The Economic Impact Of British Colonial Rule In India

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After almost two-hundred years of Western integration, one could visualize India’s prosperous progress, yet this was not the case. Mark Davis succinctly summarizes the economic impact of British colonial rule in South Asia in one sentence, “there was no increase in India’s per capita income from 1757 to 1947” (Davis: 311). Imperial rule brought technological improvements into India and helped India integrate into the world trading market. Yet these advancements were canceled out as periods of agricultural instability led to a deterioration of economic conditions in India, and any profit made in India was either brought back to Britain or quickly absorbed by the poor in India leading to little improvement in economic life for villagers and peasants in India. Though the British tried to distance themselves from moneylender system, Davis describes the British as “both father and mother…show more content…
Though the traditional system was far from perfect, it functioned well in Indian society. The new system along with loose enforcement by the British led to diminished value of property rights, hence those who owned land grew poorer while working harder. This led to a deterioration of economic status for many villagers while a few moneylenders grew richer, widening the income inequality gap. Though these farmers were poor before the introduction of the British Raj, these money-lending systems tolerated by the British exacerbated their poverty. Many villagers were upset with this new system, due to its inability to allow peasant agriculturers to develop into capitalist farmers (Davis: 326). Upset, villagers protested, leading to the Uprising of 1875, anti-moneylender riots in West India, causing the British crown to take over for the non-adept East India Trading Company and further corroding economic progress for

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