Biplab Dasgupta, London: Anthem Press, 2005. 398 pages.
European Trade and Colonial Conquest is authored by Biplab Dasgupta, a renowned political and social activist from Calcutta who taught economics at Calcutta University and was a member of the Parliament of India for several years. He has authored many books on various aspects of India’s socioeconomic and political life in the post-independence era, such as the oil industry, the Naxalite movements, trends in Indian politics, labor issues and globalization, agrarian change and technology, rural change, urbanization, and migration. The present book primarily focuses on the evolution of Bengal’s economy and society over the precolonial period, beginning from prehistoric days. Even though there are writings on Bengal’s colonial history, we know very little about its precolonial past except for the names of kings, the chronology of dynasties, and scattered references to urban settlements.