Did Britain Help India?

Today in class we discussed whether or not Britain’s rule over India was good for the country (India).  A few points were brought up such as the effect it had on the people’s identity as Indians and the effect it had on their economy.  People brought up the idea that Britain helped India by essentially updating with the introduction of new infrastructure and new technology.  What I wonder is if we consider India, and only India (not the world around it or any of the things the world around it did), were the Indians really that much better off under the British?  Yes, the British made improvements to the conditions of human rights in India but they also messed India up economically.  So, in the long run, did Britain really help India that much?

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2 Responses to Did Britain Help India?

  1. Aaron Stagoff-Belfort says:

    While I believe there were some obvious advantages to the British helping India out, for the most part harm was done. While it’s nice for India to be up to speed with the modern world, the British disturbed a group of people who did not want the British to occupy them. By occupying India, the British created more death and destruction then if they left India alone. By ruining the economy and plunging India into further depression and despair, the British short term failures outweigh the long term benefits of modern civilization

  2. Dany Sid says:

    From Michael Parenti’s book “Against Empire” we find he says: “The massive poverty we associate with India was not that country’s
    original historical condition. British imperialism did two things:
    first, it ended India’s development, then it forcibly underdeveloped
    that country.” This quote points out that Britain did exploit India’s resources and if Britain had not done that, then India wouldn’t have been regarded as a poor country. It’s also telling us that Britain almost ended India’s development and India couldn’t reach its full potential.
    Denis Judd a respected historian said in his book “Empire” that “Imperialists pretended that imperial rule was based on the consent of the colonized people, but the British Empire could never be based on consent.” So this quote strictly states that in a sense the British Empire only cared about its own benefits. This means that you can’t completely agree with the fact that India benefitted more from the empire. India could have benefitted more, if Britain had allowed it too.

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