A focal study of the methodological changes that confront historians of pre-colonial India.
Published by Anthem Press on 07/20/2019
Book details: 259 pages.
Contributed seminar papers.
Published by Pearson Education India on 07/20/2019
Book details: 305 pages.
A Sourcebook of Indian Civilization aims at familiarising its readers with the various aspects that go into the making of the history of Indian civilisation. The arrangement of the material in the chapters and selections conform to a rationally conceived and planned scheme of history. The contents of the book presents an extensive view of Indian life and thought.
Published by Orient Blackswan on 07/20/2019
Book details: 673 pages.
This exploration of key terms related to social and political order, found in early Indian texts, challenges the idea of a unified ancient India and a unified national identity at that time. This collection explores what may be called the idea of India in ancient times. Its undeclared objective is to identify key concepts which show early Indian civilization as distinct and differently oriented from other formations. The essays focus on ancient Indian texts within a variety of genres. They identify certain key terms—such as janapada, desa, varṇa, dharma, bhāva—in their empirical contexts to suggest that neither the ideas embedded in these terms nor the idea of Bharatavarsha as a whole are “given entities,” but that they evolved historically. Professor Chattopadhyaya examines these texts to unveil historical processes. Without denying comparative history, he stresses that the internal dynamics of a society are best decoded via its own texts. His approach bears very effectively on understanding ongoing interactions between India’s “Great Tradition” and “Little Traditions.” As a whole, this book is critical of the notion of overarching Indian unity in the ancient period. It punctures the retrospective thrust of hegemonic nationalism as an ideology that has obscured the diverse textures of Indian civilization. Renowned for his scholarship on the ancient Indian past, Professor Chattopadhyaya’s latest collection only consolidates his high international reputation.
Published by SUNY Press on 08/23/2018
Book details: 250 pages.
This book presents a comprehensive survey of warfare in India up to the point where the British began to dominate the sub-continent. It discusses issues such as how far was the relatively bloodless nature of pre-British Indian warfare the product of stateless Indian society? How far did technology determine the dynamics of warfare in India? Did warfare in this period have a particular Indian nature and was it ritualistic? The book considers land warfare including sieges, naval warfare, the impact of horses, elephants and gunpowder, and the differences made by the arrival of Muslim rulers and by the influx of other foreign influences and techniques. The book concludes by arguing that the presence of standing professional armies supported by centralised bureaucratic states have been underemphasised in the history of India.
Published by Routledge on 06/03/2015
Book details: 258 pages.
Religious icons have been a contested terrain across the world. Their implications and understanding travel further than the artistic or the aesthetic and inform contemporary preoccupations.This book traces the lives of religious sculptures beyond the moment of their creation. It lays bare their purpose and evolution by contextualising them in their original architectural or ritual setting while also following their displacement. The work examines how these images may have moved during different spates of temple renovation and acquired new identities by being relocated either within sacred precincts or in private collections and museums, art markets or even desecrated and lost. The book highlights contentious issues in Indian archaeology such as renegotiating identities of religious images, reuse and sharing of sacred space by adherents of different faiths, rebuilding of temples and consequent reinvention of these sites. The author also engages with postcolonial debates surrounding history writing and knowledge creation in British India and how colonial archaeology, archival practices, official surveys and institutionalisation of museums has influenced the current understanding of religion, sacred space and religious icons. In doing so it bridges the historiographical divide between the ancient and the modern as well as socio-religious practices and their institutional memory and preservation. Drawn from a wide-ranging and interdisciplinary study of religious sculptures, classical texts, colonial archival records, British travelogues, official correspondences and fieldwork, the book will interest scholars and researchers of history, archaeology, religion, art history, museums studies, South Asian studies and Buddhist studies.
Published by Taylor & Francis on 10/05/2017
Book details: 372 pages.
Written by well-known scholars, the eleven essays in this book present sub-cultures in diverse regional settings of the subcontinent. The contribution suggest that culture does not exist as fragments of the “great” and “little”, or “classic” and “folk” in any given tradition. In fact, variants within a given tradition interact with one another and assimilate new characteristics over time. These interactions also take place across boundaries of different religious and cultural spheres, and in the process, give meaning to the notions of the ‘self’ and the ‘other’. These readings introduce a new way of understanding medieval Indian history by engaging with interdisciplinary methods of research on issues that are significant to everyday existence in a plural society like that of India.
Published by Berghahn Books on 07/20/2019
Book details: 248 pages.
The book analyses the transition from the ancient to the medieval period in polity, economy, the caste system and culture. It examines the form of peasant protest and the reasons for their failure and infrequency. The author also examines the development of tantrism and the mentality that feudalism created.
Published by Orient Blackswan on 01/01/2003
Book details: 374 pages.
Not many people know that the busy and bustling capital city of Delhi and its surroundings have a long past, going back thousands of years. Prehistoric stone tools have surfaced here and many ancient remains have been found, sometimes accidentally by farmers tilling their fields, and at other times by archaeologists carrying out systematic excavations. A mound one passes everyday or a narrow strip of stream tells a story of ancient times. Centuries of history coexist with metro stations and plush cars. The readings in this book give us glimpses of the lives of people who lived in the Delhi area over the centuries, and how these details have been pieced together by historians. It brings into focus the importance of the historian’s method and the sources of information found in ancient texts, archaeology and even legends and folklore, sometimes hanging on the thread of a slender historical fact. The editor of the volume, points to the urgency of further exploration and documentation to fill in the still all-too-meagre details of Delhi’s ancient history. However, she ends on a note of caution, bordering on alarm, when she points out that invaluable evidence of the city’s past is being extensively destroyed due to quarrying and the construction of new roads and buildings. Such activities are an integral part of the modernization of a living city but the balance between modernization and the preservation of ancient remains is indeed very fragile and needs to be maintained from an informed and realistic perspective. This collection of essays has been put together by a teacher for students of history, but will also be of enormous value to a large number of other interested readers. Upinder Singhis Professor of history at the University of Delhi.
Published by Berghahn Books on 07/20/2019
Book details: 227 pages.
Despite the rapid spread of Buddhism the historical origins of Buddhsit thought and practice remain obscure.This work describes the genesis of the Tantric movement and in some ways an example of the feudalization of Indian society. Drawing on primary documents from sanskrit, prakrit, tibetan, Bengali, and chinese author shows how changes in medieval Indian society, including economic and patronage crises, a decline in women`s participation and the formation of large monastic orders led to the rise of the esoteric tradition in India.
Published by Motilal Banarsidass Publ. on 07/20/2019
Book details: 475 pages.