Pondicherry in the Era of the French Revolution 1785–1793 Part 2: The Heights and the Fall 1791–1793
- Číslo 2 
PublisherUniverzita Karlova, Filozofická fakulta
SourcePrague Papers on the History of International Relations, 2018, 2, 61-77
History of India, the French Revolution in Colonies, History of East India Companies, British-French Struggle for India, French Colonial Imperium in Asia
The study is a continuation of the same author’s contribution published on the pages of this periodical. It is devoted to the development of Pondicherry during the French Revolution, in the years 1791–1793. The course of the Revolution in French Indian colonies was dynamized by primary milestones of the development in France whose impact in each of the colonies was different in dependence on social composition and the character of economy. The development in Pondicherry was relatively calm, but was in substantial way influenced by conflicts with other factories, especially Chandernagore in Bengal and headquarters of all French colonies in Indian Ocean on the Mascarene Islands. It was concentrated on satisfying the requirements of democratization, and was free of revolutionary excesses. In principle, the loyalty towards the King, and the law and authorities in Paris remained. The main point of disputes was the question of involving classes of Indians and Eurasians into political process. While requests of the half-breeds had been accepted, crowds of Indian citizens remained beyond the politic structure despite the role they had in the economic life of the colony. But the local French elites were aware the value of this population for France, therefore attempted to find a sort of modus vivendi. The indigenous population was perceived as the population of another country and another culture, could not become French nationals, but its interests had to be taken into account. Nevertheless this concept did not get a chance to develop as a result of British action against the French colonies. Pondicherry remained virtually abandoned in this fight by Paris as well as its superiors from Port Louis. This fact after the surrender lead inevitably to an anti-revolutionary reaction among the inhabitants. The fall of Pondicherry did not result from the consequences of the French Revolution, but from the presumed British worries over the French re-expansion in India. The framework of the British action should be retrieved therefore in previous development. As a result of this operation Pondicherry definitely lost its importance.