The History of India

In The Master’s Presence.


The Making of A Eurasian Community in British India 1773-1833. 

by Christopher Hawes.

As early as the 1830’s, Eurasians (later called Anglo-Indians) of British birth already exceeded the number of British civilians in colonial India. At the time of India’s independence they outnumbered all British residents, yet  there has been little historical attention to the development of this mixed-race community, the problems which it faced (social, economic and attitudinal), nor to the questions which its rise posed to British authority. Sometimes these were hypothetical. Could, for instance, a large mixed-race population of British descent cause political danger to British interests in India, as had the colonists of America? Other questions raised by a fast growing mixed-race population which identified closely with its British fathers were practical. How to educate and employ them? Were they to be treated as British or Indians? The sixty years between 1773 and 1833 determined British paramountcy in India. Those years were formative too, for British Eurasians. By the 1820’s Eurasians were an identifiable and vocal community of significant numbers, particularly in the main Presidency towns. They were valuable to the administration of government, although barred in the main from higher office. The ambition of their educated elite was to be accepted as British subjects, not to be treated as native Indian; an aspiration which was finally rejected in the 1830’s. This study of the Eurasian Community in India is the first serious work on the subject and is an invaluable overview of a previously undocumented area of British Indian History. The author, Christopher Hawes is a graduate of St. John’s College Oxford, where he read modern history. His subsequent business career in marketing, advertising and the media included 20 years as a director of an Indian company. He was awarded his doctorate in 1993 as a post graduate of the School of Oriental & African Studies, University of London.

Poor Relations was first published by Curzon Press, London, in 1996, and only a last few copies are still available. 

Format: 8vo hardback, pp: xv/217. with b/w illustrations. 1st edition.


Price: £14.00  

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