Social Scientist. v 1, no. 4 (Nov 1972) p. 47.

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Impact of Early Colonisation on Economy of South India

THE transformation of ^medieval5 into colonial economy has not been studied with adequate seriousness by Indian historians. Academic studies relating to the theme are generally haphazard and fragmentary. They are on the whole most inadequate in terms of historical analysis. It is essential now to build a method which will analyse the specific impact of colonisation in different parts of the Indian sub-continent. It is the aim of this paper to make some preliminary observations on a method of studying this vital subject and to attempt to clarify some related issues at dispute among historians.

The first part of the paper will attempt to throw some light on the outstanding relevance of Marx's method and remarks on the Asiatic mode of production, remarks of an explorative character, to any study of precapitalist society in India. It will, in particular, try to use the insights that Marx provides to indicate an approach to the scientific study of the state of South India on the eve of colonisation. The second part will deal with the impact of early colonisation on the economy of South India and will attempt to outline a method to study this impact in its many facets and in its intensification. It will, in particular, be concerned with the

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