Colonial Weaving Schools and the New 'Middleman': United Provinces, India, 1905-1925 Public Deposited

Downloadable Content

Download PDF
Last Modified
  • March 22, 2019
  • Hempson, Leslie
    • Affiliation: College of Arts and Sciences, Department of History
  • At the beginning of the twentieth century, colonial officials stationed in the United Provinces, India established a series of weaving schools. Founded as a means of instructing weavers in `modern' production techniques, weaving schools performed a variety of other functions as well, chief among them the supply of essential inputs like loom accessories and yarn to weavers and the consumption of weavers' finished goods. Although colonial officials held the Indian middleman responsible for weavers' economic struggles, they did not abandon the middleman's project altogether. On the contrary, even while vilifying the Indian merchant-moneylender, they established elaborate mechanisms for duplicating many of his functions, usually through the medium of the weaving school. The logic the British attributed to their interventions in the Indian textile industry marked them as special kinds of middlemen, however, ones who might be more appropriately labeled patrons.
Date of publication
Resource type
Rights statement
  • In Copyright
  • Fletcher, W. Miles
  • Master of Arts
Degree granting institution
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Graduation year
  • 2011

This work has no parents.