Portugal and Portuguese India, 1870-1961
Very little has been written on the history of Goa in the nineteenth and
twentieth centuries prior to the annexation of the territory by the Indian
Union in 1961. This study therefore focuses on the period from the
1870's to the end of Portuguese rule, using sources in Portuguese and
English. It addresses the following topics in particular:
1) Portuguese perceptions of the colony in the period, the character of
Portuguese rule, and (to a lesser extent) the responses of Goan
2) Since the colony was not economically valuable to Portugal, the steps
taken to improve its situation, especially through the AngloPortuguese
Commercial Treaty of 1878, and the story of its failure.
3) The major investment by British capital in the Goa railway, and the
issues it faced in its history.
4) Other problems resulting from Goa's position as a dependant enclave
of British India, such as contraband and issues of security for British
India in the Second World war.
5) The differing British attitudes to Goa, and Britain's role as a reluctant
intermediary between Portugal and India.
6) The contrast between the evident Portuguese sentiment and feeling of
attachment to its foothold in Asia, and the lack of serious commitment
to its preservation.
7) The attitude of the Salazar government and its diplomatic struggle
with India to justify Portugal's retention of the territory as part of the
Portuguese family. The thesis shows that, despite the special nature of
the Goan culture, influenced over centuries of Portuguese rule, and by
the Catholic religion, a pattern of attitude and policy was set over
decades in Goa, in India, in Portugal and in Britain which helps
explain the absorption of Goa by India.