1. How has colonialism impacted our lives? You can either focus on one aspect like culture or politics or treat them together.
- British colonialism which was based on capitalism directly interfered to ensure greatest profit and benefit to British capitalism.
- Every policy was geared towards the strengthening and expansion of British capitalism.
- It changed the law of land as:
- It changed not just land ownership laws but decided even what crops would be grown and what ought not to be.
- It altered the way production and distribution of goods take place.
- It started interfering with the manufacturing sector.
- It started occupying forests and cleared trees and started plantation.
- Colonialism introduced the forest acts that changed the lives of tribals/ pastoralists.
- It also led to movements of people from one part to another in India which ultimately lead to the growth of nationalist and anti colonial awareness in the Indian masses.
The colonialism affected our lives culturally, politically and more or less combining the two.
Due to mobility and exposure to modem western thoughts people started thinking about freedom, liberty and human rights which provided basis for India freedom movement.
Colonialism also had significant social influences e.g. Indian society particularly the emerging middle class was gradually changed i.e. their life style, eating habits, languages and clothing.
Political impact of colonialism on Indian society was significant our national movement, the political system, the parliamentary and legal system, constitution, education system, the police traffic rules by and large the whole political structure changed due to the colonial impact.
2. Industrialisation and urbanisation are linked processes. Discuss.
- Industrialisation refers to the emergence of machine production, based on the use of inanimate power resources like steam or electricity.
- A prime feature of industrial societies is that a large number of people are employed in factories, offices or shops rather than agriculture.
- Over 90% of people are living in cities and towns where most jobs are to be found and new job opportunities are created e.g. in Britain the first society to undergo industrialisation was also the earliest to move from being rural to an urban community.
- During British period industrialisation in some regions had led to decline of old urban centres.
- The process of urbanisation during the colonial period caused decline of earlier urban centres and the emergence of new colonial cities e.g. cities like Surat and Masulipatnam lost their charm and Bombay and Madras emerged as important cities.
- When manufacturing units boomed in Britain, traditional export of cotton and silk manufactures of India declined because they could not compete to Manchester.
- At the end of 19th century, with the development of mechanised factory industrialisation, few towns became heavily populated.
- Other than eastern India where British penetration was earliest and deepest, survived much longer e.g. village crafts in the interior could survive. They were affected only with the spread of railways.
- The government of India after Independence played a significant role in protecting and promoting industrialisation.
- Because of recent policies related to liberalisation and globalisation led to vast expansion of cities.