Willoughby's Minute: The Treaty of Nownahar and Sindh's Annexation

Willoughby's Minute: The Treaty of Nownahar and Sindh's Annexation

by Matthew A. Cook


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Willoughby's Minute: The Treaty of Nownahar and Sindh's Annexation by Matthew A. Cook

Histories often link British actions in Sindh to an aggressive anti-Russian imperial policy in Afghanistan (i.e., the Great Game). While these histories capture the politics and policies that surround British imperialism in the 1840s, they also strip Sindh's history of complex local interactions. In this historiography, indigenous players and circumstances are lost to the Great Game as the only legitimate context for understanding British actions in Sindh. Willoughby's Minute, which describes events surrounding the 1842 Treaty of Nownahar, illustrates how a fraud by a local Talpur ruler named Mir Ali Morad informs Sindh's subsequent annexation by the British. The Minute also demonstrates how a local treaty that did not involve the British provides an alternative genealogy to historically contextualize British debates about the East India Company's actions in Sindh. This genealogy focuses not on the Great Game but a debate secretly involving the Minute's author and his beliefs about the institutional relationship between civil and military authority within the Company.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780199068258
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Publication date: 02/01/2014
Pages: 350
Product dimensions: 5.80(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Matthew A. Cook is Associate Professor at the Department of History and the Department of Language and Literature at the North Carolina Central University, USA. His past teaching appointments include: North Carolina State University, New York University, Columbia University, Hofstra University, and Duke University. His research focus is on Sindh, colonialism in South Asia, and the methodological conjunction of anthropology and history. He is editor or co-editor of three books by Oxford University Press: Observing Sindh: Selected Reports by Edward Paterson Del Hoste; Interpreting the Sindhi World: Essays on Society and History; and his latest Willoughbhy's Minute: Treaty of Nownahar, Fraud, and the British in Sindh. Cook recently completed a book manuscript titled, Annexation and the Unhappy Valley: The Colonization of Sindh by the East India Company.

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