British Involvement in the West Indies and India
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This paper discusses the influence of British involvement in the West Indies and India on the development of a sense of the British 'national' identity and politics over the period 1750-1860. In particular, the paper discusses the influence in the areas of material and economic wealth of Britain, Britain's social and cultural views of themselves and the 'others' they were in domination over and Britain's foreign policy and general political policy towards the West Indies and India.
From the Paper:"Finally, involvement in India, especially by the East India Company, directly influenced the notion of national identity and the politics of the period. As the East India company changed its very nature across the period, from a 'simple' trading company into an organisation which encompassed military, political and administrative roles, so did the role of the British state in India. Because the East India Company became more and more in control of the Indian subcontinent having to, successfully or not, manage administrative functions, the British crown became increasingly involved in altering the nature of the East India Company, thus 'Company' rule in India directly affected the politics of the period. It can be seen that Pitt motioned for Parliamentary reform in 1782, changing the nature of British politics, because of the influence the empire. Pitt stated that, 'some members of our Senate are at the command of a distant tyrant; that our Senators are no longer the representatives of British virtue but of the vices and pollutions of the East.' Pre-reform it had been seen that some seats of Parliament could literally be bought by foreign princes, and that educated representatives were sitting on behalf of rulers in India. The fact that Pitt's motion for Parliamentary reform exists shows the extent of the influence that India had on British high politics."
Sample of Sources Used:
- Hobsbawm, E, The invention of tradition, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 1983, p. 8.
- Mani, Lata, Contentious traditions: The debate on sati in colonial India, University of California Press, London, 1998, p.2
- http://www.history.ac.uk/ihr/Focus/Empire/index.html, 10/12/2006
- Howe, Stephan, Empire: a very short introduction, Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2002, p.86
- Walvin, James, Black Ivory: Slavery in the British Empire, 2nd Edition, Oxford, Blackwell Publishers, 2001, p. 5.
Cite this Term Paper:
British Involvement in the West Indies and India (2008, June 19) Retrieved October 28, 2020, from https://www.academon.com/term-paper/british-involvement-in-the-west-indies-and-india-104626/
"British Involvement in the West Indies and India" 19 June 2008. Web. 28 October. 2020. <https://www.academon.com/term-paper/british-involvement-in-the-west-indies-and-india-104626/>