Author Archives: Claude Markovits

About Claude Markovits

Claude Markovits is senior research fellow emeritus at the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Paris. A historian of modern India, with a particular interest in the economic and social history of the colonial era, he recently developed an interest in global history. His publications include The Global World of Indian Merchants, 1750–1947: Traders of Sind from Bukhara to Panama (Cambridge University Press, 2000), and India and the World: A History of Connections c. 1750-c. 2000 (Cambridge University Press, forthcoming).

Cosmopolitanism and Imperialism in Nineteenth-Century British India

Abstract: In this essay, I examine the link between cosmopolitanism and imperialism in colonial India. In the late eighteenth century, colonial rulers redefined Britishness as a racial category, excluding from it all those who were not of pure white British stock. This racial regime led a growing group of Western-educated Indian literati to adopt cosmopolitanism as an alternative strategy of empowerment. But their cosmopolitanism took different forms: some opted for imperial cosmopolitanism and sought a form of imperial citizenship; others found political models outside Britain, Continue reading → Continue reading →