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Best Black Troops in the World: British Perceptions and the Making of the Sepoy 1746-1805

 
Channa Wickremesekera (Author)
Synopsis The eighteenth century was a time when British were just beginning to find their way in the cultural landscape of India. The early Orientalists were the pioneers who mapped out this landscape, the knowledge generated by them represented India as not only different but also inferior to the West. This perception of Indian inferiority extended to the military sphere as well. The inability of vast, yet undisciplined Indian armies to stand up to miniscule forces of drilled European infantry and field artillery convinced many in the British camp of an ‘invincible timidity’ in Indian soldiers. This book explores the role played by the British perceptions on Indian Culture and Indian soldiers in the formation of English East India Company’s sepoy army in the second half of the eighteenth century. It examines the influence of British perceptions on the sepoy’s place from the barrack room to the battlefield, demonstrating that prejudice was a cornerstone in the making of the Company’s Indian army.
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About the author

Channa Wickremesekera

Channa Wickremesekera obtained his Ph.D. in History from Monash University, Melbourne, Australia in 1998. He is currently based at Monash University and is engaged in post-doctoral research into Sri Lankan military history.

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Bibliographic information

Title Best Black Troops in the World: British Perceptions and the Making of the Sepoy 1746-1805
Format Hardcover
Date published: 01.01.2002
Edition 1st ed.
Language: English
isbn 8173044260
length 212p., Plates; Appendix; Glossary; Bibliography; Index; 23cm.
Subjects History