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By Elizabeth Kolsky

Colonial Justice in British India describes and examines the lesser-known background of white violence in colonial India. by way of foregrounding crimes devoted by way of a often forgotten forged of ecu characters - planters, paupers, squaddies and sailors - Elizabeth Kolsky argues that violence used to be now not a good yet a normal a part of British rule within the subcontinent. regardless of the pledge of equality, colonial laws and the practices of white judges, juries and police positioned so much Europeans above the legislations, actually permitting them to escape with homicide. The failure to regulate those unruly whites published how the load of race and the imperatives of command imbalanced the scales of colonial justice. In a strong account of this era, Kolsky unearths a brand new viewpoint at the British Empire in India, highlighting the disquieting violence that perpetually observed imperial types of strength.

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Field, Some Observations on Codification hi India (Calcutta, 1880), p. 19. Nur-ul-Absar, October 1, 1872, Selectionsfrom rhe Vernacular Newspapers Published in the Punjab, North- Wesrern Provinces, Oudh, and Central Provinces (Delhi, 1872). "15 This raises a the colonizers into vexing historical question: why did law reformers like Macaulay opt to reform the Indian legal system along lines that endangered the empire's political existence? Eric Stokes argues that India offered English Utilitarians an opportunity to experiment with a legal institution that they could not implement so easily at home.

It was Bibi who, jealous of my noticing the girls in preference to herself, thus mutilated these unfortunate wretches in order to render them disgusting instead of desirable objects. She was constantly beating the girls. I understand that on her way to Patna, Bibi beat the slaves with bamboo and ordered Kunoovey to be thrown into the well due to the putrid smell emanating from her venereal sores. She warned the other servants that she would murder anyone who tried to save Kunoovey as she was her slave and she could do with her as she pleased.

The inability of the Indian laborer to seek justice for the violence committed upon hislher body was often linked to the near-death state caused by economic deprivation. In 1810, when the Calcutta Supreme Court asked an indigo cultivator named Ali why he did not lodge a formal complaint against planter J. W. K. Looker, who had confined him and his son in the stocks without food or water for nine days, Ali replied that for want of food, he could not make the journey to ~ o u r t . " ' Mortal beatings of Indian servants raised legal questions about the master's right to strike and medical ruminations on how much violence was too much for an Indian body to bear.

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