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The British Left and IndiaMetropolitan Anti-Imperialism, 1885-1947$
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Nicholas Owen

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780199233014

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2008

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199233014.001.0001

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India and the Labour Party, 1922–8

India and the Labour Party, 1922–8

(p.136) 5 India and the Labour Party, 1922–8
The British Left and India

Nicholas Owen (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines Labour's evolving Indian policy in the 1920s and early 1930s, focusing on two interrelated developments. The first is Labour's closer engagement with the machinery of imperial governance, especially during its two periods of minority government in 1924 and 1929-31. It is argued that officials in Britain and India managed to prevent ‘linked-up’ campaigning in 1924, but did so less successfully from 1929-31. The second development was Labour's troubled relationship with the increasingly alien Gandhian Congress. This revived the question briefly smothered by Tilak: was Congress really a modernizing, progressive force or not? Labour's answer to this question was affected by the emergence of a distinctive British trade union view of Indian political development, which is also explored in the chapter.

Keywords:   imperial governance, Indian National Congress, Mohandas Gandhi, trade unions

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