Abstract

Abstract:

This paper revisits the relationship between capitalism and colonialism by examining the case of British India under East India Company rule (1757–1858). The Marxist-nationalist historiography claims that colonialism generated a steady drain of wealth and that this drain was responsible for Indian famines, poverty, inequality, and economic retardation. I use the East India Company budgets to measure the extent of the wealth that was drained through three direct channels: oppressive land taxes, unproductive expenditures on the imperial army and civil administration, and the unrequited export of commodities from India to Britain. I conclude that available figures lend empirical support to the Marxist interpretation. There was a drain of wealth and its effects on the underdevelopment of former European colonies deserve further research.

pdf

Additional Information

ISSN
2576-6406
Print ISSN
2576-6392
Pages
pp. 154-195
Launched on MUSE
2021-02-06
Open Access
No
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.