SOAS Research Online

A Free Database of the Latest Research by SOAS Academics and PhD Students

[skip to content]

Ghosh, Sankar K. (1949) The influence of western, particularly English, political ideas on Indian political thought, with special reference to the political ideas of the Indian National Congress (1885-1919). PhD thesis. SOAS University of London. DOI:

Text - Submitted Version
Download (112MB) | Preview


The influence of English constitutional doctrines is direct and clear upon the early Congressmen and "moderates" (Chapters I - II). Their demands were tardily and partially conceded by the Morley-M into and Montagu-Chelmsford reforms (Chapters VI - VII). The ultimate political ideal of the "moderates", and even of the home rulers (Appendix I), was colonial self-government (Chapter IV - B). The "extremists", who drew some inspiration from the Irish Sinn Fein movement (Chapter III), and the "terrorists", who followed the violent methods of their Russian namesakes (Chapter V - A), were utterly dissatisfied with the rate of political progress that the "moderate" method of political agitation had secured. Compared to the "moderates", the "extremists" and "terrorists" were more influenced by Hindu religion and culture. The reaction of religious reformers (Arya Samajists and Vivekananda), and leading thinkers (Aurobindo, Gandhi, Tagore, Coomaraswamy, and Her Dayal) to Western ideas is shown in a chapter on "Cultural Nationalism and Western Ideas". The Western contact stimulated, in social matters, movements against the undemocratic institution of caste, std, in economic matters, movements in favour of the adoption of modern industrial methods (Chapter IX). The primary sources utilized for this thesis have been of the following nature:- proceedings of Congress, other conferences, Governor-General's Legislative Council, Parliament; speeches, writings and memoirs; periodicals published in India as well as in Great Britain; and newspapers voicing opposite views, for example, The Bengalee and The Pioneer Mail. As Bengal's contribution in ideas on politics and cultural nationalism was particularly important, Bengali sources have been used extensively. Marathi sources could not be used owing to the ignorance of that language. On political questions, not only the opinions of Indians but also the reactions of Anglo-Indian administrators and publicists, and English politicians have been discussed. But the political ideas of the Muslim Leaguers have practically been left out.

Item Type: Theses (PhD)
SOAS Departments & Centres: SOAS Research Theses > Proquest
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 16 Oct 2018 15:20

Altmetric Data


Download activity - last 12 monthsShow export options
Downloads since deposit
6 month trend
6 month trend
Accesses by country - last 12 monthsShow export options
Accesses by referrer - last 12 monthsShow export options

Repository staff only

Edit Item Edit Item