Competing masculinities
The Public Service Commission, 1886–87
in Colonial masculinity
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The Public Service Commission was both a response to the native civil service agitation and an attempt at containing it. The Public Service Commission was constituted specifically to respond to the failure in the system of statutory nominations and the subsequent impasse in the appointment of natives to senior administrative posts, offered a new basis for civil service reform. For the imperial representation of 'English' masculinity during the Public Service Commission, as compared to the specifically sectarian representation of Bengali or Hindu effeminacy, precluded any expression of doubt about the British civil servant. It was to discredit native claims to the representative status of 'Indians' that the 'Bengali phobia' was deployed most effectively in the deliberations of the Public Service Commission. The Public Service Commission made the basis of British domination of the civil service more than ever before dependent upon a sectarian elaboration of colonial masculinity.

Colonial masculinity

The ‘Manly Englishman’ and the ‘Effeminate Bengali’ in the Late Nineteenth Century


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