Is there any truth in the story that the morality of the servants of the Dutch East India Company in the eighteenth century was so rotten that one should believe the Dutch maxim ‘Vergaan Onder Corruptie’ – in translation something like ‘Succumbed to Corruption’ – and use this as an explanation for a very complex phenomenon? Chris Nierstrasz introduces us in his
In the Shadow of the Company, to the realities of the decision makers and of the servants in the field. Responding to the changing realities in Asia, the Company could only try to use the mercantile potential of its higher echelons to postpone its downfall. In a situation in which the directors were not able to increase investment from Holland, the servants in Asia were forced to take up the challenge.