Cover image for Army of empire : the untold story of the Indian Army in World War I / George Morton-Jack.
Title:
Army of empire : the untold story of the Indian Army in World War I / George Morton-Jack.
ISBN:
9780465094042
Edition:
First U.S. edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Basic Books, [2018]

©2018
Physical Description:
582 pages, 16 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations, maps ; 25 cm
Abstract:
Drawing on untapped new sources, the first global history of the Indian Expeditionary Forces in World War I. While their story is almost always overlooked, the 1.5 million Indian soldiers who served the British Empire in World War I played a crucial role in the eventual Allied victory. Despite their sacrifices, Indian troops received mixed reactions from their allies and their enemies alike--some were treated as liberating heroes, some as mercenaries and conquerors themselves, and all as racial inferiors and a threat to white supremacy. Yet even as they fought as imperial troops under the British flag, their broadened horizons fired in them new hopes of racial equality and freedom on the path to Indian independence. Drawing on freshly uncovered interviews with members of the Indian Army in Iraq and elsewhere, historian George Morton-Jack paints a deeply human story of courage, colonization, and racism, and finally gives these men their rightful place in history.
Holds:
Copies:

Available:*

Copy
Library
Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Status
1
Searching...
940.41254 MOR Book Adult General Collection
Searching...

On Order

Summary

Summary

Drawing on untapped new sources, the first global history of the Indian Expeditionary Forces in World War I

While their story is almost always overlooked, the 1.5 million Indian soldiers who served the British Empire in World War I played a crucial role in the eventual Allied victory. Despite their sacrifices, Indian troops received mixed reactions from their allies and their enemies alike-some were treated as liberating heroes, some as mercenaries and conquerors themselves, and all as racial inferiors and a threat to white supremacy. Yet even as they fought as imperial troops under the British flag, their broadened horizons fired in them new hopes of racial equality and freedom on the path to Indian independence.

Drawing on freshly uncovered interviews with members of the Indian Army in Iraq and elsewhere, historian George Morton-Jack paints a deeply human story of courage, colonization, and racism, and finally gives these men their rightful place in history.



Author Notes

George Morton-Jack studied at Oxford University and currently works as a lawyer in London. The author of The Indian Army on the Western Front , he lives in Bristol, UK.


Reviews 1

Publisher's Weekly Review

In this massive, masterful history, author and lawyer Morton-Jack (The Indian Army on the Western Front) illuminates the WWI contributions of the far-flung, multicultural Indian army. He tells "not only of the Indians' part in the Allied victory over the Central Powers, but also of soldiers' personal discoveries on their four-year odyssey." He mines previously unpublished letters and postwar interviews to reveal how Indian officers and enlisted men, as British colonial subjects and people of color, experienced military life. He writes with authority about the wrenching battles of Ypres, Gallipoli, Kut, the Somme, and East Africa, expertly weaving in how soldiers' political loyalty and Muslim soldiers' interest in jihad affected military campaigns. By war's end, the Indians' sense of unity with the British barely masked growing nationalist sentiment on the subcontinent. This book is essential for devotees of WWI military history and those fascinated by the complexities of empire. Illus. (Dec.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.


Table of Contents

Mapsp. v
Introductionp. 1
Part 1 The Road to World War
1 'The peasant's university'p. 31
2 'Inferiors in the scale of humanity'p. 51
3 'He merely obeys orders'p. 74
Part 2 1914
4 'Vivent les Hindous!'p. 99
5 'In the nick of time'p. 121
6 'The riff-raff'p. 142
7 That God-forsaken ground'p. 158
8 'Enterprises and surprises'p. 174
Part 3 1915
9 'An anti-British crusade'p. 191
10 'I could not bear the news'p. 204
11 'Just like the photos'p. 222
12 'Keskersay'p. 243
13 'As when the leaves fall off a tree'p. 266
Part 4 1916
14 'The Pasha of Baghdad'p. 291
15 'A tin full of kerosene'p. 314
16 'Looking for Germans'p. 333
Part 5 1917
17 'A cemetery of reputations'p. 355
18 'An ambulating refrigerator'p. 366
19 'No longer a Cinderella'p. 383
20 'Why did I leave my little trench in France?'p. 394
21 'Bonjour petite fille Louise'p. 406
Part 6 1918
22 'The political self-development of the people'p. 431
23 'We alone have got to keep Southern Asia'p. 450
24 'Each one of us must fight on to the end'p. 464
Part 7 Veterans
25 'Which side their bread is buttered'p. 491
Epiloguep. 517
Note on names and placesp. 529
Endnotesp. 530
Glossaryp. 551
Dramatis Personaep. 557
Acknowledgementsp. 562
Indexp. 563
Illustrations appear after page 288.