Hay Player

Shashi Tharoor talks to Oliver Balch

Inglorious Empire: What the British did to India

Hay Festival 2017, 

In the 18th century India’s share of the world economy was as large as Europe’s. By 1947, after two centuries of British rule, it had decreased six-fold. British imperialism justified itself as enlightened despotism for the benefit of the governed. Tharoor, an historian, novelist and politician, takes on and demolishes this position, demonstrating how every supposed imperial ‘gift’ - from the railways to the rule of law, was designed in Britain’s interests alone and funded Britain’s Industrial Revolution.

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Shashi Tharoor talks to Oliver Balch