculture, and definitions of work relating to the British Empire.
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Extra info for Peasants, Political Economy, and Law: Empire, Identity, and India
Yhad to make greater use of debt through mortgages or the-enticement of harvest loans at much higher rates than under the asarriiwa:rarrangements. A financial compensation was necessary to provide the same level'Ofcontrol as smaller loans offered in conjunction with tenurial subordination. The·factories had first consolidated their relatiops with the raiyats in times of hardship by offering credit on more favourable terms than prqfessio~;i'~one~f~n~~rs. Quite suddenlr, this practice develpp;d,,int~ 'Yhat could be regardeg,as ~ version of the thikadari,system appliep d,irec;tlyto t4e raiyats.
They first began to seek expert advice only in 1897, when the dangers were already imminent. Their questions could not be answered without experiments on the yield of dye rather than the weight of the crop. raiyats' rather than factory lands; but no certainties. The botanist's view was':thatthe real failure of the planters was ignorance of the plant that tHey were actually rusing.. Norre had 'made the 'Slightest'effort to follow the time immemorial usages in seed production'; they had,merely taken what was on offer in Kanpur, Delhi, 'Ui:'Molfan in the hope that if the seed was expensive, it would be good·enouglr:23 Yet at a deeper level the unpreparedness bf the industry related to the fact that it had been no more 'modern', tliat.
Irrthe ... fields set aside for indigo .. '. The dispute was prosecuted through the ,:ourts and with the government. 'A common fund was raised for contesting cases. ' Arenas for resolving the argument were also provided by an official investigation and. report, itivolving the planters' association. The remedies were equally generalized. and a local by-law reducing the area to be set aside for indigo cultivation. The terms of the raiyats' complaints themselves anticipated•these procedures and bases•for a solution.