Caste, Colonialism and Schooling: Education in British India
27 Pages Posted: 19 Jun 2012
Date Written: May 2012
This chapter reviews the development of enrollment and literacy in the colonial period with a focus on British India. Beginning in the 1850’s numerous acts were passed, various recommendations were made, and public and private funds were used to increase mass literacy. But, the outcome was disappointing — only 10 percent of the population could read and write by 1931. I identify potential factors responsible for this disappointing performance. Low public spending, a strong emphasis on secondary education and the presence of numerous castes and religions collectively appear to have constrained the development of human capital in India.
Keywords: Colonia India, Education, Returns, Caste
JEL Classification: N35, N45, O15, I24
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation