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Title of Thesis

Institute/University/Department Details
Department of History/ Bahauddin Zakariya University, Multan .
Number of Pages
Keywords (Extracted from title, table of contents and abstract of thesis)
british historiography, muslim india, oriental romanticists, sir william jones, thomas maurice, hinduism, utilitarianism, charles stewart, mark wilks, james grant duff, james tod, joseph davey cunningham, sikh, francis gladwin, utilitarians, james mill, macaulay, edward thornton, william erskine, charles grant, henry martyn, alexander duff, john clark marshman

Being the Masters of India as successors of the Muslims, British views on India, especially Muslim India has been considered as most authentic and valuable contribution to the understanding of Indo-Muslim civilization. Muslim India has been seen through the British eyes. It is British Historiography of Muslim India 1800-1857 which forms the crest of the understanding of British attitude towards the Indo-Muslims, Euro-British tradition of Indo-Muslim historiography and in the understanding of now current identities and conflicts in South Asia. It also depicts a vast arena of concepts, modules, premises, problems, technicalities, theories, issues, perceptions and misperceptions related to the area.

Although Muslim historical literature with a moral purposive background provided the antecedents to the British, yet British historiography during the period was largely influenced by the Euro-British intellectual tradition; historical, passing through Renaissance, Reformation, Scientific Revolution, Enlightenment; and the early nineteenth century trends in the European thought such as liberalism, historicism, orientalism, colonialism, industrial revolution and nationalism. Orientalism forms the key to Indian studies and colonialism the purpose of historiography. The India seen through a Western, British superior ruling "self', as an Eastern, Indian, inferior ruled "other", It appears to be an administrative dialectics or discourse, to influence the Indian policy or influenced by the Indian affairs. Although covering a variety of issues and problems, its central theme seems to be the understanding of Indian identities, and a policy demonstration in this perspective. In spite of the fact that the British analysts see the British Indian historians as "individual guerrillas", the British historical writings seem closely associated with or rather representing the western intellectual tradition. Four major streams of thought become identical in the British historiography of Muslim India on the bases of their 'views on Muslim India and their basic criterions to understand the history: Oriental Romanticists, Ethno-Regional Romanticists, Utilitarians. and Missionaries. A clear-cut demarcation among the schools is not 'possible. All seem concerned with the question of Indian identity, considering Hindus as natives and Muslims as foreigners, imperial, despotic, religiously bigoted community of fighters. They aim at strengthening the British Imperial rule in India and want to change the Indian society in European sense: westernisation, Anglicisation and Christianisation. However the four schools show their distinction from each other with an overlapping of views in coordination or in contest. Yet the treatment of Muslim India makes them clearly distinct from each other and each school represents an evolutionary change, not only within itself, but also with mutual influences to each other.

The Oriental Romanticists' criterion for the understanding of history appears to be antiquity, literature and diversity. In this perspective the ancient India forms their central theme of studies. Sir William Jones' identification of ancient Indian civilization and subsequent rise' of Indian romance and 'Indology', led to an early nineteenth century romanticists' defence of Indian civilization. They laid the blame of the degeneration of Hindu Society on the Muslim rule. The marked conflict between oriental romanticists' concept of nation based on antiquity and geography, and the state of contemporary Hindu' society as highlighted by the utilitarians and missionaries, seems to be synthesised by Malcolm and Elphinstone in the form of merger of Muslims in the Indian Nation and elevation of "a whole Indian Nation". The romanticists were of the view that Indians were a civilized society and they should be treated with civility and a cautious policy should be adopted for social change in India. However by the middle of the nineteenth century an extreme romanticism in favour of the Hindus and against the Muslims became visible.

The Ethno-Regional Romanticists identified layer of "nations" in the depth of Indian civilization on the model of oriental romanticists and advocated a treatment, having identity for a Multi-national. and Multi-cultural society. Contrary to the romanticists, utilitarians focused on the contemporary history and attached it with the Muslim period of Indian history as seen in the Gladwin's works. Mill . refused to accept the civilized status of the Hindu Society, criticizing its barbarian nature. He highlighted a positive contribution on the part of Muslims in bringing a change in the Indian society.

Thornton replied to the blame of degeneration of Hindu society as an impact of Muslim rule and pointed' out degeneration among the Muslims as an impact of the Hinduism. However the utilitarians insisted on the westernisation or Anglicisation of India through a policy of radical social change. However Erskine tried to resolve the conflict by advising a paternalistic attitude on the Mughul model.

Utilitarians used the missionaries' arguments and missionaries used utilitarian evidences. Missionaries saw the westernisation in the form of Christianisation. They insisted on an effective role of the East India Company for the conversion of the Indian Heathens.

In this way British historiography appear to be an administrative discourse. Muslims are treated as foreigners from a distance and seem not to form the central themes of the British historians, Their "self" and "other" approach failed to identify "others" and place Muslims in "others", accepting Muslim identity as a nation. None of the schools accepted the civilized status of Muslims and even placed them inferior to western civilization in their self generated criterions. Therefore it rather appears a sort of colonial apology than attempts to understand the Indian situation. On the one hand it seems to be creating a romance of Hindu nationalism and on the other hand it seems to be creating a sort of reactionary resistance among the Indian Muslims against the Brittsh.

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S. No. Chapter Title of the Chapters Page Size (KB)
1 0 Contents
265.88 KB
2 1 Introduction 1-51
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  1.1 Introduction 1
  1.2 India and Muslim India 6
  1.3 British Historiography of Muslim India 9
  1.4 Review of Literature 24
  1.5 Scope of the Study 43
3 2 Historical and Historiographical Perspective 52-90
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  2.1 Emergence of Modern Europe 53
  2.2 Enlightenment: the Foundation of New Europe 57
  2.3 The Intellectual Elements of New Europe 62
  2.4 The Practical Forces of New Europe 75
  2.5 Britain : the Leader of New Europe 86
  2.6 British India 87
  2.7 Four Major Streams of Indo-British Thought 89
4 3 The Oriental Romanticists 91-167
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  3.1 The Origin of Indian Romance 92
  3.2 Sir William Jones: A Pre-Cursor to Modern Indian Romance 95
  3.3 Antiquarian Apologetic Romanticists: Thomas Maurice's Exaggerated Antiquity of Hinduism and Denunciation of Muslim Conquests 111
  3.4 Romantic Response to the Rise of Utilitarianism: John Malcolmā€™s Administrative Problems and Muslim India 138
  3.5 Compromising Romanticists: Elphinstone's Reconciliation between Romantic and Utilitarian Thought 149
  3.6 Romantic Extremism: Sleman's Recollection of Romantic Thought on Indo-Muslim History 158
  3.7 Conclusion 165
5 4 The Ethno-Regional Romanticists 168-208
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  4.1 The Ethno-Regional Romance 168
  4.2 Charles Stewart: Muslim Rule in Bengal 171
  4.3 Mark Wilks : An Apology for the Abolition of Muslim Rule in Mysore 178
  4.4 James Grant Duff: The Rise of Marathas and Conflict of Power In India 188
  4.5 James Tod : Rajput -Muslim Relations in State and Society 193
  4.6 Joseph Davey Cunningham: Muslim Empire and the Rise of Sikh Religion and Rule 198
  4.7 Conclusion 207
6 5 The Utilitarians
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  5.1 Utilitarianism 210
  5.2 Enlightened Utilitarians : Francis Gladwin--Enlightened Bridge to Utilitarian Thought 216
  5.3 James Mill: Authoritarian Utilitarians and Romantic and Liberal Challenges to Empire 228
  5.4 Macaulay: Liberal Understanding of Religious Community 245
  5.5 Edward Thornton: The Follower and Defender of Utilitarian View 255
  5.6 William Erskine : Paternalistic Utilitarians and Synthesis of Administrative Conflict 262
7 6 The Missionaries 273-331
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  6.1 The Christian Missionaries 274
  6.2 Charles Grant: Indian Morals and Plea For the Role of Government in Missionaries' Activities 280
  6.3 Apologetic Missionaries: William Tenant -Apology and Impression 288
  6.4 Scholistical and Polemical Missionaries: Henry Martyn -the Beginning of Modern Muslim-Christian Missionary Scholasticism 295
  6.5 Missionary Cause of Social Change: Alexander Duff - Language, Literature and Social Change 307
  6.6 Missionary Officials: John Clark Marshman : Synthesis of Four Schools 319
  6.7 Conclusion 329
8 7 Summary and Conclusion 332-355
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