Economic Change in Historical Perspective
Edited by D. Narayana, Raman Mahadevan
Routledge India – 2011 – 380 pages
This volume seeks to unravel and contextualize the so-called dichotomy of ‘old’ and ‘new’ India and what binds them together. To understand this complex process, it attempts to apply a long-term historical perspective, a different conception of the economy and cross-disciplinary approaches.
The exceptional feature of this volume is the large historical canvas of essays and its sensitivity to the regional dimension in a country as large and diverse as India. They deal with issues ranging from land and agriculture, entrepreneurship, industry and demographic trends to a critical anatomy of modern Indian economic historiography. Together these essays contribute in providing significantly new and enriching insights into the complex process of transition from colonial to post-colonial economic development. There has been a conscious effort in most cases to capture the influence of the colonial economic structures and processes in shaping the trajectory of growth and development in the post-independence period. Drawing upon a large amount of extremely rich and varied data and information on the socio-economic trends, the book is lucid, well-crafted and reader-friendly.
D. Narayana is Reserve Bank of India Chair Professor at Centre for Development Studies, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala.
Raman Mahadevan is Professor, Institute of Development Alternatives, Chennai, Tamil Nadu.