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Sudev Sheth, "Bankrolling Empire: Family Fortunes and Political Transformation in Mughal India" (Cambridge UP, 2024)

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In this colorful book, historian Sudev Sheth traces how a family of diamond dealers deployed wealth to play off political leaders and survive the collapse of the Mughal Empire. The story highlights the unique role played by Jain and Hindu bankers in the daily affairs of Islamic, Hindu, and early colonial forms of Indian government.

Bankrolling Empire: Family Fortunes and Political Transformation in Mughal India (Cambridge UP, 2024) features brazen emperors, sickly princes, irate governors, and quick-witted matriarchs who commanded banking networks across cities. It explores unlikely rivalries, flaky friendships, and daring tycoons who gambled vast sums as a way to hedge against political uncertainty.

Sheth employs unconventional sources to tap into the thrilling lives of moneyed persons. Excerpts from Persian diaries, Gujarati poems, French trading manuals, Marathi letters, Sanskrit hymns, and Dutch shipping records tell new tales and are presented in English translation for the very first time.

Spanning several political dynasties and still thriving today as a billion-dollar family firm in its fourteenth generation, the entrepreneurs featured in this book help us see state power and social change through fresh eyes. How did capitalists outsmart politicians, and what insights can we gain for our own times?

You can get 20% off the price of this book with code BRE2023 at Cambridge University Press.

Brittany Puller is a PhD candidate in the department of Asian Languages and Cultures at the University of Michigan. Her dissertation examines caste, kinship, and community in the making of Sikh misls in eighteenth-century Punjab.

Arighna Gupta is a doctoral candidate in history at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. His dissertation attempts to trace early-colonial genealogies of popular sovereignty located at the interstices of monarchical, religious, and colonial sovereignties in India and present-day Bangladesh.

Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/indian-ocean-world

  continue reading

124 episodes

Artwork
iconShare
 
Manage episode 414291298 series 2917051
Content provided by New Books Network. All podcast content including episodes, graphics, and podcast descriptions are uploaded and provided directly by New Books Network or their podcast platform partner. If you believe someone is using your copyrighted work without your permission, you can follow the process outlined here https://player.fm/legal.

In this colorful book, historian Sudev Sheth traces how a family of diamond dealers deployed wealth to play off political leaders and survive the collapse of the Mughal Empire. The story highlights the unique role played by Jain and Hindu bankers in the daily affairs of Islamic, Hindu, and early colonial forms of Indian government.

Bankrolling Empire: Family Fortunes and Political Transformation in Mughal India (Cambridge UP, 2024) features brazen emperors, sickly princes, irate governors, and quick-witted matriarchs who commanded banking networks across cities. It explores unlikely rivalries, flaky friendships, and daring tycoons who gambled vast sums as a way to hedge against political uncertainty.

Sheth employs unconventional sources to tap into the thrilling lives of moneyed persons. Excerpts from Persian diaries, Gujarati poems, French trading manuals, Marathi letters, Sanskrit hymns, and Dutch shipping records tell new tales and are presented in English translation for the very first time.

Spanning several political dynasties and still thriving today as a billion-dollar family firm in its fourteenth generation, the entrepreneurs featured in this book help us see state power and social change through fresh eyes. How did capitalists outsmart politicians, and what insights can we gain for our own times?

You can get 20% off the price of this book with code BRE2023 at Cambridge University Press.

Brittany Puller is a PhD candidate in the department of Asian Languages and Cultures at the University of Michigan. Her dissertation examines caste, kinship, and community in the making of Sikh misls in eighteenth-century Punjab.

Arighna Gupta is a doctoral candidate in history at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. His dissertation attempts to trace early-colonial genealogies of popular sovereignty located at the interstices of monarchical, religious, and colonial sovereignties in India and present-day Bangladesh.

Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/indian-ocean-world

  continue reading

124 episodes

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