Hooghly: The Global History of a River
Publisher: C Hurst & Co Publishers Ltd
The Hooghly a tributary of the Ganges flowing south to the Bay of Bengal is now little known outside of India. Yet for centuries it was a river of truly global significance attracting merchants missionaries mercenaries statesmen labourers and others from Europe Asia and beyond. 'Hooghly' seeks to restore the waterway to the heart of global history. Focusing in turn on the role of and competition between those who struggled to control the river--the Portuguese the Mughals the Dutch the French and finally the British who built their imperial capital Calcutta on its banks--the author considers how the Hooghly was integrated into global networks of encounter and exchange and the dramatic consequences that ensued. Travelling up and down the river Robert Ivermee explores themes of enduring concern among them the dynamics of modern capitalism and the power of large corporations; migration and human trafficking; the role of new technologies in revolutionising social relations; and the human impact on the natural world. The Hooghly's global history he concludes may offer lessons for India as it emerges as a world superpower.
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