MILL, James

MILL (born Milne), James. Logie Pert, Angus 6.4.1773 — Kensington 23.6.1836. British Scots) Politician, Philosopher, and Historian of Colonial India. “Son of a shoemaker, educated at Montrose Academy and Edinburgh University, studied philosophy. Was licensed as a preacher in 1798, and became a tutor. Went to London in 1802, for a literary career… He … held pronounced views on political economy, utilitarianism, etc, has been called the founder of Philosophic Radicalism. He was appointed to the India Office in 1819 as an Assistant Examiner of Correspondence, and by 1830 was at the head of the office, and had great influence with his official superiors. Before the renewal of the E.I.Co’s charter in 1833 he was examined for days before the House of Commons Committee, and did not advocate the application of his advanced views to India.” Married, father of the philosopher John Stuart Mill (1806–1873).

Mill’s history is, while well documented and informed about the development of the British power in India, characterised by his one-sided and prejudiced, extremely negative opinion of Indian people, religion and civilization. It was much appreciated by historians, but severely criticized by many Indologists.

Publications: History of British India. 1-6. L. 1806-18 and further editions, abridged ed. with introd. by W. Thomas. 47+599 p. Chicago 1975..

articles in periodicals and in the Encyclopaedia Britannica.

Elements of Political Economy. 1821; Analysis of the Phenomena of the Human Mind. 1829; A Fragment on Mackintosh. 1835.

Sources: Buckland, Dictionary; Wikipedia (also a separate article on his History).

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