ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846
-A A +A

The Rebel Army in 1857

Debate persists as to the role of the Company's soldiers in the events of 1857. There were several regiments that were at the head of the resistance against the British, but as this paper argues, in very many instances, their resistance was not representative of wider class and caste interests. A reading of the mutiny across its many centres reveals that the sepoys' resistance, while largely unplanned and even spontaneous, did not reflect the desire to reimpose the traditional order of things, or to even espouse the interests of the old peasant society from which many of them, especially those in the Bengal army, hailed. Moreover, there were also signs that the institutions or the initial order the sepoys sought to establish in centres such as Delhi or Gwalior were more "democratic" and egalitarian in character.

Subscribers please login to access full text of the article.

New 3 Month Subscription
to Digital Archives at

826for India

$50for overseas users

Get instant access to the complete EPW archives

Subscribe now


(-) Hide

EPW looks forward to your comments. Please note that comments are moderated as per our comments policy. They may take some time to appear. A comment, if suitable, may be selected for publication in the Letters pages of EPW.

Back to Top