These essays cover a critical period of colonial history and trace some of the origins of the collapse of the imperial system in India. The essays show how the British tried to placate and thus restrict the Western-educated, how they relied on a rural India they wrongly believed to be stable, isolated and passive, and how they reluctantly admitted an `Indian` identity while still wooing local and community interest groups. The book shows how european understanding of India influenced policy, how they conflicted and changed over time, and how they contributed to the failures of British policy in India. The book also casts interesting light on various aspects of Indian politics and government.
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