Plants, power and productivity: the East India Company and cotton imperialism in early nineteenth-century India.
Backdoor Broadcasting Company, London, UK.
This paper focuses on how plant dissemination and experimentation were closely implicated in the East India Company's quest to establish political hegemony over the rural populations of the newly conquered territories of western India. It examines the motivations underlying, and outcomes of, the first botanical garden experiments in western India and the attempts to introduce foreign varieties of cotton. It reveals the flawed assumptions of colonial rural governance strategies that paid little attention to the ecologies of local peasant cultivator livelihoods.
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