Caste, land, and labour in Jaffna: a survey and digitisation project in Sri Lankan agrarian history (EAP1450)

Aims and objectives

This 12-month pilot project will survey and digitise privately held records relating to caste, land ownership, and agricultural labour in Sri Lanka's Jaffna Peninsula, created prior to the island's independence in 1948. The survey seeks manuscript (paper and palm leaf) and printed material relating to the management and ownership of land, labour contracts, and agricultural records. Digitisation will commence with the manuscript collection of William Digby (1849–1904), a late-nineteenth century British author and political organizer who was a vociferous advocate for the reform of British policy in India and intervention in South Asian agrarian poverty.