ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Clubs of the British Empire

In the Club: Associational Life in Colonial South Asia by Benjamin B Cohen, Orient BlackSwan, 2015; pp xii+211, Rs 695.

This is an interesting study of the “soft power” of the British as they established their control over the territory of South Asia. The setting up of clubs provided the functionaries of the Empire with a level of uniformity of rules and behaviour as they travelled across the breadth and length of the subcontinent. As the author puts it,

Clubs were gateways for officials moving in or out of the colonial realm, and as such their spaces were a kind of buttress helping to shore up imperial power (p 52).

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