By Radhika Singha

ISBN-10: 0195653114

ISBN-13: 9780195653113

This quantity bargains with law-making as a cultural company within which the colonial kingdom needed to draw upon current normative codes of rank, prestige and gender, and re-order them to a brand new and extra unique definition of the state's sovereign correct.

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Extra resources for A Despotism of Law: Crime and Justice in Early Colonial India

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The n:lib imprisoned Choruk who then persuaded Jhengur to accept compensation, The rnzi1lll711ah, deed of agreement, would have been lodged with the naib and the matte} concluded. but the amil sent the parties to the resident. BRC P/51127, 28 Novemb'er 1788, pp. 495-50L ' IJ Ashraflbhailtmantlr/rha""if. the respectable, the genteel; cnn/lngor: districtlevel record keepers. 14 'An account of the northern part of the district of Gorakhpur', Buchanan-Hamilton, Mss Eur D. 91, p. 3. IOL. ir: courtiers, those used to attending upon the great; gharaiyl1J: householders, cultivators.

Th this official objec,m process of ~~ dealing with r Conceptions of Sov~reip Right and Public Justice:'; <' Orientalists, Anglicists and the Islamic Law of HomiCide For Duncan one ofthe most obvious signs of a deficiency ofvigour in criminal justice was that, 'since the present Raja's accession, he has not ventured, nor will ofhimselfventure, to punish with Death, , the most notorious offenders. 61 Other European contempor- '" aries had also noted the reluctance of indigenous rulers to impose 60 For instance, if the Islamic law officer decided that the prisoner W2S guilty of wilful murder, the British judge had to ask him to declare the punjshmet1t which would have been awarded if (1) all the heirs of the slain had prosecuted the offender (2) ifall ofthem had reached the age of maturity (3) if all of them had demanded nus, retaliation.

This process fostered a cognitive reassessment of the state and its agencies at various so:ial levels, setting in motion complex currents of alienation, but also (If adjustment. At the same tiJIle, 'colonial refonnulations ofsovereigll right had to find expression through the existing agencies of :>rdcr and information. Company officials also groped for images of social order and frames of moral reference within wJ tich to emi >ed the judicial dahiis 'of the state. "k on its institutions and procedures.

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A Despotism of Law: Crime and Justice in Early Colonial India by Radhika Singha


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