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Law and the Economy in Colonial India - Chicago Scholarship Online
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Law and the Economy in Colonial India

Tirthankar Roy and Anand V. Swamy


At independence from British colonial rule (1947), India inherited from the Raj a complex legal system, including elaborate laws about private property and commercial contracts. Opinions differ on the quality of the legacy. Some historians suggest that the legal system served imperial power, others that it helped trade and enterprise grow. This book revisits the debate with a careful analysis of the origin of property and contractual laws. It uncovers two distinct ways that laws emerged. On the one hand, with law on property, especially agricultural land, indigenous rules, local power, politic ... More

Keywords: British Indian law, Raj, commercial contracts, corporate law, imperial

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2016 Print ISBN-13: 9780226387642
Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: May 2017 DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226387789.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Tirthankar Roy, author
London School of Economics and Political Science

Anand V. Swamy, author
Williams College