Rulers, Townsmen and Bazaars: North Indian Society in the Age of British Expansion, 1770-1870

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CUP Archive, May 19, 1988 - History - 489 pages
Widely acclaimed when it first appeared in hard covers, Dr Bayly's authoritative study traces the evolution of North Indian towns and merchant communities from the decline of Mughal dominion to the consolidation of mature Victorian empire following the 'mutiny' of 1857. The first section of the book looks at the response of the inhabitants of the Ganges Valley to the 'Time of Troubles' in the eighteenth century. The second section shows how the incoming British, were themselves constrained to build their new empire on this resilient network of towns, rural bazaars and merchant communities; and how in turn colonial trade and administration were moulded by indigenous forms of commerce and politics. The third section focuses on the social history of the towns under early colonial rule and includes an analysis of the culture and business methods of the Indian merchant family. It is based in part on the private records and histories of the business people themselves.

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India about 1785
War and society in eighteenthcentury India
Agriculture ecology and politics
Stability and change in the cities 17701810
The growth ofpolitical stability in India 17801830
The indigenous origins of the colonial economy
The NorthWestern Provinces and Oudh about 1870
Conflict and change in the cities 180057
the qasbah
The merchant family
The merchant family as a business enterprise
Towns trade and society after the Great Rebellion
Bibliographic note

The crisis of the north Indian political economy 182545 23

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About the author (1988)

Christopher Alan Bayly was born on May 18, 1945 in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, United Kingdom. He graduated from St Antony's College. He was the pre-eminent historian of India and the British Empire and a pioneer of the field of global history. He wrote numerous books during his lifetime including The Local Roots of Indian Politics; Rulers, Townsmen and Bazaars; Indian Society and the Making of the British Empire; Imperial Meridian; Empire and Information; The Origins of Nationality in South Asia; The Birth of the Modern World; and Recovering Liberties. In 2005, he received the Wolfson prize for history for his entire body of work. In 2007, he was the first scholar to be knighted "for services to history outside of Europe." He died of a heart attack on April 18, 2015 at the age of 69.

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