British Colonialism and Tamil Society: Obliterations and Exodus

பிரிட்டிஷ் காலனியமும் தமிழ்ச் சமூகமும்: சிதைவுகளும் மற்றும் புலப்பெயர்வும்

Keywords: British Colonialism, English East India Company, Indentured Labour, Torture Commission Report, Tamils Emigration, Destruction of Indian Economy, Famines of India, Abolition of Slavery, Mauritius, Sri Lanka, Assam, Fiji, Migration from Madras Presidency


The British were the forerunners of publicizing indentured labour system in the globe. In the beginning the structure was tentatively observed in their American Colony Jamestown. Initially, the whites had also comprised with the indentured labourers category. After the black population arrived in 1619, who had subdued by the indentured labour system were mercilessly hounded by their white masters. Slavery, thus, replaced indentured system in the New World. In Mauritius, such an exigency had arisen when slavery was abolished in 1834. The exploitative experiences of their past urged them to take to the system of indentured labour to ensure prompt supply of labour for their plantation work. The slaves emancipated in the wake of slavery abolition in 1834 were in no mood to opt for plantation work. Therefore the white planters in Mauritius had to look to India for their alternative source of labour supply. While commencing the study period have restricted from 1834 to 1922. 1834 was the year in which slavery was abolished in Mauritius. 1922 was the year in which a comprehensive Act streamlining the old process of immigration was adopted by the Indian legislature. The paper has been classified into four parts. The first, second and third parts of the paper are very comprehensively discussing about the negative effects of the British colonialism, degradation of the economic state and the ground reality of the 19th century Tamil society. The concluding part of the paper has made an attempt to give an outline about the 19th century colonial Tamil Diaspora of the world.