Tirthankar Roy

in Company of Kinsmen

Published in print March 2010 | ISBN: 9780198063780
Published online October 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199080144 | DOI:

Show Summary Details


This chapter examines the link between new work opportunities, managerial paradigms, collective bargaining, and organized labour supply in India. Between 1800 and 1920, millions of people deserted their homes and jobs to find employment opportunities in new enterprises inside India and overseas. The employment of wage workers increased dramatically in scale and diversity during the colonial period. In the nineteenth century, migrant labourers formed nothing like a traditional social unit and were predominantly males who had left their families and villages behind. Migrant labourers formed teams in the plantations and textile factories around headmen, and this team concept was used by the employers to introduce supervision and training. This transformation is analysed by focusing on four case studies — eighteenth-century port cities, indentured workers to Mauritius in the early nineteenth century, Assam tea workers in the late nineteenth century, and cotton mill labourers in Bombay in the interwar period.

Keywords: India; collective bargaining; labour supply; wage workers; migrant labourers; mill labourers; port cities; indentured workers; tea workers; plantations

Chapter.  13964 words.  Illustrated.

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Oxford University Press »

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.