The Ruling Caste: Imperial Lives in the Victorian Raj

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Macmillan, Jun 12, 2007 - History - 416 pages
3 Reviews
"[A] lavishly enjoyable book." --Tunku Varadarajan, The Wall Street Journal Between 1837 and 1901, fewer than one thousand Britons at any one time managed an empire of 300 million people spread over the vast area that now includes India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Burma. How was this possible, and what were these people like? The British administration in India took pride in its efficiency and broad-mindedness, its devotion to duty and its sense of imperial grandeur, but it has become fashionable to deprecate it for its arrogance and ignorance. In The Ruling Caste, a balanced, witty, and multi-faceted history, David Gilmour goes far to explain the paradoxes of the "Anglo-Indians," showing us what they hoped to achieve and what sort of society they thought they were helping to build.  "[A] dense and impressive new book on the civil administrators of Victoria's Indian Empire . . . Gilmour is a serious historian. He writes accessibly and even wittily, with a wealth of anecdotage and an eye for the telling story." --Shashi Tharoor, The Washington Post "Mr. Gilmour is a stylish and engaging writer . . . [He] does make the case that the civilians, however tarnished their cause in modern eyes, deserve better than they get in A Passage to India." --William Grimes, The New York Times
  

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The ruling caste: imperial lives in the Victorian Raj

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

British historian and biographer Gilmour (fellow, Royal Soc. of Literature), who has written other works dealing with 19th-century India, here examines British imperial activities during the reign of ... Read full review

Review: The Ruling Caste: Imperial Lives in the Victorian Raj

User Review  - Patricia - Goodreads

A good representative of what it is. After a slow start I quite enjoyed descriptions of life, work and play in the Indian Civil Service. Read full review

Contents

old boys
29
COMPETITION WALLAHS
43
The Career Opened to Talent Indianization Incentives
63
gr1ff1ns 69
84
DISTRICT OFFICERS
89
The PoohBahs of India Protectors Solomons
102
Touring the District Assessing the Land Famine
120
BLACK SHEEP
135
The Political Departments Diversity and Disappointment
186
MANDARINS
210
Armchairs and Clockwork Red Tape Promotions
223
The Viceroys Cabinet LieutenantGovernors
236
HUSBANDS AND LOVERS
278
The Shock of Asia The Memsahibs Routine A Sense
306
Repatriation Occupations Lyall Venerabilis Going
323
Bibliography
349

FRONTIERSMEN I 59
159
The Punjab School All along the Frontier Baluchi
171

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About the author (2007)

David Gilmour is the author of many works of literary and political history, including Curzon: Imperial Statesman (FSG, 2003) and The Long Recessional: The Imperial Life of Rudyard Kipling (FSG, 2002). He lives in Edinburgh with his wife and four children.

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