Useful Friendship

Europeans and Indians in Early Calcutta
Author(s): 
Robb, Peter
ISBN: 
9780198099185
Date published: 
July 2014
Hardback |c c |d
Price: 
£31.99

Robb's portrayal of Calcutta around 1800 again focuses on middling Europeans and the workings of friendship. It shows friendly norms and networks underwriting credit, securing jobs, shaping work-practices, facilitating town-development, and mediating for law and administration, while mostly excluding Indian employers, partners, agents, and employees. Europeans' personal experiences and mores assisted the evolution and acceptance of public regulation, and the convenient invention of a 'virtuous' British imperial identity, while Europeans and Indians often displayed mutual failures of inclusion and understanding.