Cambridge Imperial and Post-Colonial Studies Series

Hybrid Knowledge in the Early East India Company World

Authors: Winterbottom, Anna

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About this book

Hybrid Knowledge in the Early East India Company World presents a new interpretation of the development of the English East India Company between 1660 and 1720. The book explores the connections between scholarship, patronage, diplomacy, trade, and colonial settlement in the early modern world. Links of patronage between cosmopolitan writers and collectors and scholars associated with the Royal Society of London and the universities are investigated. Winterbottom shows how innovative works of scholarship – covering natural history, ethnography, theology, linguistics, medicine, and agriculture - were created amid multi-directional struggles for supremacy in Asia, the Indian Ocean and the Atlantic. The role of non-elite actors including slaves in transferring knowledge and skills between settlements is explored in detail.

About the authors

Anna Winterbottom is British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Sussex, UK. She is co-editor of The East India Company and the Natural World and has published several journal articles and book chapters on topics related to the history of science and medicine, the Indian Ocean region, and colonial history.

Reviews

“The book focuses on the decades surrounding the turn of the eighteenth century… . Winterbottom handles this breadth of topics with great skill. Taken together, the chapters convey a much-needed picture of the geographically particularized modes of knowledge production under the East India Company umbrella. … The book is an excellent work of scholarship and a valuable addition to the growing literature on the culture and politics of knowledge production under the East India Company.” (Jessica Ratcliff, ISIS, Vol. 108 (4), December, 2017)


“This outstanding book explores the gathering and transfer of useful knowledge between the shifting horizons of the East India Company’s Asian ‘world’ and Britain during the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries … . Anna Winterbottom has produced a beautifully written, richly detailed, and well-structured monograph that is required reading for all those with an interest in the East India Company, as well as all students of global history in the early modern period.” (H. V. Bowen, Journal of Global History, Vol. 12 (2), July, 2017)

“Winterbottom’s is chronological, exploring the activities of the London-based East India Company in its first century of existence. … Winterbottom’s meticulous research shines through in the facility with which she covers the diversity of topics discussed in the book. … The references and bibliography, which comprise a third of the book’s total length, will undoubtedly prove to be a rich mine of information for future scholars and students of the subject.” (John McAleer, Archives of Natural History, Vol. 43 (2), October, 2016)


With this dazzling work Anna Winterbottom establishes herself as one of the leading historians of science, medicine and scholarship in cross-cultural perspective and points the way forward to global social histories of knowledge. Combining exquisite erudition with remarkable sensitivity to both the violence and contingency of colonial encounters, she transforms our understanding of the early English East India Company's South and East Asian entanglements, leading us beyond company archives out into the worlds of go-betweens and interlopers who trafficked in hybrid knowledge made by the very process of encounter. Through penetrating analysis of natural history, medicine, ethnography, comparative religion, linguistic studies and questions of race and slavery, Winterbottom illuminates the neglected origins of British Orientalism before the eighteenth century. This stunning debut announces a brilliant talent and makes major contributions to the study of science, medicine and scholarship, South and East Asia, and global early modernity.' – James Delbourgo, Rutgers University, USA

Table of contents (8 chapters)

Table of contents (8 chapters)
  • Introduction: Patronage and the Politics of Knowledge

    Winterbottom, Anna

    Pages 1-25

  • Curious Collectors and Infamous Interlopers: Samuel Baron and the EIC Settlements in Southeast and East Asia

    Winterbottom, Anna

    Pages 26-53

  • Linguistic Landscapes: Early English Studies of Malay and the EIC in Maritime Southeast Asia

    Winterbottom, Anna

    Pages 54-81

  • Toleration and Translation: English Versions of Two Hindu Texts from Bengal

    Winterbottom, Anna

    Pages 82-111

  • Botanical and Medical Networks: Madras through the Collections of Two EIC Surgeons

    Winterbottom, Anna

    Pages 112-139

Buy this book

eBook $84.99
price for USA (gross)
  • ISBN 978-1-137-38020-3
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: EPUB, PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $109.99
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-1-137-38019-7
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.

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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Hybrid Knowledge in the Early East India Company World
Authors
Series Title
Cambridge Imperial and Post-Colonial Studies Series
Copyright
2016
Publisher
Palgrave Macmillan UK
Copyright Holder
The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s)
eBook ISBN
978-1-137-38020-3
DOI
10.1057/9781137380203
Hardcover ISBN
978-1-137-38019-7
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XII, 324
Topics