Civilizing Natures: Race, Resources, and Modernity in by Kavita Philip

By Kavita Philip

Kavita Philip unravels unforeseen relationships among technological know-how, expertise, and administrative platforms in colonial India from the 1850s to the Thirties, deepening our viewpoint on carrying on with conflicts over race, assets, and empire. this can be a tale in regards to the building of nature in southern India that's deeply neighborhood and irreducibly international. via specific case reports, Kavita Philip indicates how race and nature are basic to realizing colonial modernities. via its insightful blend of methodologies from either the arts and the social sciences, Civilizing Natures casts new mild on our figuring out of the relationships among technology and faith, premodern and civilized, and surroundings and society.

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Extra resources for Civilizing Natures: Race, Resources, and Modernity in Colonial South India

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In tribal areas, however, most often in hilly forested regions such as the Nilgiris, an argument very close to this was implicitly A Local Story 39 made. Categorizing vast tracts of hill land (long used by tribal populations) as wasteland or unused land, the government initiated forest management programs and encouraged coffee and tea planters to bring the land under modern productive systems. 16 Once again, however, popular narratives are invaluable windows into the manner in which ideological constructs of the economy found their way into commonsense thinking.

He does not want to do anything, he does not care about anything, he does not value or seek or aspire to anything—which is a shade trying when your ostensible object is the reformation of him and his country. He does not much mind whether he lives or dies. [I] ha[ve] seen an Agency coolie go down with heart failure after carrying a heavy load of mangoes up a ghat, and the man crawled to a pool of water and lay down and died aimlessly in the most disinterested and casual way. . With this example in view you will not expect to hear that the Agency peoples show a quick interest in clearing jungle for cultivation, building roads or setting up sanitary houses for themselves or others; and indeed they do not.

English oaks and firs were planted . . in 1829 there were wild white strawberries, wild Ayrshire roses, and small, A Local Story 33 deep damask roses growing in Ooty. . A convalescent young officer . . 9 Ooty, like other English settlements in the hills, grew around state government official activities and the stationing of troops in a climate conducive to English patterns of life. ”10 Although the attraction of the hills came initially from what seemed to be their astonishing natural climatic and topographic similarity to England, King goes on to note, they came increasingly to be cherished as sites of the elimination of two factors that “restricted social life” in the plains.

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